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LSAC reintroducing limits on LSAT retakes after July

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Ignoring a thread derail above... :twisted:

It seems as if the old policy (pre 2017) was maximum 3 test in 2 years, then they changed it to no limit, now they're moving to 3/year okay but the other maximums. This seems all over the place and why such a quick change after less than 2 years?

Also, if LSAC only keeps scores for 5 years, then it doesn't seem to make sense to have a lifetime limit. If they want a lifetime limit, shouldn't they keep scores for a lifetime and assert that old scores are still valid (not that they would be still a good predictor).

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20 hours ago, epeeist said:

Like @Iyaiaey said at least years ago I think they disliked some (or one) person writing repeatedly getting perfect scores and advertising that fact.

But, I'm not so sure I agree with them that being a tutor is invalid. I'm a volunteer tutor through LSO for those rewriting the bar admission course. If I were allowed to take the exam for pedagogical purposes, it would make me a better tutor, and I would probably have comments on how some questions could be written more clearly (though I wouldn't of course be telling students about specific questions!). Yes, being an LSAT tutor by contrast is for money, but does that make it invalid? Is anyone who uses an LSAT tutor a cheater? Because unless you think they are, what's wrong with such a tutor wanting to become better?

I went to law school with at least one person who was retired (in their 60s or 70s) and there were other less mature, but still mature, students. I really don't see how a lifetime ban makes sense if someone has spent decades, literally, since the last time they wrote. I could easily come up with other examples (undiagnosed learning disability when first wrote, etc.).

That you say there is an appeal process makes it better, but LSAC has been notorious for being not very helpful for people with disabilities, e.g. repeated litigation involving blind test-takers. So I'm skeptical they'd be appropriately fair re other bases for wanting to write as an exception to the usual limits.

On the other end, though, allowing 3 takes in one year seems excessive to me. So I see it as too harsh at the lifetime end (and maybe even at the 5 in 5 years end), especially when they're fine with someone using up 3 takes in one year.

 

19 hours ago, Aschenbach said:

Even as a tutor, you don't need to sit an official test to know the exam well. They disclose at least 3 new LSATs every year and for undisclosed tests, you can't take the questions home anyway. I don't see how, as a tutor and for pedagogical purposes, sitting repeated real tests would give you any advantage that a simulated test wouldn't. I think that @Iyaiaey is implying some tutors take real exams to signal potential students that they can get repeatedly high scores and/or to gain insightful knowledge of trends for future LSATs (eg. more miscellaneous logic games).

To me the issue isn't that the limit is unreasonable, it's that the appeal process needs to be revised. Many other entrance exams have limits on how many times you can take them. The MCAT has a similar limit, and for accountants you can only take the CFE 3 times before you strike out. Seven total takes seems like a lot, even if you had unusual circumstances the first time you took it which didn't accurately reflect your abilities.

 

Correct.

If you are a new upstart tutor or company, you want to be able to plaster that here is my 3 perfect LSAT scores on the front of your website so I know my stuff so pay me because I'll teach you how to figure this out and these are new trends in the lsat students should know.  The obvious solution would be to  force these types of writers to declare themselves so they don't taint the test taking pool.  Ie. they will have scores but they will be removed from the bell curve pool.

I agree lifetime ban is extreme for 1 perfect, they are going about this the wrong way.

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Posted (edited)
19 minutes ago, Iyaiaey said:

 

Correct.

If you are a new upstart tutor or company, you want to be able to plaster that here is my 3 perfect LSAT scores on the front of your website so I know my stuff so pay me because I'll teach you how to figure this out and these are new trends in the lsat students should know.  The obvious solution would be to  force these types of writers to declare themselves so they don't taint the test taking pool.  Ie. they will have scores but they will be removed from the bell curve pool.

I agree lifetime ban is extreme for 1 perfect, they are going about this the wrong way.

All that will happen now is these writers will take the tests and intentionally get one or two easy questions wrong, and brag about their 178s and 179s... "I would've gotten perfect but the pesky LSAT bans you for a lifetime if you do"

Edited by wtamow
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4 hours ago, wtamow said:

All that will happen now is these writers will take the tests and intentionally get one or two easy questions wrong, and brag about their 178s and 179s... "I would've gotten perfect but the pesky LSAT bans you for a lifetime if you do"

Exactly, which is why they should simply be made to identify themselves so they can still get scores without disrupting the pool scores.

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Posted (edited)

Just received the email from LSAC which says the policy will generally not be retroactive except perfect score ban which applies to the past 5 years. See the original text below:

Dear LSAT registrant,

You are receiving this communication because you have taken, or have registered to take, the LSAT in the 2019-2020 testing year. We want you to know that LSAC is committed to providing a fair and equitable testing program and maintaining the integrity of the LSAT. We will be updating our test-taking limit policy later this summer and it will go into effect with the September 2019 LSAT administration. We are still finishing up the final details of the new policy, but we know that there has been a lot of conversation on social media recently, so we wanted to share the basic elements in an effort to reduce the speculation and any anxiety. Based on our estimates, this policy will impact a small number of people – less than 1 percent of all LSAT test takers.

