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All I Want for Christmas is a Legal Education

After taking the December LSAT, the hardest part (I’m sure every test-taker will agree) is the seeming perpetual¬†waiting for scores.

This year, the LSAC is not expected to release the December scores until January 4th. How does one wait a little over a month to know whether or not the scores are great- or good enough to get into prospective law schools?

I have seen on multiple LSAT memes that it is essential to “take a shot” every few minutes; however, regardless of how tempting this may sound, no one can do this all month. After burning the LSAT books, though, there may be ways to help get through the remainder of December.

I’ve tried to think of a list of things to do to take my mind off of my score; hopefully these work for all anxious LSAT-takers.

Finish the semester strong

  • GPA is a major part of acceptance to law school, so finish strong despite being mentally drained
  • Succeeding (or surviving) in the sea of papers, projects, and presentations will give a boost of confidence

Enjoy the break!

  • Most colleges have a few weeks off, a “Winter break” for students
  • It’s important to decompress and recharge for the next semester, as well as take a break after piling your brain with LSAT stress
  • Make the most of time with friends and family; this helps to relieve stress and add to overall well-being
  • Eat a little too much; it’s easy to get malnourished when studying all the time

Stay busy when necessary

  • Spend more time getting in shape (after eating too much)
  • Go Christmas shopping with friends for fun (or whatever your form of therapy is)
  • I’ll be busy planning my wedding that is scheduled 3 months from now- but I do not advise this for anyone hoping to remain sane

If you haven’t finished applying…

Luckily, the holidays offer a lot to do in order to keep busy. Focus on family, friends, food, and some fun, and every LSAT taker expecting scores should get through the month successfully. Enjoy life while you can… January, and all that it brings, is just around the corner.

Round 2: December LSAT

This Saturday I will be taking the LSAT for the second time. I feel much more confident now that I am familiar with the process and testing environment. Even though I am only working toward making a few points higher this time, the pressure still remains. For anyone who has taken the LSAT, the pressure may either lessen or grow with each attempt.

Image courtesy of: http://blueprintprep.com

A perfect score (which is extremely rarely accomplished) is a 180. The median score is around 152 each year; however, in order to be able to apply to more competitive universities, making a higher score is crucial.

Although I did well on the October LSAT, it it is important to at least take the test twice in order to show dedication to improving. Law schools appreciate perseverance and the willingness to stay with something. Considering how stressful and difficult the LSAT process is, I (like others) am hoping this might prove something.

As I stated in my previous post, I have been working hard, especially with the Princeton Review’s Cracking the LSAT book. It has helped greatly by including:

I would strongly recommend the Princeton Review guides for any standardized test prep.

The analytical games still remain the nemesis to most in the world of the LSAT, but I have found ways to get around them. I assumed going into the LSAT that the Reading Comprehension would be the easiest section; however, each question has five answer choices all of which are somewhat correct. The trick is to find the one that is the “most” correct. Talk about frustrating.

I hope to score the highest in the logical reasoning section, which has proven to be my most successful section of the test thus far. As long as I am thinking clearly on test day, I am going to put my greatest deal of effort there. No section of the LSAT is easy; it is most important to understand the way the test is written and go from there.

How Helpful are LSAT Handbooks?

Courtesy of: barnesandnoble.com

All students who take the LSAT usually prepare by purchasing several test-prep books. I have found though, that not all prep materials are created equal.

I assumed that the books administered by the LSAC would be the most beneficial when studying, considering that this is the organization that actually creates the test. Although everyone’s experience is different, I found that The Official LSAT Handbook, created by the LSAC, to be helpful yet tedious. When the handbook is nearly as superfluous and at times confusing as the test, is it worth the read?

The Princeton Review’s LSAT study aid: Cracking the LSAT proved to be the most worthwhile for me. I found that this particular edition (2012) more carefully explained the rules of arduous logic and analytical games and time-consuming reading comprehension questions.

The book also offers techniques and clever tricks to understand the ways in which the LSAT is constructed. The LSAC purposefully makes the test impossible to earn a perfect score given the allotted time; thus, one of the most useful methods is beating the time by looking for key words, the lack of certain phrases, or being able to make inferences given little information.

It is my understanding that Princeton review study guides are guaranteed to raise the scores of anyone taking tests such as the LSAT, MCAT, GRE, etc.; I would recommend Cracking the LSAT for those anticipating taking this difficult test.

Other helpful LSAT materials include:

What’s Recommended for Recommendations?

Law School Recommendation letters are one of the most integral parts of the application process in order to enter. Luckily, if one is a good student, this is one of the more enjoyable requirements of applying. I consider myself to be a student who is fortunate enough to have great relationships with the professors I’ve gotten to know over the years, who also know my desire to go to law school. I found myself excited to tell a few of them that it was finally the time for recommendations, and ask if they would be kind enough to submit a letter on my behalf.

I understand that my professors have extremely busy lives, too. Several are up for tenure within my department of study, not mentioning their already packed schedules aside from teaching. It’s very exciting and rewarding knowing that such accomplished individuals, whom I have such respect for, are willing to take time from their lives and help me in my future endeavors.

I had no idea, though, that letters of recommendation tend to be considered all-too-common for the LSAC. Because the council views so many similar recommendations, it is important for each applicant’s professors to find a way to make their student memorable. According to LSAT Blog, there are too many Ineffective Law School Recommendations with all the right intentions.

They advise:

  • Don’t use adjectives that lose meaning, such as: bright, hard-working, asset, etc.
  • Project how the student will do well in law school, once accepted
  • The professor should show that they have gotten to know the student over time, thus has the ability to adequately assess them

This is very interesting information that pre-law school students may not consider. I feel, though, that my professors are more than competent in writing an accurate evaluation of my work, extracurricular activities, and interests that may pertain to securing my position as an accepted law school student.

Nothing Scarier in October than the LSAT…

I’m ¬†a Pre-law student at MSC and looking to start law school in the fall.

Earlier this month, I took the LSAT and am waiting for the results to come in by Halloween. Unfortunately, I have no idea to tell how well I did considering that the test was so difficult. With a writing portion, analytical and logical games, and reading comprehension, all to do with so little time, the test is extremely difficult. I heard so many rumors that it is better to work slowly and leave answers blank; however, I moved more quickly through the test and answered all the questions, with just a few seconds to spare at the end of the period.

As a pre-law student, it is difficult to carry so many classes while preparing for the LSAT and law school, but I am trying my hardest to get there. I have been advised that each LSAT taker should begin studying 15 hours a week up to 7 months before the test; I began working about a month before, unfortunately. All I can do is hope for the best!