Applying to law schools can prove to be extremely stressful. The Law School Admission Council (LSAC) has made this process easier by compiling all the necessary information and tools together on their website LSAC.org. On this site, you are able to buy test preparation materials, register for law school forums, register for the LSAT, receive your LSAT scores early, use LSAC’s Credential Assembly Service (CAS) and apply online to law schools.
Another important thing to know about this site is that you receive forms to request transcripts, letters of recommendations and evaluations and are informed right when they are received. You are also informed when they have not been received and can make decisions based on that information. Those reports, just like your LSAT score(s), are then sent to all the law schools that you have applied to instead of you personally having to send them to each individual law school yourself. That in itself is a major advantage. Imagine if you plan on applying to four law schools (like I did) and you have attended four different schools (like I also did). Instead of having to pay for four transcripts from each school (for a total of sixteen transcripts), you only have to pay for four. You also only have to mail four requests to the schools you attended, unless you are able to take the request to the schools yourself.
Being able to apply to law schools from the site is another bonus. You can have a list of all the law schools you have applied to and all your applications in the same place. If not for any other reason, this is very convenient. You can also choose to search for law schools that are LSAC members or not LSAC members and can find the right law school for you by searching using location, keywords and data provided. For example, I knew I wanted to attend a law school in southern California, so I searched using the map. You also get to see the cost of the application fee for each law school and can make a choice based on that. When you click on the name of a law school, you get a brief introduction, contact information and a lot of other interesting information such as their curriculum, deadlines, the type of school it is, their staff, the cost of tuition and other fees, living expenses, grants and scholarships, resources and even statistics based on ethnicity. You also receive vital information such as the percentage of students who pass the bar and the percentage of students who receive employment nine months after graduation. You can then use this information to make a choice on the schools you would like to apply to.
Applying to law schools can be extremely expensive and sometimes just the cost of applying along can deter some from attending. On the LSAC website, you can apply for a fee waiver which makes all their services free to you. If you receive a fee waiver, you can apply to as many law school on the site as you would like for free. You are also able to apply for two LSAT tests for free during the two year period of the fee waiver. You also get the Credential Assembly Service (CAS) for free and a complimentary copy of The Official LSAT SuperPrep. I applied to four law schools, for the CAS and for one LSAT test and because of my fee waiver, saved more than $700.
Another great thing about the LSAC website is that you have a calendar to keep you updated on important dates and information. On the calendar, you see LSAT deadlines, Forum dates and LSAC closed dates. When you register to take the LSAT, you can see the deadline dates to request accommodations, refund deadline, change date deadline, change location deadline, biographical change deadline, withdraw deadline, complaint deadline and cancellation deadline. Most important, you are able to see the date of your LSAT test which is also available on the home page. By clicking on the date on your home page or on the LSAT tab, you can view more information such as the location of your LSAT and change the information if necessary.
If you apply to a law school yourself, you will send all the different documents to the law school as you obtain them and hope that they have all been received and filed together. When you apply using LSAC, your information is sent to the law schools after your report has been completed. This means that your transcripts, letters of recommendation and evaluations have all been received as well as your LSAT Score. You will be assured that your report has been completed and sent which will take away the stress of wondering whether or not you neglected something.
Lastly, you are assigned a prelaw advisor that you can contact with questions and concerns.
LSAC is a gift to future law students and I cannot imagine surviving without it. Just the fact that I could apply to law schools for free allowed me to apply to schools that I had previously assumed that I would not be able to get into. Because it was free, I had nothing to lose.
If you still have questions and concerns, feel free to ask. I am happy to share all the knowledge I have acquired in this process and would love to benefit from your knowledge also. Don’t stress yourself out. We are going to do that enough when school begins as it is!