The Week Before the LSAT – Dos and Don’ts
After weeks of preparing for the LSAT, the test is now just a few days away. You may find yourself nervously glancing at the calendar, counting down the days. It is easy to fall into a panic mode and begin to feel the need to ramp up your study routine and take practice test after practice test until Saturday. A more effective way to spend the last few days prior to the LSAT is to avoid trying to “cram” and instead focusing on preparing your mind and body to handle the rigors of taking the real LSAT. Here is a routine that will help you sail into test day.
(NOTE: The information below is tailored to the in-person LSAT which, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, has been suspended indefinitely. In its place, LSAC now administers the virtual LSAT-Flex, an online version of the LSAT that prospective law students take at home. There are very specific test day requirements and restrictions that are unique to the LSAT-Flex, so make sure you visit our LSAT-Flex FAQ page here.
DO get a good night’s sleep this week! Start going to bed earlier and waking up earlier if you don’t already so that your body is not shocked by the time on Saturday morning. Better yet, wake up the next couple of mornings and do an LSAT problem or two.
DON’T make the mistake of believing that every practice test score from now until Saturday is exactly what you’re going to score. While they are certainly in the range of what you should expect, just because your practice test drops from a 169 to a 167 tomorrow doesn’t mean you’re suddenly 2 points LSAT-dumber. Learn from your mistakes, review carefully, and move forward.
DO continue to do timed, mixed practice through Thursday.
DON’T work too hard on Friday. If the idea of taking the day off to watch the new Arrested Development on Netflix panics you, read over your notes or do a game or two, maybe a few hard logical reasoning questions you’ve done before. But it’s not the day to take a full-length test.
DO get a passport-size photo of yourself this week if you haven’t already. (This is in addition to your identification. See the email you recently received from LSAC for details).
DON’T dwell on what you wish you’d done differently over the last few months. To do so is a waste of critical energy at this point, and your mind should be focused on…
DO think positively. Someone is going to teach this test who’s boss, and it’s not Tony Danza. It’s you. YOU. If you don’t believe you’re going to do your best, you’re less likely to. If you do, you’re more likely to. And if you can see that those two statements are not contrapositives, give yourself a high-five right now, please.
DON’T forget your analog (big hand, small hand) watch. (If you want, set it to 12 o’clock at the beginning of each section so you can easily track your 35 minutes without arithmetic). Fortunately, the LSAT interface now includes its own timer, but some students prefer their own watch to keep time.
DO take a snack.
DON’T mistake the LSAT for a mythical tool that measures your self-worth. It’s just a test. Plus, you have more friends than it, and they’re cooler.
DO log into your online account at LSAC.org and print your admissions ticket on Thursday. Occasionally the LSAC makes last minute test center changes, so it is important to confirm your assigned LSAT test location and test time. Make sure you have reliable directions to the test location and that you have dependable transportation. While at LSAC.org, review the LSAT requirements and the detailed LSAT test center regulations.
On the morning of the test, make sure you get up early so that you have enough time to eat a hearty breakfast and get to the LSAT test center early. You do not want to start off this day in a stressful way by rushing to get there on time. Just relax and be confident. Remember: You are prepared.
Consider bringing personal comfort items such as a sweater, tissues, headache medication and a snack. You cannot bring a handbag or backpack into the test center, so all of your supplies, including your wallet and keys must fit in a one gallon size, clear zip lock bag. Check the LSAC.org website for a complete list of items that cannot be brought into the test center.