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Too nervous to take the diagnostic test

bananabobananabo Core Member
in General 1204 karma

I just started my 7Sage journey and I’ve been going though the CC, but when it comes to taking the June 2007 diagnostic, I get so much anxiety and I keep putting it off and moving onto the other lessons. I’ve taken diagnostics in the past when I used to self-study and was in other prep courses, but they’ve always been so low that I always get discouraged (which is why I’ve been too nervous to take it this time around).

Am I potentially hurting my chances of getting a high LSAT score by not taking a diagnostic before I start learning and doing problem sets? If so, how can I overcome this anxiety?


  • drbrown2drbrown2 Alum Member
    2227 karma

    Only way to overcome that type of anxiety is to just take the PTs. If you are too nervous about your performance on a PT then you won't really be able to overcome anxiety on the real thing. On top of that, the diagnostic score doesn't really mean you will or won't achieve your goal scores. Just take the PT, don't worry/care about the score, and focus on Blind Review where the learning takes place. Throughout your prep you should caring about your BR score much more than you care about any individual PT score.

  • LSATTrevLSATTrev Member
    68 karma

    It's a whole journey. Chances are you will be slightly depressed by the diagnostic score. Unless you're really resilient or just naturally gifted at the LSAT, then discouragement is practically baked into the process of studying for this damn thing. Like anything else, it takes practice to get better. I'm not just talking about improving your PT scores, but the ability to treat the scores as learning opportunities rather than obstacles to your success. Missed more LR questions than you usually do this past test? Yeah it doesn't feel good. But it's actually a blessing, because you didn't fuck up the actual test. Instead, you probably learned about a category of questions that you can work on so you will be less likely to be tripped up on the big scary test day.

    It's like jumping into a cold pool. It's gonna hurt and it's gonna suck. Whatever mechanism allows your body to overcome that fear of the initial shock and take the plunge -- you gotta use that but for taking this diagnostic test. Good luck!

  • RuffianxRuffianx Alum Member
    edited June 2019 68 karma

    I'd say the diagnostic is only really there to introduce you to the LSAT and to shock you into understanding how difficult the test really is under the clock. It also gives you a good idea of how much work you will realistically need to put in if you want to achieve your goal score. A person who has a diagnostic in the high 150s is (theoretically) going to have less work ahead than a person who has a diagnostic in the 130s.

    That said, the diagnostic is in NO way a indicator of the score you will receive on test day. There is a lot of bad advice on the internet that says things like, "realistically you can expect to only score 7 or so points higher than your diagnostic". This advice is complete nonsense and should be disregarded. I'd say take the diagnostic just to get a feel for the LSAT, but do not put weight into the score. Almost everyone bombs the LSAT the first time around, it is exactly the reason why you study for it and do NOT take it cold.

  • RealLaw612RealLaw612 Member
    edited June 2019 1094 karma

    You need to get used to the time pressure and the only way to start is to start where you are. The real test day pressure is far more intense than a prep test (at least in my experience) so, if you’re comfortable with your knowledge of the section types - which you should be before doing prep tests - you should bite the bullet and Just. Do. It.

  • This_is_HardThis_is_Hard Alum Member
    815 karma

    RuffianX pretty much hit it on the head. You do not have to do the diagnostic, but you will eventually have to do practice tests. It is inevitable, so might as well get it out of the way.

  • AutumnMoon88AutumnMoon88 Alum Member
    65 karma

    I felt this way too and delayed seriously studying properly for too long because of the fear. Finally I just realized that I wanted to take the diagnostic to see where my true starting point was. I think it's valuable as an indicator of how far from our goal we are and how much time we might need to study before getting where we want to be. It really is just a number and not a reflection of how well you can or will do on the test in the future after studying.

  • xenonhexafluoroxenonhexafluoro Alum Member
    428 karma

    I was pretty nervous about taking PTs at first, because I was scared of seeing my score. I really had internalize that my diagnostic score, and every other PT after that, was an opportunity for me to work towards my goal score, and an opportunity to see what I could do well, and what needed work. That shift in mentality really helped me overcome some of the anxiety.

  • 615 karma

    If you already have taken a diagnostic test before, you really don’t need to take it again. You already know where you’re at. Just do the CC and use ptj07 as timed PT.

  • a. valdeza. valdez Member
    112 karma

    Honestly thank you for posting this because I've been feeling exactly the same and the responses truly helped. Thanks all.

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