LSAT Exam: A Comprehensive Guide

LSAT

Building a strong career in law is a dream for many but accomplished by some. If you are someone who stands for justice, wins arguments and loves to accumulate knowledge, then you are the right person to pursue Law. Lawyers are revered as the torchbearers of justice and truth. Donning black suits, they exude an aura that would make anyone fall for it. While a number of law schools around the globe offer intensive degrees in this field, pursuing it from top schools adds to its appeal. A bachelor’s degree like LLB is a prerequisite to practice law. Political System, Introductory Economics, Preliminary Psychology, Basic Sociology, etc are some of the BA LLB subjects which give you the birds-eye view of the Judiciary, Legislature, and human behavior. To get admission in a law school, LSAT is imperative. It is an aptitude test to evaluate a candidate on various parameters so as to ensure that highly skilled and dedicated applicants are chosen for the course. 

LSAT Overview

Law School Admission Test is an entrance exam required for taking admission in law schools. The test is conducted by the Law School Admission Council (LSAC) and is valid all over the world. Besides the marks obtained in class 12th class examination, the LSAT score is a prerequisite to pursue an LLB degree. The test consists of 99-102 multiple choice questions which are scored on the scale of 120-180 points. Further, the exam has to be completed in 3 hours and 30 minutes. 

LSAT

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LSAT vs GRE

While LSAT is accepted at all the Law schools in the US and other countries, GRE, on the other hand, is recognized only by some. They are different in their goals. The law admission test is used for securing admission to Law schools, GRE can help you get into business schools, engineering, and medical schools also. Some of the key differences between the two exams have been tabulated below:

CriteriaLSATGRE
Fields CoveredLawLaw, Business, Engineering
Acceptance in Law SchoolsAllComparatively lesser
MediumPaper BasedComputer-Based
Analytical ReasoningSeparate Section/ ScoredSeparate Section/ Scored
Reading ComprehensionSeparate Section/ ScoredSeparate Section and Scored
Logical ReasoningSeparate Section/ ScoredA subset of Reading Comprehension
WritingSupplementary-UnscoredSeparate Section-Scored
VocabularyNot RequiredRequired
MathsNot RequiredRequired
Exam FrequencySix times a yearThroughout the year

What Does the LSAT Test Consist of?

The exam is aimed at testing your skills based on three parameters namely, Analytical Reasoning, Logical Reasoning, and Reading Comprehension. Each section has a set of questions and an allotted time limit. Let’s have a look at LSAT Syllabus in detail.

  • Analytical Reasoning

The primary objective of this section is to assess your ability to study a given text and answer the questions using deductive reasoning in the allotted time of 35 minutes. A set of conditions is given in the passage and you are required to answer the questions based on the available data. Since the candidates come from different fields, the questions asked in the section are not related to the Law. Further, The questions asked comprise of ordering or grouping relationships or a combination of both. Grouping, distribution, seating arrangement questions, etc are some of the topics from where questions are generally framed.  You can also go through the sample questions from this section on LSAC’s official website.

  • Logical Reasoning

This section comprises of short data passages with a number of arguments and situations which you are required to analyze. After reading the passage, you are required to draw well-supported conclusions, identify flaws in arguments, and reason by analogy. In order to answer a question efficiently, you need to identify the various components of the argument and approach them one by one. This section constitutes an important portion of LSAT examination as arguments are fundamental to Law. The section comprises of 24-26 questions that are to be completed in 35 minutes. The questions are designed to test a wide range of skills like critical thinking and legal reasoning. 

  • Reading Comprehension

The law schools, as well as the legal profession, require extensive reading of lengthy texts which include case files, evidence, judgments, lawsuits, wills, etc. As a lawyer, you are likely to encounter densely written texts from a variety of sources and of varying nature which require you to have strong comprehension skills to make apt inferences. The language of legal documents appears ambiguous to an ordinary citizen but as a legal professional, you are expected to understand and make conclusions out of that text. LSAT’s Reading Comprehension section is thus aimed at checking your reading comprehension through four sets of reading questions. Each set consists of a text which is followed by 5-8 questions. While three sets have a single passage, the last part comprises of two short passages that form the Comparative Reading. In this, around 27 questions are asked which have to be completed in the allotted time of 35 minutes. 

  • Writing Sample (Unscored)

This part of the LSAT exam is unscored and additional. Many Law Schools require you to submit a writing sample to consider the completion of the exam. The test can be taken online on the LSAC’s official website using the webcam where you will be given 35 minutes to write the essay on the query presented to you. No score or marks are attached to the test but many Law Schools evaluate your profile on the basis of the writing sample. 

LSAT

Registration and Eligibility

As such, there are no eligibility criteria mentioned on the official website however, going through the requirements mentioned by the law school you are applying to is advised. The candidate can register online on the official website of LSAC. The application fee for the exam is USD 200 which is around 14,400 INR. It is advised to read the guidelines carefully before applying.

