The LSAT - Study, Test, Repeat
Okay so you’ve made the decision to go to law school and now it’s time to STUDY. Studying for the LSAT will be different for everyone. It’s completely up to you to decide how many hours you need to put in, what material to use, and what score you need to get into the schools you love with the financial aid package you need.
Personally, I saw this study time as proof that I was willing to put in the time and effort to do well. I also made a deal with myself that if I was serious about law school then I would study even when I was working 50+ hour weeks. This was important to me because I knew I would be quitting a well-paying job, draining my savings, and probably moving across the country again if I decided to attend law school. Of course, life happens and my studying schedule wasn’t ALWAYS perfect, but I am still really proud of the commitment I made to hit my goal score.
Studying - I did 80% of my studying at the library. I live in an apartment with 3 roommates and it can be a little busy at my house so I decided I needed somewhere to study that wouldn’t be so distracting. The library is, unsurprisingly, the perfect place to study! I found my local public library had LSAT test prep books so I wouldn’t have to shell out a bunch of money on top of the testing fees. I used the Kaplan LSAT Unlocked ad LSAT Preptest books which I felt were very comprehensive.
I liked both of these books for different reasons. The Kaplan book taught me what the test is actually about (jokes on me I totally thought there were going to be legal questions before I cracked open these books) - which is very important because to do well on an exam you have to know what they are testing. This book breaks each of the three testing sections down for you to gain a better understanding of the LSAT as a whole. It also has a practice test so you can get a baseline and many practice activities that teach you the rules of logic. I studied with this book before my first exam and I improved my baseline score by 5 points after about 20 hours of studying. When I studied for this exam, I only took a complete test once (the baseline). After taking it the first time, I would HIGHLY recommend at least doing a few smaller section tests to work on timing.
I was very happy with my first LSAT exam. I took the November exam so technically I could have applied early December, but after taking it once I knew I could do better and decided to sign up for the January exam. I felt like I had a good understanding of what the LSAT is about and now I just needed to focus on improving my timing and pattern recognition. The Official LSAT Preptest books are perfect for this type of studying. They are just collections LSAT exam questions. You can do sections or a whole test at a time. I chose to focus on sections at a time because I could only dedicate about an hour to studying each night a week before the test. These were very helpful. They allow you to feel more comfortable with the test environment and language. As a supplement to the Preptest books, I also used the 7sage youtube channel. He goes through the Preptests and provides tips and tricks for during the exam. I wish I would have starting using this early in my studying. On my second exam I was able to improve my score by 4 more points to reach my original target score.
Studying for the LSAT can be intimidating and overwhelming, but don’t let that hold you back. There are so many different resources, so don’t be afraid to try more than one! Also, don’t be afraid to take the LSAT more than once…trust me you are NOT the only one. I hope these resources can help you when studying! Remember, it’s just an exam, you can retake it five times and you can keep studying as much as you want, but it doesn’t mean everything. Law schools look for a well-rounded individuals, so if you don’t love your LSAT score use another piece of your application to wow them!