June and July LSAT takers, are you scoring what you need to on your prep tests to be competitive at your list of law schools? (You can use the LSAC’s GPA/LSAT Search here to help estimate your likelihood of admission based on how you are scoring.) As we approach each of these exams it is important to know all of your options if you’re not feeling ready or if you know during the test that it’s not going well. Let’s talk about withdrawing, cancelling, and retaking.
Withdrawing. LSAT registrants can withdraw until the day before the exam. Registrants who withdraw will lose their test fees but the withdrawal will NOT be noted on your file and will NOT be seen by law schools when you apply. If you aren’t quite ready for this LSAT then withdrawal might be a good option.
- If you are withdrawing from the JUNE exam, you could register for the July LSAT instead until June 13. However, you should note that the July LSAT is nondisclosed, so for that test you will only receive a score and you will not see which questions you got right and wrong.
- If you are withdrawing from the JULY exam, you could register for the September LSAT instead until July 23.
- You may be assigned to a different test site depending on availability of seats. You should continue your LSAT prep and make a realistic plan for how to use the remaining weeks until your next exam.
- Advice for those who make this choice: DO NOT PROCRASTINATE. Once the pressure of the next LSAT is off, you will be very tempted to put your LSAT materials away and relax. DO NOT DO THIS, or you will find yourself in the exact same state of panic if you realize you are not ready for the next exam either. Use this summer wisely, and take the time you need to be fully prepared for this exam.
Cancelling. Know that you can cancel your LSAT score within 6 calendar days of taking the exam. In the unlikely event that your test day is a disaster (like you have a migraine, you accidentally mis-bubble a whole section, or you have an asthma attack during Logic Games), this is a good option. You won’t know what score you received, which means you’ll need to retake, but there is some benefit to taking a “real” LSAT to make you feel less anxious the next time around.
- Advice to those who choose this option: Follow the LSAC instructions carefully, as you only have 6 calendar days to cancel. (Click here for instructions.) Since you know you will be retaking, register and get back to your LSAT study prep right away–you’ll want to use all of that time to prepare.
Retaking. Most LSAT takers want to see their score before deciding to retake, since every LSAT score gets reported to every law school to which you apply. The challenge here is with timing. June scores will not be out until the July test registration is closed, making September the next test available to June LSAT takers, and the next test available for July LSAT takers who wait for their scores will be November.
- Advice for this situation: Plan ahead to know when the next available exam will be, and then register ASAP once you receive your score. Note that all LSATs through January 2019 are already open for registration, so many test sites may be full. The sooner you register the more likely it will be that you get a seat and get it at your preferred test site. Then, get right back to your LSAT prep so you don’t lose any ground.