To re-take or not to re-take, that is thy question...

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To re-take or not to re-take, that is thy question...

Postby jengaroo » Wed Jan 13, 2010 2:02 pm

Hi all:

So I am in a serious predicament. I am applying in this cycle for Fall 2010 and I just received my 2nd LSAT score. Unfortunately, I scored a 159 this past December, not a big improvement to my 153 last year. The first score was achieved during a heavy work period (avg. 80 hours) with no studying while for the second score I studied for a full month (again limited due to work). I am debating whether or not to take the test again in February. I have roughly three weeks left to study and can commit a full-time schedule to the studying but I feel burnt out. Right now my target schools are:

1. Cardozo May
2. Fordham evening
3. St. John's
4. Brooklyn
5. Seton Hall
6. Rutgers

The benefits as I see them of re-taking are to raise my score to a level that could yield a scholarship (huge help) and possibly bump me into Fordham full-time although I am still a really big fan of Cardozo and not thrilled about Fordham's price tag.

I was wondering if you all could provide some feedback on this decision, weighing the pros and cons of re-taking in Feb, June, or not at all.


3.4 gpa undergrad (top public)
3.7 gpa grad
3+ years work experience

Any help would be greatly appreciated.


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Re: To re-take or not to re-take, that is thy question...

Postby leraa6587 » Wed Jan 13, 2010 2:23 pm

you're obviously from the tri-state area, so high five.

you can get into the lower schools on your list easily. as for scholarships, i'm not sure. it sounds like you have already spent a considerable amount of time applying to and waiting to go to law school. why don't you let this cycle play out and see where you get in, go to one of those schools, work your ass off (as it seems like you are good at), and transfer? i'm not sure how transferring affects scholarships and all so maybe someone else could comment on that.

as for your score difference, congrats! a 159 may not be a 170+ score, but it is a HUGE percentile difference above a 153. you would be better off taking the june lsat anyway; 3-4 weeks is not enough to cause another major score bump in my opinion, as it gets more and more difficult with every increase. also, this being your third time, it is your last shot until the 5 year period expires on your first one, if i am not mistaken. don't blow it because you're in a rush.

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Re: To re-take or not to re-take, that is thy question...

Postby existenz » Wed Jan 13, 2010 3:35 pm

How did you score on practice tests? Is 160 your normal score, or do you think you could do significantly better? If you think you could only improve a point or two, it might not be worth retaking.

Also, how determined are you to start in Fall 2010? If you are dead set, then I'd retake. But make sure you study smarter this time. Find your weaknesses and attack them. There is always some risk of scoring lower than your 159, but it depends on what you think your abilities are.

Also, I think you can only take 3 LSATs per 2-year period, not 5. But if you decide to put off law school until Fall 2011, I'd wait and retake in June.


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Re: To re-take or not to re-take, that is thy question...

Postby thehouseguy » Wed Jan 13, 2010 9:56 pm

Thank you both for your comments. They are very helpful. I did check and it is 3 max per 2 year period (cancellations count).

Prior to taking the Dec 2009 test I was scoring 163-164 average. My Dec test sections are below:

RC: -9
LG: -8
LR: -7
LR: -5

Typically I score between -3 and -6 wrong on RC. -8 for LG is on par - unfortunately I have never been able to really improve on this section. LR was right around where I was scoring.

I think at this point, Fall 2011 is only an option for me if I am working and I realistically would not have any time to study for the June test.


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