Ready to take the LSAT at home on your own computer?
Last year, The Law School Admission Council (LSAC) announced that starting with the September 21, 2019 test date, the LSAT would be fully digital. Candidates began taking the LSAT on Microsoft Surface Go tablets provided by testing centers in July 2019.
Due to testing center closures as a result of COVID-19, the LSAC announced in early April that the April 25th 2020 LSAT was being rescheduled for the week of May 18th and would be offered as an online, remotely proctored digital test that students could take at home. The new test is known as the LSAT-Flex. The LSAC has since announced that the June test will also be an LSAT-Flex test offered during the week of June 14th. It is possible that the July 13th LSAT and future test dates will continue in this format until in-person testing is safe and widely available again. If online testing goes well, the LSAC may continue offering the LSAT-Flex for the long-term.
For students, the actual experience of taking the LSAT-Flex should be very similar to taking practice LSATs at home in the digital format.
How can I take the test on a computer?
Students who wish to take the LSAT-Flex must install ProctorU software (hardware requirements here). The software may be installed on a Mac or PC but cannot be used on a tablet or mobile device. The computer used to take the test must include a microphone and webcam, and the computer must be connected to high speed internet. During the test, a proctor will monitor test takers through the webcams and microphones on test takers’ computers to look for prohibited behavior.
The ProctorU software manages time restrictions. It also allows test takers to cross out wrong answer choices; flag questions for later review; underline and highlight text in the passages, questions, and answer choices; as well as hide longer answer choices. Students may use scratch paper on the test.
Is the LSAT-Flex test the same format as usual?
Nearly. The sections will still be 35 minutes each and will have the same number and types of questions as usual, but the test will only have three sections: analytical reasoning, logical reasoning, and reading comprehension. The LSAT ordinarily contains four scored sections (including one analytical reasoning section, two logical reasoning sections, and one reading comprehension section) plus a fifth unscored experimental section which can be any of the preceding section types. The LSAT-Flex cuts the second logical reasoning section and the experimental section.
The LSAC has confirmed that the scoring will remain in the same 120-180 range and that the logical reasoning section will not be weighted more heavily to make up for only having one such section. This means that students who are strongest in the Logical Reasoning portion of the LSAT will be at a slight disadvantage on the LSAT Flex test compared to the standard LSAT. Students who are weaker on Logical Reasoning will probably see a slight score increase on the LSAT Flex.
Check out the FAQ for the LSAT-Flex on the LSAT website for more details.
Where can I go to preview the digital online LSAT?
The LSAC has created web-based software that you can use to practice the LSAT on a tablet. You can access this software at the website here via tablet, computer, or mobile device. The website provides free access (free LSAC account registration is required) to two practice tests (LSATs 71 and 73), which allows students to try out the software interface. The website also offers a subscription to a larger bank of digital tests. The subscription includes over 60 tests (tests 19-88, the June 2007 test, and Super Prep II test C, as of this writing) for the cost of $99 per year.
Does this change how I should prepare for the online LSAT?
Not very much. Since there is only one section of logical reasoning, it now has less impact on the test. Also, it is no longer as important for students to build up test endurance to be ready for a 3-4 hour testing experience. The LSAT-Flex should take about two hours for standard test takers. Nevertheless, it is still important for students to be comfortable with each of the three sections. Students should plan to complete at least several practice tests timed by section as well as 2-3 timed full practice tests in the current format (Three 35-minute sections).
For more information on the digital LSAT, read our article, The LSAT Goes Digital
For a suggested timeline to prepare for the LSAT, read our article, LSAT Preparation Tips: When to Start Preparing for the July LSAT.
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