Fall 2012 Applicants
For most applicants, the LSAT is over and now the focus is on completing your applications. For those of you feeling a little overwhelmed by letters of recommendation, personal statements, and the application process generally, here is a link to one of our earlier blog postings to help you stay on task. http://publish.illinois.edu/prelawadvising/2012/10/08/after-the-lsat-what-now/.
Additionally, as you try to gauge your admissions chances, here is another tool to assist you. The Northeast Association of Pre-Law Advisors (NAPLA) Law School Locator is designed to help applicants quickly assess the LSAT and GPA expectations of different law schools across the country. Click on this link to access this tool. http://www.bc.edu/content/dam/files/offices/careers/pdf/2012_NAPLA_Law_Locator.pdf.
Fall 2013 Applicants
Are you considering appying to law school next fall? If so, then you need to begin planning NOW. In particular, you should consider taking the June LSAT. Why?
First — law schools use a rolling admissions process. That means that as a general matter, applications are reviewed in the order they are received. So even though most law schools list deadlines in February or March, you are encouraged to submit your applications as soon as possible. Most applications become available online between August 15 and October 1. As such, if you take the June LSAT and are happy with your score, you can complete your applications early in the cycle.
Second — if you are not satisfied with your June results, you have the option of re-taking in October and have the ability to submit your applications by late fall, which is still relatively early in the application cycle.
Third — as this year’s applicants can tell you, you need time to prepare for the LSAT. What does this mean? This means that when planning your schedule of classes, extracurricular activities, etc. for Spring 2013, you need to set aside a significant amount of time for studying for the LSAT.
Preparing for the LSAT
The Law School Admission Council (LSAC) advises that most law school applicants preparing for the LSAT familiarize themselves with test directions and question types, practice on sample tests, and study the information available on test-taking techniques and strategies. Although LSAC indicates that it is difficult to say when LSAT examinees are sufficiently prepared, LSAC advises that very few people achieve their full potential without some preparation. It has been our experience at PLAS that most test takers set aside at least 4-6 months to prepare for the LSAT. For information on the test and how to prepare, go to http://www.lsac.org/jd/lsat/about-the-lsat.asp.
Not sure how much prep you will need? A great way to get an idea of your “baseline” LSAT score or simply begin the LSAT prep process is to take a full-length practice LSAT. Here are some upcoming opportunities to take a free practice test.
Note: We are not affiliated with any LSAT prep company. We do not receive any compensation from them. We simply provide information to students about upcoming opportunities that you may find beneficial. Students are under no obligation to use any company’s services just by taking a free test.
Princeton Review is offering a free online practice LSAT. To register, go to www.princetonreview.com/testfest or call 800-273-8439.
Kaplan is hosting an LSAT practice test on November 11 from 3:00-7:00 pm. For information on other free LSAT practice tests and to register, go to http://www.kaptest.com/enroll/LSAT/61820 or call 1-800-KAP-TEST.
The Law School Admission Council (LSAC) offers a free LSAT online that you can download, print, and take under your own conditions. (Make sure that you time yourself carefully to get a realistic idea of how you perform.) Find it at http://www.lsac.org/jd/lsat/lsat-prep-materials.asp
PowerScore offers the same free practice LSAT as the LSAC website, along with a “virtual proctor” to keep yourself on track. http://www.powerscore.com/lsat/help/content_index.cfm Their website also has some sample “lessons” about test sections.
These would be great opportunities for sophomores and juniors to get an idea of what the LSAT is all about, or even for students taking the December or February LSAT to gain more experience taking the test under “testlike” conditions.