Column: Considering law school? LSAT can be conquered

By Jonathan Jacobson

If you happen to be taking the Law School Admission Test on Sept. 29, I’m about to provide you with a place to dry your tears. If you’re planning on taking it eventually, but maybe not right now, I’ll give you a shoulder to lean on.

If you’re not planning on taking it at all because you don’t believe the world should be populated with any more lawyers than it already has, maybe you would be better off finding yourself a more relevant – and possibly even better – column adjacent to this one.

Now that we’ve rid ourselves of the slackers and you’ve made it this far, you are probably familiar with the LSAT: the law school entrance exam.

Maybe you know that it will, by most accounts, be significantly more important to admissions departments than the four years of work you did while at this university.

Maybe you even know that it’s on a scale of 180, but simply spelling your name properly – ever the challenge for the enlightened student – will give you a 120.

And it’s good to know these things, but not good enough. Fortunately for you, if you made it into the University, your standard testing skills cannot be abominable. This will work to your advantage, because the LSAT is the overlord of standardized tests.

It will examine your logic skills, your reasoning skills, your logic reasoning skills and, if you’re really lucky, your reasoning logic skills. This could be bad news for you if you are the kind of person who is prone to repeatedly putting their left shoe on their right foot.

It will test your ability to read and interpret quickly and will check to see if you know what time Calva, Fu, Haga, Irving and Jessup each arrived at Duvall’s most recent social gathering, assuming that Calva showed up in time for the last of the pita chips and Jessup made it just before Fu blacked out. (These names were taken from an actual LSAT question, so, at the very least, the test will keep you entertained).

Now, this might sound difficult to you. Because you attended classes here and learned important skill sets necessary for survival in the real world (maybe?), and because you have proven to be the sponge of knowledge your mother always said you were (possibly?), you probably have a chance with this test.

The LSAT is an exam that can be beaten. It is not an IQ test. There is a direct relationship between the amount you study for it and the ultimate score you receive. This means that if you have learned how to study, and if you can apply that wonderfully versatile little skill, you can get into a good law school.

It’s true that everybody has a ceiling – we are not all born computer programmers. But if you’ve come this far in your education, that ceiling is high, and if you jump high enough, you might even be able to poke a hole through it. Who knows, maybe one day you’ll be leaned against a centuries-old sycamore with the ambrosial smell of Harvard Square’s grass in your nostrils.