Average LSAT Score and Scores of Accepted Law Students

The typical LSAT score for 2022 law school enrollees was about 159, but top programs require scores in the 170-175 range.
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Data Summary

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    The average LSAT score for first-time takers was 151, according to scores tracked from 2006-2013.[1]
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    During this period, second-time test takers had the highest LSAT average score of about 152.Note Reference [1]
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    The average national LSAT score for full-time, first-year JD enrollees for fall 2022 was about 159.[2]
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    The average GPA of full-time, first-year JD enrollees for fall 2022 was 3.6.Note Reference [2]
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    Of the 427,043 applications (not applicants) to JD programs, only 128,500 were given offers. That's roughly 30% of the total applications submitted.Note Reference [2]
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    Harvard University received around 8,200 applications for the 2022 cycle and gave offers to 822 candidates, translating to an acceptance rate of approximately 10%.Note Reference [2]
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    In 2021-2022, nearly 130,000 people took the LSAT in total, and about 52% of them were first-time test-takers.[3]
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    In 2022, there were 35,000 first-year, full-time students enrolled at JD-granting institutions.Note Reference [2]
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    Nearly twice as many people applied to law school in 2018-2019 as did in 2021-2022.[4]
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    The number of Black law school applicants more than halved, going from 9,000 to 3,400.Note Reference [4]

The Law School Admission Test (LSAT) is a standardized test used by graduate schools to gauge test takers' readiness for law studies.

The American Bar Association (ABA) has approved 196 law schools to grant Juris Doctor (JD) degrees.[5] Prospective law students can now choose between taking the GRE or the LSAT at most of these institutions.[6]

Law school is a huge investment, requiring a significant amount of time and money. Knowing the average LSAT score can help you plan your application process and help set realistic expectations.

Read on to learn more about national LSAT score averages, average GPAs for law school applications, and first-year enrollment statistics.

Average LSAT Score

LSAT scores range from 120-180. The ABA reports the median scores of accepted students at all of its approved law schools. We took the average of those median scores to find a total average, or typical, LSAT score. For full-time, first-year JD students in fall 2022, that was about 159 (158.5).

This number just includes the scores of those who successfully enrolled in law school. It is not the overall average score. The average of all test-takers would be much lower, considering it would include rejected applicants' scores too.

National LSAT Scores of Full-Time, First-Year JD Student Enrollees, Fall 2022
Percentile All-School Average
75th Percentile 160.9
50th Percentile 158.5
25th Percentile 154.8
Source: ABANote Reference [2]

GPAs of Future Law Students

The ABA also shares the median college GPAs of accepted students at its approved law schools. We found the average of all schools' GPAs categorized by 25th, 50th, and 75th percentile. The typical GPA of full-time, first-year JD student enrollees for fall 2022 was 3.6.

GPAs of Full-Time, First-Year JD Student Enrollees, Fall 2022
Percentile All-School Average GPA
75th Percentile 3.77
50th Percentile 3.59
25th Percentile 3.30
Source: ABANote Reference [2]

How Many Applicants Get Accepted to Law School?

  • Of the 427,000 applications — not applicants — to JD programs for 2022, only 128,500 were given offers.
  • In other words, roughly 30% of the total applications submitted were accepted, and 70% were rejected.
  • Each of the 196 JD-granting institutions received roughly 2,200 applications on average.
  • The range greatly varies, however, with Harvard University receiving over 8,000 applications for the 2022 cycle.
  • Harvard University made offers to around 800 candidates, bringing their acceptance rate to 10%.
  • Georgetown University received the most applications (11,325).
  • Columbia University (8,000), New York University (8,900), and George Washington University (9,000) all had high numbers of applications as well.

By the Numbers: JD Applicants and Enrollees, Fall 2022

Total JD Applications

Total Offers Made

Total Enrollees

Total Number of First-Year Students

Source: ABANote Reference [2]

Note that the total number of first-year students includes those who deferred or were previously admitted. This explains why there is a smaller total number of first-year students than enrollees.

LSAT Scores by School

While the typical LSAT score is about 159, more selective universities may only accept much higher scores.

LSAT Score Ranges for Ivy League Law Schools

To gain admittance to an Ivy League law school, you should score in the 172-175 range. In addition to a stellar LSAT score, many Ivy League law schools also require near-perfect GPAs.

LSAT Scores and GPAs at Ivy League Law Schools, Fall 2022
School Median LSAT Score 25th-75th Percentile Median GPA
Yale University 175 171-178 3.94
Harvard University 174 170-176 3.92
Columbia University 173 171-175 3.87
Cornell University 172 170-174 3.87
University of Pennsylvania (Carey) 172 167-173 3.90
Note: Only full-time students were considered in the medians
Source: ABANote Reference [2]

LSAT Scores for More Top Law Schools

Other popular, top law schools require LSAT scores not far below those of Ivy Leagues. A score in the high 160s or low 170s appears to be the middle range of accepted students' scores for many of these selective programs.

