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Last Updated: June 16, 2024

LSAT- The Law School Admission Test

LSAT is a standardized test developed by the Law School Admission Council (LSAC) to help students gain admission into JD programs in the US, Canada, and a few other countries. The test takes around 3 hours to be completed. It contains sections like reading comprehension, analytical reasoning, logical reasoning, and even a writing section.

Though the American Bar Association has waived off the necessity for the LSAT in colleges, the exam continues to be an integral part of getting admission to law schools in many countries. The exam focuses on analyzing the ability of the student to thrive in a law school setup and has been proven to outshine the results that GPAs portray since the variables associated with GPA are far too many when compared to that of the LSAT.

Some colleges have eliminated the need for the LSAT in cases where the student has received a constant GPA of 3.8 or above. This exam is administered in two parts where the former is graded and the latter is not graded but included in the score report for the perusal of the admission council in colleges. The exam has been converted into an online, proctored one given the importance of the test and according to their official website, it will continue to be administered online until June 2023.

How is LSAT Administered?

The Law School Admission Test (LSAT) consists of four sections, which are administered through LawHub. The Writing section, however, is not graded and is available to the students up to 8 days before the scheduled test date, making it easier for them. As of August 2023, the multiple-choice portion will be proctored via Prometric, whether the candidate chooses to take the test at a designated test center or remotely. LSAT Writing, on the other hand, continues to be administered by ProctorU.The option to take the test, whether in person or remotely, is offered in response to the valuable feedback received from test takers. This endeavor aims to grant individuals the autonomy to select the modality that suits them most favorably. Students can register for any of the available test dates online and can attempt the multiple-choice section during their allotted time.

Students will require the following things to take the LSAT online-

Registering for LSAT

Candidates who wish to register for the LSAT will have to create an account on the official website of LSAC by providing their email address and creating a username and password for the same. They will also have to provide their name and other personal details to complete the process. Once they have completed the initial process, they will receive an email verification. After the verification, they can successfully register for the exam at a date of their choice.

Eligibility Requirements for LSAT

There is no eligibility requirement to take the LSAT. There is no age limit or educational qualification required. Anyone take the test, though it is preferably taken by students who have either completed or are in their final year of a Bachelor's degree. Some unspoken and commonly understood requirements for the test are that the student has the financial means to pay for the test and is fluent in the English language.

Starting from the August 2023 examination implementation, individuals wishing to take the LSAT will be allowed to do so:

Cost of LSAT and CAS

The basic fee for LSAT including the fee for LSAT writing is $238. Subscription to CAS is $207. The CAS or Credential Assembly Service is a system created by the LSAC where students can upload their undergrad work, transcripts, letters of recommendation, and all the information that they would like to send to the universities with their LSAT scores. CAS will arrange and organize all this information and send it with the score report to all the colleges that the student chooses. Each report costs $45. Fees charged for other services are-
Test Date Change$145 (up to 7 days after the registration deadline)
$238 (anytime thereafter till the day before the test)
Score Preview$45 (before first day of testing)
$80 (after testing concludes)
Score Audit$150 (or $75 if the candidate has been pre-approved for a fee waiver)
Retaking LSAT$238 (same as registration fee)

Test Dates and Schedule for LSAT

Candidates are expected to register for the LSAT approximately one month before the registration deadline. The exam is conducted during January and February in winter; April and June in spring; and November in fall. These months are prone to change every year. The updated list of test dates can be found HERE.

It is recommended that candidates cross-check the requirements of the universities they are applying to before registering for the LSAT. Students will also have to consider a date that will allow them to send applications to their universities of choice after the results have been declared giving them enough time to take a retest if they so require it.

Structure of LSAT

The LSAT exam consists mainly of two parts- the first part is a multiple-choice section and the second part is a written essay.

The multiple-choice section of the test includes 3 scored subsections and 1 unscored subsection that can be in the format of any of the three scored subsections, namely-
SectionNumber of QuestionsTime Duration
Reading Comprehension25-26 questions35 minutes
Analytical Reasoning27-28 questions35 minutes
Logical Reasoning 25-26 questions 35 minutes
Variable Section (unscored)VariableVariable
The second part of the test is comprised of a writing section where a decision problem will be provided and the candidate will have to take a stand and defend the choice they have made. The section has been designed to understand the persuasion skills of the candidate and the arguments they can create whether for or against the cause that has been mentioned. There is no right or wrong choice in this section. The qualities that are evaluated through this unscored writing section are their reasoning ability, language use, and writing skills including clarity and organizational skills. Though the writing section is not graded, it will be included as a part of the score report and sent to schools where they will be able to evaluate the candidate based on what they have written. The writing section can be attempted up to 8 days before the exam date.
SectionNumber of QuestionsTime Duration
Writing1 scenario35 minutes

Changes in August 2024

August 2024 will see a change in the LSAT's structure. Another Logical Reasoning section will take the place of the Analytical Reasoning section in the multiple-choice section. In this method, the test will have two portions for scored reading comprehension and two sections for scored logical reasoning, in addition to one unscored section for either reading comprehension or logical reasoning.

In the upcoming Argumentative Writing Section, which is set to replace the previous LSAT Writing Section, examinees will be presented with a controversial topic that encompasses multiple perspectives. Following a fifteen-minute review of these viewpoints, students will have thirty-five minutes to compose an argumentative essay that articulates their own stance while acknowledging the strengths and weaknesses of opposing arguments. This section will be conducted solely online, in a proctored and on-demand environment, utilizing secure proctoring software installed on the test taker's computer.
Students can find out more about the syllabus and format by clicking on this link.

LSAT Scores

The LSAT score is valid for a total of 5 years after the test has been taken. The score range for LSAT ranges between 120 and 180 where 120 is the lowest possible score attainable and 180 is the highest score. The scores candidates receive for each question they answer is called a raw score which will not be visible on the score report. The raw score is converted into an LSAT-scaled score which will be between 120 and 180. The LSAT score range will remain consistent despite the modifications that will take effect in August 2024.

The average score is 150 but a good score that will allow the candidate to enter into top law schools would be around 160, Due to the competition surrounding the examination, most students aim for a score between 170-180 to be able to enter a good college.

Preparing for the LSAT

The LSAC recommends devoting enough time for preparation, as test scores are seen to be directly proportional to prep time. It is important to give one's best for the test, as the LSAT score, along with the undergraduate GPA, is the most important deciding factor in the application. In general, most students spend around three to four months preparing for the test. LSAC has released prep materials and practice tests to help students with LSAT prep. The pattern of the test remains consistent year after year and hence candidates can refer to previous tests for a general idea of the challenge. There are many books that students can refer to. Attempting practice tests also helps to estimate how much time to spend on each section. Some prep companies have obtained licensed LSAC test questions. However, these are independent agencies and are not monitored by LSAC.

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