If you want to get into law school, you will have to take the LSAT. The LSAT, or Law School Admission Test, is administered four times a year by the LSAC or Law School Admission Council. It was first brought about in 1948 to give law schools a way to test student readiness outside of their GPA. You cannot take the LSAT more than three times within two years, so it helps to be prepared when you take it the first time. The highest score is 180 and the lowest is 120. Most students aim for around 170 to get into a top-tier law school. However, the average score is 150 and with a good GPA, you can still get into a reputable law school. As of 2013, the average cost to take the LSAT is $165. You are also timed. There are six sections, and you are given 35 minutes to finish each for a total of three hours and 30 minutes. This can be daunting to some, so read on for tips on LSAT prep. With a good plan, you can truly go farther than you have ever dreamed. There are fully comprehensive online LSAT prep courses to help you do so.
Take a Class There are many courses that will help you prepare for the LSAT. When you take an online course, you get the benefit of one-on-one instruction with no distractions. Moreover, you can replay sections that you might need more time to understand. In addition, it helps to have someone who can guide you through the process, especially if you have never taken nor studied for the LSAT. Even if you have family members or friends with experience, they are not 100 percent focused on teaching you how to prepare, because that is not their job. On the other hand, a class is designed specifically to help you succeed. If the professor does not achieve their goals, then they may no longer have a class to teach. Try an online LSAT prep course because you will have an advantage when it comes to testing time.
Study Early The last thing you want to do is feel unprepared before the test. Remember, you will be at the test quarters for a minimum of three and a half hours. That time frame has a psychological effect that requires nerves of steel.
The longer you have to study, the better off you will be. However, there is a good middle ground. If you start too long ahead of the test, you could forget some of the things you have learned. It is best to start three months before the test. So, pick a date that suits you best and set it for three months out. Make sure that those three months are supremely dedicated to making your study a priority. Remember, if you want to become a lawyer, there are sacrifices you have to make. You can choose to work hard now and play later. Not to mention, it will give you time to determine you weaknesses so that you can overcome them before it is too late.
Take Practice Tests There are lots of practice tests you can purchase that are versions of actual tests given. The more recent the date, the better. Take one practice test before you start studying. It might be very difficult and confusing. However, it will point out your strengths and weaknesses. Note your score. Now, your goal is to study and practice in order to improve your score. Take mini tests for each section as you become more well-versed and comfortable with the parameters and format of the test. You want to take a practice test after each week or two of continuous study. Set aside several hours a day, five days a week, to improve. You will start to see improvement, which will build your confidence levels even more.
Study with an Objective The LSAT has different sections such as reading comprehension, logical reasoning (arguments) and analytical reasoning (logic games.) Many students find the analytical reasoning section the most difficult, but that can still vary. Here is a breakdown of the sections:
- Reading Comprehension
This section is significant because once you get to law school, you will be required to read hundreds of pages of cases every single week. The LSAC wants to know how good you are at reading comprehension. In addition, once you start working, you will have to read judgments that are quite long and with very a very dry and complex writing style. The reading comprehension is specifically formatted to test your ability to get through intricate parts of passages in order to notice key elements and their relationships with one another.
Each passage is between 400-500 words long. After reading, you will see a set of between 5-8 questions. For the reading comprehension section, there will be about four passages. It might look similar to the SAT reading comprehension section, but it will be more difficult. Your goal is to read quickly while still having the ability to understand the main points. Be careful because they are made so that they can be easy to miss. This is why it is critical to take a total LSAT prep, which you can take on your own time.
- Logical Reasoning
This section takes up about half of LSAT. That means you want to be sure you are confident in your performance regarding logical reasoning. There will be at least two logical reasoning sections. You have to convey the ability to skillfully take apart arguments. This is what lawyers do on a daily basis.
The text presented will be very dense. Not to mention, each section has between 24-26 sections, which you will have only 35 minutes to complete. So, you have to think accurately and quickly! Each passage can be up to four sentences long and have one corresponding question. You either need to find the conclusion of an argument or figure out the logical errors. They will be presented with logical errors on purpose to see if you can figure them out. However, there are step by step solutions you can use to help you breeze through them.
This is the section that seems to give students the most headaches. However, it shouldn’t because with enough practice; it can be the easiest to tackle and understand. The reason for the section is to test your ability to understand a system of relationships. Your objective is to deduce conclusions about the presented relationships. Furthermore, you have to draw intricate diagrams that represent the relationships given. A small mistake in your diagram or understanding can lead to error. Moreover, you have the pressure of time added to it. In addition, if you need help improving your probability skills, there are expert online courses to help you do so.
So, this might be the section you start studying for first. There will be about 24 questions associated with approximately four games. Each game comes with between five to eight questions. Each game can be put into one of several categories. They can be sequencing, grouping, matching or hybrids. The initial step should be determining what type of game it is. Then, you can figure out how to diagram the game and plug in the information given.
If the LSAT were easy, everyone would take it, and the world would be filled with lawyers. Nonetheless, if you feel the calling to this useful career, then understanding LSAT prep, in addition to time and discipline is critical. Do not let your lack of experience cause you to shy away from making the attempt. Every great accomplishment begins with the first step. As you continue to practice and study, you will find new methods of success that will lead to achieving your ultimate goal.