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Blueprint vs Kaplan LSAT
Determine which prep course is better for you in this comprehensive Kaplan vs Blueprint LSAT comparison
Blueprint and Kaplan are both heavyweights in the LSAT prep space. Accordingly, both companies offer prep courses that seem very similar on the surface. However, once you dig a little deeper, you can start to see each company has their own strengths and weaknesses. Lucky for you, we’ve studied with both prep courses so we have a pretty good idea as to which course is best for which types of students. In this comparison, we cover the different course options each company offers and how their prep materials stack up against one another so you can make an informed decision.
Blueprint keeps things fairly simple and offers just two primary course options: 1) their Online Anytime Course; and 2) their Live Online Course.
The Online Anytime Course is Blueprint’s base level course and offers as its core curriculum effective and engaging videos, access to over 85 actual practice exams and unlimited live help. Blueprint’s Live Online Course has all the same features as their base program, with the additional benefits of expert live classroom LSAT instruction and personalized resources including smart homework, detailed score reports and customized practice questions. These classes are taught by individuals who have scored in the 98th percentile on an officially administered LSAT exam.
We found all of Blueprint’s online content and classroom instruction to be top-notch and extremely effective. Their curriculum truly focuses on the fundamental skills and knowledge necessary for mastery of each exam. The price for their Online Anytime Course starts at around $800 and they charge approximately $1,500 for their Live Online Course. Blueprint also offers a unique program for those students who only have a short amount of time to prepare for the LSAT. For students in that situation, they offer the ability for $300/month to subscribe to their Online Anytime Course.
For students seeking the highest score possible in order to get into one the nation’s elite law schools, Blueprint offers several diverse private tutoring packages. These programs are designed to provide each student with an individualized LSAT study plan designed specifically to their skills, needs and goals, and hours of 1-on-1 tutoring. Since Blueprint was founded by a group of veteran LSAT instructors, teaching is at their core. We were consistently impressed with the depth of knowledge and communicative skills of all the instructors in our study program. We found them to be engaging, entertaining and zeroed in on the needs of every student.
Blueprint offers 3 levels of private tutoring packages starting at $3,800 for 16 hours, going up to 40 hours at a ceiling shattering $9,000 price point. Although these prices may initially seem high, when compared to many of the other LSAT prep courses which charge an average of $175/hour for their private tutoring options, these packages actually become quite competitive given the high level and quality of Blueprint’s tutoring.
Course options and pricing current as of date of publication.
Our Assessment Of The Blueprint LSAT Prep Materials
Blueprint’s study materials for their basic courses are anchored by hundreds of short video lessons. These videos are purposely presented in a very unique style – to be fun and entertaining. Blueprint specifically designed the videos in this manner with the goal to grab and hold your attention, and thereby improve the learning experience and retention of the course material. In this regard, they exceeded all our expectations. We found the videos to be highly entertaining, and presented in a clean dynamic format – instructors appear on screen as graphics, notes and cartoons appear around them.
As designed, the videos make for an engaging and interesting learning experience. The video lessons are then followed in the study materials by assessments and quizzes, detailed homework assignments, drills and practice problems. When combined, the video lessons, assessments and homework methodically break down all the complex concepts in great detail, and offer the ability to customize explanations to each student’s learning preference. Overall, we found the quality and quantity of Blueprint’s primary study materials to be among the best on any LSAT prep course we have reviewed.
Blueprint supports their online coursework with a full package of hardcopy textbooks and a comprehensive classroom experience. Blueprint’s classroom coursework offers students 12 virtual classroom lessons, meeting one day per week with one of Blueprint’s LSAT master instructors, along with 4 proctored exams. We found the instructors excellent at analyzing complex concepts and problems, all awhile keeping the lesson fast paced and light. They would often break away to speak about different law schools, career goals, and other questions posed by students. The hard copy textbooks serve as the core of the classroom and video curriculum, and contain lesson notes, practice problems and drills. The books are thorough, well written, and provide excellent ancillary study material.
Blueprint also utilizes official past LSAT questions in its study material and practice tests. Similar to their competition, they do this through a subscription to the LSAT Prep Plus program providing access to every LSAT administered since 1991. Historical anecdotal evidence has consistently shown that practicing on official past LSAT exams provides for greater relevance and test preparation.
After every practice exam, Blueprint also provides students with their detailed score report, a unique scoring analysis tool breaking down how a student performed on every component of the test, and where they might need additional help. Through their analytics, not only does Blueprint know what problems or questions you got wrong – they know why you got them wrong. Our team found such feedback to be extremely valuable.
