Shop

Here is some advice for the last month before you take the LSAT:

Don’t Worry If Your Practice Scores Are Still A Little Low

If you’ve been studying over the previous two months, you’ve likely seen some improvement. A lot of people worry that they have hit their upper limits and can’t get any better. It just doesn’t work like that. Keep practicing and drilling stuff into your brain, and you will see progress. Just keep following the study schedule and forget worrying that there is some sort of wall in your mind that you can’t climb. There isn’t.

In fact, it’s likelier that all the work you’ve been doing up ’til now will start to pay dividends. My personal story: I went from still missing around 4 or 5 on logic games to missing 0 in my last month.

What did I do?

Step 1: stop worrying.

Step 2: keep practicing.

Step 3: watch the improvement.

If you don’t see much improvement, you can likely fix it. Try these tips:

Identify Areas of Weakness

Facepalmstatue

Gentle facepalm if you haven’t been doing this all along, but now it’s critical to see where your mistakes are. Go back over ten preptests you have already done and look at what you got wrong. Was it assumption questions? Was it parallel reasoning? Go back to your Logical Reasoning Bible and reread the section on attacking that specific question type. Then, drill a whole bunch of them.

Repeat this search and destroy technique with any weaknesses you find. Eventually, you will start to run out of weaknesses! That’s a beautiful thing. You are almost ready to take this test.

EXTRA TIP: Parallel reasoning questions are usually some of the more time-consuming ones on LR. If you are having trouble completing timed logical reasoning sections within the allotted 35 minutes, consider skipping over Parallel Reasoning questions and only coming back to them if there is time.

Focus On Health

I’ve said this a lot, so I’m not going to belabor the point: Eat healthily and exercise. Don’t let LSAT study or anything else cut into your sleep time. Don’t drink heavily. Be a little bit selfish about your health. If other people are trying to mess with your zen, kick them out of your life for a bit. Tell your parents you don’t want to talk about the LSAT at dinner. Do whatever it takes so you feel good. Except for the fact that you have to study, the last month before your LSAT should be like your birthday: it’s about you, and it’s okay to be selfish. Yes, you can cry if you want to.

The one thing I didn’t try that I might recommend is meditation. Younger me would have said no way, but I’ve heard about some pretty startling positive results from doing mindfulness exercises. Check the coverage on this study, for instance: Meditation Improves Memory, Attention.

This seems well worth a try to me. Worse case is that you get to unwind and relax for a bit, and that can’t be a bad thing the last month before the LSAT.

Simulate Tests The Right Way

By the last month, you are mostly just doing all real LSAT problems you can. Here’s what we have for the last month on your study schedule:

At this point is your LSAT study its time to take stock of how much material you have remaining and schedule your remaining prep. From here on out, the lion share of your study consists of simply doing timed sections and going over the answers to understand any that may have given you trouble. Schedule it out so you can do 3-4 full preptests a week the next 4 weeks. Do these every other day. On in between days don’t do a full test. Rather do 2-3 sections with rest in between sections. On these in between days, load up on more sections of whatever section type (LR/LG/RC) is giving you the most trouble.

For these full, timed preptests, ensure that you are working through AT LEAST two a week under full simulated conditions. The closer you can simulate test-day conditions, the better.

This means taking all 4 sections of an older LSAT preptest to simulate the actual conditions you will see on test day.

That’s how it’s gonna be on test day. Don’t expect to hit your practice average on the actual test if you haven’t simulated practice tests the right way.

Simulating tests this way at least twice a week, you will have the stamina for game day. Are sports metaphors appropriate right now? Absolutely! Test-taking requires endurance. If you’ve only run 20 miles in your practice before the marathon, I bet those last 4 miles are going to kill you. I know for a fact this is how it works on the LSAT. Unless you are a natural test-taker, you will run out of steam towards the end of the test unless you have learned how to focus that long by practicing.

What If Nothing Is Working???

If it’s the last month and you are still more than 10 points below the score it would take to get you into a school you would be satisfied attending, then you have a tough choice. There may be limits to how much someone can improve on the LSAT in one month. It’s probably best to keep prepping, but if you reach the middle of this month and you are nowhere near a score you would be satisfied with, it is very reasonable to consider postponing the test. Especially consider delaying if you don’t feel you have been prepping as much as you should have. You may want to start fresh and do it right the next time.

Before anyone cancels right now with a month to go, there is one emergency measure to consider: ditch any lousy system you are using to diagram LSAT problems. Here I am speaking directly to those using Kaplan or Princeton Review books to prep. Hopefully, none of our regular readers are doing this, but if you are reading this now and are still using PR/Kaplan methods, QUIT RIGHT NOW BEFORE IT’S TOO LATE. I’ve beaten this point to death in other articles on this site, but suffice to say, those prep books are terrible. Use Powerscore, Manhattan, or Blueprint’s books. These are all reputable LSAT companies that earned their reputation by helping a ton of people get high scores on the LSAT.

Here are the books we most strongly recommend you use to learn how to do LSAT problems:

Recommended LSAT Prep Books

That said, while these books are the best out there, they may not be able to work miracles in the space of a month. You are likely better off postponing the test and trying again with the right materials if your score is still way below what you aim to hit.

