Multiple LSAT Scores - Should You Take the LSAT More Than Once?
One of the most common questions we are asked regarding law school admissions is, "Should I take the LSAT again, and if I do, how will law schools interpret my scores?" In order to help you better understand your options, we have researched LSAC policy, as well as that of top law schools, and spoken with many admissions counselors regarding these issues.
How many times are you allowed to take the LSAT?
Generally, the LSAC allows you to take the LSAT no more than three times in any two year period (even if your scores are cancelled or otherwise unreported). There are select exceptions to this rule: “You may retake the LSAT if a law school to which you are applying requires a more recent score than any you have on record, or approves your retaking the test, and the school provides LSAC with written proof of its requirement no later than the last day of registration for the test.”
How LSAT scores are reported:
LSAC policy is as follows: “LSAC will automatically report the results of all LSATs in your file, including cancellations and absences, since June 1, 2002. The scores are averaged and also appear separately.” (Note: LSAC rounds up when calculating the average score).
Recent change to ABA policy
In 2006, the ABA Section of Legal Education and Admission to the Bar changed its policies, now requiring schools to report the highest LSAT scores of those students who took the test twice or more: “…beginning with the October 2006 Annual Questionnaire, which collects LSAT data on the Fall 2006 entering class, the Questionnaire will seek 75th percentile, median, and 25th percentile LSAT data based on the high score rather than the average score for matriculants who took the test more than once.”
Since schools now report their students’ highest scores to the ABA, the majority of law schools now consider only an applicant’s highest LSAT, although a small number of schools still consider the average of all scores.
Is a significant score increase possible?
We routinely hear this sort of question regarding potential score increases. It is important to understand that the LSAT is not an I.Q. test! Dramatic score increases are possible with proper preparation and the right approach. We routinely see students achieve double-digit score increases after studying the cutting-edge techniques taught in our courses, using real LSAT questions, relayed by an instructor who has scored in the 99th percentile on an actual LSAT (this is the minimum requirement for all of our LSAT instructors).