Blueprint uses a proprietary learning platform to tie the whole user experience together. The platform uses an advanced algorithm to produce the most optimal learning methodology and schedule for each student. The platform captures data on every student interaction with the course material and analyzes performance against dozens of metrics.
User interaction between the platform and course material is accomplished through Blueprint’s advanced Dashboard. The Dashboard’s interface is simple, intuitive and aesthetically pleasing, and is simply one of the best and most advanced of any we’ve encountered. The banner at the top of your screen moves you smoothly and seamlessly through all the coursework components. Overall, combining Blueprint’s quality content with its learning platform makes for one of the most user-friendly experience of any LSAT prep course.
What distinctly differentiates Blueprint from Kaplan, and other LSAT prep course providers, are their incredible video lessons. The video lessons are founded on the idea that test prep can actually be entertaining – Blueprint calls the process “edutainment”. In essence, that you learn and retain more when you’re having fun.
Blueprint’s cutting edge video production truly makes the learning experience engaging and enjoyable. The videos roll through a series of dynamic notes, images and diagrams, are fast paced, and use gaming features and other software tools to grab and hold your attention throughout the entire video lesson. Their LSAT video instructors are masters at bringing dense intimidating material to life. Blueprint has built their reputation on the ability to help students understand very complex material, and their video lessons truly enhance that goal.
Kaplan is widely considered by many to be the Heavyweight Champion of the LSAT prep course world, and by most accounts, the title is well deserved. For decades, they have been one of the top names you’ll always hear when people talk about the best LSAT prep courses. Kaplan’s size and experience allows them to bring an abundance of resources to the table, and that is reflected in all their course options. Kaplan offers a diverse menu of courses to fit virtually any student learning type.
For highly disciplined self-starters Kaplan offers its DIY course, a self-paced package that provides for maximum flexibility. In addition to 180+ hours of on-demand lessons through Kaplan’s LSAT channel, you also get access to actual LSAT questions, practice drills and strategies, and logic games, all for a package price of around $800.
For those students who benefit from a classroom environment, Kaplan offers it flagship Online Course for approximately $1,300. The Online Course has all the same benefits of the DIY Course, plus 32 hours of classroom instruction, 60 full-length practice tests and 300+ quizzes. Never short of options, for those students who might just need a little personalized 1-on-1 instruction, Kaplan offers the Tutor+Online Course. Starting at $2,400 you can choose from between 10 to 40 hours of 1-on1 tutoring to help identify your unique strengths and weaknesses, go over test taking strategies tailored to your specific needs, and receive personalized homework assignments to keep you on track during the lesson breaks.
Lastly, for those students seeking the highest score possible in order to get into the nation’s most elite law schools, there is Kaplan’s Bootcamp program. The program design immerses you in an intense 4 week regimen where studying for the LSAT becomes your full-time job. Participants follow a strict daily schedule, participate in an incredible 140 hours of live classroom instruction, hours of 1-on-1 tutoring, 180+ hours of on-demand video lessons, and a full slate of other resources. At a price of around $4,000, nothing is left to chance in this white glove package.
Course options and pricing current as of date of publication.
Our Analysis Of The Kaplan LSAT Study Materials
Cementing Kaplan’s core belief of leaving nothing to chance, one is virtually overwhelmed with the sheer quantity of their study materials. There are literally hundreds of hours of lessons, assessments, practice problem tests, drills and problem explanations.
Kaplan’s course curriculum is designed by experienced teachers, and has been perfected over decades. It is broken down into 6 major core sessions closely mirroring the 3 LSAT sections. Each session is further broken down into units with their own video lessons, assessments and ancillary coursework.
Whether you choose the DIY Course or the Online Course, Kaplan provides 32 hours of core lesson instruction, and over 180 hours of video content through their LSAT channel. The LSAT Channel is a key feature of Kaplan’s study materials, and provides supplemental video lessons that drill down into more complex concepts and problem types.
We found all of Kaplan’s study materials extremely well designed and incredibly detailed. The video lessons generally average in length from several minutes to an hour, and take the form of a digital whiteboard with the instructor appear in the bottom corner with notes, highlights and graphics constantly changing around them. The videos are genuinely insightful, engaging, and provide solid actionable strategies.
In addition to the core curriculum, Kaplan offers a “Practice Library” full of advanced resource material based on past official LSAT questions designed to help master advanced subjects and problem types.
Throughout the coursework, Kaplan is constantly assessing their students’ progress. Every student is required to take 3 full-length diagnostic tests under LSAT exam-like conditions. Following each test, students receive a Smart Report providing detailed feedback outlining where they performed well and where they might need a little additional help.
