Retaking the LSAT? Read This

Traditionally, law schools would report the average LSAT score of their incoming students to factor into law school rankings.

Since 2006, however, LSAC began taking the highest LSAT score rather than the average score.

What exactly does that mean for repeat test takers?

Gabriel Kuris, the founder of Top Law Coach and a contributor at US News, recently discussed how law schools look at applicants with multiple LSAT scores.

HOW MANY TIMES CAN YOU RETAKE THE LSAT?

Last year, the LSAT went digital.

As a result, LSAC expanded test offerings to nine exams per year and updated its policies to allow applicants to take the exam up to three times in a single testing year (from June to May), five times within five years, or seven times total overall.

“Right now, few applicants need to worry about those limits, because the remotely proctored LSAT-Flex tests being offered during the COVID-19 pandemic do not count against the total,” Kuris explains. “Moreover, tests taken prior to September 2019 also do not count against the limit. So, for the time being, it is open season on LSATs.” 

CONS OF RETAKING

While applicants can technically retake the LSAT multiple times, experts warn that there are a few cons associated with retesting.

For one, it costs money every time you take the exam, with each registration fee priced at $200 per test.

There’s also the possibility of how admissions officers may view repeat test-takers.

“Law schools will see each time applicants take the LSAT, even if an applicant cancels the score,” Kuris writes. “Obsessively retaking the LSAT can look a little unprofessional, since law schools value time management, working under pressure and self-motivation. An upwardly trending score shows improvement, but multiple retakes without a change in results looks more like the definition of insanity.”

If you do have to retake the exam due to extenuating circumstances, Kuris recommends explaining your situation via an addendum.

It’s important, Kuris says, to be aware of timing as well.

“Retaking the LSAT too late in the admissions cycle, particularly after October or November, risks application delays that reduce odds of admission to law school,” Kuris writes. “To leave room to retake the test, be sure to schedule your first test by August or September.”

Sources: US News, TaxProf Blog, Tipping the Scales

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