Taking the LSAT: October vs. December vs. February

Cory Ferreira —  September 8, 2011 — 5 Comments

With less than a month to go before the October LSAT, I have noticed an increase in the number of students who call and ask for advice on which LSAT administration they should be setting their sights on. Many of these students are concerned about their readiness for the upcoming October exam, and are fearful about what postponing until the December exam will do to their admission prospects (timeline wise) for the Fall of 2012.

Legend has it LSAC decided on its four implementation months by tossing a marble on a rotating Mayan calendar

While there is something to be said for taking the June or October LSAT and applying earlier in the rolling admissions cycle that law schools use, I want to be very clear about my advice on this: it is far more important to maximize your potential on the LSAT than it is to apply early!

Ann Levine, President of LawSchoolExpert.com and author of The Law School Admission Game: Play Like An Expert has reiterated this point time and time again on her blog.

I can certainly understand the tendency of a prospective law school student to want to get the LSAT over and done with – and their applications in as early as possible – however rushing to take the test before you are truly prepared is an error in judgement that will ultimately hurt your application, since the LSAT is factored so heavily in to your admission decision.  If you have been preparing for the October LSAT and are not yet where you think you can be score wise, then you should embrace (not fear!) the prospect of postponing your exam until December.  Remember, LSAC has relaxed its policy on postponing registration for the exam, making it more convenient for students to choose a course of action that will benefit them the most in the bigger picture.

When it comes to the February LSAT, it is a different story entirely.  Taking the February LSAT will not allow you to apply for law school admittance for the Fall of that same year.  While there is nothing wrong with taking the February LSAT if you’re ahead of the game (scores are good for five years), all February LSAT takers should be aware that the February test is not released, meaning you will never have the opportunity to review which questions you got right or wrong, which can be a real bummer when you’ve put so much in to preparing for the exam.

If you’re one of the many students who has been preparing for the October LSAT but are not quite feeling like you are where you can be score wise, you should strongly consider setting your sights on the December exam.  We still have a few online courses (and courses in select cities) yet to kick off that have schedules catering to December LSAT takers.

 

Cory Ferreira

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Cory Ferreira is the head of Marketing for Manhattan LSAT. He graduated from Syracuse University with a triple major in Communications, Marketing and Writing. When he’s not talking to pre law students about their post graduate dreams, Cory enjoys watching and playing sports, trying to master his guitar skills, and meeting new people.

5 responses to Taking the LSAT: October vs. December vs. February

  1. Thanks. I just emailed u guys recently about this very question.

    But, isn’t it too late to postpone the October test? If so, the only other option would be to withdraw correct?

  2. Great advice. I’ve taken the test once, didn’t do well. Decided to take it again in Oct but some things in life haven’t given me the time to prepare the way I know I can.

  3. Xlogic :

    Thanks. I just emailed u guys recently about this very question.

    But, isn’t it too late to postpone the October test? If so, the only other option would be to withdraw correct?

    You’re right that it is too late to postpone your registration (and thus apply your application fee to another administration of the exam), however per the new LSAC rules, you may withdraw up until the midnight EST the night before the exam and not have this show up anywhere on your score report, which is nice.

    For a full list of LSAT dates and deadlines, check out http://www.lsac.org.

  4. SouthernBeau87 :

    Great advice. I’ve taken the test once, didn’t do well. Decided to take it again in Oct but some things in life haven’t given me the time to prepare the way I know I can.

    Ahh, sometimes life circumstances do become an obstacle on your way to LSAT glory. If you’re sure that there are clear, identifiable improvements that can be made in your LSAT prep, then sure – have another go! We’d love to help out any way possible.

Trackbacks and Pingbacks:

  1. LSAT Countdown: What to Focus on the Week of the October LSAT | | News 100wizard.comNews 100wizard.com - October 1, 2011

    [...] As we close in on the October LSAT, I thought I would share our usual tips to keep you on track as game day draws near. What’s that you say – you’re not sure if you are ready, willing, or able to take the October LSAT? before you go pushing the panic button, make sure you are making all of the proper considerations about which test administration you &#…. [...]

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