Average time to prepare for LSAT

obsrvr
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Average time to prepare for LSAT

Postby obsrvr » Sun Mar 17, 2013 11:34 pm

Hello everyone,

I am about to begin preparing for LSAT, first time, and just to have a rough idea, what is the average time it takes for someone to do well on LSAT for someone familiar with the format/sectons (1 month, 3 month, year, etc.) based on the stories you have heard or your personal experience? How long does it make sense to practice? Obviously, I am not looking for answers like "2 weeks" or something because it is rare and frankly I do not consider myself a genius or a great test taker.

I studied for GMAT, so I have a decent idea about LR and RC sections, albeit I understand the LSAT stuff is harder than GMAT's verbal part (I saw the thread which exam is easier and I think it is fair to say that Verbal part of GMAT is easier than LSAT, having seen LSAT practice tests) and I would not say I did fantastically well on GMAT Verbal.

On another note, if I wanted to get into top 10 Law Schools or JD/MBA programs, what would you say is the lowest LSAT score you can get into one of them?

Thanks in advance for your inputs.

J90
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Re: Average time to prepare for LSAT

Postby J90 » Sun Mar 17, 2013 11:50 pm

This is ridiculously dependent on where you are right now.

Generally, I'd say give yourself around 2-3 months of honest, total effort to know that you put in a substantial amount of time toward the LSAT. It's a terrible feeling to think you might've been able to score higher, and that might've meant the difference in the next highest group of schools or a significant amount of aid. Don't settle for, "I only want 165+," or "I just need the bare minimum to make Duke consider me," shoot for that 180 and everything else will follow.

For some people, it might take more than 3 months. For others, less. In my experience, it depends on your starting proficiency in each separate section and how much prep you've done before. You may also think you've put in enough time, but you haven't - perhaps in the next month of studying, something completely clicks for you in LR, etc.

That said, if you're getting ready now, I'd say to think about taking it in June, prepping hard now and - in the event it doesn't go as well as you hope, you test beneath your practice scores, or you think you have sizably more room for improvement - take it again in October afterward.

I didn't spend much time preparing the LSAT. I'm very much happy with where I'm going, but hindsight's 20/20 and I wish I had followed the advice I've written above. If nothing else, I might've gotten more $$$ to somewhere else. The important thing to remember is that even 50 hours extra spent studying now might mean the difference in 1-2+ years of paying back loans later, substantially increase your chance at employment (by virtue of what school you're able to attend), or who knows what. It's all variable but generally, you won't regret the time you put in now. Suck it up, go hard and best of luck to you.

Edit: Also. There is nothing comparable about the GMAT and LSAT. Take a practice test and see exactly where you're at, then work from there if you really are serious about law school. If you aren't - and your having studied for the GMAT suggests you may have decided upon the law route very recently - do the research, figure out exactly what you want to do in law then honestly, realistically evaluate what chance you have of securing that spot. If the risk (and subsequent potential loss of several hundred thousand dollars) outweighs your desire to go, don't be afraid to move on. If you do decide to take the June LSAT, study hard for the LSAT even while you're still doing this research.

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A → B ⊨ ¬B → ¬A
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Re: Average time to prepare for LSAT

Postby A → B ⊨ ¬B → ¬A » Mon Mar 18, 2013 12:19 am

you should read this. it has cherry-picked high scorers and their prep times with highlighted tips

Tips from people who did exceptionally well on the LSAT:
TLS1776 wrote:Here is a copy of that document:
People Who Did Exceptionally Well on the LSAT

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isuperserial
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Re: Average time to prepare for LSAT

Postby isuperserial » Mon Mar 18, 2013 12:25 am

It's entirely dependent on you. Some people take their first practice test and get a 170, some take their first and get 140. For the former, they could probably take the test right now and go somewhere in the top 10 if they have grades to match. For the latter, they better hit the books and prepare for the long haul.

Don't shoot for what the "average" person does because average people suck. Do what you need to do to succeed.

Additional Edit:

Scores to get into the top 10 are around 170. Scores to get into the top 5 are closer to 173-175.

