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 All About the LSAT

All About the LSAT

What is the LSAT?

The Law School Admission Test (LSAT) is a crucial part of the law school admission process in many countries. The LSAT, like most other admission exams, assesses key skills needed to be successful in the first years of law school. These skills align with the six portions of the exam entitled logical reasoning, reading comprehension, logic games, and the experimental and writing sections. The test results help admissions officers decide which candidates are best prepared for law school and thus influence their decisions on whom to let into the school.

The Breakdown of the LSAT Exam

The LSAT takes 3 and a half hours to complete. The test consists of six sections, each 35 minutes long with a 15-minute break after the third section. The first two sections of the exam are logical reasoning tests. Each section will contain 24-26 multiple choice questions that will measure an individual’s ability to determine the main points of an argument, analyze arguments, pick out important information, and apply logic to abstract ideas. This section is worth 50% of your total score because these sections are most applicable to the work of a law student.
The next section of the exam is logic games which test analytical reasoning. This section will contain 4 logic games with 4-7 multiple choice questions each that assesses one’s ability to examine relationships between concepts, analyze situations and draw conclusions based on guidelines, understand the effects of rules on decisions and apply logic to complex events. This section is worth 23% of your total score and many test-takers find this section the most challenging.
Next is the reading comprehension section which should be familiar if you’ve taken other standardized tests. In these passages, you may face unfamiliar prose and will need to understand the passage’s structure, perspective, and purpose rather than outside facts you know to be true. This section will contain 27 multiple choice questions based on 4 passages and test-takers will need to draw inferences, pick out the main idea and relevant information in complex, scholarly passages. This section is worth 27% of your total score and many test-takers find it difficult to improve in this section.
The experimental section of the LSAT is an unscored section of the exam used by test makers to see how questions will perform on future exams. This section can be either logical reasoning, logic games, or reading comprehension. The section is not scored so don’t waste time trying to identify it or get stressed out if you don’t know how to answer a question: this section is purely for research by the test makers and will not count towards your score.
Lastly, the LSAT exam includes a writing section. Test-takers must form an argument based on the given facts, support their argument, and use proper English and grammar. This section also isn’t scored but can be used by schools to choose between candidates with relatively equal credentials, so it’s extremely important!

How do I prepare for the LSAT?

Everyone has their method of studying and test preparation, but many find it useful to learn from those who have a greater knowledge of a subject. Miles Smart Tutoring offers a unique opportunity to work with tutors who know the exam inside and out and can provide LSAT section-specific assistance, as well as a plethora of test-taking strategies that are proven to be effective. The Miles Smart Tutoring approach includes reviewing and practicing LSAT questions in real-time (either in person or virtually) as well as learning time management skills and question answering strategies that will not only benefit you on LSAT exam but in the legal world and throughout life.

What is a good LSAT Score?

Three to four weeks after taking LSAT, you will receive a score ranging from 120-180. The average LSAT score is around 150 and if an applicant is satisfied with acceptance to any accredited law school, a score around average is sufficient. However, if an individual wants to enroll in a selective J.D. program that ranks among the top 10 or top 25 in the 2019 U.S. News Best Law Schools rankings, one should aim for a score of 160 or higher. For example, at Harvard University (MA), the median LSAT score for full-time students entering in fall 2019 was 173. This is an extremely high score that allows entrance into an extremely selective school, so there’s no need to fret if your LSAT score isn’t quite that high.

At the end of the day, LSAT is a vital first step towards a legal career, so make sure to take the time to adequately prepare for it and take it seriously. Best of luck!