LSAT-Flex FAQ

I've gotten a ton of questions from students about LSAT-Flex, so I decided to make a separate FAQ page compiling the most common ones. I'll update with more info as time goes on.

(I also have two related YouTube playlists: one on how coronavirus affects LSAT and admissions and one on LSAT-Flex.)



LSAT Retake Limits Reinstated (August 3 Update)

Starting with the October LSAT, all LSATs will once again count toward retake limits, even if they are rescheduled as LSAT-Flex administrations. (The May, June, July, and August LSAT-Flex tests do NOT count toward retake limits.)


Some July LSAT-Flex Test Scores Lost (July 29 Update)

Somewhere in the range of 120-140 July LSAT-Flex test-takers' exam data was lost due to a glitch when transmitting their information from ProctorU to LSAC.

LSAC called many of those affected and offered them a refund for July, a free retake in August (or through April 2020), and 4 free law school reports.

In my view, this is not nearly enough given a screw-up of this size, and LSAC should do much more for these test-takers.

LSAC has not made an official written public announcement to students. However, they did provide a statement to the National Law Journal saying that those affected will have the option to take a makeup exam sometime in the next week or so.


August LSAT-Flex Announcement (July 8 Update)

LSAC announced the August 29 LSAT will be an LSAT-Flex. Most will take it on Saturday, Sunday, Monday.

Like previous LSAT-Flex administrations, it will not be disclosed, and it will not count toward retake limits. Target score release is September 18 at 9AM Eastern.

Unlike other Flex administrations, there will be a score preview option for first-time test-takers (for a fee - $45 if you pay before the test, $75 if you pay after the first day of the test).

This means you can see your score before deciding whether to cancel. You still have to wait a few weeks for your score like everyone else, though.

LSAC has confirmed the score preview option will be available for all LSAT administrations moving forward.

LSAC also established a new requirement that you must complete LSAT Writing in order to receive your score, and it opens up 8 days prior to the LSAT.


July LSAT-Flex Scheduling

The July 13 LSAT in North America as well as the June international LSAT has been rescheduled as an LSAT-Flex the week of July 12, with most taking it on July 12 and 13.

LSAC opened the scheduling sign-up process for the July LSAT-Flex on Friday, June 26.

However, many of those taking the May and June LSAT-Flex were able to access ProctorU to schedule their times early, and this loophole was still open for the July LSAT-Flex as well.

In other words, without prior announcement, May, June, and July LSAT-Flex scheduling was available several hours before the initially-announced scheduling time of 12PM Eastern. You could log into ProctorU by resetting the password on the ProctorU account associated with your LSAC account email (already created by LSAC).

If you experience "405 errors" while trying to schedule, hit refresh a couple of times (even if you have to do so through each step) and you should be able to book. Also try multiple browsers - I've heard Chrome might work better.

In an email, LSAC wrote, "Due to the remote proctoring logistics, different countries will test at different times and dates. Scores for the July LSAT-Flex will be available on July 30."


June LSAT-Flex Administration

The June LSAT-Flex administration went much more smoothly than the May administration, with few reports of the issues that affected the May administration. Wait times for proctors were much shorter.


May LSAT-Flex Administration

Many LSAT-Flex tests were successfully administered. However, some ProctorU proctors mistakenly told students they weren't allowed to have scratch paper (when it is permitted). LSAC will work with affected students to let them retake.

Many students experienced long wait times for proctors and difficulty logging in (especially on May 18). If this happens to you, stay in the queue, don't disconnect. If you disconnect and rejoin, you lose your place in line and go to the back of the queue.

It wasn't possible to see the proctors on camera, even though they could see you. You communicate with them through a chat box and over audio (in other words, voice-only using your mic). Some reported that it was distracting to have their webcam light on the entire time. (You could cover the light before starting if this might bother you.)

Students got a full minute "break" between sections (not previously advertised).

I received some reports that students were able to use legal-sized scratch paper (8.5 x 14). It's worth noting that LSAC's rules simply say 5 sheets and don't specify the size, and it's up to the proctor's discretion. It might be worth trying, but I'd recommend also having regular (8.5 x 11 unlined) paper available just in case.

