How Hard Is The LSAT Exam? The Truth About LSAT’s Difficulty

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In this article, we are going to tell you about How Hard is the LSAT Exam? Let’s go ahead.

The LSAT is used to test a candidate’s legal knowledge and abilities to determine if they can handle a career in law. Hence, prospective law students naturally worry about how difficult the LSAT will be.

The LSAT is designed by the Law School Admission Council (LSAC) to ensure that applicants have the capability of practicing law and are serious about getting into law school.

They will fail the LSAT if they casually take it. It takes months of study to do well on the LSAT. Time-consuming as well as expensive, this process takes a lot of effort.

It is designed to be difficult, so yes, the LSAT is hard. Rather than being a test requiring students to memorize random facts, it showcases their critical thinking skills. It is therefore unlike other tests a student may have taken up until this point, such as the SAT or ACT.

What you can do to make the LSAT less challenging will be discussed in this article. We will also discuss each section of the LSAT and share some helpful study tips.

What is the difficulty level of the LSAT content?

The LSAT does not contain questions about scientific or mathematical terms, as part of the MCAT or GMAT.

To pass the LSAT, you must be able to read critically, think logically, and apply rules in a structured manner based on what you are reading. The following skills are indeed essential to succeed in law school, despite at first appearing vague.

LSAT - How Hard is the LSAT

Throughout the LSAT, you will be challenged with incredibly detailed passages, challenged with logic-based questions, and flooded with tons of information.

On the LSAT, students are required to answer 99-102 multiple-choice questions across three separate categories: Analytical Reasoning, Logical Reasoning, and Reading Comprehension. 

Hardest LSAT Sections

Can you tell me which LSAT sections are hardest, and which LSAT questions are toughest? 

We will discuss each section in detail since it poses a unique challenge and requires different skills.

How Hard is the LSAT Logical Reasoning?

You will see about 24 to 26 questions in each of the two scored sections of Logical Reasoning on the LSAT (although this is not guaranteed if the experimental section is also Logical Reasoning).

Many of the questions ask you to identify logical flaws in short passages with argumentative support. A few may also require analysis of an argument.

Logical Reasoning - How Hard is the LSAT

Analogies, inferences, and identifying unstated assumptions are all skills you need to succeed on the legal aptitude test.

There are approximately 50 questions on the LSAT that test your reasoning skills, which is why you need to practice them.

New LSAT applicants can improve their score on the Logical Reasoning section by doing the following:

  • It is important to realize that despite the density of the text and the need for careful reading, most passages contain logical errors. 
  • Understand the different types of Logical Reasoning questions (e.g. Must Be True, Fault in the Reasoning, Strengthen the Argument, etc.) to save time and avoid costly mistakes. A dedicated LSAT prep course or strategy guide for Logical Reasoning may be extremely useful when combined with practice questions. 
  • Before digesting the passage, read the question. It is best to know the type of question in advance so you know what to look for when reading the passage. 

How Hard is the LSAT Analytical Reasoning?

The Analytical Reasoning section on the LSAT is considered to be the most notorious. Each logic game has 5-7 questions associated with it.

This section requires students to juggle several complexes and sometimes competing, concepts. As we deconstruct how LSAT Logic Games are designed, we find that they are composed of three essential components:

  • Assignments with an order, grouping, or both
  • Mismatches and subsets
  • ORs and conditions

Ordered, grouped, or both assignments

Assigning elements to positions is part of LSAT games. Games are largely based on assigned positions (e.g. six students stand in line at a food truck). A significant number of logic games entail groupings of players (e.g., six students line up at two food trucks).

Additionally, logic games may also involve grouping and ordering (e.g. a food truck line of six students play rock, paper, scissors three times in a row). 

Subsets and Mismatches

In addition to subsets and numerical mismatches, the LSAT complicates logic games. There are two ways to form subsets such as combining elements and positions (e.g. six students stand in line at a food truck; some are seniors, some are juniors, etc.).

There are some cases where the number of elements is not equal to the number of positions (e.g. six students stand in line at the food truck playing rock, paper, scissors for the remaining four hand-made gyros). 

It is also possible for a mismatch to occur when the number of elements or positions is unknown (e.g. six students are waiting for an unknown number of gyros at a food truck during lunchtime). 

Conditionals and ORs

Furthermore, there may be conditional rules (“if-then” type statements) and “or” rules in some logic games. LSAT students must clearly explain how each game’s rules integrate or conflict with each other. Exam takers will be able to deconstruct complex rules by drawing multiple diagrams. 

