Summary: Use these four ways of preparing for your LSAT to ensure you get the timing right the first time.
Taking the Law School Admission Test is a crucial step in the law school admissions process. The score you receive will determine which schools you can even apply to and how competitive of an applicant you will be. Now there are even more factors to consider when preparing for the exam. Follow these four steps to help you prepare.
- Consider the LSAT or the GRE
There is a growing number of Law Schools that will accept GRE scores in place of LSAT scores. Look at which schools accept the alternative exam before deciding which test to take. It may be wise to take both tests in case you get a higher score on one test, but remember that your LSAT score will appear on your law school report. Starting this year, a number of the top law schools are accepting the GRE, with several more indicating that they plan to begin accepting the scores soon. Only take the LSAT if you are confident in your ability to score well.
The GRE is a computer-based test that is offered year-round across the globe. This makes the test much more available with more study options. The way the test is laid out is more comfortable for many compared to the LSAT. There is a math portion that tests arithmetic, geometry and algebra and a verbal reasoning portion that examines sentence completion and reading skills. Those with strong quantitative and vocabulary skills may do better on the GRE.
- Take your time
The Law School Admission Council has made a few changes to the test, including how many times a law school applicant can take the exam. Applicants were once restricted to taking the exam only three times, but now they can take it as many times as they would like. With that being said, potential law school applicants should still try to take the LSAT only once or twice. Since applicants should only try to take the test a couple times at the maximum, they should give themselves plenty of time to prepare. Don’t rush into taking the exam because you think you can take it again anyway and it doesn’t matter.
- Pick your schools
A lot of what and when you take your exam will depend on the law schools you plan on applying to. According to Michelle Kim Hall in a U.S. News article, Yale does not give an advantage to applicants that apply early, but other top schools like Columbia University and Berkeley do. Weigh factors like the time of year that you start considering law school as an option and how you feel about taking the LSAT or GRE with when your top pick law schools start and stop accepting applications.
- Plan accordingly
When you finally feel that you are prepared enough to take the exam, check your calendar to ensure you don’t have any other conflicts, whether academic, professional or personal. You may still be in college and have other exams around the same time that you will be studying for. Choosing a test date during a time of year when you don’t have classes is a better option. However, you also want to consider when the law schools you plan on applying to want to see applications. There are some law schools that want to see applications as early as possible, so if you think you may need to take it twice, allow yourself time to re-take the LSAT if necessary before applications are due.
Do you think the GRE is an accurate test of how students will do in law school? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below.
To learn more about the schools now accepting the GRE, read these articles:
- Cardozo School of Law Accepting GRE for 2018 Classes
- Brooklyn Law School To Accept GRE for Fall 2018
- BYU Law Will Accept the GRE for Fall 2018 Students