Soon, students may no longer have to bring pencils to the LSAT testing room.
The pre-law exam will transition from paper-and-pencil to an online format in July, said Kellye Testy, the president and CEO of the Law School Admission Council. The council made the decision Wednesday to change the way the exam is given.
“The structure of the test sections and test questions will not be any different than the paper-and-pencil LSAT,” Testy said. “We don’t think test takers will have any problems moving to the digital version.”
UF is currently the largest source of law school applicants in the U.S. Last year, 635 UF undergraduates applied for law school, said Grant Keener, the interim assistant dean of admissions in the UF Levin College of Law.
The change in the exam will be beneficial for students, Keener said.
“I think the transition is helpful,” he said. “It is a more efficient way for students to take the exam and receive their scores faster.”
Testy said the council is hoping the transition will benefit test takers and schools because scores would be released faster and they could offer additional test dates.
“The digital LSAT will maintain the quality and predictive value that the LSAT is known for while providing a modern delivery system that enhances security, access and ease of use,” Testy said.
Current students preparing for the LSAT have anticipated the traditional paper-and-pencil method, which is why the exam will go through a trial process in July, Testy said. Half of the test takers will get a paper-and-pencil version and others will receive the digital format. The scores will gauge if students perform equally on both exams and will help make adjustments for future digital tests.
To ease the transition, students who take the July exam can see their scores before they decide to cancel sending them to their law schools of choice, Testy said. Students who decide to cancel their July score can choose to retake the exam until April 2020 for free.
Lauren Paul said she is optimistic about the change. The 21-year-old UF political science junior is currently preparing for the November LSAT.
“I am glad that this change will allow students to receive their scores back faster,” Paul said. “It seems much more efficient.”