i got a 180 on the october 2008 administration. here's what i did:
i ordered two of the 10-LSAT books and five of the most recently released LSATS. i started with the oldest test materials and worked my way up to the most recent administration. i did not use a tutor or prep class.
five weeks out, i took a timed diagnostic with four sections. i omitted the fifth unscored section. this alerted me to areas in which i was weak, like logic games and logical reasoning; for what it's worth, my diagnostic was a 165. i think i only completed half of the logic game questions.
knowing that i need some LG/LR work, i did two sections of one - or the other - or both - every other day, alternating on the other days with a four section test. this went on for about a week and a half.
for personal reasons, i was forced to take a week off at that point, leaving me a little less than three weeks before the test. i began taking four section tests every morning before work. i'm not going to lie - it was really brutal. i was getting up at 5 am, testing from 6-9, then working from 9 to 6 at night. i had no life. sacrifice is necessary.
about 10 days out, i began adding a fifth "unscored" section into my tests. obviously, i knew which section i was using to proxy as unscored, but i took it seriously and corrected those sections anyway. absolutely DO NOT underestimate the fatigue effect during the test. i don't want to sound horrible, but i missed one question on the test, and it was a misbubble on a relatively easy LR question. silly mental errors are part of the LSAT! it is designed to wear you down and challenge your ability to stay focused and alert. misbubbling is no less legitimate a way to miss a question than simply not knowing the answer, and the scoring certainly does not distinguish between the two.
my biggest advice for everyone is to simulate test conditions as best you can when you practice. be psycho about it - seriously, it will help you on test day. to my recollection, my test began around 9 am, so the fact that i had been practicing in the morning and training my brain to wake up sharp helped. when i practiced, i went to far as to only eat/walk around/use the restroom during the 10 minute break following the third section. i even ate and drank the exact same things during practice tests as i did during the real test. i can't stress enough the importance of routine, routine, routine. it sounds silly, but controlling as many variables as possible helps eliminate sources of anxiety on test day and will undoubtedly raise your score by at least a point or two. do not give yourself an extra ten seconds to bubble. do not drink coffee while taking the test. force yourself to finish sections even though you really, really need to hit the restroom. practice the way you want to perform.
beyond what i said above, i spent the month being really physically and mentally healthy. i ate nutritious things and exercised when i had time (which, admittedly, was relatively infrequently given my schedule). my practices ranged from 173-177, and i guess i had a really good day on test day. be confident. control everything you can, and be prepared for the things you can't.
future LSAT takers - you can do this! i believe that anyone can raise his or her score considerably by employing a serious, dedicated approach to preparing for the test. you have to keep your eyes on the prize. that three hour test is not everything; you will find the law school that is right for you regardless. you will, however, be kicking yourself forever if you prepare inadequately for the most important part of the law school admissions process.
oh, and take the writing part seriously. it's 30 minutes. i know schools supposedly don't look at it, yada yada yada, but what else are you going to do during the time? don't take even a slight risk out of laziness. besides... it's kinda fun.
ok, speech over. good luck, everyone!