As with most major LSAT prep course providers, every Kaplan student receives a set of hard copy prep books. The books closely follow and augment the course lessons, and provide additional practice questions and drills. We found that the books to be thoughtful and well written, and a helpful complement to the course lessons.
In evaluating the Kaplan course curriculum against other LSAT prep course providers, what stood out the most to us was the sheer quantity of the study materials. Between the lessons, assessments, textbook materials, practice problem sets, practice tests, drills and problem explanations, there are literally hundreds of hours of prep material. It’s a mountain of resources and much more than others, including Blueprint, provide.
The practice material is extremely comprehensive, detailed, logically formatted, well designed and thoughtfully presented. Overall, we found Kaplan’s prep material to be virtually unparalleled in the industry.
Deciding between the Blueprint and Kaplan course options makes for a daunting decision. They both are excellent, but not without they’re own strengths and weaknesses. Hopefully, you’ll find the below head-to-head comparisons helpful in making your final decision.
Study Materials – Both Blueprint and Kaplan provide excellent lessons and coursework. Kaplan overwhelms with the quantity of its course materials, while Blueprint excels with its masterful video lessons. For our team, the Blueprint videos place it slightly ahead of Kaplan in this category. For this reason, we give the nod to Blueprint.
Price – Price is typically a major criteria when evaluating any LSAT prep course. Both Blueprint and Kaplan are very competitive with their price points at virtually every course level, from their self-paced on-demand courses to their white-glove private tutoring packages. Verdict – Tie.
Books – Blueprint and Princeton both provide excellent hard copy textbooks that compliment and track their course lessons. However, our team found that Kaplan’s books outperform Blueprint with their proven strategies, practice questions and drills for each of their 6 major core sessions. Advantage – Kaplan.
Practice Tests – Blueprint and Kaplan, as well as virtually all other LSAT course providers, subscribe to LSAC’s LSAT Prep Plus program – providing access to over 85 official LSAT exams for the most relevant testing preparation possible. However, whereas Kaplan requires students to take 4 diagnostic practice exams, Blueprint requires 6 exams, both self-paced and proctored. Plus, our team found Blueprint’s scoring feedback reports to be very useful. Advantage – Blueprint.
User Experience & Interface – As noted above, we found Blueprint’s proprietary learning platform and Dashboard to be one of the best we have encountered. Although Kaplan’s user interface is certainly intuitive and easy to use, it simply is not on the same level as Blueprint’s. Advantage – Blueprint.
Classroom Component– As two of the top LSAT prep course providers, both Blueprint and Kaplan offer a top-notch classroom experience with LSAT master instructors, individuals who have scored in the 98th percentile or better on an official LSAT exam and who have undergone intensive instructor training. But, while Kaplan instructors were certainly enthusiastic, helpful and good at holding students accountable, we found Blueprint’s instructors equally as qualified, and across the board naturally humorous and better at holding your attention through at times dense material. Advantage – Blueprint.
Extra Resources– Although not covered above, Blueprint goes above and beyond Kaplan by offering students a myriad of supplemental tools and extra resources. For example, Blueprint provides it’s students simulated proctored exams, daily online review sessions, office hours with one of their master instructors, and a cool Law School Compass to name a few. Unfortunately, we found Kaplan a little lacking in their extracurricular resources. Advantage – Blueprint.
Online Content Access Period – Again, although not covered above, Kaplan provides it’s DIY students with 4 months on online access. The content availability for their live courses is typically tied to your LSAT test date. Similarly, with Blueprint you have access to the Live Online materials for the duration of the course, but the content will deactivate 3 days after your scheduled LSAT administration date. However, Blueprint does offer the option to cancel your class and put your work on hold for up to 12 months should something come up that prevents you from taking the exam on your scheduled day. Even with this feature, our team voted this category at tie.
Refund Policy & Score Guarantees – This category is complicated for both Blueprint and Kaplan. In short, they both offer score guarantees and have refund policies, but with many conditions and qualifiers depending on a variety of variables and course selection. Be sure to read the fine print for both providers. Advantage – Tie.
Which LSAT prep course is better - Kaplan or Blueprint?
In our honest opinion, we give the nod to Blueprint given the company’s engaging and effective video lessons. With that said, it is a very close call. Some students may prefer Kaplan depending on the type of learner you are.
Which LSAT prep course is more affordable - Blueprint or Kaplan?
Both Blueprint and Kaplan offer several different LSAT course options that are very similar in terms of pricing. However, the companies do offer special promotions regularly, so the answer to which course is cheaper largely depends on timing.
Do Blueprint and Kaplan offer LSAT score guarantees?
Yes, Blueprint and Kaplan both offer higher score guarantees for students. Keep in mind, there are conditions and qualifiers to those guarantees.