The GRE, GMAT, and LSAT – Which Test to Take?

In the past, deciding which exam to take in preparation for graduate level education was relatively straightforward: the GMAT for business school, the LSAT for law school, and the GRE for almost everything else. However, more recently, more business schools have begun to accept the GRE in addition to the GMAT. The GRE’s homepage calls the test “the smartest way to graduate and business school.”

In addition, Harvard Law has recently announced that they will accept the GRE in lieu of the LSAT. Although Harvard is only the second law school program to make this move, their prominence lends a credibility to the test substitution, signaling the possibility of a major change in law school admissions overall.

So which test is for you?

We say this a lot at Get Smarter Prep, but this decision does depend significantly on which school you want to attend. If you’re looking at a graduate program outside of business or law, then the GRE is the pretty clear choice. For business schools, the picture is a little more complicated. A significant number of business schools accept the GRE, but not all do.  Beyond that, even if your school does accept the GRE, they may prefer the GMAT, or they may view a student who submits a GRE score as less serious about the business school path than one who submits a GMAT score. This makes a bit of sense, at least – if I want to keep my options open, I am more likely to take a GRE, which is accepted for multiple kinds of programs. But these hypotheticals depend upon the business schools on your list. If you do find that the schools to which you’ll apply will accept either, consider taking a practice version of each test to see where you fare better. ETS has released a comparison tool that might help you evaluate scores.

For prospective law school students, at least for now, the picture is a bit clearer. After many years of pushing back against any school that deigned to break away from the mandatory-LSAT track, the Law School Admissions Council (LSAC) is considering revising their rules to permit schools to use the GRE. Any changes likely would not be in effect until the 2018-2019 admission cycle, so depending on when you plan to apply, these potential changes may not impact you at all. If the rules are changed, it would be a significant change for LSAC, and for students going through the application process. But unless the only two law schools on your list are ASU and Harvard, for the moment, it looks like you’ll be diagramming logic games with the rest of us.


GSP and UMKC’s New Partnership

As a recent alumnus of the University of Missouri – Kansas City School of Law and a current employee of Get Smarter Prep, I was thrilled to learn that the two were finally going to partner up for an LSAT class. To me, it seemed a match made in heaven and something that should have happened a long time ago. Get Smarter Prep is well-known in the Kansas City area for its ACT and SAT test prep and its individual attention to students’ needs. UMKC law school is also known for its smaller class sizes and focus on individual students’ needs. The first class through the new partnership is in full swing and the class is set to finish right in time for the June LSAT.

Get Smarter Prep developed the material for the six week course and UMKC is providing the location as well as law school professors who are willing to work one-on-one with the students to help them determine what score they will need to get accept at UMKC. The law school professors are even willing to talk to the students about the other important aspects of law school admissions, such as the personal statements and their grades during undergrad.

I was fortunate enough to teach the first class of this brand new class this past week and I was extremely proud of each and every student after class. The first class was Logic Games and for most students, Logics Games are a struggle. In fact, when I took a poll in class, seventeen out of the twenty students raised their hands when I asked if Logic Games was the area they dreaded the most on the LSAT.

We started off the class rather slow but as the two hours went on, students became more engaged and the “light bulb” went off for some students who were really struggling at the beginning. The class as a whole worked really diligently throughout the two hours, which is no small feat when you are working on logic games after logic games. During our short break and even at the end of class, students were coming up to me to ask questions and were really engaged. I felt that our first LSAT class as a GSP-UMKC team was successful and I am looking forward to seeing the students’ scores after the six weeks of class.

If you are interested in taking the LSAT test prep through GSP and/or attending UMKC School of Law, please do not hesitate to contact me as I’m a strong believer in GSP and the results that can be produced from our test prep and I’m a UMKC roo through and through

Trisha McCulloch is a graduate of the UMKC School of Law and a Tutor at Get Smarter Prep in St. Louis.