It may seem intimidating to play logic games, but the truth is they are simply foreign to you. Analytical Reasoning is the most learnable section of the LSAT.

If you are familiar with the fundamental elements of logic games, learn how to draw effective diagrams, and practice regularly, you can significantly increase your score.

How Hard is the LSAT Reading Comprehension?

One Reading Comprehension section on the LSAT consists of about 27 questions spread over four passages (i.e. six to eight questions per passage).

A fourth passage, which includes two shorter passages related to the third, should contain around 450 words.

Reading Comprehension

Comparative Reading, which consists of two passages, requires that test-takers assess the relationship between the two passages (which is exactly what law school work involves). 

Reading Comprehension passages for the LSAT may cover a variety of topics, but they will all be densely written, contain high-level vocabulary, and include complex rhetorical structures.

Moreover, this section can be very time-consuming. Future LSAT test-takers must understand that each Reading Comprehension passage has one main point.

Students who quickly learn to recognize the main points from passages and read with those points in mind will be better able to perform at the Reading Comprehension section of the exam.

How Hard is the LSAT Writing Sample?

Not difficult at all. Really. In your admissions packet to law schools, your LSAT Writing sample will be included, but it will not affect your composite LSAT score. The LSAT Writing sample only needs to be completed once, even if you plan to take the exam more than once. 

An argumentative essay question containing background facts about a decision to be made will be provided in this section.

Writing - How Hard is the LSAT

There will be two options you can choose from, and you will have to support your choice with the included facts (which sounds a little like a courtroom scenario).

The fact that you’re still reading this article indicates that you’re doing your best despite the weight given to this section by law schools. 

How did I conclude that this section is not very difficult? By studying in-depth for the LSAT exam, you will be honing the skills needed to produce an excellent writing sample.

The section might not require as much study as the other sections (most high-scoring students study for it), but it shouldn’t demand as much time. The final goal of the LSAC is to see a well-written, structured essay with a well-reasoned argument.

How to Improve LSAT Score By 10 Points

Would you like to know how you can improve your LSAT score by 10 points? The following tips will help:

1. Conduct an Assessment

You need to take a self-assessment to know where you stand.  The LSAT score you earned from your last test can serve as your assessment if you have taken the test before. 

Your current score can be displayed along with your scores for each area. To increase your LSAT score, you will need to adjust your LSAT study plan around these topics. 

2. Wait to Test

Before you begin to study for the test, make sure you have a study plan in place. Use an old, official LSAT exam rather than a real LSAT to find out how you stand. This will save you money, and you won’t have to worry about sending a lower score to your potential law schools.

3. Make a Plan

Neither the LSAT nor any law school final is comparable to a college final. Specifically, you will be tested on key skills you will need to master in law school. As a result, it will take a lot of time to learn and master these areas.

Plan your studies realistically and stick to them religiously. Don’t let anything distract you from studying. It’s easy to lose track of time one day due to fatigue and then lose a whole week before you realize it. 

Think of the LSAT as a marathon you are preparing for. If you want to study for as long as possible, schedule your study time so you can study a little bit every day, rather than trying to cram 16-hour study sessions into a week. 

When studying, take breaks so that you can stretch, drink water, and eat a snack. Rest days can prevent you from getting burned out during your study schedule. 

Plan your studies around a schedule that works well for you. Consider focusing your attention on one subject at a time, if you get easily distracted. If you need more stimulation, you may want to break up your studies into smaller chunks and rotate between different topics. 

A study schedule is typically included in the best LSAT review courses, but you can also buy separate ones online. If you select a course that offers analytic feedback like LSATMax, these can be easily customized to meet your specific needs.

4. Call in the Big Guns

Despite your fierce independence, now is not the time to show too much pride. In all likelihood, you are preparing for your biggest test yet. Take advantage of all the assistance available to you. 

Invest in a commercial preparation course such as Alpha Score or Princeton Review if you can afford it.

Most of these courses provide everything you need to study hard for the test, including books, curriculum, study guides, and calendars. Other students before you have also found these courses very helpful. An excellent score can often be influenced by these resources.

If you are having difficulties with specific LSAT sections, consider private tutoring. If you know exactly what subjects the instructor should cover, you can greatly improve your LSAT score with a little help from an expert.

5. Purchase a Logic Games Bible

Logic games are widely regarded as the most difficult section of the LSAT. You can probably improve your LSAT score the most in the shortest amount of time by improving your performance on this part of the test. 

