Building Confidence for the LSAT

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Confidence is essential to performing your best on the LSAT. You can put in the hours studying and enter the test equipped with optimal LSAT skills, but the way you feel about the material and yourself is the last piece you will still need in order to achieve your best score. No matter how a student has prepared for the test, there are still things they can do as their exam day nears to boost their test-day confidence and give themselves the best opportunity to succeed.

People mean difference things by “confidence,” but the Sound of Music-level confidence that’s going to get you through the LSAT involves self-assurance, a positive attitude, and appreciation of your abilities. Back in Apri, my colleague wrote about how confidence played into the actual experiences of her students. On a timed test like the LSAT, your level of confidence will impact your performance, particularly because you need to be able to implement the correct method of solving a question, pick the correct answer, and move on without hesitation.

No matter how many months (or days) until your LSAT, you can add these tips to your study process to boost your confidence on the exam:

1. I decided to write myself a mantra for my LSAT studies that I would use to get myself into the best frame of mind before practice exams and before the official LSAT. It ended up becoming a longer and longer letter to myself as I found positive things to focus on and points I wanted to keep in mind during the exam.

2. Taking full, timed practice LSATs under test-day conditions is a hallmark of LSAT studying. For those who have practice exams from the LSAC with only four test sections, it’s great to add a fifth (experimental) section. Try using a section from a test that you took previously in your studies. You’ll get the benefit of building your endurance on the five section test, and you’ll see how far you’ve come in your studies when you compare your second attempt at the exam section with your first effort.

3. If you are close to the end of your studies, you take a practice test, and you achieve your highest score to-date, then congrats. Take a well-earned break, and maybe even end your full-length practice exams on this high note to focus on smaller chunks of material for the remaining days before your exam. If you aren’t having so much success, you can return to concepts that you have mastered, like grouping games or Flaw questions, to remind yourself how far you’ve come in your studies already.

4. Finally, some students need a warm up shortly before the official exam in the form of a couple games or a few practice Logical Reasoning questions. If you feel that this would help you get your brain into LSAT-mode, make sure these final practice questions are within the realm of questions you are already comfortable with, and whatever you do, DON’T check the answers. This kind of warm up is about getting focused, not about scoring.

However you’re scoring on the LSAT, confidence will push your score potential further. Focus on this last piece of your preparation, and you’ll be that much more ready for the exam.

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