In effect starting with the September 2019 test administration, test takers would be permitted to take the LSAT:

  • Three times in a single testing year (the testing year goes from June 1 to May 31).
  • Five times within the current and five past testing years (the period in which LSAC reports scores to law schools).
  • A total of seven times over a lifetime.
  • This policy is forward-looking, not retroactive. Tests taken prior to September 2019 will not count against these numerical limits.  

In addition, test takers would not be permitted to retake the LSAT if they have already scored a 180 (perfect score) within the current and five past testing years, the period in which LSAC reports scores to law schools. This policy will be applied retroactively.

There will be an appeals process for test takers who have special circumstances and want to request an exception to this policy.

We hope that this helps to address many of the questions. We will provide more detail in the weeks ahead. In the meantime, please reach out to us at 215.968.1001 or at [email protected] if you have additional concerns regarding our test-taking limit policy.

Sincerely,

The Law School Admission Council

 
 

Please note: To ensure timely and consistent delivery of communications from the Law School Admission Council, please add [email protected] to your Safe Senders and contact lists.

 

Edited by huskybins
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I was listening to a powerscore podcast discuss this issue and I think they made some really good points as to why they would bring back the limitations on the amount of times you can take the LSAT.

The first is that starting in 2020, the LSAC will be administering the LSAC 10 times a year. This is almost double the amount of tests they used to offer per year which was around four or so but has steadily been increasing over years. Nonetheless, to go from 6 to 7 LSATs a year to 10 a year is a significant jump. That is an INSANE amount of times that you will be able to take this test and it also puts immense pressure on the LSAC to create tests. I find it very unlikely that they can create a new test every month without increasing staff and other expenses which may decrease the amount of money they make by making the exam more accessible.

So how do you address this issue? Well one strategy would be to have tests that you can repeat ever so often to allow you more time and therefore less resources to spend on creating the tests. However, the issue with repeating tests is that it gives an unfair advantage to test takers who decide to retake almost every chance they get because they have already seen the test and know the hard and easy parts and have a way higher chance of getting a better score.

So, in order to stop this issue you can put a restriction on how many times individuals can take the test to stop the probability of an individual getting an unfair advantage from taking the same LSAT test twice.

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Posted (edited)
11 hours ago, dritchi said:

I was listening to a powerscore podcast discuss this issue and I think they made some really good points as to why they would bring back the limitations on the amount of times you can take the LSAT.

The first is that starting in 2020, the LSAC will be administering the LSAC 10 times a year. This is almost double the amount of tests they used to offer per year which was around four or so but has steadily been increasing over years. Nonetheless, to go from 6 to 7 LSATs a year to 10 a year is a significant jump. That is an INSANE amount of times that you will be able to take this test and it also puts immense pressure on the LSAC to create tests. I find it very unlikely that they can create a new test every month without increasing staff and other expenses which may decrease the amount of money they make by making the exam more accessible.

So how do you address this issue? Well one strategy would be to have tests that you can repeat ever so often to allow you more time and therefore less resources to spend on creating the tests. However, the issue with repeating tests is that it gives an unfair advantage to test takers who decide to retake almost every chance they get because they have already seen the test and know the hard and easy parts and have a way higher chance of getting a better score.

So, in order to stop this issue you can put a restriction on how many times individuals can take the test to stop the probability of an individual getting an unfair advantage from taking the same LSAT test twice.

LSAC was racing too quickly to the bottom and schools didn't adopt the GRE en masse like they feared. 

Edited by Eeee

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9 hours ago, Eeee said:

LSAC was racing too quickly to the bottom and schools didn't adopt the GRE en masse like they feared. 

Yep pretty much, once they realized that the GRE may be a better substitution they had to make some big changes to the LSAT because they thought it would be a big threat. This is probably why they decided to go digital and make more tests in a year since these were the main benefits of the GRE over the LSAT. All of it was for not though, since the GRE has not been as widely accepted as expected but they made these changes anyways and have to make limitations in order to make the test fair, sucks but it is what it is. 

 

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15 hours ago, dritchi said:

Yep pretty much, once they realized that the GRE may be a better substitution they had to make some big changes to the LSAT because they thought it would be a big threat. This is probably why they decided to go digital and make more tests in a year since these were the main benefits of the GRE over the LSAT. All of it was for not though, since the GRE has not been as widely accepted as expected but they made these changes anyways and have to make limitations in order to make the test fair, sucks but it is what it is. 

 

Since repeating myself I'll be brief, all of the information it makes sense to limit the number of exams within a 5-year period. I still can't understand the rational basis for a lifetime ban, even with the possibility of an appeal, especially since they don't retain scores past 5 years (and law schools won't accept, etc.). Also, how will it work with disclosed/non-disclosed tests with this many exams?

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The LSAT is graded to a curve. Someone who scores 180 and repeatedly takes the test to score 180 will throw off the curve for everyone else. There's almost virtually not a single reasonable, not incredibly stupid hypothetical for which someone who scored a 180 would need to retake the test in the first place, let alone also not get through an appeal.

It's a stupid thing to harp over.

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