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Withdraw vs Cancel Considering New Retake Conditions

Posted: Wed Jun 07, 2017 2:15 pm
by KSaraSara
I've taken my prep course and I'm woefully far from my target score (10-15pts). Most of this is timing issues and RC; I'm currently -1 or -2 on LG, and -2 to -5 on both LR section barring mitigating factors where I don't finish them (see: timing). I'm already registered for September and I feel that with 3 months of drilling and application of the techniques I've learned I can perhaps score consistently where I want/need to be scoring, but I'm considering taking the test Monday and seeing how it goes.

I know that the general consensus about this in the past has been to withdraw if you are not at or close (as possible) to your target score. But given the new rules of unlimited retakes would it be a bad idea to take the test for the experience and cancel? I'd really appreciate any advice...

Re: Withdraw vs Cancel Considering New Retake Conditions

Posted: Wed Jun 07, 2017 3:21 pm
by anonposter6775
KSaraSara wrote:I've taken my prep course and I'm woefully far from my target score (10-15pts). Most of this is timing issues and RC; I'm currently -1 or -2 on LG, and -2 to -5 on both LR section barring mitigating factors where I don't finish them (see: timing). I'm already registered for September and I feel that with 3 months of drilling and application of the techniques I've learned I can perhaps score consistently where I want/need to be scoring, but I'm considering taking the test Monday and seeing how it goes.

I know that the general consensus about this in the past has been to withdraw if you are not at or close (as possible) to your target score. But given the new rules of unlimited retakes would it be a bad idea to take the test for the experience and cancel? I'd really appreciate any advice...


You should take the test. Cancel it if you would like, but I don't believe that is even necessary. Most schools take the top score, but given how LSAT is changing their rules and whatnot I could see this slowly start to change- who knows.

Some people on here will surely disagree with me, but that is my opinion. I've taken the test not being at my target score in the past and it was a good experience. I did not cancel my score.

Re: Withdraw vs Cancel Considering New Retake Conditions

Posted: Wed Jun 07, 2017 6:55 pm
by dm1683
anonposter6775 wrote:
KSaraSara wrote:I've taken my prep course and I'm woefully far from my target score (10-15pts). Most of this is timing issues and RC; I'm currently -1 or -2 on LG, and -2 to -5 on both LR section barring mitigating factors where I don't finish them (see: timing). I'm already registered for September and I feel that with 3 months of drilling and application of the techniques I've learned I can perhaps score consistently where I want/need to be scoring, but I'm considering taking the test Monday and seeing how it goes.

I know that the general consensus about this in the past has been to withdraw if you are not at or close (as possible) to your target score. But given the new rules of unlimited retakes would it be a bad idea to take the test for the experience and cancel? I'd really appreciate any advice...


You should take the test. Cancel it if you would like, but I don't believe that is even necessary. Most schools take the top score, but given how LSAT is changing their rules and whatnot I could see this slowly start to change- who knows.

Some people on here will surely disagree with me, but that is my opinion. I've taken the test not being at my target score in the past and it was a good experience. I did not cancel my score.


+100. Take the damn thing and see what happens. No schools except yale (maybe stanford?) look at low first takes negatively as long as you have a good final take. Maybe lightning will strike and the RC will be very easy - then you might have a score close to where you want it.

Re: Withdraw vs Cancel Considering New Retake Conditions

Posted: Wed Jun 07, 2017 6:55 pm
by Platopus
You can't un-ring the bell. Sure, most schools only consider the highest score, but a 15 point jump is going to require an addendum, and given applicants with otherwise equal stats and backgrounds, I would imagine schools would favor the applicant without the 15 point discrepancy between tests. Sure, a 5 point increase doesn't raise any alarms. But a 15 point increase without a valid reason why you scored so low on the 1st take (illness, death in the family, etc.) I think does raise at least some suspicion. If you were closer, and you actually hit your target a couple times on PT's then I'd advocate taking, but 10-15 points is a lot. Keep in mind it is relative though. It's probably not a huge deal, but it something to keep in mind.

I 140 --> 155, and most schools probably wouldn't care. A 165 ---180 same deal. But a 155 --> 170 I think raises some doubt in those cases when schools are evaluating otherwise similar applicants.

You also risk getting a similar score the 2nd time around, devaluing a 3rd take if you fail to hit the 2nd time too. For example 155 --> 162 ---> 170 I think looks worse than a 162 --> 170 when schools are evaluating otherwise similar applicants.

Re: Withdraw vs Cancel Considering New Retake Conditions

Posted: Wed Jun 07, 2017 7:04 pm
by dm1683
Platopus wrote:You can't un-ring the bell. Sure, most schools only consider the highest score, but a 15 point jump is going to require an addendum, and given applicants with otherwise equal stats and backgrounds, I would imagine schools would favor the applicant without the 15 point discrepancy between tests. Sure, a 5 point increase doesn't raise any alarms. But a 15 point increase without a valid reason why you scored so low on the 1st take (illness, death in the family, etc.) I think does raise at least some suspicion. If you were closer, and you actually hit your target a couple times on PT's then I'd advocate taking, but 10-15 points is a lot. Keep in mind it is relative though. It's probably not a huge deal, but it something to keep in mind.

I 140 --> 155, and most schools probably wouldn't care. A 165 ---180 same deal. But a 155 --> 170 I think raises some doubt in those cases when schools are evaluating otherwise similar applicants.

You also risk getting a similar score the 2nd time around, devaluing a 3rd take if you fail to hit the 2nd time too. For example 155 --> 162 ---> 170 I think looks worse than a 162 --> 170 when schools are evaluating otherwise similar applicants.


very well argued, I completely change my position. OP disregard my post pls.

