Standardized Testing: Good, Bad, or Ugly?

Standardized Testing: Good, Bad, or Ugly?

The LSAT probably isn’t the first standardized test to play a role in determining your academic future. But should standardized testing play such a huge part?

Show notes

The LSAT probably isn’t the first standardized test to play a role in determining your academic future. From SATs to ACTs to MCATs and GREs, standardized testing is a huge part of the U.S. education system and has been for a long time.

But should it be? Does it have to be? And will the COVID-19 pandemic lead to a societal shift away from standardized testing?

In this episode, Branden & Jelena branch out beyond the LSAT to talk about . . .

  1. How undergraduate programs moved away from standardized testing during the pandemic and why
  2. Biases inherent in standardized testing
  3. How those biases affect the LSAT, too
  4. Alternative ways to assess students
  5. The path forward for college admissions in a post-pandemic world . . .

Links and further resources from from this week’s episode:

California leading the nation in diminishing the role of SAT testing:

College Board discontinues SAT optional essays & subject tests:

Colleges dropping SAT requirements during the pandemic:

2013 study of race, poverty, and SAT scores:

2015 study found family income highly correlated with SAT score:

TestMax Announces Justice in Action Program to Support 1,000 Future Lawyers:

33 Common LSAT Flaws, Available Now in Paperback & Kindle Formats:

Start Your BarMax Free Trial Now:

Start Your LSATMax Free Trial:

The Road to 180: The Ultimate Guide to LSAT Prep (free on Kindle unlimited):


Jelena Woehr

Jelena Woehr

Jelena was born & raised in Golden, CO. There she cut her teeth on logic by getting into, then out of, an impressive amount of trouble. When not organizing student protests or lobbying the school board, Jelena competed in equestrian sports & constitutional debate. Jelena took the June 2017 LSAT, partly out of curiosity and partly because she developed a serious Logic Games addiction. After three months of study, Jelena achieved a score of 178. While she didn't end up falling in love with law school, she did find herself really enjoying the LSAT—so much that she left her previous career in tech startups behind and began teaching. Jelena prides herself on helping her students understand not just the systems and methods they can apply to get a good score, but the underlying logic & its applicability to the challenge of learning to think like a law student. Outside of her work with the LSAT, Jelena is a writer, creative content producer, & a competitive equestrian endurance rider.

Branden Frankel

Branden Frankel

In 2000, Branden graduated with a BA in Philosophy from UC Santa Barbara. For a few years after, he cast about in vain for entry-level philosopher positions, but, when he was visited by the Ghost of Student Loans Past, he knew it was time to make a change. In June 2006, Branden took the LSAT, scoring a 175. Thereafter, he attended UCLA School of Law, graduating in 2010 and practicing patent law for several years. Since 2013, he has taught dozens of live LSAT classes and tutored scores of successful test takers. When he's not considering the finer points of a particularly tricky Logical Reasoning question or kicking it with his daughter, Branden writes Science Fiction. You can find him after work at the local Starbucks, typing furiously, then deleting what he typed, then typing more, and so on for hours.


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