Need an LSAT Study Plan? Read This

The LSAT recently went digital.

As students prep for the exam, having a concrete study plan is more important than ever.

Gabriel Kuris, the founder of Top Law Coach and contributor at US News, recently offered a few tips on how students can develop a multi-month study plan.

FIND WHERE YOU STAND

Kuris says the first step is to familiarize yourself with the exam and see where your strengths and weaknesses lie.

Take a couple of practice tests to get a sense of your baseline,” Kuris writes. “Expect a poor performance. The point is to spot your strengths and weaknesses, not to make judgments about your abilities or intelligence. Even top-scorers have initial weaknesses they overcome through deliberate practice.”

DISCOVER YOUR STUDY TECHNIQUE

Finding how you study best is critical to prep. Kuris recommends students to give themselves time during this phase to discover their learning style.

“Give some thought to your personal learning style,” Kuris writes. “Research various LSAT test prep options and try out some free online materials to determine if you work best solo or in a class, watching video lectures or reading prep books, accountable only to yourself or to a tutor. This phase may take up to three months, or three weeks of full-time study.”

UNTIMED AND TIMED

While it’s important to get an understanding around how long you take to complete the exam, Kuris says, it can be helpful to first practice untimed.

“Instead, consolidate your lessons through outlines and drills,” Kuris writes. “Then spend at least two weeks applying those techniques through untimed section practice, using materials that provide explanations for each answer. Rather than race through practice sections, put time into analyzing trends in your performance and reflecting on how you could have approached questions better – even if you got them right.”

Once you master the exam untimed, consider moving to timed sections at least three times per week for a few months, Kuris says.

“You don’t want to burn out, so explore new approaches or resources if practice feels like a slog,” Kuris writes. “For example, consider getting a new book or hiring a tutor to focus on your problem areas. If you start stagnating or backsliding, you risk developing bad habits or self-defeating thoughts and anxieties.”

FOLLOW THROUGH

As you begin to improve over time, it’s important to take note of where your remaining weaknesses lie.

“Surprisingly, the most critical improvements may come toward the end, when you finally feel familiar enough with the test to recognize and better handle specific challenges,” Kuris writes.

And, lastly, remember to take it easy on yourself.

“Your emotions will be running high after so many months of work,” Kuris writes. “Review prior practice tests and remind yourself of the skills you internalized. Leave time to retake the test if needed. Once you are satisfied with your score, take pride in reaching your goal, then craft a law school application that reflects the discipline you so clearly demonstrated.”

Sources: US News, Tipping the Scales

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