Can you study for the LSAT on the cheap? Yes, it is possible. I’ll tell you why you would want a cheap LSAT study plan and how to create one.
If you’ve done your research, you’ve realized that the LSAT is the single most important factor in determining where you’ll go to law school and thus, how your legal career will develop. Higher LSAT scores allow students to attend higher-ranking law schools, and higher-ranking law schools provide greater career opportunities for graduates. But the power of your LSAT score doesn’t end there.
Raising your LSAT score will not only get you into a better law school, but it can also earn you a significant amount of scholarship money. These scholarships can significantly lower, or even eliminate, the cost of tuition, resulting in law school graduates with lower amounts of debt. From a financial standpoint, raising your LSAT score is a sound investment.
But the cost of LSAT prep is notoriously high, and the test itself is exceedingly complex and difficult to master for most students without access to sufficient study materials.
We’re going to solve that problem.
This is the cheapest, most effective comprehensive LSAT study plan out there. The resources and plans it utilizes are tried and true methods used by top scorers all over the country.
So, whether you’re trying to break 175 and get into Harvard, or if you’re just trying to get a full scholarship to your local school, this will help you achieve your LSAT goals.
Let’s get started.
The first step in this program is to take a cold-diagnostic LSAT. Lucky for you, LSAC has released the June 2007 LSAT for students to take, completely for free.
Print out this prep test, sit down in a quiet room, and take the test. It is very important to emulate real test-day conditions, so be SURE to time yourself. Each of the first three sections is 35 minutes each, followed by a 15-minute break, and the final section again at 35 minutes.
After finishing the exam, use the answer key to determine your raw score, and then use the score conversion table to convert that score into your actual LSAT score. If your LSAT score is a 180, congratulations! You don’t need to study at all, and can go ahead and register for the real test, crush it, go to Harvard, then take over the world.
If your score isn’t where you know it needs to be to reach your law school goals, don’t fret. With the appropriate amount of work, you’ll be able to significantly increase your score.
The next step for you will be to purchase and read Mike Kim’s LSAT trainer. This book gives you the best bang for your buck out in terms of a comprehensive LSAT study guide.
In the LSAT Trainer, Mike Kim will give you a brief overview of the LSAT, as well as an introduction to the three sections of the test: Logical Reasoning, Logic Games, and Reading Comprehension.
What follows in the trainer is a holistic study guide to the logic of the LSAT, all question types in each section, and how to approach each type of question. When you complete the study plan, you will have likely increased your diagnostic LSAT score already.
Mike Kim’s LSAT trainer, at this point, will have either gotten you to your goal score already or laid the foundation for you to further increase your score by following the rest of this plan.
Once you have the foundational knowledge of the LSAT, the questions it asks and how to approach each question, you need to practice and further develop your skills. The amount of time you need to spend doing this will vary depending on your diagnostic score, how high you need your actual exam score to be, and how quickly you develop this knowledge.
Either way, the next step is to begin drilling sections or taking full-length practice tests. At this point, you will need access to actual LSAT exams, which you can purchase in bundles off of Amazon. Taking actual LSAT practice exams is incredibly important, and I strongly urge you to avoid prep-test resources that create their own LSAT questions.
All available LSAT exams contain questions that test the concepts that the modern LSAT contains. However, there are subtle variations within these tests that have developed over time. For that reason, the tests from the most recent years will be more similar to the test you will actually take on Test Day. The most recent bundle of tests is Volume VI, but you can also purchase the more recently released tests individually.
During your test prep, I recommend that you save the more recent prep tests for later on in your studying. This is because you want to have your LSAT skills developed before using up a modern LSAT. Once you go through a prep test or even just a section, you will be unable to use it again for at least a few months. Do NOT waste prep tests.
Now that you have actual, real LSAT exams, you can start to study with them. This is a 4-step process.
If during your studies, you somehow miss a question, you need to find out why- you need a question explanation. For logical reasoning and reading comprehension questions, you have a few options. One great resource is the Manhattan Prep forums. If you cannot find an adequate explanation there, I encourage you to post your question onto the LSAT subreddit.
For Logic Games, I advocate a different approach known as The Fool Proof Method. During your studies, I encourage you to take each LG section at least twice. The first time, take it timed as a full-length practice test, or as a timed individual section. Instead of blind reviewing, you’re going to completely redo the entire section, untimed. Only then, after doing the section twice, will you check your answers.
If you got all the questions correct in the 35 minutes, you’re good to go! If not, you should watch the free logic game explanation video posted by 7sage, and prepare to do this game again in the near future.
Once you get the hang of taking timed sections and full-length tests, you will continue to do so until your score gets where it needs to be. If you reach a plateau, check your performance in each section and determine where specifically your weakness lies. Target those weaknesses with focused study.
This method of studying is perfect for anyone who is trying to increase their LSAT score but who is unwilling or unable to pay for expensive tutors or programs. If you follow it, you will be able to increase your LSAT score by a significant degree.
Students utilizing these resources can go from scores in the 140s to scores in the 170s. All you have to do is put in the work, so get to it!
Alternatively, you can get a great deal on a quality LSAT prep course, so learn more about your best LSAT prep course options.
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John Wilson Booth grew up in Alabama and attended the University of Alabama. He moved to Salt Lake City after graduation and began studying for the LSAT. His cold diagnostic score was a 154 and he self-studied to a 171. Now, he works as a writer as he decides which law school to attend.