Ep. 212: September LSAT Pandemonium
We’re hot on the heels of the September LSAT and accounts of the test are flooding in from
students and law-school hopefuls. Many folks are describing sheer pandemonium, with last-
minute cancellations, madness-inducing test proctoring, and ultra-challenging logic games.
Nathan and Ben take a look at some of the tales of woe and tales of pride coming out of the
September 2019 LSAT. Plus, the guys get a PSA from a listener, they offer some advice about
GPA addendums for splitters, they consider intermediary conclusions vs. “regular” conclusions, and they take a look at a surprisingly great personal statement.
As always, if you like the show and you want to get more from the Thinking LSAT community, check out the links below. You can connect with other folks studying for the LSAT, and get more useful resources from Nathan and Ben.
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7:54 – September LSAT Pandemonium
It happens. You prep your best. You show up on the day. Yer pencil bag is stuffed to the gills with sharpened No. 2s. You sit down. And you get totally, completely, devastatingly stumped. Such was the case for this self-described “victim” of the test. They sat for the test and got toasted on a game they deem “impossible.” And after that, the rest of the test kinda sucked. And that’s not all! They heard stories of similar experiences from their peers. They want to know if a -12 can still nab them a 170. Is it possible with a curve? The guys tell Victim to take a step back and recognize that they probably just had a bad day. It would be extraordinarily rare to see an official LSAT question actually be impossible. Yes, you could have a -14 or -15 and still grab a 170 on the test. But the reality is that you probably just need to work harder and do more games.
19:10 – September LSAT Pandemonium, Part Deux!
More horror from the September LSAT. Josh shares a tale of woe from September’s test.
According to him, the administration of the test was a complete shitshow. He’s sure his score
will suffer as a result and wants to know if he should cancel his score. Here are some facts and tips regarding score cancellation:
- Yes, you can cancel your score within six days of your test
- Cancelling your test is easy. Log into your LSAC account, find said test, click cancel
- Cancelling your score will show up on your official record as a “C” (for cancel, silly)
- A cancellation still counts as one of your 3 annual or 5-in-5-years attempts on the test
- You probably shouldn’t cancel your score
- You probably shouldn’t cancel your score unless you’re “C” for “Certain” that your score
has zero chance of meeting or beating (even by a point) any other score you have on
The guys generally advise against cancelling your score. And while Josh’s account does sound like the test day sucked, it’s important to note that things can go wrong on your test day, and you stand a much better chance of achieving a good outcome if you come to the test prepared, and prepared to roll with the punches when weird shit goes down.
36:56 – September LSAT Pandemonium, Part Trois!
And now for some happy news. Stacy also took the September test and had an experience that was notably more positive than some of our other correspondents. While she points out that the logic games were tough, she said she felt prepared by all of the practice she’d done in the LSAT Demon. Pretty awesome that if you thoroughly prep with a bunch of past tests, you’ll probably have a relatively chill experience when you sit down to yet another official test.
40:02 – Seat Availability Headaches
Meghan writes in to let all you mid-Atlantic residents know that November testing centers are filling up becoming scarce! Many New Jersey and New York testing centers are already at max capacity and are starting waitlists. Just a heads up if you’re planning to take the November LSAT in the northeast. She also asks the guys to weigh in on whether a 30+ military retiree with a full-time job and a family should pursue a law degree part-time. The guys weigh in and Ben suggests reading Don’t Go To Law School (Unless).
44:42 – LSAC Snafus During the September LSAT
Imagine working your butt off to get ready for the LSAT only to attempt registering at a testing center and find out that it’s full. Bummer, right? But you’re a tenacious lil’ devil. You decide to register at a testing center hours away to ensure a seat. You get a hotel room. You drive a few hours. You’re all set to take the LSAT the next day. Then…*ding!* Your inbox pops off and you see a letter from LSAC letting you know that your testing center has been cancelled because they didn’t ship the tablets in time to administer the test. HUGE bummer. And an actual nightmare tale from the recent LSAT rollout. The guys share crazy stories and pick apart an email from LSAC about these last-minute cancellations.
51:27 – Intermediary Conclusions vs. Regular Ol’ Conclusions
Eliana asks the guys if they can clarify the difference between intermediary conclusions and straight-up conclusions. Nathan and Ben talk about the difference between these two conclusion types and offer a hip-hop-themed example.
57:16 – GPA Addendum Advice
Hannah is a super splitter. With a formidable 175 on record, she’s wondering if she has a shot at top-20 law schools considering that she has a 2.2 GPA. The guys consider her addendum and say that while the ship has sailed on many elite schools, her 175 will open the door to several strong law schools. Still, they recommend thinking about what you want to do with your career and working backward from there. Do you need to go to a top-20 law school to have the career you want to have? Do you need to go to law school at all? Let the answers to those questions guide you to a free JD or perhaps another degree.
1:09:25 – Personal Statement Review
Dave asks the guys to take a look at his personal statement and Ben and Nathan are, of course, happy to oblige. But there’s an interesting twist in this week’s personal statement review! The essay is pretty damn close to being a usable statement. Nathan serves this up as an example of good writing and putting your best foot forward when applying to law school.