I've also heard some students successfully used the command-F / control-F (find) shortcut function to search for keywords in the exam text. LSAC has confirmed this is permitted.




LSAT-Flex and Retake Limits (May 13 Update)

LSAC updated their website to indicate that the May and June LSAT-Flex administrations will not count towards retake limits (and later confirmed via email that the July LSAT will not count toward retake limits).

From their site:

The online, remotely proctored LSAT-Flex tests do not count toward this total as they were administered as an emergency response to the COVID-19 pandemic in May and June 2020.


June LSAT-Flex Scheduling (May 13 Update)

The same loophole that allowed students to register early for the May LSAT-Flex was still open for June LSAT-Flex scheduling.

Without prior announcement, June LSAT-Flex scheduling was available several hours before the initially-announced scheduling time of 12PM Eastern. You could log into ProctorU by resetting the password on the ProctorU account associated with your LSAC account email (already created by LSAC).

If you experience "405 errors" while trying to schedule, hit refresh a couple of times (even if you have to do so through each step) and you should be able to book. Also try multiple browsers - I've heard Chrome might work better.



​June LSAT-Flex Announced (April 29 Update)

The June 8 LSAT has been rescheduled as an LSAT-Flex for the week of June 14.

Most will take it on Sunday, June 14 and Monday, June 15. LSAC is targeting June 30 for score release for all test-takers, and scheduling opened 12PM on Wednesday, May 13.

(So far, the announcement only relates to the June 8 test in North America - they haven't yet made a decision on the international June 27 / 28 administration. IMO, they should've rescheduled that as a Flex already, and I'm hoping they will soon.)



May ​LSAT-Flex Scheduling (April 27 Update)

Without prior announcement, May LSAT-Flex scheduling was available several hours before the initially-announced scheduling time of 12PM Eastern. You could log into ProctorU by resetting the password on the account associated with your LSAC account email.

If you experience "405 errors" while trying to schedule, hit refresh a couple of times (even if you have to do so through each step) and you should be able to book. Also try multiple browsers - I've heard Chrome might work better.

Available time slots for the May LSAT-Flex were 9AM-7PM Eastern Time in 20-minute increments.



May LSAT-Flex Scheduling (April 23 Update)

LSAC has moved May LSAT-Flex scheduling to Monday, April 27, at 12PM Eastern, citing issues with a system in ProctorU that is required to handle signups. Test dates will still be May 18 and 19 for most test-takers.

ProctorU support shared with me what they're sending students right now:

"LSAC has not entered this exam into our system or made it available for proctoring yet...You’ll have plenty of time between setting up an account and taking your exam in order to test your equipment. Please do not set up an account under ACER or any institution or organization that is not your own as this can negatively impact that institution’s tracking of their own test-takers."

In other words, wait for LSAC's email with instructions before you register on ProctorU.


LSAT-Flex Section Weighting and Dates:

LSAC confirmed that Logical Reasoning will NOT double-weighted - all questions will count the same. This means Logical Reasoning is less important than on the regular LSAT, and Logic Games and Reading Comprehension are slightly MORE important.

There will be about 75 questions and each section will have roughly the same number of questions. Based on previous exams, we can expect RC will have ~27, LR will have ~25, and LG will have ~23. If you'd previously planned to spend more time on LR, you may want to adjust your study plan accordingly.

LSAC also announced the May LSAT-Flex will be offered on May 18 and 19 (accommodated test-takers may take it on a different day), and scores will all be released on the same date -- no later than Friday, June 5.

They haven't yet released specific options, but there will be multiple time slots during which it's administered over the course of two days (May 18 and 19). I imagine there will be both morning and afternoon options. Registration will open (for previous April LSAT registrants) on April 22.



How to simulate LSAT-Flex

There are four sections in the Online LSAT Prep Plus (and books of published PrepTests) because that's how PrepTests have always been published -- the four scored sections. LSAT-Flex is three sections. One Logic Games, one Logical Reasoning, one Reading Comp.

If you're taking the online LSAT-Flex, I would practice like Game Day - only do three sections. A simple solution would be to remove or skip one of the logical reasoning sections from any given published LSAT PrepTest. Then you've got three sections - one of each type. Do them back to back (no break).

