369 episodes

Ben Olson and Nathan Fox started the Thinking LSAT Podcast to become better LSAT teachers and have some fun. Please 1) subscribe, 2) rate and review, and 3) send us questions: help@thinkinglsat.com. Don't pay for law school!

Learn more at lsatdemon.com

Thinking LSAT Nathan Fox and Ben Olson

    • Education
    • 4.5 • 58 Ratings

Ben Olson and Nathan Fox started the Thinking LSAT Podcast to become better LSAT teachers and have some fun. Please 1) subscribe, 2) rate and review, and 3) send us questions: help@thinkinglsat.com. Don't pay for law school!

Learn more at lsatdemon.com

    Score Preview Isn't Worth It (Ep. 363)

    Score Preview Isn't Worth It (Ep. 363)

    LSAC just made Score Preview available to all test takers. Ben and Nathan discuss the change and why it’s inconsequential. As long as law schools care only about your highest LSAT score, there’s no benefit to canceling. The guys also share advice on how to overcome anxious thoughts on the test, warn listeners against the perils of Netflix binges, discuss the rising number of older student borrowers, and remind everyone to chill out.

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    3:37 - Anxious Thoughts - Ben and Nathan discuss common anxieties among test takers and explain how to set aside anxious thoughts by focusing on one question at a time.

    17:55 - Netflix Is Winning - Seen any good TV shows lately? If so, Nathan and Ben don’t buy your excuse that you don’t have time to study. The guys discuss Netflix’s intent to hijack your waking—and sleeping—hours.

    23:36 - Score Preview Expanded - The guys comment on LSAC’s recent expansion of Score Preview and discuss whether it has any value to test takers.

    31:18 - Take a Break - New student Adriana shares her emotional reaction to the Demon’s meditation feature. The guys remind listeners to relax every once in a while.

    34:18 - LSAT Study While in School - An anonymous listener asks for advice on whether to pick up a part-time job while finishing school or to focus on the LSAT. Nathan and Ben worry that Anonymous may be rushing the process. They suggest dropping LSAT study for now to focus on grades.

    41:43 - Unusual College Degrees - Hanyang wonders if their unusual combination of degrees in piano performance and sports management will help them stand out in law school admissions. Ben and Nathan reiterate that your LSAT score and your undergraduate GPA matter far more than your major. The guys encourage Hanyang to reconsider their plan to pursue a master’s degree before law school.

    47:58 - $329K in Debt at Age 91 - The guys discuss a recent New Yorker article about a ninety-one-year-old former law student who owes $329,000 in student loans. More student borrowers are aging into their debt, not out of it.

    53:49 - Listener Mailbag - Nathan and Ben offer rapid-fire responses to more listener emails. They discuss how to review correctly answered questions. They react to Malcolm Gladwell’s podcast episodes on the LSAT. They advise a listener to fire their terrible LSAT tutor. And they caution applicants against revealing too much to admissions officers.

    • 1 hr 16 min
    Law School Rankings Are BS (Ep. 362)

    Law School Rankings Are BS (Ep. 362)

    The guys unveil LSAT Demon’s new Law School Rankings page, which charts U.S. News and Above the Law rankings over the years. Spoiler: Rankings are basically worthless for deciding where to go to law school. Plus, Ben and Nathan develop a simple formula for LSAT success, discuss why score “plateaus” don’t actually exist, and give advice on writing addenda.

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    1:29 - Law School Rankings - Nathan and Ben discuss the Demon’s Law School Rankings page, which illustrates the extreme variability in law school rankings from year to year. The evidence is clear. Rankings are b******t.

    7:06 - A Formula for LSAT Success - Dr. Joel Furhman says Health = Nutrients / Calories. If nutrition can be reduced to a simple formula, then why can’t the LSAT? Ben proposes a formula: LSAT Success = Clicks / Time.

    10:41 - Plateaus Don’t Exist - Can listener Jacob overcome a score plateau, or has he reached his LSAT peak? Nathan and Ben worry he’s looking for an excuse to stop pushing. They discuss why plateaus don’t really exist and how to measure your progress in “clicks” of understanding.

    20:24 - Demon Lessons from a Redditor - Ben and Nathan review a Reddit post that summarizes their teachings. They agree with most of it but clarify some points on their world-building approach to Logic Games and on the shortcomings of categorizing Reading Comprehension passages in abstract terms.

    38:37 - Get a Job - Listener Pablo wants to move out of his parents’ house and jumpstart his life as an adult. The guys think that’s a bad reason to go to law school. Want to move out? Get a job.

