Alright everyone, the October LSAT is right around the corner. If you’re planning on applying to law school this coming year, I strongly urge you to gear up and take this administration. It’s the latest you can take the exam and still get your applications in with enough time to be considered for most scholarships (the deadline is usually Dec.15/Dec30th). If you haven’t started studying, it’s not too late but there are a few things you should start doing right away!
1. Buy a calendar. You can refer to my older post for some of this. Buy one of those monstrously huge calendars from wherever you get school supplies and set a schedule. I find this is one way that forces me to keep to my plan. If you set the calendar somewhere that you’re forced to see it every day, it’ll make sure you feel the guilt to stick to it. I recommend doing an every other day routine to begin with, so as to not burn yourself out. If you spend one week reading each of the “bibles” logical reasoning, reading comprehension, and logic games plus one prep test each weekend, you’ll be on a good schedule for your first three weeks. Then bump it up to one prep-test every other day until the last week in September and you should be in pretty good shape. When you’re within the last three/two weeks before the exam I definitely recommend doing one prep-test a day. Make sure you always score your prep-tests. It’ll let you know where you’re weak and where you need to improve. Save the most recent prep-test you have for the day before/day of the LSAT so you’ll have something to jog your memory.
2. Form a study group. I did this myself and it worked really well. By having other people to keep you accountable it’s just one more way to guilt yourself into making sure you don’t lag behind in your studying. Yes, it’s rough having to study for the LSAT while you’re in school, but believe me, you don’t want to slack off and have to postpone the LSAT until the December administration, it’ll be too late to really be competitive for this cycle. Don’t sell yourself short! Find some friends that are also taking the LSAT and start making a weekly plan to meet and do a prep-test together. It also gives you the opportunity to compete against one another as the exam looms.
3. Be realistic. I honestly cannot stress this enough. Each of us would love to go to Harvard Law, fact of the matter, very few people will. Take a prep-test, time it, and see how you do. The general rumor is you can improve that score up to 15 points if you really work. Find what your first score is and be realistic about where you’ll end up. I took my first prep-test and got a 155, I studied hard, but not as hard as I could have and set a realistic goal. I didn’t hit a 170 (which would have been the original score plus the 15) but I was within 1 point of my average practice prep-test minus 1 point for test day anxiety. Based on how I was performing with prep-tests throughout my study for the LSAT I had a good idea of where my range was and what I could expect. (A quick note, expect your actual LSAT score to be 1-3 points less than your average practice prep-test, it’s impossible to mimic the test-day feelings of the real thing.) Once you have a steady average go through your prep-tests and see where your common weaknesses are and flip through the “bibles” again to see how you can improve in these areas.
Check back soon, I’ll be posting great tips for the upcoming administration of the LSAT as well as general applying to law school advice as I work through the application process myself.