Students preparing for law school are sure to have a lot of cost-related questions, the first of which is likely how much does it cost to take the LSAT
If you’re thinking about going to law school to earn your JD, you’ll need to take the LSAT. This test is essential to your law school application, and is just as important as your overall academic record and personal statement. It’s not an easy exam, but it’s viewed by admission committees as a vital benchmark for how well you’ll fare in law school. Naturally, one of the first topics that comes to mind revolves around the cost of signing-up and taking the LSAT.
So, how much does the LSAT cost? There are a number of different fees you might encounter that factor into the overall LSAT price. The basic fees involved with the LSAT are as follows:
Full LSAT exam (multiple-choice and writing): $215
Credential Assembly Service (CAS): $195
Law school reports (sent to the schools to which you’re applying): $45
On a side note, students can no longer purchase LSAT Writing as a standalone.
First Step for Taking the Exam
Before you can pay the LSAT fee, you’ll need to start the registration process. The LSAC website has all the information you need to determine when the test is held.
There are a few ways you can register for the LSAT. The best way is to register online using an account with LSAC. If you don’t have an account, and for whatever reason don’t want to set one up, you can register by phone. You just need to call LSAC at 215-968-1101.
To register for test dates between September and February, you need to call weekdays between 8:30 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. EST. To register from March through August, you need to call weekdays between 8:30 a.m. and 4:45 p.m. EST. Mondays are their busiest days, so it’s best to avoid calling on Mondays if you can.
Before calling, it’s best to consult the website for the dates the test will be offered and click the date you want to take the test. This will give you a wealth of information such as deadlines for applying, accommodation requests, and uploading necessary materials, and information as changes in dates, test centers and the like.
Cost to Change Your LSAT Date or Testing Location
You can change the date and location for your exam, but how much does it cost to change your LSAT date, and what are the auxiliary fees you may accrue for other factors? These are as follows:
Changing the date of your LSAT exam: $135
Changing the test center/location of your LSAT exam: $125
Using a non-published test center (domestic): $295
Using a non-published test center (international): $390
Hand scoring your exam: $100
As you can see, making a change to your LSAT date or testing location can result in a hefty fee.
Refunds for the LSAT
Before the test change date deadline arrives, you can request to take the LSAT on a different date or at a different location. This will incur an additional fee, as listed above. Still, it may be a much better idea (if you can’t make your date or location) to pay the extra fee than it is to cancel altogether.
If the test date change deadline has already passed, you may need to withdraw.
Because LSAC incurs costs for setting up your exam and maintaining the registration infrastructure, if you need to cancel your exam, you can only get a partial refund. In general, you can only get $50 of your fees back if you withdraw from the exam and request a refund.
For this reason, and given the comparatively high LSAT price, it’s a very good idea to make sure that you can make the date for which you register to take the exam.
It’s important to understand that many schools value the LSAT scores every bit as much as they do your GPA, so it’s an important test.
Many law schools require that you take the LSAT by the December before the fall semester in which you wish to enroll. It’s a good idea to prepare well in advance, including registering and paying the LSAT test cost and fees.
We actually recommend preparing well before December, as applying earlier in the application cycle will improve your chances of being accepted. Law schools may not like to admit as much, but it is true. Try to take your LSAT in the spring or summer before applying early in the fall.
What Can I Expect From the LSAT?
The LSAT is a law school entrance test with multiple-choice and essay sections. The test was formerly taken with pencil and paper but is now administered digitally. It is offered by the Law School Admission Council, or LSAC. Its purpose is to assess the reasoning, reading, analytical and persuasive skills that will be required to succeed in your graduate school education.
The LSAT is offered several times per year, and you should set aside several hours. The test itself requires 3 hours to take, and consists of up to 101 multiple-choice questions.
You’ll also probably want to book at least a half-hour on either side for yourself to account for transportation and getting yourself in the right frame of mind to take the test.
The test itself is composed of four sections. These are:
Arguments (logical reasoning)
Logic games (analytical reasoning)
There’s also an experimental section that is not scored and provides a benchmark for testing out new items, new test forms and other elements that may appear on future versions of the test. Your performance on the experimental section helps the test evolve for future legal professionals.
Preparing to Take the LSAT Exam
LSAC also offers a wealth of resources to help prospective students prepare for the exam. You’re best advised to do as much preparatory work as possible, including taking practice exams, studying the various skills on which you’ll be tested and reviewing practice materials.
If you’d like more information about the LSAT test cost, LSAT registration or preparing for the exam, check out our website for more resources and help!
How much does it cost to take the LSAT?
At a bare minimum, students will need to spend around $400 to sit for the LSAT. However, the cost can quickly increase once you add-in other auxiliary fees, study materials and prep courses.
What's the cost of LSAT prep course?
Though the LSAT itself costs around $400 to take, students will still need to buy a prep course. Those courses can range from around $150 to $3,000, depending on features.