If you’re studying for the October LSAT and applying to law school this cycle, you’d be well advised to keep your applications in mind starting now. Ideally, you’ll have everything ready to go so that you can submit your law school applications as soon as your October LSAT score goes live. This means you should start giving some parts of your law school application attention now, before LSAT crunch time hits. Other things can wait until after the LSAT.
Request your letters of recommendation soon. It’s nice to your recommenders to give them ample time. Plus, if they’re in academia, let’s just say that that field doesn’t exactly have a reputation for efficiency. Asking for your law school letter of rec early also makes you look organized and on top of things, and makes clear to your recommenders that they’re the ones you really want writing your letters and not choices of last resort. While I wouldn’t expect any of this to turn a scathing letter into a glowing one, it certainly can’t hurt. Before LSAT prep invades your brain, go visit (if at all possible) the people you’d like to write your letters.
Request your transcripts now. There’s really no reason to put this off. Just do it and get it out of the way. If, for some reason, anything takes a long time, you’ll be covered.
Start brainstorming and working on your personal statement. It’s good to have an idea early in the law school admissions process of how you’re going to present yourself as an applicant. This can also inform your discussions with your recommenders. Trust me, in the final weeks before the LSAT, you’re not going to want to have to worry about much else. So get a head start on this.
On the other hand, you don’t have to get your personal statement totally done now. You can use the weeks after you take the LSAT but before your LSAT score goes live to polish and edit your law school personal statement. Get your ideas together in the weeks to come, but don’t worry too much about the finished product yet.
You can also save the nuts and bolts of filling out the law school applications until after the LSAT. Look at the applications sooner, so you don’t come across any surprises at the last minute, but there’s no need to do the busywork of filling them out yet. Just make sure the applications are done before you get your LSAT score.