On October 18, the Law Admission Council (LSAC) announced that it will be removing the Analytical Reasoning section — better known as “Logic Games” — from its standard Law School Admission Test (LSAT).

The news came as a shock to students who were planning to take the LSAT this year. Some were annoyed, having taken the test prior to the announcement, while others were relieved having been spared from taking one of the hardest sections for which to study. Logic Games may be fun for some students, as it’s a predictable section where, once you understand the rules of the games, you can, in theory, get a high score. 

However, it takes a while to train your brain to overcome logical trickery. As someone who spent this past fall studying for the LSAT, this news is a huge relief for me. Out of the three sections, I struggled with Analytical Reasoning — probably due to my learning disability, dyscalculia, which affects my ability to logically organize and put things in sequential order. So you can imagine my joy when I got the email saying that the LSAC would be removing the section. 

Now, you must be wondering: why would the LSAC remove one of the core sections of the LSAT now? This decision was not a hasty one, as it took the LSAC four years to come to this conclusion. The removal is the result of a settlement in 2019 with two blind students who claimed that the inaccessibility of the Analytical Reasoning section violated the Americans With Disabilities Act. 

Before explaining the section’s inaccessibility, let me explain how it works. 

Analytical Reasoning expects students to organize a list of variables in a particular order, while also being attentive to the rules that restrict the possibilities. 

For instance, one example of a Logic Games puzzle might be a sequencing game, where you are to rank five people — Adam, Bethany, Colin, Eve, and Frank — along a line from one to five. However, you have to follow certain rules, for example:

  1. Adam must always be directly before Eve.
  2. There must be at least one space between Colin and Frank. 
  3. Colin must go before Frank. 
  4. Bethany must be last. 

With these rules, the game drastically restricts the positioning that each person can be placed along the sequence. However, it is difficult to do this kind of math in your head. This is why tutors and LSAT books suggest drawing a diagram of the variables and the rules you’re given in the problem to help visualize the probabilities in order to identify the correct sequence. 

However, due to this overreliance on creating visual diagrams, the two blind LSAT takers found the Logic Games section to be inaccessible. They could not see the diagrams, much less draw them. 

The LSAT is a required portion of the application for top law schools in Canada, the US, and Australia. In addition to GPA, personal statement, and references, the LSAT makes up a significant portion of the application. Thus, LSAT takers who are unable to complete the test due to inaccessibility would likely find themselves unable to study law and become a lawyer. 

This is why I am thrilled that the settlement’s success led to the LSAC removing the section. I believe this change would drastically improve the accessibility of the test and allow more persons with disabilities who aim to become lawyers to impact legal and policy change for the benefit of the disability community. 

After the settlement in 2019, the LSAC had four years to find a replacement for Analytical Reasoning. Starting in August 2024, the section will be replaced with an additional version of the test’s current Logical Reasoning section. While this change may seem like the LSAT would become easier, you should be cautious. Kristin Theis-Alvarez, the dean of admissions at the University of California, Berkeley School of Law said: “I’ve seen the data — it won’t.” 

The LSAT is still a required portion of the law school application process, but I hope that this radical change after a 75-year existence will lead to a wider discussion: whether we should make the LSAT optional. 

After all, the LSAT is not the best form of content preparation for law school. In an interview with The Innis Herald, cybersecurity lawyer and former LSAT coach Raajan Aery said: “The test doesn’t really prepare you for law school. Rather, the LSAT prepares you for taking the test. It teaches you learnable skills such as logical reasoning, analytical reasoning, reading comprehension, and argumentative writing.” 

“These are important skills to have as a lawyer in general, but taking the test multiple times does not guarantee that you will be a good lawyer. Rather, to be a good lawyer you must learn skills that are taught to you in law school as well as on the job in the law firm,” he added. 

While I still highly doubt that law schools will be willing to get rid of the LSAT as the one quantitative section of the application that helps them sift through the giant pile of applications, I am glad that students with disabilities will have a better chance of applying to law school and pursue their dreams as a lawyer. Here’s to hoping for further change that will increase accessibility for everyone.

Catherine Dumé is a fifth-year student at Innis College studying political science. She is the current co-chair of Accessibility Services and the founder of the University of Toronto’ Accessibility Awareness Club.