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LSAT Information and LSAT Prep
The Law School Admission Test (LSAT) is a half-day standardized test required for admission to all ABA–approved law schools, most Canadian law schools, and many non–ABA–approved law schools. It provides a standard measure of acquired reading and verbal reasoning skills that law schools can use as one of several factors in assessing applicants. The test is administered four times a year in February, June, September/October and December at hundreds of locations around the world.
The LSAT consists of five sections:
Each section includes 22-28 questions and you are given 35 minutes per section. All questions are multiple choice and there are a total of 98-102 questions on the LSAT.
In addition to the above five sections there is a written section however this is not included as part of your final LSAT score. You have 35 minutes for the writing section.
Preparing for the LSAT
Here’s a quick guide on the LSAT and some of the common questions you may want answered.
How much time should I allocate to prepare for the LSAT?
The easy answer is… “it depends.” It depends on you, and how you study, where you’re starting from and where you want to get to.
If you’re looking for a rough guide, I’d say take 3 months and plan to put in 20-30 hours per week.
To get more precise, start by taking a practice LSAT exam. Check your score and compare it to admission requirements of the law schools you want to go to. If you’re already scoring as high as your chosen law schools require then you don’t need to do much work. If not then calculate the difference and use that as a guide to determine how much work you need to put in. A score improvement of about 5 points (on the 120-180 scale – see LSAT Score Conversions for more info) can often be achieved in a few weeks to a month. 5-10 points might take a month or two and 10-20 points or more may take 2 or more months. These are of course estimates and can change dramatically based on how you prepare and how your brain works with the LSAT.
Here’s a standard three months LSAT study schedule.
How should I prepare for the LSAT?
There are a number of prep options ranging from little or no prep (it works for some people) to spending thousands on courses and text books.
Here’s what I recommend:
Get a few LSAT practice exams and take them under timed conditions. The LSAT proctor / Timer can help you with the timing.
Check your score and see where you’re at. If you only need a few more points 1-5, then you can probably get away without spending any money on books or courses. Just get more practice LSAT exams and take them under timed conditions and then review the questions you get wrong until you fully understand why they were wrong and why the right answers are right.
If you’re looking for more than a 5 point increase then you probably need a course or book. Be careful about the books and courses as there is a wide range of instructional quality out there and even within the same test prep company you can have good and bad teachers. Here’s one course we recommend http://www.alphascore.com
How can I register for the LSAT?
You must register for the LSAT through the Law School Admissions Council at http://www.lsac.org
Is the LSAT the same in Canada and the United States?
Yes. The LSAT is an US based exam administered by LSAC and they offer exactly the same test around the world. The one exception is LSAT India which is a slightly different test. But in Canada, the US and everywhere else it is the same test.
How important is the LSAT?
Many law schools weight the LSAT equally with your entire undergraduate degree. It does seem a bit extreme to weigh one test equally with four years of study and grades, but the test is standardized and designed to test the skills necessary for law school. It is apparently still the single greatest indicator of success in law school. So in short, the LSAT is very important to your law school application. Often the most important part.
What other resources are there to help me prepare?
For more help check out AlphaScore.com