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Blueprint vs Princeton Review LSAT
See which prep course wins in this detailed Princeton Review vs Blueprint LSAT comparison
Preparing to take the LSAT can be a stressful time. You obviously want to score as high as possible so you can get into a top-tier law school, however, you likely have a million other things going on in your life such as school or work that are limiting that amount of time you have to study. That’s where structured and streamlined prep courses like those from Princeton Review and Blueprint can really help. But which course should you choose? In this comparison, we analyze the LSAT prep courses from both companies so you can choose which one best fits your particular study schedule and habits.
Blueprint offers a full range of course options, from their basic level courses to extensive private tutoring packages. Blueprint’s base level courses include their Online Anytime Course, Live Online Course and Classroom Course.
All of Blueprint’s online content and classroom instruction is top-tier, engaging and by all accounts extremely effective. The price points for these basic packages start at around $700 and are pretty much in line with other top-level prep courses, including Princeton Review. However, if you only have a short study time window, Blueprint offers you the unique ability to subscribe on a monthly basis to their Online Anytime Course for only around $250/month.
At the other end of the course option spectrum, Blueprint offers dynamic private tutoring packages for those students who best learn in a 1-on-1 setting. Blueprint’s tutors are some of the best we have encountered in both the depth and breadth of their LSAT knowledge and mastery of the subject material, and have excellent communicative skills.
Although highly effective for many students, this option comes at a steep price. Blueprint’s tutoring packages start at around $2,100 and can go up to an eye-popping $9,000. However, when you break down the typical cost of other prep courses hourly private tutoring charges, such as Princeton Review at $175/hour, given the extreme high level and quality of Blueprint’s tutoring, these private tutoring packages become very competitive.
Course options and pricing current as of date of publication.
Evaluation Of The Blueprint LSAT Study Materials
Blueprint’s study materials are purposely designed to be fun in order to achieve their dual goals of improving the learning experience and retention of the course material. We found the quality and quantity of Blueprint’s study materials to be virtually without peer among its competitors.
The primary study materials are a combination of hundreds of short video lessons, assessments and quizzes, followed by detailed homework assignments, including drills and problem sets. The video lessons, assessments and homework are all presented in a very clean and dynamic format. Concepts are broken down in great detail, and explanations can be customized to each student’s learning preference. The content of the course work and instruction is extremely relevant and high quality.
Blueprint augments their online content with a comprehensive set of hardcopy textbooks and classroom experience. Blueprint’s classroom instructors are LSAT masters, are extremely engaging and entertaining, and are experts in breaking down complex concepts and problems into understandable bits of information. The books are useful in tracking and supplementing this classroom core curriculum. However, while these books are thorough, well written and provide excellent study material, we found they pale in comparison to Blueprint’s online and classroom content.
Similar to other LSAT test prep companies, Blueprint relies on past LSAT exams for their practice tests. While this is pretty much standard in the industry, Blueprint goes beyond in its scoring modality providing students with detailed score reports. Following your practice test, Blueprint will give you an analysis of where you performed well, and where you may need further work. Most students find such feedback extremely valuable.
Tying the whole user experience together is what sets Blueprint apart from its competitors – its Dashboard. The Dashboard interface is simple, intuitive and aesthetically pleasing. The banner directs you to lessons and homework, practice problem sets, exams, study schedule and resources. The transition between each element is seamless and smooth. Overall, when the Dashboard is combined with Blueprint’s high quality of content, we found it offers perhaps the most user-friendly experience of any LSAT prep course.
The Blueprint LSAT prep course is all about its online content, and the cornerstone of this content are the video lessons. As designed by Blueprint, the video lessons are an amazing teaching tool, and are the highlight of the course curriculum.
The videos are fast paced, interesting, fun and simply hold your attention better than other prep course videos we have reviewed. The instructors are engaging, entertaining and insightful. They are masters at breaking down difficult and complex concepts and problems with humor and wit as notes, graphics and cartoons appear around them. Images and diagrams are used to further enhance the learning process and retention of the course material. The quality of the video lessons alone is one of the main reasons Blueprint ranks among the top of our list of best LSAT prep courses.
