A Basic LSAT Breakdown

Flickr user Dan Hancock

LSAT is an acronym for the Law School Admissions Test. All law students must take and pass this standardized test as a prerequisite to applying law school (although some schools are now accepting the GRE as an alternate).

As with any graduate level exam, preparation and practice are the key elements to your success. Before you start studying for this test, it helps to understand how the sections are broken down so you know what you need to do to prepare for each one.

Timing and the LSAT

If you Google “how long is the LSAT?” you’ll find many different answers. You’ll see timing that ranges from 3 to 5 hours. Typically, there five sections take about 35 minutes each to complete. 

The first four sections are comprised of multiple choice questions. Only these first four sections are scored.

There is also a writing portion, which is administered at the end of the exam. This written section is not scored but it is sent to all the law schools that you’ve applied to for them to review.

Format of the LSAT

The four multiple choice sections include the following:

  • Reading Comprehension Section: These questions measure your ability to read lengthy and complex passages. You will be asked to recall and analyze specific passages of the readings provided.
  • Analytical Reasoning Section: These questions measure your ability to analyze structural arguments and draw conclusions and make decisions based on this information.
  • 2 Logical Reasoning Sections: There are 2 logical reasoning sections. These questions assess how well you analyze, evaluate, and complete arguments as they occur in ordinary language.

The last section, which comprises of the writing sample, judges your ability to put forward a compelling argument based on facts that are provided to you.

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College Raptor Staff

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