LSAC Updates


NAPLA Conference LSAC Slide Show

A member of Spivey Consulting was in attendance at the Northeast Association of Pre Law Advisers conference these past few days. LSAC presented updates, and we have pictures of the slides to share, as well as other comments they made.


Notes and Takeaways

July Test

  • They mentioned that 28,000+ registered for July, which was welcome since they were hoping for a large pool to test the rollout of the digital test.
  • Test results for the July test will be released August 28 and candidates will have 5 business days to decide to cancel or not (until September 4 at 11:59pm eastern)
  • There is a free retake available to those who decide to cancel their score. The September test registration will be closed by that time, but it was suggested that you may be able to get a retroactive refund for September test if you’ve already registered.
  • Can take the free test within the current testing year (up until April 2020)

LSAT writing

  • As of July, all test takers will be doing the digital writing. If you have taken the test previously and have a writing sample on file, there is no need to complete this portion on an LSAT retake
  • LSAC will report the three most recent writing samples, and your score report is complete with at least one writing sample
  • You are able to do the writing portion of the test starting on the day of the test (It was unclear if you could do it before the test administration but doing it before the test is not recommended)
  • It will be administered using secure software on your own computer
  • Candidates will be notified repeatedly if the writing portion isn’t completed
  • There will be a spell check in the system, but it will only notify if it is a word not in the dictionary – it will not give you options for correct spelling

Test taker limits:

  • Starting with the September test, there will be a limit of taking the test 3 times within a testing year
  • Moving forward (not retroactive) there will be a max of 5 tests in a 5 year period and  maximum of 7 tests in a lifetime
  • If you score a 180 on the test, you will not be allowed to retake
  • There is an appeal process to all of these restrictions, and each case will be reviewed individually. (Personally, I can see situations where LSAC would grant an appeal in all of these limits with the exception of the retake after a 180. I doubt there is a situation where that would be granted)
  • The reason given for this change was that there were many people taking advantage of the lack of limits and were not taking the test for its intended purpose. It was a measure taken to protect the integrity of the test – they noted that people had taken the test as many as 40 times.

Getting ready for the Digital LSAT

  • July test takers will not know if they are getting paper or digital test util they arrive at their testing center. After July, all test will be digital.
  • You will be given a pen/stylus and a scratch paper booklet when you enter the digital test. You can’t write/take notes on the tablet, but you can use the stylus
  • You will be able to highlight/ underline/ choose font size/eliminate answers on the tablet. The scratch paper booklet will have some of these hints on the back cover
  • The tablet has a timer. You can choose to show or hide your remaining time up until the last 5 minutes of the test (it will always show during the last 5 minutes).
  • I was able to use a tablet and scroll through a test to see what it would be like. If you are familiar with using a tablet, this should be an easy transition, BUT I highly recommend taking a look at familiar.lsac.org to familiarize yourself with the digital test. You can look at it on any device, but if you can do it on a tablet, that would be an even closer simulation to the real thing.

Other

  • When you take the test, you will sign a statement that says you cannot share the content. This is not new -- it has always been the rule – but the fact that they are highlighting it may indicate that they will be more closely watching what is shared online after each test. This is important because violating this can result in misconduct (never good from an admissions point of view) or a lifetime ban from taking the test.
  • If you apply for a need-based LSAC Fee waiver and are denied, (and you believe your income and assets should qualify you for a need based fee waiver) you should absolutely appeal the decision.
  • There many answers to FAQs on LSAC’s website. There may even be answers to questions you didn’t know you had.