For aspiring law school students, the LSAT is one hurdle that must be surpassed. However, if you are just beginning with your preparation, you may not know much regarding the test. It is integral to make sure you know as much as you can about the test before making your decisions. For instance, how difficult is the LSAT, and what is the best way to get ready for it?
If law school is your passion, then this article is for you. It will let you know everything you need to know about the difficulty of the LSAT and how to prepare for it.
How Hard is LSAT?
Law is not an absolute science. It revolves around logic, intelligence, precedents, reasoning, and the interpretation of ideas. To produce a test appropriate for screening aspiring lawyers, you must be able to test these facets of the profession. That is why the LSAT is not like a regular test, as there are few facts that you can read and regurgitate back on the paper. It takes a lot of thinking and application of concepts.
Without mincing words, yes, the LSAT is hard. If you have not yet exposed yourself to any practice questions or tests, you will find out that it is vastly different from any exam that you have probably taken up until now.
When you look at the number of study programs available to prepare for this exam, you will see the price tags that come attached to them. The fact that these courses are extremely popular, and some run for as long as a year of study, shows you how intense the preparation required for this exam can be. Only an exam which is difficult will require such intense work.
There are some factors which are the main culprits for the difficulty of this exam. Some of them can be worked on to improve your chances, but others are intrinsic to the test itself. These include the following:
With around 100 questions in each LSAT, you have 3 and a half hours to answer everything. For pretty much any other test you might have done up to this point, that is more than ample time.
However, considering the fact that LSAT questions are long and require a lot of thought before answering, you will realize that having less than 2 minutes on average to answer each question is part of what makes this grueling.
As earlier mentioned, the LSAT is a test unlike any most people have ever done. There are three main segments to the test. These are Reading comprehension, and the two reasoning sections: Analytical and Logical.
These segments have long questions with a lot of information, which require proper analysis. And unlike other exams, the answers are not necessarily in a book that you’ve read beforehand.
Limit on Number of Attempts
The LSAT is an integral test in the journey towards becoming a lawyer. The fact that it is the obstacle that must be passed by law school aspirants makes it hold a lot of importance in their minds.
However, it is even more stressful when you realize that the test can only be written a given number of times. This means that each potential failure is a step closer to losing the chance to become a lawyer. The following limitations are in place regarding the LSAT:
Limit on Number of Attempts1). The test can only be written three times in a year.
2). For each five-year period, it can only be attempted a total of five times. Whether it is one test every year for 5 years, or three tests in the first year and two in the second; you are only allowed 5 attempts in a period of 5 years.
3). You only get a total of 7 attempts at the test overall. This means that once you have failed the LSAT 7 times, you can never write it again. This prospect can be fearful to aspirants, and the higher the number of attempts, the more anxious and stressed out one will be for the exam.
How to Prepare For the LSAT
It has been established that the LSAT is a difficult test. If this hasn’t deterred you however, then it is likely that law school is something you are determined to go to. In that case, the next step is to figure out how to prepare in the most effective way. This section will inform you and help ensure you are ready for this hard test.
Start Your Preparation Early
You may have heard of some people who claim they only started preparing for the LSAT with weeks to spare and they aced it. Don’t attempt this. It’ll be better if you use too much time preparing than finding out that it’s not enough.
Depending on how much time you will be able to dedicate to studying per day, you may need to modify your preparation time. If you can manage at least 4 hours studying every day, then four months is ideal. If you are busy with other things though, then you may need to greatly extend your preparation time.
Do practice tests to familiarize with the test format. This will give more insight into how questions are framed. Official past LSAT questions are best for this. Grade yourself afterwards and note the questions you got wrong. Understand exactly what went wrong to avoid making the same mistake in the future.
Get a Prep Course
Use at least one LSAT prep course. These are a very useful companion. They will help you understand how to break down some concepts, as well as providing you with practice tests. Some courses even give access to tutors.
The LSAT is definitely a difficult test and the analytical nature of the questions makes it unfamiliar to many. Regardless, it is still an essential part of law school admission. However, with proper preparation and practice, the LSAT will be a lot more familiar and a bit easier for you to conquer.
The lowest score that can be had on the test is 120 and the maximum is 180.
There are five sections consisting of multiple-choice questions, and a single timed essay section.
If you pass the LSAT, you can only use that score for five years. If that time elapses, you will need to write the test again.