Timing on the LSAT is really tricky, and even students who typically finish all sections in the allotted time when preparing can find themselves running out of time on a section on the actual test. Too often this results in test takers panicking, causing that section to go poorly, and, if they become worried about their results on the one section, the entire remainder of the test can be affected. Here are three LSAT tips to practice a few times before the test, just in case things don’t go according to plan:
- On a games section, practice completing the last game in less than three minutes. You will need to read the rules and then select global questions that are easiest to answer without a thorough set-up, so practice seeking those questions out!
- On a reading section, practice completing the last passage in less than 5 minutes: skim the passage, and then answer detail questions first, and leave main idea/big picture questions until the end.
- On a logical reasoning section, know which types of questions are hardest for you and are most time-consuming. If you find you have more questions than minutes left in a section, your best strategy will be to skip the questions you struggle with most, not to try to rush through all the questions. For example, most test takers find analogical reasoning questions, one of which almost always appears in the last five questions, both difficult and time-consuming, so quickly skipping past that question can give you more time to answer later questions that you will have a greater likelihood of getting correct.
Finally, remember that the LSAT usually has a fairly forgiving scale: missing a few questions on a single section is not a disaster. Other test takers likely also found the section difficult, and thus the scale may be even more forgiving. There is a lot of room at the top of an LSAT scaled score: the cut off for 99th percentile is a 173. That’s the 99th percentile, not the 90th, and recent scales have allowed as many as 11 missed questions to reach a 173, so do not despair of a tough section!
If you’re planning to take the LSAT, you may also be interested in our articles on the most common LSAT myths and how students should prepare for graduate school admissions. If you’d like to consult with us for free about your LSAT prep, we’d be happy to answer your questions, and if you’d like to share other feedback with us, please comment below.