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Future JD Students

Frequently Asked Questions: LSAT

Before You Take the Test

The LSAT is a half-day, standardized test administered four times each year at designated testing centers throughout the world. The test is an integral part of the law school admission process in the United States, Canada, and a growing number of other countries. It 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 test consists of five 35-minute sections of multiple-choice questions. Four of the five sections contribute to the test taker's score. These sections include one reading comprehension section, one analytical reasoning section, and two logical reasoning sections. The unscored section, commonly referred to as the variable section, typically is used to pretest new test questions or to preequate new test forms. The placement of this section in the LSAT will vary. The score scale for the LSAT is 120 to 180. A 35-minute writing sample is administered at the end of the test. The writing sample is not scored by LSAC, but copies are sent to all law schools to which you apply.

The LSAT is designed to measure skills that are considered essential for success in law school: the reading and comprehension of complex texts with accuracy and insight; the organization and management of information and the ability to draw reasonable inferences from it; the ability to think critically; and the analysis and evaluation of the reasoning and arguments of others.

You should take the LSAT as early as possible before law school application deadlines. In recent years, many law schools have requested that applicants take the test by December for admission in the following fall's entering class. If you think you may want to repeat the test after getting your initial score, plan to take the LSAT first in either June or October. This will give you time to access your score on your LSAC.org account and register for the test again in December.

The LSAT is administered at various locations throughout the world. There are established test centers at undergraduate schools, law schools, military bases, embassies, and educational centers. The LSAT is not administered at every test center on all testing dates, and there is limited center availability for each test administration. Test centers are open to every registered candidate regardless of race, color, creed, or national origin. If it is impossible for you to travel to an established test center and you are located more than 100 miles (160 km) from an open center, you may request that LSAC establish a nonpublished test center.

The LSAT measures skills and knowledge that develop over a period of time. Thus, you cannot prepare for the test by making a last-minute effort to master specific subject areas. However, persons who have thoroughly familiarized themselves with test directions and questions types, who have practiced on available sample tests, and who have studied information available on test-taking techniques and strategies, may feel more secure on the day of the test. You may also purchase additional nominally priced LSAT preparation materials.

Registering online is the quickest and easiest way to register. You can also call 215.968.1001.

Once you have registered for a test during the regular registration period, you may not withdraw your registration and reregister for that same test during the late registration period.

Please make sure you have Adobe Reader 7 or later installed on your computer. If you have an earlier version of Reader, you will need to uninstall it, then download and install a later version. Reader is available free from www.adobe.com.

Admission tickets are displayed in an Adobe Reader pop-up window. If you click the link to your ticket and no window appears, it is being blocked by software on your computer. Be sure that you have disabled all pop-up blockers. LSAC cannot assist you with any software provided by a third party.

Microsoft Windows XP or newer versions—If you have the required version of Adobe Reader installed and your admission ticket opens in a blank window, it may be necessary to change a setting in Adobe Reader. Start Reader, click Edit, then Preferences. From the menu on the left, click Internet and clear the "Display PDF in browser" check box. Click OK, then exit Reader and try to open your Admission Ticket. You may need to log out of your account, close and reopen your browser (Internet Explorer or Firefox), and try to open your ticket.

Some users may need to make an additional change to their Internet Options. Exit all open programs, then, from your computer's Control Panel, open Internet Options and click the Advanced tab. Scroll down to the Security section and clear the "Do not save encrypted pages to disk" check box. Click OK and try to open your admission ticket.

Macintosh OS X users—The default application to view PDFs in OS X is Preview. Some LSAC documents do not display correctly in Preview and must be viewed using Adobe Reader. Opening the admission ticket in Preview will also place a copy of the file on your desktop as Example.pdf. Open Adobe Reader, click File, then Open. Browse to your desktop and select the downloaded copy of the ticket. This should open the admission ticket properly and allow you to view and print your ticket.

Safari—The default application in OS X to view PDFs is Preview. Some LSAC PDF documents do not display correctly in Preview and must be viewed using Adobe Reader. Opening the PDF document in Preview will also place a copy of the file on your desktop as Example.pdf. Open Adobe Reader, click File, then Open. Browse to your desktop and select the downloaded copy of the PDF. This should open the PDF document properly and allow you to view and print it.

Firefox—Version 15 and later display PDF documents using Firefox's own browser software, and some LSAC documents will not display correctly. To change Firefox’s default PDF viewer to Adobe Reader, select the Tools menu item, then Options. Click on the Applications tab to display the default programs linked to each file extension. For each Adobe Forms Document listed in the Content Type column, select the pull-down menu for the associated Action and change it to Use Adobe Reader (default). Reopen your PDF document; it should open in Adobe Reader with your personal information.

