104 days, 270 plus hours, hundreds of practice questions and eight practice exams; all for a four-hour test that will quite literally change my life.
This year, around 23,000 people took the June Law School Admission Test, according to the Law School Admissions Council’s website. The June LSAT is just one of four LSATs given each year.
You may have heard about this test, or you may know someone who took it or you might be planning to take it yourself. Shoutout to everyone who just took the September LSAT. I’m with you bro, it was hard. Let me give you a little warning for those of you who haven’t experienced it yet: studying for the LSAT is actually tortuous. And the content of the test isn’t about law, it’s logic based. It’s testing your ability to dissect arguments and notice the author’s position in a passage.
I’m sorry to be the one to break it to you, but Elle Woods’ version of the LSAT isn’t real life. Yes, she studied for hours upon hours, which is necessary, but it’s not sufficient for you to get into law school or even get you into the 90th percentile. (High five if you caught my nerdy LSAT reference.)
I spent around four months studying for the LSAT. I sat in front of my computer and LSAT books and studied for three to four hours a day. Sometimes I even threw in a five-hour study sesh. And after all that stress, I probably will not make it anywhere near the 90th percentile.
Can you imagine studying for months and barely seeing your practice scores tick up a few notches? It’s devastating.
Despite everything I went through for the September LSAT, for the first time in four months I am not worried about reading comprehension. I did my homework and didn’t worry about how many logic games I completed that day. Which are named inappropriately by the way, they are not “games.” Tetris is a game, logic is not. I made plans to have dinner with my friends and I didn’t first think about how many hours of logical reasoning I could fit in before six. I spent months missing out on Chimy’s with my friends, just so I might get into law school.
This test is brutal. It’s made to trick you, bore you, and essentially make you question all your life goals. But that’s the point, isn’t it? The Law School Admissions Council is not messing around with who, someday, might get to be a supreme court justice or even the president. They don’t want it to be easy.
If you make it through the picky admissions process to get into law school, then pass all three years, and then pass the bar; you actually hold people’s futures in your hands. You might be the reason an innocent person isn’t sent to jail for the rest of their life, or make sure a perpetrator goes behind bars. You can help a couple who has been trying for years to get pregnant finally adopt that baby, or you might take custody away from an undeserving parent. The possibilities are endless, and with a law degree you can do and change so much.
So they aren’t handing J.D’s out and the average person who isn’t going to law school should be happy about that. That means the chances of you having a worthless, unintelligent lawyer defend you later in life are significantly smaller.
For the percentage that do want to go to law school, it’s hard, endless, and kind of painful. But, if I haven’t scared you away yet, then you should know something that my best friends and my family reminded me daily; this test does not define you. It can’t really tell how smart you are or how great a lawyer you could some day be. It’s just a score. It’s not your personality or your worth.
If you are thinking about law school, really think about it. The admissions test alone is brutal, and that’s just the first step.
Good luck, and may logical force be with you.