A common question over the weekend was, “If I take the LSAT again in December, is it too late to be competitive for Fall 2010 admission?”
No. It’s not too late. I had clients last year who were admitted to Harvard and Columbia with December LSAT scores. It’s not too late. The key is deciding whether you are set up to be successful with an LSAT that is only 6 weeks away. Here are some factors to consider:
1. Was the problem with your LSAT score in October a lack of sufficient preparation? If so, do you have time to dedicate in order to make a dramatic improvement in your score?
2. If the problem with your October LSAT result was a strange testing circumstance (illness, medication side-effects, noise, terrible proctors, missing an uncharacteristic amount of questions on a particular section, etc.) then it is feasible to raise your score significantly.
The next thing you’re going to ask is: Do I submit applications BEFORE I take the December LSAT? Here are the factors to consider:
1. You only have 6 weeks to maximize your December LSAT score? Why would you cut into such a short time frame by spending time on applications? Especially when those schools aren’t going to review your application without your score. And especially if you have other obligations (school, work, family) that are going to demand your time in the next 6 weeks.
2. You can work on applications starting December 2nd and still get things submitted sooner than most December LSAT takers.
3. Applications are down overall (2012) so there isn’t as much emphasis on the traditional “apply before Thanksgiving” rolling admissions schedule.
4. I’d always rather have someone with a higher LSAT score (at least 2 points higher to be worthwhile) in December than an application admitted in October with a lower score.
5. And, no, having a cancellation on your record won’t hurt you. Really. You can cancel an LSAT score; that’s why they let you.
For more about your decision regarding retaking the LSAT, see “Re-taking the LSAT“