    44:31 - The LSAT Is Your Priority - What should listener Jay prioritize during his gap year before law school? Nathan and Ben remind him that he has only one priority: the LSAT. They also recommend The Law Career Playbook, by Rachel Gezerseh, as a guide to networking with lawyers before, during, and after law school.

    54:00 - Don’t Chase Fantasies - Ben and Nathan worry that listener Heather’s high school fantasy of what lawyers do has compromised her decision-making. They counsel her to stick to her current successful career.

    1:02:28 - Addressing Withdrawals - Thomas crushed the LSAT but worries that two years of withdrawals on his undergraduate transcript will raise eyebrows. The guys discuss how to address the issue in a way that highlights Thomas’s accomplishments.

    1:10:08 - Obstacles in Addenda - Alyssa has overcome major obstacles in her life and wonders how to address them tactfully in a GPA addendum or supplemental essay. Nathan and Ben advise her on which details to include.

    1:16:14 - Apply Next Cycle - Sheldon’s practice scores are below his goal. Ben and Nathan suggest that he withdraw from the August LSAT and apply next cycle. They suspect his “goal score” is interfering with his performance on the test and remind him to play the game at his own speed.

    • 1 hr 23 min
    The 2x Rule for Law School Rankings (Ep. 361)

    The 2x Rule for Law School Rankings (Ep. 361)

    How much should rankings influence your decision about where to attend law school? On this week’s episode, Ben and Nathan rebrand their “100% rule” as the “2x rule” for law school rankings. The name’s changed, but the rule is the same: When comparing one school to another, you shouldn’t consider their rankings unless they differ by twice as much or more. The guys also discuss how to study like a top scorer, advise a struggling student not to let the LSAT dominate their life, and write a GPA addendum.

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    4:37 - Yield-Protection Worries: Demon student Anna’s GPA and LSAT score are so high that she worries her top-choice school might waitlist her for yield protection. Ben and Nathan recommend that Anna visit the school to demonstrate her genuine interest and ties to the community.

    16:27 - The 2x Rule: Ben proposes a new name for the 100% rule for law school rankings: the 2x rule. Follow this rule when comparing law schools. Rankings should influence your decision to choose one school over another only when they differ by twice as much or more.

    18:37 - Getting to the 170s: Listener Hasaan has improved substantially from his diagnostic score and wonders whether he can make it to the 170s. Nathan and Ben’s advice? Start studying like someone who scores in the 170s. Forget the clock, focus on accuracy, and trust that speed will follow.

    26:32 - Oracles of Common Sense: LSAT Demon student Ola finally understands Logical Reasoning and compares Ben and Nathan to Greek oracles. Are their teachings oracular insight, or just common sense?

    28:06 - Follow Through with Something New: Anonymous is a self-described “serial studier with no follow-through” who’s been studying off and on for six years. Lawyers don’t lack follow-through, the guys note. They suspect that Anonymous might’ve been using bad prep materials and recommend trying LSAT Demon for a month. If it doesn’t start to click, Anonymous may want to reconsider law school.

    31:41 - The LSAT Shouldn’t Dominate Your Life: Listener Robert describes his LSAT woes. Despite prep courses, a tutor, and 10 weeks of full-time study, his score hasn’t improved. His friends and family tell him to quit. Should he heed their advice? Ben and Nathan suggest some radical changes to Robert’s approach.

    46:29 - Be a Big Fish: LSAT Demon student Kash wonders whether earning a high class rank at a less-competitive school might serve him better than attending a top-ranked school. Nathan and Ben reiterate the benefits of attending the highest-ranked law school you can go to for free. They also discuss a 2010 Above the Law article about Shell Oil’s tiered ranking system for evaluating job applicants.

    57:18 - Ben Writes a GPA Addendum: Ben demonstrates how to write a short GPA addendum that focuses on the facts and doesn’t make excuses.

    • 1 hr 5 min
    Don’t Die with Your Debt (Ep. 360)

    Don’t Die with Your Debt (Ep. 360)

    Law school can leave you with a lifetime of debt if you aren’t careful. On today’s episode, Nathan and Ben discuss a cautionary tale of a recent law school graduate who is $347k in student debt and can’t find a job. He thought that attending law school would set him up for a comfortable future. Instead, he’ll likely be in debt for the rest of his life. The guys implore listeners not to make the same mistake. Don’t pay for law school. They also answer a full mailbag of listener questions about how to structure your study schedule, whether testing accommodations are fair, and how high-scoring students achieve a deeper understanding of the LSAT.

    As always, if you like the show and want to get more from the Thinking LSAT community, check out the links below. You can connect with other folks studying for the LSAT and get more useful resources from Nathan and Ben.



