How long should I study?
- Assess yourself – familiarize yourself with the LSAT by taking the exam without timing it. Then do a timed practice exam and score it. There are released exams on reserve in the Hunter library (see under the "Resources" tab).
- Given the unusual nature of this test -- it is a test of skills rather than knowledge of substance -- it is typical to need 6-8 months, or even a year of study to reach maximum potential score on the test; some find that they don’t improve significantly on practice tests until after 120 hours of studying. Do not be discouraged! Remember that just because an LSAT class lasts for 3 months does not mean that is all the practice you need to maximize your score.
- Not enough time to study? This can be true if you work and are in school and/or have family obligations. Consider postponing until you complete school so you can achieve your best score! Many students do this and at the same time take jobs in fields that can affirm or support career plans.
The key approach: Take practice exams (but only on actual LSAT questions)
- Whatever the method of study you choose, (see study options on the next tab) you should take timed practice tests as much as possible. Over 40 actual LSAT exams are available for purchase on the LSAC website or are included as study materials provided by test preparation companies. Do timed practice tests and do them again.
- Spend time going over the exams that you take and understand your errors. You will improve not by just doing the exams, but by reviewing your answers. This can be a tedious process, but it is the only way to determine what you are doing wrong, so that you can figure out how to avoid mistakes on the next test.
- Avoid practicing on simulated questions; with so many released exams, it is not a challenge to locate actual tests.
Where can I find sample tests?
- Exams are on reserve in the Hunter library, see Resources, for your use and are free (but please be courteous to other users and avoid writing on them).
- Download sample questions and explanations and a complete sample test from www.LSAC.org.
- LSAC sells books that contain released LSAT exams. Order from LSAC online or by phone. The books are also available for purchase from bookstores and on-line booksellers.
- Some test preparation companies (Princeton Review and Kaplan) offer free scored and timed practice tests for anyone who would like to sit for them.
Can I take this test more than once?
- Ideally you want to take the LSAT one time, when you are ready.
- There is a 3-time retake limit within any two-year period.
- Multiple scores are provided to law schools.
- Do take the LSAT again if you are not pleased with your score and think you can do better -- particularly if you were feeling ill during the test. However, if you prepared appropriately for the first exam, realize that most students do not significantly increase their scores through subsequent testing.
- If you are able to do substantially better on a second exam, you will greatly improve your prospects of admission.
- Never take a reported, "live" test for practice.