Re: Withdraw vs Cancel Considering New Retake Conditions

Posted: Wed Jun 07, 2017 7:30 pm
by zkyggi
Platopus wrote:You can't un-ring the bell. Sure, most schools only consider the highest score, but a 15 point jump is going to require an addendum, and given applicants with otherwise equal stats and backgrounds, I would imagine schools would favor the applicant without the 15 point discrepancy between tests. Sure, a 5 point increase doesn't raise any alarms. But a 15 point increase without a valid reason why you scored so low on the 1st take (illness, death in the family, etc.) I think does raise at least some suspicion. If you were closer, and you actually hit your target a couple times on PT's then I'd advocate taking, but 10-15 points is a lot. Keep in mind it is relative though. It's probably not a huge deal, but it something to keep in mind.

I 140 --> 155, and most schools probably wouldn't care. A 165 ---180 same deal. But a 155 --> 170 I think raises some doubt in those cases when schools are evaluating otherwise similar applicants.

You also risk getting a similar score the 2nd time around, devaluing a 3rd take if you fail to hit the 2nd time too. For example 155 --> 162 ---> 170 I think looks worse than a 162 --> 170 when schools are evaluating otherwise similar applicants.


Strongly agree. The way I see it, there are two ways to interpret, say, a 170 score. If it is the only score, the applicant is either very, very gifted, or worked very hard. If it is the second score following a 155, then it removes the chance that your score will be viewed as you being gifted. Sure, it really won't make much of a difference (if any at all) in most cases, but I believe one should control as much as they can about their cycle, and this is controllable.

Re: Withdraw vs Cancel Considering New Retake Conditions

Posted: Wed Jun 07, 2017 8:01 pm
by KSaraSara
Thank you everyone! Very valuable advice all around. Any opinions on taking the test for the experience and cancelling the score immediately afterwards? Would it reflect poorly on my app to have a cancellation? My goal is 170-175 and my highest PT has been a 164 with the lowest being a 155.

Re: Withdraw vs Cancel Considering New Retake Conditions

Posted: Wed Jun 07, 2017 8:16 pm
by Slippin' Jimmy
KSaraSara wrote:Thank you everyone! Very valuable advice all around. Any opinions on taking the test for the experience and cancelling the score immediately afterwards? Would it reflect poorly on my app to have a cancellation? My goal is 170-175 and my highest PT has been a 164 with the lowest being a 155.


What is your average from your last 5 PTs? Unless you have scored something like 5 164s in a row I think withdrawing is the obvious choice here.

Re: Withdraw vs Cancel Considering New Retake Conditions

Posted: Wed Jun 07, 2017 9:45 pm
by Platopus
KSaraSara wrote:Thank you everyone! Very valuable advice all around. Any opinions on taking the test for the experience and cancelling the score immediately afterwards? Would it reflect poorly on my app to have a cancellation? My goal is 170-175 and my highest PT has been a 164 with the lowest being a 155.


Taking for the experience and cancelling afterward probably wouldn't be the end of the world. 1 cancellation is probably ok. But again, if you under perform on the 2nd test now you have a cancellation and a weaker score diluting the value of a 170+. Again, probably not the end of the world, but I would do everything in my power to avoid even the slightest "asterisk" (so to speak) next to my score.

I would either take the test and NOT cancel or withdraw altogether. If you take the test you might as well gamble and see if you get lucky enough to crack a decent score, who knows. Taking and cancelling weakens your application for no other reason than "the experience", which I think is probably a pretty bad trade.

Re: Withdraw vs Cancel Considering New Retake Conditions

Posted: Thu Jun 08, 2017 9:11 am
by KSaraSara
Slippin' Jimmy wrote:
KSaraSara wrote:Thank you everyone! Very valuable advice all around. Any opinions on taking the test for the experience and cancelling the score immediately afterwards? Would it reflect poorly on my app to have a cancellation? My goal is 170-175 and my highest PT has been a 164 with the lowest being a 155.


What is your average from your last 5 PTs? Unless you have scored something like 5 164s in a row I think withdrawing is the obvious choice here.


My last 5 averaged to 160. The 155 was my test before last.

Re: Withdraw vs Cancel Considering New Retake Conditions

Posted: Thu Jun 08, 2017 9:20 am
by KSaraSara
Platopus wrote:
KSaraSara wrote:Thank you everyone! Very valuable advice all around. Any opinions on taking the test for the experience and cancelling the score immediately afterwards? Would it reflect poorly on my app to have a cancellation? My goal is 170-175 and my highest PT has been a 164 with the lowest being a 155.


Taking for the experience and cancelling afterward probably wouldn't be the end of the world. 1 cancellation is probably ok. But again, if you under perform on the 2nd test now you have a cancellation and a weaker score diluting the value of a 170+. Again, probably not the end of the world, but I would do everything in my power to avoid even the slightest "asterisk" (so to speak) next to my score.

I would either take the test and NOT cancel or withdraw altogether. If you take the test you might as well gamble and see if you get lucky enough to crack a decent score, who knows. Taking and cancelling weakens your application for no other reason than "the experience", which I think is probably a pretty bad trade.


This makes sense. The last thing I want to to do is weaken my app. I'm a URM with a 3.4, decent softs, and work experience. I know a 170 and submitting my app as early as possible could secure a T14 spot and that waiting and focusing on that score is the best plan. I just fear test day angst and the pressure of the September test with those goals in mind.