For those bitten by the lure of the law, the Law School Admission Test, or the LSAT - to give it its popular acronym - represents the final frontier, or the starting point, however one chooses to see it, in their journey towards becoming a successful lawyer.
There’s no denying the importance of your LSAT score in your efforts to get into a reputed law school. Popular study abroad destinations for English education, such as the USA, Australia and Canada have the 175-minute exam, which contains questions on reading comprehension, analytical reasoning and logic, as their chosen method of evaluation of students who wish to study law.
Getting a top LSAT score is huge challenge, no doubt, but don’t worry - there are ways to beat the pressure and make sure you’re on top of your game to ace the LSAT!
Surely you don’t think you can just flip through the LSAT prep book a week before the big day! Presuming you don’t, you’re on the right track - begin well in advance, familiarise yourself with practice material, get a feel of the underlying logic behind the questions and talk to experts. In short, do the groundwork.
Do an honest self-assessment
Once you think you have a fair idea of the LSAT, the time is ripe to see where you stand in terms of a numerical score - the best way to do this would be to take an LSAT practice test blind. This way, you determine what can be termed your ‘baseline’ score - the score you’ve achieved without prep.
Identify and Set a Goal
You know what your baseline score is and what level of improvement you’re looking for - fix a number in mind as a goal. This will also help you chart a roadmap for how much time and what LSAT
prep options it'll take to get you there.
Create a Study Schedule
This is the LSAT after all – not everything is going to come easy. It’s vital that you carve time into your daily schedule, so a time management chart might be in order. Also keep in mind how much time you have left, whether months, or weeks, and plan accordingly.
Practice, practice and practice!
All of the steps above can get negated if your practice isn’t sustained, sincere or focused enough. Practice involves simulation of not just the test paper, but every aspect concerning the test – building up your physical and mental stamina, adjusting your body clock so you’re at your freshest best during the test etc.
Accuracy first, speed next
This isn’t to imply that you can be slow; just that when you begin practice, it’s important to understand and work out the question and make that a habit. Speed can and will follow thoroughness. The LSAT is among the few graduate selection exams not yet computerized, so take full advantage by making, diagrams, short notes – any kind of representation that simplifies the question for you
On test day
So you’re done with your prep and the big day’s finally arrived – and, whether you admit it or not, you’re nervous. Nerves may be impossible to avoid and can even help you if they heighten your alertness, but a few simple tips to control what you can will help you concentrate fully on the task at hand:
- Get acquainted with your test centre and mentally prepare yourself for any possible quirks - small chairs, unique arrangement etc.
- Attend to the nitty-gritty details the night before - your bag, pencils, clothes and suchlike. You could even rent a hotel room for the night, if you live in a crowded apartment which isn’t conducive for study or relaxation.
There’s no magic formula for the LSAT that’s very different from other important exams - but a little planning, with vision and direction, and wholehearted execution should take you closer to achieving your desired result!