If you’re taking the LSAT or have already taken it and wondered, “How many times can you take the LSAT?” here is your answer: LSAC allows you to take the LSAT three times in one testing cycle. For example, within the testing cycle between August 21 and June 2022, you are only allowed to take the LSAT three times. There’s more:
- You can only retake the LSAT five times within the five testing years since your most recent one. Within this five-year period, LSAT scores that are reported to law schools will remain valid.
- In your lifetime, you cantake the LSAT a maximum of seven times. There are instances that LSAC will make an exemption through appeals, but this rarely happens.
Exemption for LSAT-Flex: With the abrupt changes that the pandemic has introduced to us, the LSAT-Flex has been established to offer a safer process of earning LSAT scores. If you have already taken any of the LSAT-Flex tests last May, June, July, and August 2020, your scores won’t be counted towards these limits set by LSAC. However, the scores from the test taken beginning October 2020 will once again be counted.
How many times does the average student take the LSAT?
Around two-thirds of the test-takers are first-time LSAT takers, one-third make up those taking the LSAT twice, and only a small number of test-takers take the LSAT the third time in a testing cycle.
These numbers show you that on average, most students take the LSAT only once. There are a lot of reasons why students prefer to take the LSAT only once. Here are some of them:
- Students taking the LSAT have allotted time and energy to prepare for it, so retaking the LSAT will require the same amount of preparation. Will this be worth it for a slightly higher LSAT score?
- If you’re the type who feels better with an LSAT prep course while reviewing for aptitude tests, then retaking the LSAT is going to be an additional cost to account for.
- This may move your law school timeline since LSATs can be only taken within a given time period. When planning to retake the LSAT, prepare for your application timeline to significantly change.
- Already mentally and emotionally stretched out from taking your first LSAT? Students rarely take the LSAT more than once because they may also do worse–defeating the purpose of retaking the LSAT.
Remember these pointers when weighing your options. If you’re still wondering, “How many times can you take the LSAT?” understand the context and what it takes for YOU to finish another cycle of LSAT preparation.
Does taking the LSAT multiple times hurt your chances of getting into law school?
Law schools do have competitive target scores, so if you’re still not satisfied with the current LSAT score and determined to retake it, don’t worry, it won’t hurt your chances! Although law schools know if a student has taken the LSAT multiple times, schools will only consider your highest LSAT score. It’s best, however, to review your target law schools’ admission process to see if they review your past LSAT scores.
When you’re still preparing for your LSAT, instead of planning to take the LSAT multiple times, invest as much as you can on taking practice tests before taking your first LSAT. Even if you know that LSAT can be taken three times in a test cycle, treat it as if it’s a once-in-a-lifetime exam before law school. This gives you extra motivation and drives you to do your best on your first take.
So, should you retake the LSAT?
After going through this information, and keeping your first LSAT score in mind, are you still asking “Should I retake the LSAT”? The majority of the LSAT takers have only taken the test once – because each retake also means readjusting your time, priorities, and extending your resources. If you’re still determined to retake the LSAT, don’t worry, taking the test more than once won’t affect your chance of getting into your dream law school. In fact, it might even get you into it with a better LSAT score!
Here are some pros and cons to remember before making a final decision:
|Pros of Retaking the LSAT||Cons of Retaking the LSAT|
|You have the chance to achieve a higher and more competitive LSAT score.||Retaking the LSAT will require additional time, energy, and resources.|
|You know what to expect during the actual LSAT, so the second time won’t be as intimidating.||If you’ve already performed well in your previous LSAT, you only have a small margin of improvement at the cost of delaying your application timeline.|
|Getting a better score after retaking the LSAT also means a higher chance of getting awarded a scholarship or grant.||Responsibilities do not wait for you, so extending your LSAT preparation may also affect the rest of your personal timeline.|
Remember, only you know what’s best for you! If you think retaking the LSAT is the best course of action, do not count it as a failure because your dream law school won’t.
When preparing for your LSAT or when planning to retake, review the process as well and get your LSAT questions answered. Don’t worry, it is normal to struggle when getting into law school. Recollect, refuel, and be ready to succeed on your LSAT!
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