If it is impossible for you to travel to an established test center and you are located more than 100 miles (160 km) from an open center, you may request that LSAC establish a nonpublished test center. Please note the earlier deadlines that are found in the LSAT Dates and Deadlines section of this website.

An email will be sent to you when you are moved off the waiting list and assigned to a test center. An admission ticket will be available in the LSAT Status section under the LSAT tab as soon as you have been assigned.

If you are unable to take the test and you submit a request for a refund by the refund deadline associated with your test date, you are entitled to a partial refund of $51 ($50 CDN). You can download the Refund Request Form (PDF) from this website. LSAC will also accept a signed, dated letter as long as we receive it by the appropriate deadline date.

Yes. The option to withdraw your LSAT registration will be available in the LSAT Status section of your LSAC.org account once the refund deadline has passed. You must complete the withdrawal by the withdrawal deadline associated with your test date. No refund will be issued. Your LSAT registration cannot be reinstated once withdrawn.

The option to withdraw your LSAT registration will be available in the LSAT Status section of your LSAC.org account once the refund deadline has passed. You must complete the withdrawal by the withdrawal deadline associated with your test date. Once that LSAT is withdrawn you may use the waiver to register for an LSAT administered prior to the date your fee waiver expires.

If you have registered for an LSAT or the Credential Assembly Service, any changes to name, date of birth, or Social Security/Social Insurance number must be submitted to LSAC in writing and require a signature. Fill out the LSAC Biographical Information Changes form (PDF), then either email the form to LSACbio@LSAC.org, fax the form to 215.968.1119, or mail the form to:

Law School Admission Council
662 Penn Street
PO BOX 2000-C
Newtown PA 18940-0994

All other biographical information can be changed online.

Yes. The easiest way to change your test date is through your LSAC.org account. You may also use the Test Date Change form or a signed, dated, written request. Enclose an $85 payment ($82 CDN plus 5% Goods and Service Tax). The Test Date Change form (PDF) can be found on this website. Be sure that the request is received by the appropriate date, which can be found in the LSAT Dates and Deadlines section of this website.

Day of the Test

If you encounter a problem during the test administration, report it to the test center supervisor; however, informing the test center supervisor is not sufficient. You must also follow up your complaint by writing to:

LSAC
PO BOX 2000-T
Newtown PA 18940

Fax: 215.968.1277
Email: LSACinfo@LSAC.org

Your complaint must be received within six calendar days after the administration. It is your responsibility to keep proof of LSAC's receipt of your complaint (i.e., a fax transmittal report); however, no such proof will be accepted beyond 14 calendar days after the test. Indicate "Test Center Complaint" in the subject line and include your name, address, LSAC account number, the last four digits of your Social Security or Social Insurance number, test center name and the building and/or room in which you were tested, if known. Be aware that the availability of your LSAT score may be delayed pending the review of your complaint.

Test takers must report to the test centers for the October, December, and February administrations of the LSAT no later than 8:30 am. The reporting time for the June LSAT is 12:30 pm.

Candidates registered at international test centers should note the actual test date, day, and reporting time printed on their LSAT Admission Ticket.

Test takers may bring into the test room only a clear plastic ziplock bag (sealed), maximum size one gallon/3.79 liters, which must be stored under the chair and may be accessed only during the break. The ziplock bag may contain only the following items: LSAT Admission Ticket, valid ID, wallet, keys, medical or hygiene products, tissues, #2 or HB pencils (no mechanical pencils), erasers, pencil sharpener, highlighter, and beverage in a plastic container or juice box (20 oz./591 ml. maximum size) and snack for break only.

Test takers may only use an analog, nondigital wristwatch. No electronic devices are permitted.

After You Take the Test

  • LSAT takers who have LSAC.org accounts will automatically receive their LSAT scores by email approximately three weeks after taking the test. This is the quickest way to obtain your LSAT score, and there is no additional charge. Please keep your email address current in your LSAC.org account to receive your score promptly.
  • LSAC will send score reports by mail approximately four weeks after each test for those without online accounts.

There are two ways you can cancel your score:

  • Complete the score cancellation section on the LSAT answer sheet at the test center. (Instructions are provided on the answer sheet.) Sign your full name and date for the certifying statement in the Score Cancellation section of your answer sheet.
  • Send a written cancellation request to LSAC after the test. Your written cancellation must be in the form of a signed fax; overnight letter; or expedited, mailed score cancellation form (PDF), which you can access on this website immediately following your test administration. Your request must be received within six calendar days of the test. If you do not receive confirmation of receipt of your request within four calendar days after your request was submitted, contact LSAC immediately. If your request has not been processed, you may submit proof that your request was received at LSAC within the required period. Documentation of proof of receipt will not be accepted beyond 14 calendar days after the test.

