The LSAT is
offered four times per year - February, June, October (or late September),
and December. Assuming you are entering law school in the fall of
next year, you should consider the following factors when choosing
a test administration date:
Many prelaw advisors recommend taking the June LSAT because
it will allow you to submit your applications at the beginning of
the admission period. Most law schools use a "rolling admissions"
process and applying early gives you a slight advantage. In the
rolling admission system, applicants are considered as they "roll
in," and thus by applying early you have the least amount of
competition for the greatest number of spaces. Applying late can
be a disadvantage because you have a greater amount of competition
for a smaller number of remaining spaces. However, that is only
a generalization-if you apply late with outstanding credentials,
you will still get into many law schools. All things being equal,
though, applying early is better.
Taking the June
LSAT also gives you more time to work on your résumé,
your personal statement, and your law school applications. By completing
these items early and then reviewing them over the ensuing months,
you can create the very best application possible.
Also, if you
do not feel prepared for the June test, or if you do poorly on the
June test, you can re-take the exam in October.
October is the most popular test date of the year, in
part because the test falls at the start of the application cycle.
October is also popular because the test comes at the end of summer,
convenient for many college students who can use part of the summer
to do their test preparation. An important consideration for all
test takers is to take an LSAT that allows a plentiful amount of
preparation time, because more preparation time usually translates
into a higher score.
also like the October test because they have the December LSAT to
fall back on if October does not go well. Just make sure you sign
up early-the October test tends to fill up early!
Every single law school accepts the results of the December
LSAT. Equally important, December is the last exam that you can
take to meet the deadlines of the top law schools. However, the
downside of the December LSAT is that your results come in later
than other applicants, pushing you back in the rolling admissions
cycle. The December LSAT can also be tough on college students since
the test date often coincides with final exams.
ask if it is better to take the October LSAT over the December LSAT
simply because the October LSAT returns earlier results. Despite
the earlier results, we feel your final score is a more important
consideration. Given the choice of taking the October LSAT or taking
the December LSAT and scoring three points higher, we would opt
for the December exam.
Although many schools accept the results of the February
LSAT, not every school does, and so you must check application deadlines
before deciding on this exam. The February test can be a lifesaver
for applicants applying to schools that accept the results of this
test, and this exam is also a great option for students planning
ahead and preparing to apply for the following year admission.
One final note:
contrary to internet rumors, no particular LSAT is necessarily harder
or easier than other LSATs. For example, some people say that the
June LSAT is the hardest test every year. In our experience, some
June LSATs are difficult and some June LSATs are easy (relatively
speaking, of course!). Law Services works incredibly hard to equate
each LSAT, as explained at http://www.powerscore.com/lsat/help/scale.htm,
and no particular monthly LSAT administration is consistently harder