Princeton Review is one of the top legacy LSAT prep courses that has been helping future law students get into the law school of their choice for decades. Princeton Review offers 3 basic course options: 1) Self-Paced; 2) Fundamentals; and, 3) LSAT 165+. The Self-Paced course is priced at around $800, which is slightly above Blueprint’s Online Anytime Course. The Fundamentals class prices in around $1,100, while the LSAT 165+, which is designed for students targeting a very high score, costs around $1,400.
The quality of all three Princeton Review courses is rock solid providing high-end coursework. The Fundamentals course is Princeton’s flagship in-person class offering 30 hours of in-class lessons with an LSAT expert, supplemented by over 150 hours of additional video lessons and online content. For those students seeking the highest score possible, the LSAT 165+ course offers a robust 84 hours of in-person instruction.
Much like Blueprint and its other competitors, Princeton Review also offers a top tier package that includes 1-on-1 personalized tutoring sessions. The personalized tutors are the same LSAT master instructors who teach the in-person courses. Princeton’s personalized tutoring options start at around $1,800. Overall, the personalized tutoring option at $1,800 provides a great value over many of Princeton’s competitors, such as Kaplan at $2,400, for those students looking for a little 1-on-1 time to fine tune their skills or get an extra couple of points on their overall score.
Course options and pricing current as of date of publication.
How The Princeton Review Study Materials Stack Up
The Princeton Review study materials are comprised of video lessons, written lessons, practice problems and drills. We found the Princeton Review lessons, both in-person and on-demand, to be highly effective. Princeton offers an impressive 150+ hours of video lessons throughout its online coursework. Although the videos are top notch and offer time-tested test taking strategies and detailed explanations of concepts and problems, unlike Blueprint there is no actual person on camera but rather a whiteboard illustrating problem solving strategies with a voiceover. Nevertheless, the video quality, voiceovers and lesson material are well designed, effective and engaging.
The remainder of the course work is comprised of written instruction, general test taking strategies, drills and practice problems. We found the written material to be very comprehensive and detail oriented, almost to a fault in the exacting manner in which they drill down into virtually every single concept and problem type. Princeton Review provides 5 prep books that track and supplement the online lessons and materials. As with the online material, the books are thoroughly detailed, analytical and well written, and provide well-designed drills, practice problems and lessons.
Princeton Review goes beyond many of its competitors with the many practice tests the course offers. The prep course requires every student to complete 6 full-length diagnostic practice exams as part of its core curriculum. Students are also given access to over 70 other full-length practice exams from past LSATs.
Unfortunately, tying all the components of this dynamic course together is what we found to be a rather basic and mundane Dashboard. However, although lacking the bells and whistles of Blueprint’s user interface, we found the functionality of Princeton’s dashboard to be more than adequate. It provides easy and direct access to your coursework, practice tests, practice problem explanations and more. It was just a little surprising not to see a cutting-edge Dashboard with such a comprehensive top tier prep course.
Princeton Review is a test prep heavyweight and its coursework is anchored by perhaps the best live classes and prep books in the business. Their live class instructors are all LSAT masters having scored in the 98th percentile or better on the exam. Each instructor is a little different, but across the board we found them all to be extremely knowledgeable, genuinely interested in their students scoring potential, and strong communicators. The in-classroom coursework closely tracks the prep books, but provides the benefit of hearing and breaking down the material from several different perspectives.
Equally important, all in-classroom instructors are available by phone and/or email to answer questions about difficult problems or challenging concepts, and we found them true to their promise typically responding in less than 6 hours. Lastly, the in-classroom component also offers the opportunity of 4 live, proctored exams, simulating the real test day experience, which all our team members found very beneficial.
The 5 hard copy books that Princeton Review provides with all its course options are among the most thorough we have reviewed. Not only do they augment and compliment the online lessons and in-classroom material, but they also provide additional detailed explanations of concepts and strategies, well-designed drills and independent practice problems.