If you want to get a rough approximation of a scaled score on the LSAT-Flex, multiply your initial raw score by 4/3 before converting it using that exam's chart.

It won't be perfect, but it'll be close enough to give you a sense. Another option would be to calculate your overall accuracy % on the 3 sections you complete, then use that as a baseline to approximate your accuracy % out of the total number of questions on a given exam.

(For example, if you answered 60/75 correct, that's 80% accuracy. If you maintained that level of accuracy on a 100-question exam, that would mean your raw score was 80. On the June 2007 LSAT, a raw score of 80 converts to 161.)

Give yourself a margin of error of a couple of points on each end to be safe. If you take the average of your most recent five exams you've done in a relatively short period, that will give you the best indication of where you stand.



How to simulate LSAT-Flex proctoring

Do some practice runs -- take a practice test online with the Official LSAT Prep Plus with a friend watching you on Skype/Zoom on the other end to simulate the online proctoring with ProctorU.

You could also get a group together and do a Zoom call, where you take practice tests together and watch each other, to have the feeling of not being alone in this process and also to have the feeling that somebody might be watching you and holding you accountable.

Another thing you could do that's popular on YouTube is doing a "study with me" session, where you livestream yourself in front of your desk on camera, studying for the LSAT. However, you don't have to have your face on camera, if you're shy about that. Instead, you could have the camera stationed over your desk, to simulate that experience, just a little bit.

(Note: for the actual LSAT-Flex, you need to show your face on camera for the entire duration of the test so they know it's you taking it and they can track your eyes, etc.)

You're doing the online LSAT-Flex on computer, whether desktop or laptop, not on an iPad, which is somewhat ironic since the digital LSAT was on a tablet for the in-person administrations.

The look and feel will be the same, but obviously on a computer, you're not using a touchscreen. You'll be doing it with a keyboard and mouse instead.



Why LSAT-Flex is only 3 sections (not 4 or 5)
Part of the reason is there'd be no way to monitor you during any breaks (if you went to the bathroom, for example). It's not a controlled environment like a test center. They can only monitor you as far as the video camera can see on your laptop.

There's also the issue of paying proctors for longer periods of time - ProctorU is not set up for tests as long as the LSAT.

Finally, the longer an online test goes, the more likely it is for there to be a tech issue.

They equate the scores, though, so it ends up being equal in difficulty in the end.



LSAT-Flex Bathroom Breaks

I've confirmed with ProctorU that bathroom breaks will not be permitted for most test-takers.

During the in-person LSAT, you can leave to go to the bathroom while the clock is ticking (not that it's desirable, but it's an option).

ProctorU wrote:
the exam does not have breaks unless LSAC specifically approves it (for things like accommodations)
Limiting coffee / tea or other diuretics (liquids in general, really) will help you get through the 2-hour exam without issue.



LSAT-Flex and Reading Aloud to Yourself

I asked ProctorU if test-takers are permitted to quietly read aloud to themselves.

(Some people do this as they read - often called subvocalizing.)

Alternatively, it might be likely to lead to a flagged/canceled test as a perceived security violation.

ProctorU responded:
"This may create a flagged event. If the whispering is very consistent and you can understand what the test-taker is saying, there [is] unfortunately no way for our system or proctors to know whether the tester is just reading aloud to themselves or speaking to another person in the room or on a device, etc."

(For in-person LSAT administrations, proctors might be able to distinguish talking softly to oneself from a potential security issue, like whispering to another test-taker, and allow more leeway.)



Will LSAT-Flex become the new normal?

The more LSAT-Flex administrations there are, the more that becomes the new "normal." And I suspect there will be several due to COVID-19 this year.

And with each LSAT-Flex test date, they'll get better at administering it.

It will be hard for them to go back (especially if there are more "waves" of COVID-19 as I'm hearing predicted).

LSAC says they hope to return to regular in-person administrations when possible. But COVID-19 or not, I suspect it's hard to go backward on technology.

If you're planning on taking the LSAT anytime in the next few months, don't assume it will be the Digital LSAT on tablet. It may be LSAT-Flex on your computer.



Will LSAT-Flex be easier?

