November 2019 LSAT scores are being released today. Congratulations to all those who took that test! We also have a blog posted today for those who are taking again, here. Now that the scores are on file, we're going to take a brief look at some applicant and application numbers.
Applicant and Application Volume
Here's a look at our top level volume changes from the 2018-2019 cycle.
And here's our LSAT score bandwith changes, now that November scores are on file and updated in LSAC's database.
As you can see we're still down in all score ranges below 165- and up in all those above 165. It's definitely a very interesting phenomenon we're seeing this cycle, and one that bears watching. Of particular note is the incredible decline in applicants below a 150.
Prior to the release of November scores the tremendous growth in 175+ scorers had been slowing down. We'll see if that stays the same now that those test results are in.
If you're wondering about the difference between LSAT applicants and total applicants, that's attributable to those applying without an LSAT- GRE, GMAT, or just no LSAT. There are 1,032 such applicants as of today, accounting for 4.6% of the total applicant pool.
You've probably also noticed applications are outpacing applicants. We have too- it's an interesting trend, and a welcome reversal from last year for law schools.
***Note***We are aware our LSAT and applicant numbers are different than LSAC's. Ours are based on daily entries and do not have the same "high score" effect LSAC's cumulative data does, and so is slightly more accurate for daily comparisons.
Because the November 2018 LSAT scores were released about a week ahead of the 2019 scores, we had some time to fall behind last year in volume, since there simply wasn't such a large influx of scores at the same time. In fact, last years November test was enormous, with 36,887 people registered for it day of and 34,369 taking it. This November was substantially smaller, with 24,183 registrants. Of course, a lot of that is likely attributable to the October test this year, which wasn't available last cycle.
We don't yet have final test taker numbers for November; there have been hints from LSAC that the final number of takers may be lower than the usual 5-8 percent "no-shows." This is likely due to the number of problems the November administration had. It really depends how LSAC counts those individuals; if they cancel their registration, or include them in the non-taker count.
Our next test is the January administration, which also has a lower registrant count than last year; 27,720 last year to 23,767 this year. That's already a 14% decline, and it will grow as people withdraw. There may even be more withdrawals than usual, as November was our largest administration to date and many November takers will have registered for January as insurance. Expect at least a 20% decline in final January registrants, if not more.
What's all that mean? Well, between November and January we'll have fewer fresh test takers to join the applicant pool than we did last year. A lot fewer, in fact. There will be a surge in applicants this year as November test takers jump into the pool. Then between early January and mid-March, when February scores come out (there was no February test last year) we really should see a decline in overall volume. But this cycle has been strange in a number of ways, so it wouldn't surprise us to be surprised. Or couter surprised!
That's it for now- we'll have a better idea how things look in a couple weeks when the November surge calms down!
**Please also note we have a new consulting package for applicants who have recieved a decision already.