When should you take the LSAT?
1. Applying to law school and LSAT preparation is lots of work. You must not let the process of applying to law school interfere with study time that is necessary for high grades.
2. The application deadlines for law school are generally in the fall.
3. May law schools use a process of “rolling admissions”. This means that you will evaluate applications prior to the law school application deadline date.
The LSAT is administered four times a year in: June, October, December and February.
You should take the LSAT in June. Furthermore, you should take the LSAT the first June that is convenient for you. There is no reason (and it may not be advisable) to delay until the June before your law school application deadline.
The pros and cons of each LSAT administration:
June LSAT – This is your best option for three reasons:
First, you will be finished with school and will be able to focus on LSAT prep during the month of May.
Second, you are still in “exam mode” and have the academic stamina to continue.
Third, if you need to take the LSAT again you will have the October LSAT.
October LSAT – This is your second best option.
It is early in the semester and should not cut into your “school time” too much. But, if you need to do a retake, you are left with December which can be a bit late (you will have missed some offers for early admissions). Furthermore, to take the LSAT the first Saturday in December will certainly cut into your “study time”.
December LSAT – This is not great. You have missed “early admission” for some schools. But, the bigger problem is that the December LSAT is in early December. You have other things to do (“study time”). Furthermore, the only time for a retake is the February LSAT (see below).
February LSAT – Worst option if you want to start law school the following September.
Some schools will accept a February LSAT score. Many people have been admitted to law school. But, if you want to use the February LSAT as an “early bird” start then it is okay. In my current Toronto LSAT course, half of the people in the class are using the February LSAT as an “early bird” start. This can work quite nicely.