You will not receive a pass or fail on the LSAT - instead you will receive a “score band”, which is an overall score. You will also receive a percentile rank which compares you to other test takers.
Your LSAT score report will not provide separate scores for the individual multiple choice sections. Instead you will receive an overall score which ranges from 120 to 180. In addition, Law Services will also report a "score band", which is a range of scaled scores above and below your score, indicating a "true score" at a reasonable level of confidence. Finally, you will receive a percentile score. This ranks your performance relative to the scores of a large sample of other LSAT test takers.
LSAT Score Bands
There is some measurement error associated with the LSAT, like all tests. Law Services now report score bands to caution users (admissions officers) of test scores. This advises them against treating small score differences as a true reflection of differences in test taker abilities or skills.
A score band is a range of scaled scores above and below the score reported for a certain test in which a tester’s true score is represented at a reasonable level of confidence. The size of the band for most LSAT scores will be about 7 scaled-score points (plus and minus three from the actual score), at a 68% level of confidence. In other words, a test taker's true score will fall within the reported score band approximately two out of three times. For instance, we are 68% certain that the true score of someone who gets a 150 is between a 147 and a 153.
You should however note, that the average of multiple scores will produce smaller score bands. Therefore, each additional test an individual takes produces more information, thereby diminishing the measurement error associated with the average score.
LSAT Percentile Rank
US law schools use percentile rank to determine where you place in comparison to your competition. Over 50% of test takers receive scores between 145 and 159, representing fewer than 25% of the possible scaled scores. Therefore, scoring 160 or above puts you in an elite group. The difference between the 50th and 75th percentiles is approximately three extra correct answers per section. Essentially, this is the difference between being barely competitive at any law school and being in the running for dozens of excellent programmes. The difference between the 90th and 95th percentiles is less than two more correct answers per section—the difference between being marginally competitive at a Top 20 law school and being a front runner.
Receiving Your LSAT Score
Those who registered for the test through the LSAC website will receive their score approximately three weeks after the test by email. Your score will only be released to you and the law schools to which you applied. To receive a paper notification of your results, you must request this from LSAC and pay a fee of US$25.
Cancelling Your LSAT Score
After your test you will have 5 working days to cancel your score. You should use this time to critically reflect on your performance after the stress of test day has subsided. You should not cancel your score based on your perception of the difficulty of the exam. Every exam is normed scoring adjusted to reflect slight differences between exams.
You should really only have two valid reasons to cancel your score:
Test day factors that affected your test day experience
Nervousness on test day usually does not prove to be a valid reason. In fact, most students are just as nervous—if not more—on their second attempt. Some nervousness is perfectly normal and can even be healthy.
If you take the exam more than once, Law Services reports each separate score, the average score, and each cancellation. Most schools will not question one (or maybe two) cancellation(s) on your record, but will frown upon multiple ones. You should also be aware that you are not permitted to take the LSAT more than 3 times in any 2-year period.