Interested in going to law school to pursue a legal career? Beyond achieving excellent grades and having an affinity for learning, there’s an intimidating test that stands in the way.
The LSAT (Law School Admission test) is a crucial gatekeeper for entrance into law school. This grueling 4+ hour exam is offered 7 times each year at select testing sites throughout the world.
What You Should Know About the LSAT
This test has 5 sections (one of which is not scored). The sections cover reading comprehension, analytical skills and logical reasoning.
It’s important to note that the LSAT does not test your knowledge. When considering how to prepare, you should remember that the LSAT rewards critical thinking skills and test taking strategies more than content.
Since this exam is a hurdle that every aspiring law student must overcome, there’s a lot of interest in how to study for the LSAT. One step you can take is to reach out to professionals who have already begun their careers in law.
Networks like our organization, Corporate Counsel Women of Color , have been promoting diversity in the legal profession for more than 17 years. We offer excellent resources that support aspiring women law students of color. Here are four tips to help you prepare for the LSAT.
Tip #1: Take Several LSAT Practice Exams
It’s okay to learn facts about the LSAT such as what it measures and its score range (120 – 180). However, you’ll gain more insight by taking LSAT practice exams.
There are numerous resources available for you to try your hand at various LSAT questions, challenges and versions of the test. These include:
- Sample tests by exam preparation companies
- LSAT pop quizzes
- The Law School Admission Council practice exams
Ultimately, knowing where you need to improve can save time and energy. LSAT practice tests will give you a sense of what you’re up against. Scouting your competition—in this case an exam—is an integral step towards victory.
Tip #2: Gather the Best LSAT Prep Resources
Regardless of your feelings about standardized testing, this method of selecting candidates isn’t going away anytime soon. So, it’s important to take advantage of the LSAT resources that are available to you.
Some of the best LSAT prep materials on the market come from The Princeton Review, Kaplan and Law School Admission Council. These organizations understand how the LSAT is designed. By using their exam preparation guides, you can create a study schedule and train your brain to solve problems.
LSAT test prep resources can:
- Explain how the test questions are developed.
- Offer methods for responding to questions.
- Provide examples of exam questions from previous tests.
Additionally, if you learn better by working alongside someone else, consider hiring a reliable and well-vetted tutor.
Tip #3: Your LSAT Study Schedule Should Be a Marathon Not a Sprint
An effective LSAT study schedule should not include cram sessions. On average, aspiring law students spend around 300 hours preparing for this exam. Make a commitment to spend as many hours as you can to practice for the LSAT.
If you are not a strong standardized test taker, it may require you to devote several months of studying for the test. If you have other important responsibilities, you’ll have to use your time wisely. Beyond reviewing LSAT prep books, consider downloading mobile apps that are designed to challenge your mind. Spend your free time solving puzzles and playing “brain games”.
Moreover, there’s a biological and organic element to high performance. Training for test day requires more than just exercising your intellect. Commit yourself to maintaining:
- A healthy diet
- Physical exercise
- Your mental health
Tip #4: Don’t Take the Exam Until You’re Ready
Sometimes, people establish a deadline and feel as if taking the exam on a date later than their original schedule is a failure. They’re wrong.
The failure may come by taking the exam without being adequately equipped. Knowing how to study for the LSAT also means paying attention to the scores you’re getting during practice tests. If they’re not good enough, keep plugging away until they are.
Lastly, once you’ve passed that test, be sure to sign up for a Premium Membership with Corporate Counsel Women of Color. We offer sponsorships, mentoring and internships that are sure to enhance your journey.
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