For most law schools, a student’s scores on the LSAT exam carry the most weight when determining whether or not to accept them. For this reason, the LSAT exam should not be taken lightly by any aspiring law student.
In order to understand the importance of the LSAT to an admissions board, we must first look at the other factors used to make the decision and decide why they alone are inadequate.
GPA: A student’s four-year GPA, while it is very important, is not always an accurate depiction of a student as a whole. Comparing different universities and colleges and their specific programs and levels of difficulty is an ineffective way to evaluate a student. Course load and many other factors must be considered, and there is simply no way to evaluate each individual student on all of these terms.
References: References are great, but are not always completely objective. Many professors are writing these references with ulterior motives to get their students into top law schools to make their program look good.
Application Essays: While a student’s writing skills are highly valuable to the success of their education, they are certainly not everything. Just because a student can write an effective essay does not mean that they are worthy of law school. While an essay may reflect great talent, abilities and personality, it may not reflect academic preparedness for law school. It is also important to consider that you essay may never even be reviewed if your GPA is lacking.
How to Prepare
Taking the LSAT exam is an all day event. The test can take up to 5 hours to complete. When taking practice exams, which is highly recommended, it is a good idea to take them in intervals, one after the other with small breaks in between. This will simulate the feeling of the actual test day and you will feel more prepared to sit for long periods of time
It is also wise to take these practice tests for another reason. The test has not deferred much from its original format, so the practice tests really will give you a sense of what it will be like to take the test for real. Nothing is better than real practice when it comes to standardized testing. You may also want to talk to students or professionals who have been through the LSAT experience before. They may have insight on studying methods and tricks and tips for taking, and passing, the exam.
Many say that the LSAT is most effectively matched by reason and preparation rather than actual specific knowledge. Knowing broad concepts and how to apply will be much more helpful than knowing very specific facts and details. Try to understand how the test works and what it really wants from you. You will gain a much better perspective on how to beat it this way.