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The LSAT Is Officially Going Digital Next Spring


The LSAT is indeed going electronic, or at least so says LSAC’s president. Maybe Big Pencil needs to spend more money on lobbying. Anyway, the shift is supposed to happen this coming spring. Supposedly, for a few months, you’ll get to choose whether you’d like to take the test electronically or on paper. But after that, it’ll be electronic from then on out.

This means that if you love the smell of #2 pencil shavings and brand new erasers, time is running out. There are legitimate reasons you might prefer to take the LSAT with paper and pencil, foremost among them that you get to scribble in your test booklet; the proctors might look at you askance were you to scribble on your screen. So if you know you’d really rather take the test on paper, it’s time to start the process. Pick a test date. Pick a backup. Start studying. Shameless plug: maybe take a class.

LSAC has clearly thought about this for a long time. They were doing reports about computer adaptive testing at least as far back as 2007 (the electronic LSAT won’t be adaptive, as far as we know). So this is a big step. A momentous occasion. Some may call it a travesty. Things don’t change often in LSAT land, so savor this moment.

In other news, the numbers of LSAT test takers and of law school applicants continue to increase. The number of high-scoring applicants is especially up. This means that if you’re thinking of going to law school, the competition is stiffer than it’s been in quite a while. So if you want to get into the law school you want to get into, your application will need to be solid. Don’t slack in those college classes. Work hard on that LSAT score. Carefully craft your personal statement.

Maybe a giant meteor will strike our planet, obliterating us all before we even realize it means we won’t get to go to law school. If so, none of this will matter. But otherwise, this news only amplifies the urgency of the LSATs coming up later this year. If you want to take the test on paper, the upcoming LSATs are among your last chances. Either way, your score is going to be even more important thanks to the increased competition. But you’re up for that competition, right?