LSAT Study Tips
The LSAT is a notoriously difficult exam that evaluates logic and critical thinking skills rather than content knowledge or fact memorization. The average LSAT score without studying ranges from 135 to 145, well below the median at 151 in the 50th percentile.
Preparing with practice tests and learning the skills you need for each exam section is the key to boosting your LSAT scores. To maximize law school admissions and scholarship opportunities, most test-takers begin studying for the LSAT long before exam day.
Your test prep plan should fit your schedule, cover every part of the exam, and give you ample time to study and review.
Set Your Timeline
When Should I Start Studying for the LSAT?
Quick cramming sessions won't work for the LSAT. To fully prepare, you'll need time to review the questions given within each exam section and learn the analytical and logical reasoning skills needed to solve them.
Be Realistic About Your Schedule
Many students adopt a 3 month LSAT study schedule, but there is no one-size-fits-all plan for test preparation. When developing your LSAT study strategy, be realistic about your coursework, employment, and household commitments and add up how many hours you can devote to test prep every week.
If your schedule leaves little time to spare, following a 6 month LSAT study schedule is better than pressuring yourself to prepare faster. Your LSAT study plan should work with your schedule, not against it.
Set the Pace
How Long Does It Take to Study for the LSAT?
Learning the logical and analytical skills you'll need for this exam takes time. Most test-takers spend 200 to 300 hours studying for the LSAT, typically dedicating about 20 hours every week to exam prep.
Aim for Consistency
Setting your pace with a consistent weekly study schedule ensures you can cover all the material, take multiple practice tests, gauge your progress, and avoid burnout. Set a goal and use your weekly study schedule times to determine how long you should study for the LSAT.
For example, 240 hours is a good study target. If you only have 15 hours available after your work, class, and family commitments, then a 4 month LSAT study schedule will keep you on track for test day. Giving yourself extra time for emergencies and the occasional weekend off is smart, too.
Meet Your Goals
What's the Best Way to Study for the LSAT?
Once you've set up your LSAT study schedule, it's time to get to work. Research your preferred law schools' LSAT score requirements and set a goal for your results. Then, use the following LSAT study tips to kickstart your test prep sessions, maximize your performance, and earn the scores you need to succeed:
- Start with a Practice Test: Taking a timed practice exam under proper testing conditions gives you a baseline score and clarifies which sections to prioritize in your LSAT study plan.
- Choose Prep Materials: Look for LSAT test prep resources that offer plenty of practice questions, multiple simulated exams, comprehensive answer explanations, and customizable study options.
- Take Breaks: Long test prep marathons are exhausting. When planning your study sessions, give yourself short breaks every few hours along with ample time for meals.
- Schedule More Practice Tests: Make practice exams part of your LSAT study schedule and commit to the testing dates you add to your calendar. Compare your results to previous scores to track your accomplishments.
- Analyze Wrong Answers: Reviewing incorrect answers helps you figure out how you missed the right choice, so you can avoid the same mistakes on test day.
- Study Solo: Ultimately, your personal reasoning and analytical abilities determine your LSAT score. While group study is beneficial for content or knowledge-based exams, it isn't the best approach for the LSAT.
- Play More Games: The Analytical Reasoning section is a challenge for most test-takers. However, logic games fall into specific categories with predictable solutions. The more games you play and recognize, the easier this section becomes.
- Get Out and About: Studying in a calm quiet room is great at first. If restlessness or boredom creeps in, move to a park, library, or coffee shop to change things up. Being able to focus despite noise and distractions is helpful, too.