Beginning this September, law school applicants will be allowed to retake the Law School Admission Test as many times as they want. Previously, applicants were limited to three tests in any two-year period.
The Law School Admission Council (LSAC) announced that it has revised its LSAT policy as part of planning for additional administrations of the exam. At the moment, the LSAT is administered only four times a year. LSAC also announced that more details will be released in coming weeks.
“LSAC removing its testing limit and potentially offering additional testing dates is very student-friendly,” says Jeff Thomas, Kaplan Test Prep’s executive director of pre-law programs. “The additional flexibility could go a long way in de-stressing the admissions process.”
IS THIS ABOUT THE LSAT SURVIVING?
Thomas speculates that removing the test-taking limit, and offering the exam more often, may be responses to LSAC losing marketshare to Educational Testing Service (ETS), which administers the Graduate Record Examination. Harvard Law School recently announced that it will begin accepting GRE scores from applicants in place of the LSAT, and other law schools are expected to follow suit.
Just how many is an open question, but in a Kaplan survey last year of 125 law schools, 56% told the company they had no plans to accept GRE scores, 14% said they planned to change their policies, and 30% were uncertain.
Harvard Law School Dean Martha L. Minow said the school’s move was made to help eliminate barriers as Harvard searches for the most talented candidates for law and leadership. She added that for many students, it’s unaffordable to take both the GRE and the LSAT.
‘GET ONE KILLER LSAT SCORE’
Thomas says it’s possible that LSAC’s policy change could be a bid to make the LSAT the more attractive option for test takers.
However, he doesn’t necessarily advise law school hopefuls to take the test many times.
“Our advice to students will always remain the same: prep once, get one killer LSAT score, and leave no doubt to admissions officers about your candidacy to your top law school choices,” Thomas says.