In fact, we found the 5 books to be so comprehensive and detailed that they alone can virtually get you to your desired score. But better, when combined with Princeton Review’s high-quality online content and in-classroom coursework, the books provide the structural backbone to virtually guarantee you the best score possible.
Verdict: Princeton Review vs Blueprint LSAT Comparison
Study Materials – This is a close call as Blueprint and Princeton Review are both major players in the LSAT prep course space, and provide excellent lessons and coursework. The flow and structure of the study materials is effective and well designed with both courses. Overall, there is simply not much difference in the quality of the course material between the two, with the exception of Blueprint’s video lessons. As noted above, the videos are a masterful teaching tool in their presentation, conceptual format, and ability to hold your attention. For this reason alone, we give the nod to Blueprint.
Price – Price is always one of the primary criteria in evaluating any prep course. At the self-paced on demand course level it is a virtual tie between Blueprint and Princeton Review. Both start at the $700-800 price point. As you move up in course options, however, Princeton offers slightly lower prices for very similar content, including private tutoring packages. Advantage – Princeton Review.
Books – Again, advantage – Princeton Review. Both Blueprint and Princeton provide excellent hard copy textbooks that accompany and compliment their coursework. The books for both are detailed, thoughtfully written and closely track the core curriculum. What gives Princeton the edge is the thoroughness in the presentation of the course material. No stone is left unturned, every possible problem type and concept intricately analyzed.
Practice Tests – Blueprint and Princeton Review, like virtually all their competitors, subscribe to LSAC’s LSAT Prep Plus program – opening the door to every LSAT administered since 1991. In essence, access to over 85 real LSAT’s. Both also require a minimum of 4, with the ability to take up to 6, full length, diagnostic practice exams, both self-paced and proctored, as part of the core curriculum. However, we found Blueprint’s scoring feedback reports and detailed analysis of problem areas to be extremely useful. Slight Edge – Blueprint.
User Experience & Interface – Not close, advantage – Blueprint. We found Blueprint’s user experience and Dashboard interface to be at the head of the class. It’s professional, sleek, and seamlessly moves through all the coursework and resource components. In contrast, although functional and practical, we found Princeton’s user interface to rather pedestrian.
Classroom Component – Blueprint and Princeton Review both offer a top-tier classroom experience with LSAT master instructors, individuals who have scored in the 98th percentile or better on the exam and who have undergone hundreds of hours of instructor training. We found the instructors for both to be extremely knowledgeable, engaging, entertaining and strong communicators. However, as outlined above, Princeton’s live classes are a cut above the rest of the field. The instructor’s personal commitment to each of their students, and their access and availability by phone or email to answer questions and respond to a student’s needs we found compelling. Advantage – Princeton Review.
Extra Resources – Although not covered above, both Blueprint and Princeton Review offer students other included resources. Overall, we found Princeton’s additional resources is be a little thin, containing only the course syllabus, problem explanations and book corrections. In contrast, Blueprint boasts an impressive set of supplementary materials, including, but not limited to, simulated proctored exams, daily online review sessions and office hours with a Blueprint instructor, and a personalized study plan. Not close, advantage – Blueprint.
Online Content Access Period – Again, although not covered above, Princeton Review’s online course content is accessible for 120 days. With Blueprint you have access to the Live Classroom and Live Online materials for the duration of the course, but the content will deactivate 3 days after your scheduled LSAT administration date. What we found unique, however, was Blueprint’s available option that should something come up that prevents you from taking the exam on the scheduled day, you may cancel the course and Blueprint will save your progress for 12 months allowing you reactivate and pick up where you left off. Nevertheless, even with this unique feature, our team voted this category a tie.
Refund Policy & Score Guarantees – This category has many moving parts for both Blueprint and Princeton Review, depending on a variety of variables and course selection. Overall, however, both have higher score and money back guarantees, with certain qualifiers. The terms are technical and a little different for each. Also, each company does have a refund policy, but again, the terms and criteria vary by course selection. And the winner is – tie (they both have excellent attorneys who wrote the refund and score guarantee policies).