If you do try to summon a miracle with the new books in the next thirty days, here’s how to attempt it: https://lawschooli.com/how-can-i-increase-my-lsat-score-in-under-30-days/

However, remember that canceling or retaking the LSAT is not the end of the world.

I’m not trying to get people to second guess themselves. If you are 5 points (or even a little more) below your target score right now, keep prepping and go for it! Remember that you will likely see improvements in this last month.

Best of luck to everyone!

Share.

34 Comments

  1. I know what it is you are attempting to indicate and your stage does make sense but that I can not say I completely agree with you.
    You see, there might be some complications in regards to the problems
    you’ve said. But I enjoy the time you invested in describing your opinion. I’m interested in this subject and will definitely dig deeper into the problem.

  2. Coco Brashears on

    I’ve just about completed the 4 month study schedule and saw my score go up from 159 on my first diagnostic to 176 on the June 2007! But now that I’m doing the 5 most recent tests, my score has dropped substantially. On preptest 81 I got 162. What could this mean and what should I do before the test next week?

  3. What LSAT does someone with a 2.9GPA from a top50 public state school for undergrad need for t14 admission? Thanks in advance!

  4. Hi, I’m scheduled for the September LSAT, and I’ve been studying almost every day, atleast three hours a day for a little over a month now (before that I was studying, but no as intensely). I have taken plenty of real practice tests, in simulated conditions, and the last three that I have written came to 157. I want to get atleast 160 on the real thing- so I am on the fence about whether or not I should give my self more time and write the December LSAT or if I should just go for the September one. Do you think improvement is possible at this point?

  5. Hi,
    There’s only a month and a half left before the June lsats and I’m studying intensely every single day. The problem is I’m getting more and more anxious. And as a result I’m forgetting major concepts like how to identify conditional reasoning in a stimulus. This is making me very frustrated because all this effort I’m putting into studying is for nothing. Besides the tips mentioned how do I ease my nerves?

  6. Hi,

    I am currently studying for the FEB LSAT, I have been studying off and on for about a year now but just starting to see improvement since I have been able to devote more consistent time as of lately. With 6 weeks left I am seeking an opinion on weather I should focus on full length practice tests everyday or continue on with my online prep course. Realistically I just do not have time to complete full length practice tests and the full lesson plans daily. I am taking the Blueprint online prep course which has been a great help thus far. Any tips as far as how to balance between the prep course and full length test would be great. I also have the bibles however I haven’t even worked them into my schedule between the prep course and the homework.

    Thank you in advance!
    -Nique

  7. Hi,

    I’ve been studying since end of June. My full PT score started at a 156. I’ve improved significantly on untimed accuracy. I can get 173-175 consistently untimed. However, lately all my recent full timed PTs hit a ceiling of 159. Is there hope in the last month to raise if to my potential untimed? I presume a lot of my issue has to do with pace and endurance, is that fixable to this extent in this time frame?

    • Hi Kate, 10 points is a big boost to expect in a month. While I don’t doubt it’s happened, you might want to prepare for the possibility of a December retake if you don’t get there. I recommend this: see how long it takes you to hit that 173+. Say it’s taking 45 minutes per section, you should then try to shave a minute off of each section each time you take the test. Work down that way, looking for ways to improve your timing with each test.

      If it doesn’t go well for you in the next month, I would consider joining our Mastermind Study Group to prepare for the December exam. There are a lot of things we can try to get your speed up. Check it out here: https://lawschooli.com/shop/lsat-study-group/mastermind/ This week just added thousands of LSAT explanations to the group site. Most of them are for recent tests, so it might be helpful in this last month as well. email if you have any questions about that evan.jones@lawschooli.com

  8. Hey there! I’ve been getting the logical questions right when practising, but when I attempt them in timed conditions, I get less than half right! What do I do? (I use the power score books)

    • Hi Maria,

      You’ve already done the right thing by building accuracy untimed, so good job! (See our post here on improving at LR) However, my guess is that your problem is that you are trying to immediately go full speed (simulating the actual test conditions). That’s too much to put on yourself all at once. Instead, time out how long it takes to do a section at a comfortable pace, getting all the questions right or close to it. Then give yourself a little less time than that each day and see if you can stay accurate.

      Say it takes you 40 minutes at first to get only 1 or 2 wrong. Then try doing it in 38 minutes the next day. If it doesn’t work yet, practice at 38 minutes for a bit until you get only 1 or 2 wrong again. Then, drop your time by another two minutes. Go by feel and push yourself.

      Look for problem types that are taking you a lot of time and review the logic games bible lesson on them. Single out those problem types and practice them untimed a little more if needed. A great resource for doing that is the logical reasoning workbook: http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/098266186X/lawschooli-20

      Do this, and you should eventually feel much more comfortable doing the problems in the time required. You might not ever be just as accurate timed as untimed, but I guarantee you can make significant improvements if you go slowly.

      • Bear in mind this process might take longer than a month, so if you are scheduled for the June LSAT, be prepared to postpone.

  9. Hi again, I would like to say thank you for all the great articles you post.

    I have the bibles, preptests you recommended, and an online kaplan course.

    I haven’t yet put as much time towards this yet (mainly due to majoring in history and literature) but now that the semester is coming to a close I plan to pick it back up and finish strong.

    What is your recommendation for an intensive 5 week study schedule? (taking the June exam)

    Thanks,
    JC