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These pages contain information on the LSAT and how to prepare for the LSAT, as well as links to various study aids.

LSAT 101

What is the LSAT?

The Law School Admission Test (or LSAT) is a half-day standardized test that is required for admission to all 200 plus LSAC (Law School Admissions Council) member schools. The LSAT provides a standard measure of acquired reading and verbal reasoning skills that law schools can use as one of several factors in assessing applicants. The LSAT is designed to measure the skills that are considered necessary for students to succeed in law schools.

The Content of the LSAT

The LSAT consists of five 35-minute sections of multiple-choice questions. One of the five sections is "experimental" in that the LSAC uses that section to try out new questions for possible use in future tests. You will not know which section is the experimental one, and trying to guess, thereby giving less than your all because you think you have spotted the experimental section, is a frequent cause of students doing poorly.

The LSAT consists of 2 logical reasoning sections, 1 analytical reasoning section, 1 reading comprehension section, the experimental section and a 30-minute writing sample. The writing sample is not scored but is forwarded as part of your file to law schools which you apply. Law schools often use the writing sample as one factor of determining admissions.

How to Register for the LSAT

To enhance your prospect of admission to law school, you should try to take the test either in the summer between your junior and senior years or early fall of your senior year.

Registration for the LSAT can be done electronically by visiting the LSAC Web site.

Additional Resources

LSAT Prep Course

There are currently no ISU-run prep courses scheduled. Although, the LSAC offers students a free LSAT prep course through the Kahn Academy.

LSAT Study Tips

Before the Test

  • Don't make yourself crazy - While the LSAT is very important, don't lose perspective. Everyone in the test center is basically in the same situation you are in. If you panic and start thinking about how everything comes down to the LSAT, you will lose the focus that is absolutely essential in taking the test.
  • Get a good nights sleep - The LSAT requires high levels of concentration. Therefore, make sure you get enough sleep the night before the test to make sure your mind and eyes are well rested.
  • Be careful what you eat and drink - Stay away from too much caffeine, sugar and food that makes you sleepy (like turkey which contains tryptophan). Getting a stomach ache, the shakes or dozing off during the test will likely effect your performance.

Day of the Test

  • Dress in layers - Make sure you are dressed comfortably for the test. Since the temperature of the test center can be quite unpredictable, be prepared by wearing clothes that can either be added or removed quickly. Sweating profusely during an exam or shivering uncontrollably will certainly effect your performance.
  • Bring supplies - Be prepared by packing extra pens, pencils, tissues, a clock (make sure it's silent), water, medicine in case of a headache or stomach ache and your favorite good luck charm.
  • Arrive early - Arrive at the test center extra early so you can get settled, adjust to your surroundings and start to focus on the test. There is enough stress associated with the test itself, so try not to add any more stress by leaving only minutes to spare. Assume that something will go wrong on your trip to the test.

Taking the Test

  • Bring your admission ticket and your identification - You need these items in order to take the test so please don't forget them. Tape them to your forehead the night before if you have to.
  • Try to spend 1:36 per question - If you spend roughly one minute and 36 seconds on each question, you will have enough time to finish each question. If you find you're spending too much time on a question, move to the next one. Don't forget - each question is weighed equally.
  • Answer every question on the test - Even if you are running out of time, make your best educated guess on those questions. Don't forget - you get points for each question answered correctly and are not penalized for incorrect answers. Let the rule of odds help you get the highest score possible.

If LSAT is presented in online format, check with the LSAC as to what to expect for the test.