Sections Basic Fees and Packages in 2019-2020
LSAT (includes LSAT Writing)₹14,400
Credential Assembly Service (CAS)₹14,000
Law School Report₹ 3,300
Single-Report Package: LSAT (includes LSAT Writing), CAS, 1 Law School Report₹30,900

Six-Report Package: LSAT (includes LSAT Writing), CAS, 6 Law School Reports
₹46,700
Standalone LSAT Writing₹1,100

*Source: official website for LSAT, lsac.org

Exam Dates, Validity, and Attempts

LSAT is conducted four times in a year-June, Sept/Oct, December, and February. In India, the test is conducted at the following locations:

  • Bengaluru
  • Hyderabad
  • Gurugram
  • Pune

To check the dates and deadlines, you can visit the official website here.

Validity 

Like any other exam, LSAT has a limited validity period. The LSAC keeps your records for 5 years. If you take multiple tests during the course of 5 years, LSAC will provide you with the average score and the score for individual tests also. Within 5 years of taking the test, you are required to get admission in a law school.

Attempts

If you are wondering how many test attempts you can take, then it is imperative for you to understand that LSAC allows candidates to take the test 3 times in a year. But over a period of 5 years, you cannot give more than 5 attempts. During your lifetime, you can appear 7 times for the test. 

LSAT Scoring 

The test score can be very crucial while seeking admission to top Law schools. Since it is hard for evaluators to process your admission on the basis of GPA or percentile due to the varying scoring systems in different countries, they largely rely on your LSAT score. The score is measured on the scale of 120-180 where 120 is the lowest possible score and 180, the highest. 152 is considered the average score but the admission solely depends on the minimum score set by the respective Law school you are applying to. After the test, the score is sent to your email and not disclosed to anyone but your Law school. 

Top Law Schools 

While most of the law schools offer admissions based on the LSAT, the students having scored above 150 are likely to get admission to good law schools. However, to secure a seat in some of the prestigious universities like Stanford, Yale, and Harvard, you are required to score 170 or above. Given below is the list of top law schools and their accepted scores:

Law SchoolCountryLSAT Score QS Ranking in Law 2019
Harvard UniversityUS170-1751
University of OxfordUKNot RequiredUCAS/LNAT Preferred2
University of CambridgeUKNot Required3
Yale UniversityUS170-1764
Stanford UniversityUS169-1745
The University of MelbourneAustralia150+6
LSEUKNot RequiredLNAT Preferred7
University of California— BerkeleyUS165-1708
Columbia UniversityUS170-1749
New York UniversityUS167-17210

Countries that Accept LSAT

While the law schools in the US affiliated to the American Bar Association (ABA) have made it mandatory for students to qualify LSAT to seek admission, UK does not recognize the test and have their own national exams. Further, top law schools across Australia also require the admission test score. Canada has also recently started admitting students based on the scores of this exam. Here is the list of some of the Law colleges in Canada that accept the exam:

LSAT: India

To be at par with the rest of the world in terms of imparting quality education, the Law colleges in India have also adopted the test to offer admissions. But the test pattern in India varies slightly. The scores are measured on the percentile basis and the duration is comparatively lesser than the test held in the US and Canada. Besides, the LSAT-India is valid in India only and is administered by Pearson VUE. Delhi, Chandigarh, Bangalore, Mumbai, Chennai, and Kolkata are some of the 24 locations where the test is conducted. The registration process is completed online on the official website of Pearson by paying a registration fee of 3,800 INR. Given below are the details of the test contents in India:

Section TypeNumber of Questions Duration
Analytical Reasoning2335 minutes
Logical Reasoning (1) 2235 minutes
Logical Reasoning (2)2335 minutes
Reading Comprehension 2435 minutes
Variable~2335 minutes

~115 Total2 hours and 55 minutes Total

Some of the colleges in India that accept LSAT score to grant admission are: 

  • Jindal Global Law School, Sonipat
  • The ICFAI University
  • ICFAI Law School, Hyderabad
  • Alliance School of Law, Bangalore
  • SRM University, Delhi-NCR, Sonepat
  • Auro University School of Law
  • Azim Premji University
  • College of Legal Studies (UPES)
  • JSS Law College
  • NCU Law School     
  • School of Law, Sharda university
  • IIMT – Greater Noida
  • BMS College of Law
  • Lovely Professional University
  • Asian Law College (ALC)

Dates for LSAT-India

EventsDates (Announced)
Commencement of Application formDecember 6, 2019
End of Application formApril 14, 2020
Release of Admit card20 April – 30 April 2020
LSAT India 2020May 1, 2020
Declaration of resultMay 29, 2020

FAQs on the LSAT

Q: Is LSAT global different from LSAT-India?

A: Yes, While former is valid all over the world, the latter is valid only for law schools in India.

Q: Does LSAT have a negative marking scheme?

A: No, as of now the test does not follow the scheme of negative marking. 

Q: What is a percentile in  LSAT?

A: Percentile rank refers to the number of candidates whose scores were lesser than you. If your rank is 70, it means 70% of the candidates who appeared for the test have lower scores than you.

Q: Is there an age limit for the Test?

A: As of now, there is no age limit prescribed for a candidate to appear for the test.

Q: Can I change my test date?

Yes, if the deadline has not passed, you can change the test date on the official website of LSAT. However, you may have to submit a test date change form which is available to download from their website. 

LSAT is your golden ticket to enter your dream law school. Be it the US, Canada or Australia, the test is the first prerequisite for applying to universities for studying Law. For complete guidance on the application process, scores and admission to top law schools, you can reach out to our career experts at Leverage Edu who will guide you at every step throughout the admission process.

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