Some are assuming the LSAT-Flex will be easier because it is only 3 sections, rather than 5. However, LSAC has always been extremely careful about "test-equating" (ensuring that LSAT scores from different administrations and test forms are comparable).

They go to great lengths with detailed statistical analyses to adjust the "LSAT curve" (raw score conversion) to account for any differences in difficulty based on students' performance.

(That's the main reason LSAC takes a few weeks to release LSAT scores - they are checking to see if students performed as expected on the questions.)

It's possible there will be higher accuracy because endurance/fatigue is less of an issue, and LSAT-Flex is likely a more pleasant test day experience for most, assuming good Internet, quiet environment, etc.

However, LSAC will equate the scores to account for that, so I wouldn't assume it will be easier to get a higher scaled score out of 180.



Would you do LSAT-Flex or regular LSAT?

It depends on your personal timing and when you're ready for the LSAT versus 3 sections at home versus five 5 in-person.

For a lot of folks, if they have a quiet home environment, 3 sections at home is preferable because it's shorter, it's a smoother test day experience, on the flip side though, the 75 questions you do count relatively more per question than when you're doing four scored sections, so that's one thing to consider.

Lots of unknowns -- we don't know how long the online LSAT-Flex will be available. LSAC is taking a wait-and-see approach, as they typically do.

You may not necessarily have both options. You'll probably have one option or the other, for each administration, as things unfold.

(As for the writing sample, that will still remain online, they're not going to administer that in-person, whether you're doing LSAT-Flex at home online, or digital LSAT tablet in-person, you'll still be doing LSAT writing online, at a separate point, at a separate time, either way.)



LSAT-Flex score release

The LSAT-Flex score release will be two weeks after you take it. LSAC is targeting June 5 for the May LSAT-Flex, June 30 for the June LSAT-Flex, and July 30 for the July LSAT-Flex. (Score release will be the same for all who take a particular administration - regardless of the exact date / time you take it that week.)

A 2-week turnaround is slightly faster than regular administrations, but not by much.

That's because they still have to do all their detailed statistical analysis to make sure that people performed on Test Day as LSAC expected (previous calculations, internal difficulty ratings, etc.)

A lot of law schools will be extending deadlines if they haven't already to wait for the May LSAT results to be released. They may also extend beyond that for those taking the June LSAT-Flex.


Will LSAT-Flex tests be disclosed?

LSAC considers these "special" administrations and remains hopeful about returning to in-person administrations (and, relatedly, releasing 4-section exams) in the near future.

There was not only one test form used across multiple days of LSAT-Flex, so there wouldn't just be one test form for any month's Flex administration anyway. The May, June, and July LSAT-Flex exams will not be disclosed.


How admissions views LSAT-Flex

Some schools aren't accepting LSAT-Flex this cycle only because of timing (although most will). They still consider it a valid LSAT comparable to the regular in-person LSAT.

Now, let's say, your in-person score was low, your LSAT-Flex score is higher.

They still won't look down on the LSAT-Flex score. While they'll know you took the LSAT-Flex, it's not a huge deal.

Law schools are confident in LSAC's ability to administer a valid and reliable admission test. They're confident that a 75-question exam can be equivalent to -- or equated with -- a 100-question exam.

Obviously, there are pros and cons to doing a shorter LSAT at home vs a longer one in-person, but law schools want the number.

They have incentive to care only about the number because that's what goes to the ABA -- meaning that's what's factored into the US News Rankings. So, don't worry about it.

(The admissions professionals in the LSAC webinar, as well as those I've spoken with directly, all say they will consider LSAT-Flex scores equal to those earned on the paper and Digital LSATs.)

I wish LSAC wasn't annotating LSAT-Flex scores with an asterisk - it adds a lot of unnecessary stress for students (especially considering they used to add an asterisk to accommodated scores until settlements forced them to stop).

However, if anything, this will remind admissions you took a new LSAT format during a global crisis. It provides a bit of context. Your score is still your score, of course, regardless of the format.

tl;dr Just get the score, the number is what matters the most at the end of the day.

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If you have any questions I didn't address or would like further clarification, email me, and I'll update this FAQ with them.