The Law School Admissions Test (LSAT) is well-known as one of the more difficult standardized tests to take. Many individuals study full-time to ensure they achieve a high score on this test, and some test takers may decide that they need to take this test more than once to ensure they get a high score.
If you’re wondering how many times you can take the LSAT total, look no further. Our article answers all your important questions about taking the LSAT and the testing limits in place for this important exam.
Understanding the LSAT’s Importance
The LSAT consists of two main sections – the multiple-choice question section and the LSAT writing. When most people think of the LSAT, they are thinking about the multiple-choice question section, which consists of four separate testing sections containing logical reasoning, analytical reasoning, and reading comprehension questions. One of these sections will be doubled and unscored to evaluate new test questions. In total, there are approximately 99 to 102 questions on the LSAT between these four sections.
The highest score that you can receive on the LSAT is 180, while the lowest score is 120. Many law schools will have a minimum score that they consider acceptable for admission, and the higher your LSAT score is, the greater your chances are for acceptance into top-ranked law schools and merit scholarships.
How Many Times Can You Take the LSAT?
In order to obtain your best LSAT score, you might find it necessary to take the LSAT a few times. There’s nothing wrong with this, and one or two retakes might just help you gain acceptance into the law school of your dreams or significant merit scholarships.
However, the Law School Admissions Council (LSAC) limits how many times one can take the LSAT over their lifetime. You may take the LSAT up to 3 times in one testing cycle –typically from July of one year to June of the next, but the LSAC’s website provides more information on specific dates. Over the course of five consecutive years, you can take the LSAT 5 times.
The LSAC will report all of your scores earned within the past five consecutive years to law schools when you apply and request your scores be sent.
Over one lifetime, you are eligible to take the LSAT a total of 7 times.
It’s important to note that canceled LSAT scores do count towards the total LSAT testing limits. However, withdrawals and absences for an LSAT administration do not count toward your total LSAT testing limits.
Can You Appeal the LSAT Testing Limit?
The LSAC’s testing limit of 7 total tests over a lifetime may be appealed in certain circumstances. To complete the appeal process and earn another administration of the LSAT outside of these limits, you will need to follow the appeals process listed on the LSAC’s website.
When submitting your appeal, make sure that your explanation and request are as detailed and polite as possible and that you provide any necessary information or documents to back up and support your request for the best chances of this being granted to you.
Are LSAT Retakes Detrimental?
Whether or not to complete an LSAT retake is a hotly debated topic amongst those preparing for the LSAT and applying to law school. While some individuals worry that retaking the LSAT will give them a worse score, it’s important to remember that most law schools will only consider your highest LSAT score listed on the score report.
Some law schools may look at your average LSAT score from all tests or the general trend of your LSAT scores, which only tends to be notable if you have a significant decrease in your LSAT scores with each test attempt or you have a sudden increase in score. If this is the case with your score report, you should be prepared for the admissions committee to ask you some questions about your LSAT scores during the application process.
Simply put, LSAT retakes are unlikely to be detrimental to your chances of acceptance to law school, but they can be incredibly positive if you study hard and earn a higher LSAT score. As we mentioned above, the higher your LSAT score is, the greater your chances of acceptance into your preferred law school and the award of merit scholarships.
Studying for Your LSAT
Studying for the LSAT can be a complex process that many find overwhelming. However, with the proper, comprehensive LSAT prep course and plenty of patience, you will become familiar with this test, and the questions asked, eventually developing the skills needed to complete the LSAT easily. Over time, dedicated studying for your LSAT can help you greatly improve your score for any retakes you may decide to enroll in and help you achieve the best score possible, enabling your law school dreams.