Test Prep: 6 tips for LSAT success
There are many factors to be considered when applying to a law school – personal statement, LSAT Score, GPA, reference letters, and many others. However, the most important ones are your GPA and LSAT Score. Many law schools consider your LSAT Score in the same light as your undergraduate GPA. Rather than testing the knowledge you’ve already garnered in school, LSAT is designed to measure and project your ability to excel in a law school. In this light, it is evident that one cannot afford to approach an LSAT test in a light-minded manner because it is slightly different from any regular exam or random tests students take in colleges. That said, these seven tips below will get you started.
LSAT isn’t a sprint but a marathon
Many aspiring law students are guilty of falling short in their LSAT preparation during their busy schedules at home, work, or school, only to spend hours on the weekends cramming and taking an endless number of practice tests. Experts recommend that students should practice a new section each day while taking practice tests occasionally or on the weekend. Remember, while you wouldn’t run a marathon every day to train for a marathon, you wouldn’t sit down idle all week and then run miles on the weekend.
LSAT is quite different from those regular exams you took while in college. Although group readings and discussions were perfect for those exams, you wouldn’t need them for your LSAT preparation. LSAT exposes your personal weaknesses and strengths and given the analytic nature of the tests, what comes easily to your friend may prove challenging to you. Group reading might be detrimental to your LSAT preparation, as you tend to review the practice tests and questions in a more generalized fashion, rather than concentrate on your personal specific weaknesses. Hence, it is better to practice alone for your test
Don’t just practice, get a tutor
Forget it; you may find it hard preparing for LSAT on your own! For all your incredible undergraduate knowledge and spectacular GPA, LSAT might still prove challenging for you, and without the right LSAT tutoring, you risk falling short in your preparations for the test.
Don’t just practice, analyze
You are going to come across several challenging questions on the LSAT. Hence, you need to study well and practice every day to get accustomed to the format of the test. However, little practice is never enough, which is why experts suggest that after working through your timed practice test, don’t just tabulate your score and results; instead, take a good look at the questions you’ve missed and try to understand why you chose the wrong options. Students who have excelled at LSAT often claim that practice without analysis leads to little improvement.
Sharpen your critical thinking
Although, LSAT doesn’t test the contents you were taught in either high school or college. However, some contents learned in your college classes can still help you tackle the test. Taking courses in critical reasoning, logic, and philosophy can prepare you for this test as these courses require you to analyze complex theories and present relevant ideas gleaned from those theories in a concise, logical manner, which is precisely what is demanded on the LSAT. These classes are not directly mandatory for LSAT preparation, but they can get you in the right shape ahead of the test.
Like the SAT, this test doesn’t penalize wrong answers. So, it’s essential to make an educated guess on each question at least. After all, leaving questions you don’t know unanswered does you no good. Hence, always try to answer as many questions as the time permits, and if you have any time left, use it to revisit the tough questions.