1. It’s All In the Timing
As you flip through a practice LSAT test book, you read the questions and think to yourself, “Yeah, I could answer that question”. But can you answer 20+ of them within 20 minutes? And can you count on yourself not to panic when you hear the proctor shout, “5 minutes left!” Reviewing test-taking strategies and doing practice problems are undoubtedly helpful, but be sure to take full, timed LSAT tests for practice as well. Not only will timing yourself reveal which sections need the most and least work, but it’ll also help you inoculate yourself against the pressures of taking a timed test. The more like the real deal your practice sessions are, the better prepared you will be on your actual test day.
2. Learn From Your Mistakes
Taking practice tests and doing practice problems is a great way to prepare for the LSAT. But in order to get the most out of your practice, it’s important to know not only which questions you missed, but also why you missed them. After all, if you don’t know what mistakes you made, how can you learn from them?
3. One and Done
The LSAT sends a complete record of your LSAT scores to law schools to which you apply. If you’ve taken the test more than once, these law schools will average your scores together and use that score in considering your admission. Don’t try to take the edge off by telling yourself that you can always retake the test — do your best the first time around! Even if you take the test again and get an amazing score, any past, lower scores are going to dull its luster. No pressure or anything.
4. Always Be Prepared
You may have left the Boy Scouts of America behind long ago, but you will most likely never outgrow their universally applicable mantra. Don’t forget to bring everything that you need to bring with you to the testing center. Print out your admissions ticket the night before the exam, and make sure that all the information on the ticket matches what you think — sometimes testing rooms will change with little or no notice. Research and know the route to the testing center so you don’t let test-day jitters throw you off track. Mechanical pencils are not allowed on the LSAT, so bring several fresh No. 2 pencils and a pencil sharpener, as well as several good erasers. It may be helpful to bring a highlighter for close reading and an analog (non-digital) watch for keeping track of time. You can bring a ziplock bag (up to one gallon in size) with you, so cram all that stuff in there and be prepared for anything and everything!
5. Leave No Bubble Behind
There is no penalty for guessing on the LSAT. Obviously, you want to get the answer right, and an educated guess is always better than a shot in the dark, but if you find yourself out of time and with empty bubbles, just fill them in. Your LSAT score is calculated based on the number of correct answers you have, and there are no point deductions for incorrect answers, so leave no bubble behind!