The LSAT is an exam in which students are likely to improve in a meaningful way by receiving excellent instruction, and by diligent and dedicated practice. Of course, LSAT scores and LSAT score increases are hard to predict and likely to vary considerably from student to student due to numerous factors. In addition, LSAT Prep companies do not have sufficient data to compare initial practice scores to one’s actual (or “official”) LSAT score.
However, by comparing one’s initial practice LSAT score to one’s best practice LSAT score (using real LSATs in a timed classroom environment designed to simulate the official LSAT), one can get a general sense of what can be accomplished. The average practice LSAT score increase of ScoreItUp students was calculated in several classes. It was an outstanding +15 LSAT points (comparing first-to-best practice LSAT scores, based upon all responding students).* That can translate into an exceptional practice LSAT score increase of approximately 56 percentile (see below!).
Of course, many students increase more than +15 points on their timed practice LSATs. For you numbers junkies, here is some additional data regarding these practice LSAT score increases (see * below for more details):
- 100% of students increased 1 or more points
- 98% of students increased 5 or more points
- 83% of students (5 out of every 6) increased 10 or more points
- 54% of students (more than 1 out of 2) increased 14 or more points
- 33% of students (1 out of every 3) increased 18 or more points
- 10% of students increased 24 or more points
- 2% of students increased 30 points
If you are unfamiliar with the LSAT, the entire LSAT “curve” is only 60 points (it is graded on a 120-180 scale), so you can imagine the impact of an increase of +15 points, or 56 percentile. Consider the following two hypothetical situations demonstrating the impact of a +15 point practice LSAT score increase:
- Hypothetical Student #1: He/she begins the course with a practice LSAT score better than or equal to approximately 50% of the nation (and worse than 50% of the nation), and improves to a practice LSAT score better than or equal to approximately 95% of the nation (and worse than only 5% of the nation) – i.e., an improvement of approximately 45 percentile (and +15 LSAT points).
- Hypothetical Student #2: He/she begins the course with a practice LSAT score better than or equal to approximately 33% of the nation (and worse than 67% of the nation), and improves to a practice LSAT score better than or equal to approximately 89% of the nation (and worse than only 11% of the nation) – i.e., an improvement of approximately 56 percentile (and +15 LSAT points).
As mentioned above, please note that student results vary considerably and the above numbers are not a guarantee of actual performance on the LSAT. Although imperfect, these results can be useful.
*Summer 2012 live course taught by Mark Sacks. Survey was repeated for live Spring 2013 course taught by Mark Sacks, with the same +15 average practice LSAT score increase. These results were repeated again in ScoreItUp’s live course in Spring 2015, and it was once again a +15 average practice LSAT score increase. Numbers and percentages based on all responding students – all student responses were included, so long as they reported taking the initial diagnostic exam and at least one additional mock exam. Percentages listed in the bullet points below the second paragraph are based upon the combined total responses from Summer 2012 and Spring 2013 live courses. For more information, please email Mark at firstname.lastname@example.org.