I may be wrong, but for MBA/JD, I believe you have to independently be accepted to both schools. The MBA requirements are drastically different and focus a lot more on work experience. Why would you want an MBA/JD?

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Balthy
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Re: Average time to prepare for LSAT

Postby Balthy » Mon Mar 18, 2013 12:48 am

It depends on (a) how much time you have to study per day, (b) how well you study, (c) how smart you iz, (d) whether you are a decent test taker, and (e) what score you want.


EDIT: IMO, to be safe, you should assume you are below TLS-average and expect to take at least 4 months for your desired score.
Last edited by Balthy on Mon Mar 18, 2013 12:52 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Balthy
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Re: Average time to prepare for LSAT

Postby Balthy » Mon Mar 18, 2013 12:50 am

isuperserial wrote:I may be wrong, but for MBA/JD, I believe you have to independently be accepted to both schools. The MBA requirements are drastically different and focus a lot more on work experience. Why would you want an MBA/JD?



There are a few programs, like NU, that have one application process for both. I think you're only required to take one of the tests, too.

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Teflon_Don
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Re: Average time to prepare for LSAT

Postby Teflon_Don » Mon Mar 18, 2013 12:51 am

2-3 months

Daily_Double
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Re: Average time to prepare for LSAT

Postby Daily_Double » Mon Mar 18, 2013 1:03 am

isuperserial wrote:Don't shoot for what the "average" person does because average people suck. Do what you need to do to succeed.


This.

Although, in my opinion, which is biased, unrepresentative, should be taken with a grain of salt, etc. and assuming a number of things which I'm not going to list because I'm lazy, you should be in a situation where you're confidently scoring well above 170 after 7-8 months of prep. It will take at least two months to learn what the books, LRB, LGB, BPLG, and MLSAT, teach, at least two months to drill, Cambridge, and at least three months for PTs. Theoretically, you could condense this into five or six months, but stretching it out will result in less stress, more time for breaks, and other benefits, which is why I recommend a longer time period.

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Gamine
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Re: Average time to prepare for LSAT

Postby Gamine » Mon Mar 18, 2013 6:49 am

I've started to prep for the October exam. It may seem like a good while away but I've sat the test before and was unhappy with my performance. I'm also working full time so I felt that I needed to start early to get enough prep done before test day

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Ave
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Re: Average time to prepare for LSAT

Postby Ave » Mon Mar 18, 2013 7:19 am

Daily_Double wrote:
isuperserial wrote:Don't shoot for what the "average" person does because average people suck. Do what you need to do to succeed.

obsrvr
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Re: Average time to prepare for LSAT

Postby obsrvr » Tue Mar 19, 2013 7:01 am

Thanks a lot for your inputs looks like I have a journey ahead of me. Now, if I score 155-160 on my practice tests (and I need 165), do you think I should not go to take an already scheduled/cancel LSAT exam?

isuperserial wrote:I may be wrong, but for MBA/JD, I believe you have to independently be accepted to both schools. The MBA requirements are drastically different and focus a lot more on work experience. Why would you want an MBA/JD?


It is likely that I will have to apply to a school with separate application process. I will look into NU definitely.

I always though I was good at Law for some reason, I took business law back in undergrad and I felt I was much more confident there (vs. many other classes). Generally, I feel like it is more of a strength than a drag. So I wanted to try something new rather than just plain MBA which, I feel is not that useful on its own, not to mention I am not the party person (although I like intelligent chat). Anyways, I wanted to look more into PE direction with an emphasis on analysis of contractual obligations and the means to enforce them, etc. So I feel like extra work is likely to pay off, particularly if I enjoy what I am doing (which is probably rare anyway, most people go to school to be done with it, or perhaps do it for someone else) My trouble is I am not particularly strong at standardized tests, it does take me a lot of effort even though I had decent grades back in the days. And LSAT won't likely be an exception.

Anybody here went through or will be going through JD/MBA and can argue against it? I guess there is a thread relating to the relevant discussion.




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