Knowing how to identify patterns and apply appropriate structures to them can help you improve your score in logic games.

After you finish each game, make sure you go over it to see how you might have answered a question incorrectly or how you might have saved time. Your score on this section is likely to rise in a short time. 

6. Pace Yourself

To avoid burnout before test day, pace your study schedule over a long period. 

  • What is your preferred time of day? Morning or evening? Make the most of your studying time by dedicating the most productive time of the day to it. 
  • You should practice your tests in a timed environment and in an environment that resembles your testing environment. Practice your tests closer to the day of your actual test. If you haven’t already done so, you should do so now. 
  • Make sure you get plenty of rest every day and that you are in good health. If you are well on the day of the test, you can perform at your best.

7. But Be Ready to Work

Getting a better LSAT score takes a lot of effort. Even after completing all these steps, you must still invest your time and energy into improving your score.

You should also look for a high-scoring program. Princeton Review, for instance, guarantees a 165+ on the SAT. There are many resources and tools provided by the course to help test takers achieve a high score even though the course is rigorous. 

8. Use Flashcards

Although you cannot get a high score on the LSAT by memorizing rote facts, flashcards can help you remember important facts more quickly, such as:

  • Ideas
  • Vocabulary
  • Indicators of logic
  • A shorthand for logic games

On the LSAT, each section lasts 35 minutes, so anything you can do to reduce the amount of time you need to answer each question accurately can help you improve your score. 

Both commercial and free sites offer flashcards for LSAT prep. You can also make your flashcards, either on paper or digitally. 

9. Review Your Wrong Answers

Go back and review your wrong answers after completing a section of practice questions, as well as questions you couldn’t answer but guessed the right answer. Understanding how answers were missed is key. Analyze why one answer was right and the other was wrong. 

As you review your answers, you will be able to see and recognize patterns, including how test-makers attempt to deceive you into picking the wrong answer and discourage you from selecting the right one!

10. Improve Your Weakest Section

By now, you should know where your strengths and weaknesses are based on the assessments you have already taken (or several).

You can focus more of your time on developing the skills you need to score well in your weak areas if you already score well in your strong areas. Your final score can be significantly affected by this, and it will also boost your self-confidence.

FAQs on How Hard is the LSAT Exam?

Which Logic Games are the Hardest on the LSAT?

The LSAT has a lot of logic games. The hard and weird logic games on the LSAT are the subject of whole websites and Reddit threads. Grouping, matching, and combining scenarios pose a challenge to many candidates. The logic games are layered, and breaking them down into individual tasks can be very confusing.

Does the LSAT have math questions?

The LSAT does not include a math section. The math equations aren't set in a context where you are required to understand percentages and numbers.

Comparing the LSAT to the SAT, how hard is it?

There are many differences between the LSAT and the SAT. The purpose of the SAT is to measure a student's breadth of knowledge and basic skills. On the LSAT, advanced logic and skills are tested. There is no comparison to the SAT. Preparing for and studying for the LSAT requires specific skills and knowledge that don't apply to SATs and ACTs.

Which part of the LSAT is the hardest?

Depending on your greatest intellectual strengths, your answer will differ from person to person. That being said, most candidates find the Analytical Reasoning (or logic games) section of the LSAT to be the most challenging. You probably haven't done anything like this in your academic career because they are structured uniquely. A good deal of preparation is required to solve these unique logic puzzles.

Is the LSAT passable for the average person?

You should know that a perfect score on the LSAT is only achievable by 0.1% of test-takers. There's no doubt about how hard the LSAT is. LSAT scores range from 120 to 180. Getting about 60% of the questions right results in an average score of 155.

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Conclusion: How Hard is the LSAT Exam?

Compared to any other test you have likely taken, the LSAT is unlike anything else. In many ways, attending college for four years is less valuable than a four-hour test.

Many find that fact as difficult to accept as the LSAT content itself. Nevertheless, the LSAT exam can be learned – particularly the logic game portion, which is a common fear among candidates.

The LSAT is a tremendous opportunity to improve your law school application. Determine your target LSAT score, devise a study plan, determine what resources you will need, and execute your plan diligently on your path to law school admissions. 

Jacob Keifer

Jacob Keifer is the main author of Kawa College of Education. He spends most of his time writing best online course reviews, learning new skills, and playing chess. Jacob is a Texas-based writer and blogger with more than a decade of experience covering online education. Before launching his education blogs, he was a professional teacher who has trained many students and helped them pursue their careers.  

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