The LSAT is a big deal. Don’t believe me? Check out this post with the top LSAT scores from the top 100 law schools. While GPA and LSAT score are the most important part of your law school application, LSAT takes the cake. It’s really the only way law schools have of objectively analyzing a bunch of applications with a bunch of different students. So, here are five tips to help you get the best LSAT score possible.
1. Study the Logical Reasoning section twice as much as every other section.
I’ve written at length on this topic over at Magoosh. Here’s the cliffsnotes version. Most people won’t tell you this, but the LSAT is actually weighted. 50 percent of the exam is taken up by the Logical reasoning section. That’s big news if you know what to do with it.
There are officially four sections on the LSAT: 1. Reading Comprehension; 2. Logical Reasoning; 3. Analytical Reasoning; and 4. Logical Reasoning. In case you missed it, there are two logical reasoning sections.
That means if you can increase your average score in the logical reasoning portion, it will have double the impact of an equivalent increase in your average score in the other two sections. In other words, you’re looking at a 2 for 1 deal. Who could say no to that?
2. Take official tests, but don’t do it all at once.
The LSAT is great in that it gives you the chance to study actual test questions, answers, and explanations from the test creators. The point of taking these tests is to figure out what your strengths and weaknesses on the LSAT are. If you just start taking these tests in rapid succession, you may pick up some stuff, but you’ll be wasting your time. You’re better off taking 2 or 3 of them, figuring out what section you need to work on the most, and then going from there.
3. Give yourself at least 2 months to study.
The LSAT isn’t one of those exams you can just take. Lots of people have done just that. Unfortunately for them, you would be hard pressed to find a single person who actually liked their resulting score.
The LSAT it tough. It tests your ability to think logically, read carefully, and infer a bunch of stuff, all at the speed of light. There are a few habits you’re going to need to get in that head of yours before you take the test, and the only way that will happen is if you give yourself plenty of time to study.
I hesitate at recommending only two months, but hey, it’s what I did, and it turned out alright for me in the end.
4. Time your practice tests.
You have exactly 35 minutes to complete each section. That means you have roughly 1.45 minutes to complete every question. Your LSAT score doesn’t care if you mark an answer or not, and finishing early might not be the best thing for you. However, one thing is for sure, if you don’t finish the test, you’re missing out on potential points, especially since you don’t get docked points for incorrect answers.
5. Don’t study the night before the LSAT.
This last tip might not seem like a big deal, but it is. You might not believe this, but chances are, if you’ve been studying for a few months, you’re not going to learn anything groundbreaking the night before that you didn’t already know.
Do yourself a favor, and eat a nice early dinner, get to bed at a reasonable time, and get to the test center with plenty of time to spare in the morning. Your head will be clearer, and you’ll probably get a better score because you did.
Randall Floyd earned his JD from the University of Denver in 2013. He received his BA in Communications and Social Science from the University of Washington in 2010. Check out more of Randall’s articles and LSAT tips on the Magoosh LSAT blog.