If you wish to verify or contest the machine scoring of your answer sheet after you have received your LSAT Score Report, you may request a rescoring by hand. Send a signed request to:

LSAC
662 Penn Street
PO BOX 2000-T
Newtown PA 18940

Fax: 215.968.1277

Your request must be received no later than 60 days after the test date.

Include your name, LSAC account number, the last four digits of your Social Security/Insurance identification number, the test date, the test center name and code number, your reason for requesting the handscore, and payment for the $45 ($44 CDN) handscore fee (check, money order, or credit card).

NOTE: If the handscoring results in a score that is different from the original machine scoring—higher or lower—the revised score will be mailed to you and the law schools to which you apply.

If you did not request a refund, change your test date, or withdraw your registration by the stated deadlines and you do not take the test, your LSAC file will note "absent." The absent notation is not a score of zero, nor will it be factored into any reportable scores on file.

You will need to reregister, as the test registration cannot be removed from your file after the refund/test date change/withdrawal deadlines have passed. You will have to pay the full registration fee if you register for another test date.

If you believe that your test score does not reflect your true ability, you should consider taking the test again. Data show that scores for repeat test takers often rise slightly. However, be aware that your scores may drop. You should also notify law schools of any facts relevant to the interpretation of your test results, such as illness or extenuating circumstances. If there is no reason to believe that one score represents a truer estimate of an applicant's ability, schools are advised that the average score is probably the best estimate of ability—especially if the tests were taken over short period of time. Law schools must have access to your complete test record, not just the highest score; therefore, LSAC will not honor requests for partial score reports.

Normally, you may not take the LSAT more than three times in any two-year period. This policy applies even if you cancel your score or it is not otherwise reported. LSAC reserves the right to withdraw your registration, rescind your admission ticket, or take any other steps necessary to enforce this policy.

For significant extenuating circumstances, exceptions to this policy may be made by LSAC. To request an exception, submit a signed, detailed explanation—along with verification, if possible—addressing the circumstances that you feel make you eligible to retake the LSAT and specify the date that you wish to test. Email your request as an attachment to LSACinfo@LSAC.org or send it by fax to 215.968.1277.

You will be notified by email of approval or denial of your request. Be sure to submit your request well in advance of the regular registration deadline so that you can receive timely notification of our decision. Barring unforeseen circumstances, LSAC will respond within seven working days of its receipt. LSAC's decisions are final.

LSAC will automatically report the results of all LSATs in your file, including cancellations and absences, since June 1, 2009. The scores are averaged and also appear separately.

Scores earned prior to June 2009 are not considered current for law school reporting and are not available for printing from an online account. See instructions below for ordering:

To have older scores sent to a law school or to you, send a completed request form (PDF) to LSAC via mail or fax. Or, you can send a letter including your name as it appeared when you took the LSAT, your LSAC account number (if available), the last four digits of your Social Security or Social Insurance number, date of birth, most recent test date(s), current name, current address, day telephone number, email, and the name and address of the schools to which you want the report sent. Be sure to include your signature and your payment with your letter or request form.

If you are making your request by mail (PDF), send a check, money order, or credit card information to:

LSAC
662 Penn Street
PO BOX 2600
Newtown PA 18940-0979

If you are making your request by fax (PDF), only credit card payment is acceptable. Fax your information to 215.504.1480.

Be sure to check with the school(s) to determine if a Credential Assembly Service report is needed. Scores earned prior to June 2005 will not be reported to law schools.

NOTE: Reports may only be sent to you or to law schools (not to graduate schools, employers, scholarship programs, etc.).

If, while taking the LSAT, you find what you believe to be an error or ambiguity in a test question that affects your response to the question, report it to the test supervisor as soon as you finish the test and write immediately to:

Law School Admission Council, Test Development
662 Penn Street
PO BOX 40
Newtown PA 18940-0040

You may also contact us by email at LSATTS@LSAC.org.

Information about the review process can be found in Policies and Procedures Governing Challenges to Law School Admission Test Questions.

Some state bar associations inquire about the law school admission records of those seeking admission to the bar. You should keep and maintain complete copies of all law school application records throughout the admission cycle and your law school career.

LSAC sends a copy of the applicant's writing sample to law schools along with the LSAT or Credential Assembly Service Law School Report. If you have taken the LSAT more than once, the three most recent writing samples will be sent to law schools. Each law school determines for itself how it will make use of the writing sample.

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