Scheduling your LSAT test date is a major step toward getting into a top law school. However, there’s a lot more to consider than just choosing the LSAT test dates that are open on your calendar. So to be ready for the LSAT, you have to meet several deadlines, especially if you might need assistance. Moreover, the COVID-19 pandemic has led to a change in LSAT test date schedules and methods, including the LSAT-Flex.
This article will help you pass the LSAT on the next test date. You’ll find information about deadlines, how LSAT dates are responding to the pandemic, and the online LSAT-Flex.
The LSAT test dates and locations are determined by LSAC, or the Law School Admission Council. The exam is given several times a year. But, the dates don’t follow a predictable pattern. As you can see in the chart below, the dates are spread out so that you have a chance to take the LSAT every month or two.
Normally, the LSAT is given on several different weekends, mostly Saturdays but sometimes Sundays, too. Furthermore, exams are administered at testing centers around the globe. So, you have plenty of options. If possible, you should pick a date that is several months before your chosen law school’s admission deadlines.
However, you have several dates to mark on your calendar. For example, you also need to learn about the registration deadline and the deadline for requesting accommodations. In addition, you even need to know the deadline to upload a personal photo to the registration platform. Likewise, note that the timeframes are a little different for the traditional “in=person” LSAT vs. those for the new LSAT-Flex.
To make matters even more complicated, I suggest checking the LSAC website on a regular basis for updates. Dates might be adjusted to keep everyone safe during the COVID-19 pandemic.
LSAC understands how important it is to take the LSAT for law school candidates. Therefore, considering the emergency nature of the COVID-19 pandemic, LSAC is making certain accommodations.
At least for a while, candidates will not have to travel to a testing center to take the LSAT. Instead, they will take the LSAT-Flex and use a secure online platform to test on their own computers. Plus, the exam will be proctored remotely. But, don’t worry about the online safety. LSAC has measures in place to make sure that remote, online LSAT exams are testing law school candidates at the same high level as before.
So in the chart below, you’ll notice that some testing takes place over a whole week. Candidates will be able to choose from days and times during those weeks to take the LSAT-Flex. Beware of the deadlines as listed in the chart.
You’ll notice that the chart includes dates for “assistance request.” If you have to take the LSAT-Flex but you don’t have the needed computer hardware, access to a safe and reliable internet connection, or even a quiet place to take the exam, LSAC might be able to help. However, you’ll have to make a request before the listed deadline.
You should take the LSAT as soon as you feel you have adequately studied and are ready for this rigorous 2-part exam. But usually, law schools prefer that candidates who want to start school in the fall should take the exam before the following December. So if you want to enter law school in August 2021, for example, you should plan to take the LSAT before December 2020.
However, you can still sit for the exam in the January or February dates if you aren’t happy with your score. But keep in mind that you might be up against a tight deadline if your law school choices have early spring admission deadlines. And other candidates who sat for the exam earlier might fill up the top schools, leaving you with your second choice school.
So take my advice: Study and take the LSAT early. You’ll have more opportunities if you need to re-take it for a higher score and still make your school’s admissions deadlines.
My readers often ask me about which test date is the easiest.
I’m going to be frank. The LSAT is the LSAT. Therefore, it doesn’t matter when you take the exam. Every test-taker must follow the same exam format and answer the same types of questions. Plus, they all have the same amount of time to take the test.
So what’s the difference? Well, since test-takers on different dates do get different questions, it’s possible that one test is slightly more or less difficult than the others. But that level of subjectivity depends on who is taking the test that day.
However, the people sitting in the test center with you might be different depending on the time of year. So, dates in December through February are more likely to have candidates who are repeat test-takers. Typically, they are trying to improve their scores before law school admission dates.
But in the end, it’s more important to worry about law school admissions cycles. Therefore, pick the LSAT date that best allows you to meet your school’s deadlines. However, still give yourself a little wiggle room in case you want to re-test for a higher score.
For candidates in the United States (including Puerto Rice and the U.S. Virgin Islands) and Canada, the following are the remaining LSAT test dates for 2020.
Originally, LSAC planned to return to in-person testing by the November 2020 exam that was scheduled for Saturday, November 14. However, the organization is working on plans to keep all test-takers as safe as possible during the pandemic. In short, LSAC would like to resume in-person exams. But still, in late August, LSAC made the decision to switch the November 2020 dates to LSAT-Flex only. In the future, LSAC could decide to rely more on the LSAT-Flex depending on the direction the pandemic might take.
If in-person dates change, or more dates will use the LSAT-Flex, I will keep you updated.
LSAC has announced the following LSAT test dates for 2021. When they release more dates, I will share them with you.
