For specific questions about the LSAT, head to https://www.lsac.org/update-coronavirus-and-lsat.
Will I be penalized in the law school application process for choosing C/NC grading in Spring 2020 courses?
No. Many schools across the country have shifted to C/NC or P/F grading. Indeed, even many law schools are doing this. The Spring 2020 semester will be seen as one in which students were confronted with unprecedent challenges and in which colleges and universities responded by providing them with the flexibility necessary to get through the semester. In recognition of these challenges, the Law School Admissions Council issued the following statement:
Law schools are fully aware of and understand that virtually all students enrolled during the spring 2020 COVID-19 pandemic experienced significant disruption in their living and learning arrangements. Law schools are also aware that many undergraduate and graduate schools changed their grading systems to allow or require Pass/Fail grades in lieu of their traditional grading systems and will not penalize any applicant for presenting Pass/Fail grades. LSAC will place a letter in the CAS report of every applicant enrolled during spring 2020, reminding law schools of the COVID-19 pandemic and its effects on the population and on higher education.
How is the LSAT being offered during the pandemic?
The Law School Admissions Council has transitioned the LSAT into the LSAT-Flex, an online, remotely proctored version called LSAT-Flex. You can read details and find answers to most of your questions at https://www.lsac.org/update-coronavirus-and-lsat/lsat-flex.
Will the LSAT-Flex score be treated differently by law schools than the traditional LSAT score?
No. Law schools have confidence in LSAC’s ability to assure the validity and reliability of the test even with the new format. Although the delivery method of the exam will differ, it is still composed of questions that have been through the typical LSAT development process and all test takers will be remotely proctored to assure integrity of the exam.
Should I prepare differently for the LSAT-Flex?
Maybe slightly, since the LSAT-Flex scores will be weighted differently. In the normal LSAT, 50 percent of the score is from the logical reasoning section. In the LSAT-Flex, each of the three sections–logical reasoning, reading comprehension, and analytical resoning (logic games)–is weighted equally. This weighting may guide the amount of time you spend preparing for each section.
Should I wait to take an in-person LSAT rather than the LSAT-Flex?
You should take the LSAT when it’s right for you, that is, when you’re fully prepared to take it. At the moment, it’s difficult to say when in-person LSATs will be offered again. It seems likely that we will see LSAT-Flex tests for the rest of the ’20-21 academic year.
What if I don’t have a good computer or a good space in which to take the LSAT-Flex?
To take the LSAT-Flex, you need a desktop or laptop running Windows or Mac OS and with a camera and microphone. You must also be in a private room that has no other electronic devices in it. If either of these are problems, you have the opportunity to request equipment or space when you register for the LSAT. If LSAT is unable to help you, get in touch with one of your pre-law advisors ASAP to see if we can find an on-campus solution.
Given the uncertainty, should I wait for a year before applying to law schools?
This isn’t an easy one to answer, but in general you should apply to law school when it best fits into your goals and when you are most ready to do so. If you feel like disruptions to your life make this an inopportune time to apply, that’s understandable. It’s very important that you know that there is no advantage to applying to law school directly from your undergraduate institution. The typical applicant to law school has been out of college for 2-3 years. You will never be a weaker applicant if you wait to apply. Your work and life experience in the meantime will almost certainly help you focus even more on your goals and help you know where law school fits into them.