^ Then what about the lists on this page: Retaking the LSAT
Or maybe the lists are misleading because many of the law schools that use the highest score are lower-tier?
Ok everyone, I understand now that the LSAT should be taken as few times as possible. That said, I still feel like taking the LSAT during my freshman year would be advantageous for me, though feel free to try to convince me otherwise. I'm not a stubborn guy at all and I will value all your opinions. If I gave the impression that I was going to be the idiot that tries to take the LSAT 8 times (yes, I know three is the max), that is not true at all. I only took the SAT once. In fact, I have never retaken a standardized test in my life, except for the PSAT.
Advantages to taking the LSAT super-early
1. A LOT of time for prep. More than three months with absolutely nothing to do, and for various reasons, I'm unable to take any college courses. I plan to follow the 5-month plan outlined here: 5-Month Study Schedule
2. Don't know how many of you have read his (?) posts, but Cue7 has a lot of posts in the UChicago (where I'm heading this fall) forums about how he suspects that the reason Chicago underperforms at pre-law placement relative to its peers is because people don't take the LSAT seriously enough. I don't know if he's right, but either way, I plan to take the LSAT very seriously, and I sincerely believe that this will be the best time for me to focus on knocking out the LSAT (and being fully prepared to do so) and not needing to juggle studying for the LSAT (which supposedly is the equivalent of a full-time job or at least a part-time one) with taking hard classes, pursuing a satisfying social life and interesting extracurriculars.
3. Note, I may want to knock out the LSAT as early as possible, but that is not inconsistent with getting a high score. If I'm not consistently getting good scores on the practice tests, I won't take the real thing, though I will likely continue studying and consider taking it the next test date.
Potential Disadvantages which I would like to get some opinions on
1. Of course, relative intellectual immaturity. I'm the first one to admit that I'm much smarter now as a HS senior than I was as a HS sophomore. Am I underestimating the impact of this relative to the advantage of having a lot of time to prepare?
2. Impact of college courses. This is related to the above point. Will taking courses in logic and so forth make a huge difference in my score, keeping in mind that I will be learning logic according to the 5-month plan. Student615 says here (Taking LSAT during Sophomore year?
) that: "While I don't imagine that law schools would care whether you took the LSAT sophomore year, I would caution against it. I think that college level work in general will do a lot to prepare you for the test: critical thinking, logic, dense reading, emphasis on speed."
3. Will colleges look at when I took it, even if I got a good score, and say, "OMG! Another over-achieving ORM!!!"
4. The five-year limit on the score. If I understand correctly, June marks the beginning of a new cycle, right? This means that I can only apply either my senior year or one year after that, right? My thinking is that if I take more than a year off before applying (or reapplying, wouldn't it be fairly easy for me to find some time to prep again?)
Apparently others have taken it sophomore year (Taking LSAT during Sophomore year?
) so it isn't too crazy for me to take it freshman year, right? Of course...that is a slippery slope until gradeschoolers are taking it.
At the very least, would you guys think it would be worth it to study hard for the LSAT this coming summer before I even enter college even if I don't take the LSAT until sophomore or junior years?
Once again, I have to emphasize. I am aware of the huge experience gap between me and most of you, and really value your insight. My own personal experience taking the SAT early in junior year has shown me how stress-relieving it is to have the SAT out of the way while everyone else is trying to struggle with prepping for it and getting good grades with a rigorous junior year courseload. In fact, if I could do it all over again, I would have taken the SAT as a freshman or sophomore so I would have had the summer before junior year to do something much more fun and exciting.
Also, I don't mean to sound really conceited (though, I admit I am...), but I do consider myself more mature than average, and I've learned to trust my gut about these things, though admittedly, my gut is only 18 years old...
And yes, I am wary of the pitfalls with this strategy. After all, that is why I asked everyone's advice...
Edit: I also forgot to mention that I read some schools have their own time limit on the LSAT and won't take scores older than three years. Not that I want you guys to do the hard work researching which ones these are, but any off the top of your head?