LSAT and Law School Admissions Forum

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General questions relating to law school or law school admissions.
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I took the LSAT for the first time in August and scored 174. My PT's were in the 176-178 range. Had a wicked headache and a broken writing thumb on test day that probably factored into slight deviation from PT's. GPA is 3.94, and I have a Master's degree in finance. Been out of school for 6 years. Spent the last 4 running a sole-proprietorship. Letters of rec. are stellar. Softs are good, with substantial hardship overcome, academic awards (not a Rhodes Scholar or anything), and NCAA-II athletics during undergrad. Looking for any wisdom on whether I should go ahead and apply ASAP with the 174 or retake the LSAT in Oct. or Nov. in hopes of a higher score. I was thinking of applying now and then retaking down the line if wait-listed at the top schools like HYS, but would love to hear from someone with experience. Thank you in advance for the insight! :-D
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If I were you, I would apply now. The earlier you can get the app in, the better, and you can (potentially) add the new LSAT score later. A174 is not a surprising score if you were PTing at high 170s because PTs are not always indicative of how one will perform on the real thing. You are at the new median for Harvard and Yale, and your GPA is good. I would think long and hard before retaking a 174 because if you score lower, it might not look good for you and show poor judgment. Test day can be a bit of a crapshoot.

Hopefully, someone more qualified can comment.
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 Beth Hayden
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Hi PeopleAreLaw,

Congratulations on such a great score! With your GPA, you have a great chance at a top school, but a few extra points could make you stand out. It is true that you could score lower a second time, but I don't think it's likely to hurt you. Now if you take the test 10 times to try to get a 180, that might make you look a bit intense! But if I were an admissions officer and I saw a 174 then a 173, I would think that shows commitment and drive. In my experience, schools don't care as much about extra scores as they used to because their primary concern is their LSAT median.

Either way, get in your app as soon as you think it's ready. If by the time you get your new score they haven't accepted or rejected you, they may just hold onto your app for a few months while they see how the rest of the class fills out. Adding a higher score could be what pushes you over the edge during that "limbo" period.

Hope that's helpful, and good luck!

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