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    4:16 - Pearls vs. Turds

    9:23 - Ideal Implementation Granularity

    13:00 - Advice for High-Scoring Students

    21:11 - Are Accommodations Fair?

    28:06 - Balancing a Study Schedule

    37:58 - Tautology

    40:00 - Advice for Non-Native English Speakers

    46:26 - Value Zero

    56:47 - From 157 to 180

    58:11 - Stuck in the 150s

    1:05:24 - Can I Improve by 40+ points?

    1:13:16 - Don’t Expect Law School to Be Interesting

    1:19:28 - Unemployed and $347k in Debt

    1:24:40 - Some Friendly Bad Advice



    Read more on our website!

    • 1 hr 27 min
    Secure Your Oxygen Mask First (Ep. 359)

    Secure Your Oxygen Mask First (Ep. 359)

    If you want to help others, you need to take care of yourself first. On today’s episode, Ben and Nathan advise a listener to focus on helping herself before becoming a non-profit family law attorney. Doing so will ultimately put her in a better position to help others. The guys give another listener tips on how to ease test-day anxiety. They discuss the benefits of taking a gap year—or several—before law school. Plus, they talk about part-time lawyering and the ups and downs of entrepreneurship. Finally, they share a thoughtful note from LSAT Demon tutor and rising 3L Matt, who will be graduating from law school without a penny of debt.

    As always, if you like the show and want to get more from the Thinking LSAT community, check out the links below. You can connect with other folks studying for the LSAT and get more useful resources from Nathan and Ben.

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    5:15 - Test Day Anxiety

    17:32 - Summer Associate Season

    20:23 - When Should I Apply?

    28:13 - GPA and Admissions Questions

    49:26 - Part-Time Lawyer

    1:00:13 - Graduating from Law School Debt Free



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    • 1 hr 7 min
    A Score Release Lovefest (Ep. 358)

    A Score Release Lovefest (Ep. 358)

    June LSAT scores have been released, and lots of Demon students are riding high. Today on the show, Ben and Nathan share a bucketload of inspiring LSAT success stories submitted by listeners. Then, they comment on a former Demon student’s admissions cycle recap. They discuss Columbia’s decision not to participate in the U.S. News law school rankings. They wrap up the show with a discussion of LSAT prep timelines and answer some law school admission questions. 

    As always, if you like the show and want to get more from the Thinking LSAT community, check out the links below. You can connect with other folks studying for the LSAT and get more useful resources from Nathan and Ben.



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    4:34 - Words of Encouragement

    12:32 - A 25-Point Increase

    15:22 - The Real Deal

    16:40 - Get Greedy

    18:55 - Making LSAT Prep Fun

    25:52 - A Life-Changing Score Improvement

    29:17 - Up 21 Points and Counting

    30:04 - Cycle Recap

    41:41 - Columbia's School Ranking

    46:30 - A Rapid Score Increase

    56:55 - LSAT Timeline

    1:07:44 - Law School Admissions Questions



    Read more on our website!

    • 1 hr 19 min

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5
58 Ratings

58 Ratings

MariahWalsh ,

Highlight of my LSAT Journey (& Most Mondays)

Hosts Ben and Nathan are entertaining and honest. This show is a valuable resource and Ben and Nathan are generous with their advice. Before purchasing access to their paid service, the LSAT Demon, I raised my score by ten points to a 163 using the skills I learned for free on the Thinking LSAT Podcast. I highly recommend that you check out the podcast and see for yourself how effective Ben and Nathan’s common sense approach is. I'm so convinced that this is the best use of your podcast time that I’m writing my first podcast review!

barbsketch ,

An infomercial with little content

I started listening to this podcast thinking I would get some educational content to supplement my study. I was wrong! Occasionally there is an explanation of an LSAT question. Most of the time it’s two self-stroking guys evangelizing a high LSAT score as the solution to all problems, hawking their LSAT course, and berating emailers (usually students earnestly asking for advice) for sending in “stupid” questions. The latter is touted as a tough love approach when, in actually, it’s classic bad teaching.

MetoWe ,

This Podcast Was So Bad I Wrote a Review. I never write reviews

First of all, it’s an LSAT podcast and they’re talking about their work outs. Who cares.

Second of all, they have zero knowledge of the law school application process beyond the LSAT, which is very evident in the misinformed advice they give.

They ramble on and on, repeating the same advice over and over again. There was maybe 5 minutes of actual content to talk about and the rest of the 90 minutes was just repetition, getting off track, and “uuuuuhhhs”. And they keep giving advice, retracting that advice, give it again, retract again. Pick a lane.

And, lastly, the one of the hosts has a whiney, nasally voice that is ill suited to anything audio. Stick to writing a blog or something.

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