The LSAT Essay: What It Is and How to Write It - LSAT

Assume that everyone on every admissions committee is reading every single LSAT essay. They’re not, but what if your essay happens to be the one they pull out of the pile for scrutiny? You’d better be prepared. What’ll it hurt, anyway? You have to spend 35 minutes of your LSAT experience writing the thing, so you may as well do a good job.

Here are a few more things to keep in mind when writing your LSAT essay:

When making admissions decisions, the Admissions Committee considers all the information in an applicant’s file. The principal criteria considered are the LSAT score, undergraduate grade point average and personal statement. In addition, the Committee considers significant advanced education, writing ability demonstrated through the LSAT essay and personal statement, significant life experiences, and other information in an applicant’s file that indicates promise of academic excellence or diversity of background or perspective that will enrich the educational experience of the class.

The LSAT Essay - LSAT Writing Section - LSAT Prep Course

If one of the following applies to you, then you should worry about the LSAT essay:

After the five sections of the LSAT, you are given 35 minutes to write an essay on a specific prompt. The LSAT essay is not scored. Law schools are provided with a copy of your essay, though; the essay itself is not given much if any weight by the vast majority of law schools and only sometimes reviewed by Admissions Committee.

Sample LSAT Essay Topic

The city of Stockton must choose an event to inaugurate its new auditorium, an open-air stage with seats for about 15,000 people and a surrounding lawn with room for 30,000 more. Write an argument in favor of hiring either of the following performers with these considerations in mind.
Know this: There is no right or wrong answer. You can choose either the lofts or the empty building, but you must convincingly argue you think it is the best choice.

Develop a template for the LSAT essay and use the same structure on test day. Since each scenario is more or less the same, your template will work for any scenario you are presented with. Here's an example template for an essay in which you choose Option 1:

P2--Why Op 1 fulfills the first criteria better than Option 2 does
P3--Why Op 1 fulfills the second criteria better than Option 2 does

Another template for choosing Option 1:

P2--Why the pros of Option 1 outweigh the cons, considering the criteria
P3--Why the cons of Option 2 outweigh the pros, considering the criteria

Read and write several LSAT writing sample prompts so that you know what to expect on test day. If you have sets of full-length LSAT practice tests, you can locate the writing section at the end. You can also find LSAT sample writing prompts on the LSAC website.

When practicing, write the essays under timed conditions, 35 minutes each. And when you take full-length LSAT practice tests, don't skip the writing sample.

On the day of the LSAT, keep in mind it is not the most important part of the LSAT, but try do your best. If you have a ready-made template that you are comfortable with, you will have no problem producing an acceptable essay.