To clarify, LSAC is planning to give the LSAT-Flex in January, February, and April, 2021. However, LSAC could update those plans in the future.
|LSAT Date||Registration||Assistance Request||Accommodation Request||Photo Upload||Test Date Change||Withdrawal||Scores Released||Disclosed Form Available?|
|Week of August 29, 2020 (LSAT-Flex only)||July 15, 2020||August 9, 2020||July 15, 2020||N/A||August 21, 2020||August 28, 2020||September 18, 2020||No|
|Week of October 3, 2020 (LSAT-Flex only)||August 21, 2020||September 13, 2020||August 21, 2020||September 9, 2020||September 25, 2020||October 2, 2020||October 23, 2020||No|
|Week of November 7, 2020 (LSAT-Flex only)||September 23, 2020; Registration now open||October 18, 2020||September 23, 2020||N/A||October 30, 2020||November 6, 2020||November 24, 2020||No|
|January 16 and 17, 2021||December 2, 2020; Registration now open||December 20, 2020||December 2, 2020||N/A||January 2, 2021||TBD||February 3, 2021||No|
|February 20 and 21, 2021||January 6, 2021; Registration now open||January 31, 2021||January 6, 2021||N/A||February 6, 2021||TBD||March 10, 2021||No|
|April 10 and 11, 2021||February 24, 2021; Registration now open||March 21, 2021||February 24, 2021||N/A||March 27, 2021||TBD||April 29, 2021||No|
However, keep in mind that due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s possible that LSAC could move a LSAT test date to LSAT-Flex only. In addition, as of August 2020, you can only get your scores if you’ve also completed the LSAT Writing portion.
Click here to learn about LSAT dates and test center locations outside of the U.S. and Canada.
LSAT test dates are labeled as either “disclosed” or “non-disclosed.” For non-disclosed exams, candidates only receive their final scores, percentile, and a copy of their writing sample.
However, if you take a disclosed exam, you’ll have a more thorough breakdown. So, you will receive your scores and a copy of the test, your answers, a list of the correct answers, and a score conversion table. Therefore, disclosed exams are ones that the LSAC plans to retire and will not reuse.
So what’s the benefit of taking a disclosed exam? Well, an undisclosed exam will give you the chance to learn a little about your numbers. Therefore, this type of data could be beneficial if you don’t like your score on your first try. Did you only miss questions in certain topic areas? If so, then focus your studies in those subjects and re-take the exam. Of course, if you don’t take a disclosed exam, you’ll still know your final score. But, you won’t have that level of granular detail to help you do better next time.
It’s possible, though, that an exam that was planned to be a disclosed exam could become an undisclosed one without a lot of warning. For example, LSAC originally planned to give a disclosed exam on November 14, 2020. However, in late August 2020, they switched it to an undisclosed LSAT-Flex exam given during the week of November 7 because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The COVID-19 pandemic has affected many aspects of our lives, including when and how to take the LSAT. For example, LSAC has recently announced a change in policy for the following in-person LSAT test dates in August, October, and November 2020. As a result, candidates with these LSAT testing dates will take the LSAT-Flex exam.
LSAT-Flex is an online version of the exam that is remotely proctored. Actually, LSAC first used all-digital tests for two of the LSAT test dates in 2019-2020 in January and March 2019. In fact, over 33,000 candidates have already taken the LSAT-Flex because of the halt of in-person testing due to the pandemic. For example, 2020 candidates with a June LSAT test date took the LSAT-Flex exam remotely and did not have to travel to testing centers.
If you’ve already scheduled your LSAT exam, then your registration will automatically be updated for the LSAT-Flex instead of an in-person registration. Consequently, you should receive a notification from LSAC if this situation applies to you.
However, if you’ve already scheduled an October or November 2020 exam, you can choose to opt out of the LSAT-Flex option. Instead, you will be issued a coupon that you can use for any future in-person LSAT test date locations.
Will LSAT-Flex be offered for future candidates? Well, right now, we just don’t know. For now, LSAC is monitoring this new process. Depending on how the COVID-19 pandemic progresses, they might consequently announce additional remote LSAT-Flex dates. Or, they might go back to in-person testing.
LSAC keeps a list of LSAT test dates and locations on its website. Click here to conduct a LSAT test dates locations search.
If you need to make a LSAT test date change, you can do it as long. However, you must meet the test date change deadline as outlined in the chart in this article. You simply need to log into your LSAC account and submit your request. However, LSAC charges a $125 fee for this service.
If you need additional information, check out LSAC’s website about date changes.
In short, yes, you can change your scheduled testing location. But only if your test center change deadline hasn’t passed yet (see the chart above). Likewise, seats must be available in your desired test center. In addition, you’ll also have to pay a $125 fee.
To chance your test center, log into your LSAC account and submit your request. Or, call LSAC at 215-968-1001. You can find additional information here.
In conclusion, picking your LSAT date is just one of many decisions ahead of you. If you’re still looking for an LSAT prep course, let me make that decision a little easier for you. I have reviews of the best LSAT review providers on my blog. Plus, you’ll find other valuable but totally free information like tips for studying for the LSAT. I also have articles about what to expect on your LSAT test day and law school admissions help.