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Interpreting Your February 2011 LSAT Score

Or: The case for waiting a year

Most readers know that the February 2011 LSAT is the last stand for those looking to start school in Fall 2011. For those of you who receive a great score on this exam, as always, is congratulations! For those of you with a borderline or disappointing score, here are some considerations:

  • Waiting a year is often a great option. In fact, for many it could be an only option as admissions can be tough to come by this late in the cycle. A year off can give potential applicants a great opportunity to not only improve their LSAT but add some great work experience as well. Applying for 2012, you’ll have the opportunity to prepare for the June test for several months and get applications in at the begining of the application season rather than the very end, a big advantage.
  • The June LSAT should be out as an option for those looking to apply in 2011. It just isn’t going to happen for accredited, full-time applicants that aren’t already on a school’s waitlist.
  • June LSATs can sway wait list decisions, but don’t count on it. Last year Next Step had a student that was wait-listed at UNC Chapel Hill. He was able to improve his LSAT by several points on the June test, and the week after scores were released he was in with a partial tuition grant. However, this is the exception rather than the rule.
  • That said, one great strategy would be to prepare for the June test with the intention of applying for 2012, and just keep in your back pocket that if you are on a few wait lists, a great score might put you over the top.

It’s hard to overestimate how important hitting the right time in the admissions process can be. We’ve seen dozens of students that are crushed by the idea of waiting a year to go to school. However, in the current legal hiring market it’s even more important to make sure you go to the highest value (prestige/cost) law school you possibly can. Waiting a year won’t kill your career, and it can make a big difference in your law school options.

Next Step Test Preparation provides complete courses of one-on-one tutoring with an LSAT expert for less than the price of a commercial prep course. Email us or call 888-530-NEXT (6398) for a complimentary consultation.

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