LSAT Scores and GPAs at More Top Law Schools, Fall 2022
School Median LSAT Score 25th-75th Percentile Median GPA
Stanford University 173 170-176 3.92
University of Chicago 173 169-175 3.91
New York University 172 169-174 3.88
Washington University in St. Louis 172 164-173 3.94
University of Virginia 171 166-173 3.94
University of California, Los Angeles 171 166-172 3.90
Northwestern University (Pritzker) 171 166-172 3.89
Georgetown University 171 166-172 3.87
University of Michigan, Ann Arbor 171 166-172 3.83
Duke University 170 168-171 3.85
University of California, Berkeley 170 167-172 3.83
Boston University 170 164-171 3.84
University of Texas, Austin 170 166-171 3.84
Vanderbilt University 170 163-170 3.90
University of Florida (Levin) 169 162-170 3.90
University of Southern California (Gould) 168 165-169 3.87
University of Georgia 168 156-169 3.87
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill 166 162-167 3.77
Note: Only full-time students were considered in the medians
Source: ABANote Reference [2]

Law Schools With Average LSAT Scores

Getting into law school is no easy feat and even the schools with median LSAT scores closer to the national average of 159 reject about half of their applications.

LSAT Scores and Acceptance Rates at Other Law Schools, Fall 2022
School Median LSAT Score 25th-75th Percentile Acceptance Rate
University of Nebraska 158 155-161 61%
University of Oregon 158 155-161 55%
University of Kansas 158 153-160 55%
University of Maine 158 153-162 55%
University of Cincinnati 158 156-161 45%
University of Hawaii 157 155-160 30%
Louisiana State University 157 154-159 53%
Hofstra University 156 151-158 45%
Source: ABANote Reference [2]

Law Schools With the Highest Acceptance Rates

All law programs are challenging to get into. That said, the schools listed below have median LSAT scores well below what's typical nationally. They also have relatively high acceptance rates.

When you're applying to law schools, also be sure to check out a specific program's graduation rates and job placements to see if it's a worthwhile investment for you.

Law Schools With the Highest Acceptance Rates, Fall 2022
School Median LSAT Score 25th-75th Percentile Acceptance Rate
Drake University 154 151-157 71%
Creighton University 153 149-157 68%
Capital University 150 148-155 67%
University of South Dakota 151 148-155 67%
University of Idaho 152 149-156 67%
Widener University, Delaware 150 148-152 66%
University of Akron 153 151-156 63%
University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth 152 147-154 59%
Willamette University 154 151-156 59%
University of Baltimore 154 151-157 57%
University of Arkansas, Little Rock 152 150-156 56%
Campbell University 154 152-158 56%
Duquesne University 155 154-158 56%
Source: ABA

How Many People Take the LSAT?

Roughly 70,000 students have taken the LSAT so far for the 2022-2023 cycle.Note Reference [3] The total number of test-takers is expected to be similar to that of 2021-2022.

  • In 2021-2022, roughly 130,000 people took the LSAT in total, and 51.4% of them were first-time test-takers.Note Reference [3]
  • Out of the 130,000 LSAT test-takers, less than 63,000 were law school applicants.Note Reference [4]
  • Enrollment at JD-granting law schools increased from 114,520 students in 2020 to 117,501 in 2021.[7]

Did You Know…

As of November 2022, the ABA panel decided to no longer mandate admissions tests for law schools.

The change will take effect for students applying for the 2026-2027 school year. All ABA-approved law schools can determine for themselves whether to require the test in their admissions process.[10]

As of December 2022, the ABA also announced that it would allow students applying to law school to take the Graduate Record Examinations (GRE), an alternate standardized test.[11] Traditionally, the LSAT has been the only test accepted. The decision came after a new study released by the Educational Testing Service (ETS) showed that GRE results are a strong predictor of law school performance.[12] The GRE can also be used for students applying to master's of business administration (MBA) and other graduate programs.

LSAT Takers by Gender

More women than men applied to law school every year since at least 2018. Almost 10,000 more women applied to law school than men in 2021. The gap slightly lessened in 2022 when roughly 8,000 more women than men applied to law school.

LSAT Takers by Race/Ethnicity

Broken down by race/ethnicity, white folks make up the majority of applicants.Note Reference [4]

  • Hispanic/Latino/a people make up the second-biggest group to apply to law school.Note Reference [9]
  • Some racial/ethnic groups saw an increase in application numbers (Asian, Hispanic/Latino/a, Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander, and Puerto Rican) while others saw drops in numbers (American Indian or Alaska Native, Black, and White).
  • There was no significant drop or increase in applications from 2018-2022 by any racial/ethnic group.

Frequently Asked Questions About the LSAT

How long is the LSAT?

The LSAT is roughly three hours long. It is made up of four 35-minute test sections with a 10-minute break between the second and third sections.[13]

What is the average LSAT score for first-time test-takers?

According to data taken from 2006-2013, the average LSAT score for first-time test-takers was 151. Second-time test takers had the highest LSAT average score of about 152 (151.7 to be exact). Those who took the test a third-time had the lowest average of the three with about 149 (149.4).Note Reference [1]

How many times can you take the LSAT?

From September 2019 onwards, test-takers are allowed to take the LSAT up to three times in a single year. Test-takers can take the LSAT up to five times within five testing years, and a total of seven times in the course of a lifetime.[14]

Note that canceled LSAT scores still count toward the limit. Only absences and withdrawals do not count.Note Reference [14]

Lastly, the LSAT-Flex test, which is the online version of the LSAT that was introduced in 2020 during the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, also does not count towards the test limits.Note Reference [14]

Those who have scored a perfect score of 180 in the past five testing years are also not allowed to retake the LSAT.Note Reference [14]