Summer is testing time for students

Michelle Poje

For many, summer is a time to take long vacations, catch up with old friends and simply relax and enjoy the reprieve from school.

But for students preparing to take academic tests like the GRE and LSAT this summer, three months of rest and relaxation may not be in store.

“I feel added pressure this summer as opposed to my past summers due to LSAT preparation,” senior economics major Justin Miller said. “Law schools typically weight the cumulative GPA and LSAT score equally. So I feel pressure because it boils down to one day that is as equally important as the past four years I’ve been in school.”

Miller will be taking the LSAT this October. The results of the LSAT determine a student’s acceptance into law school. The LSAT is just one of several tests the Academic Testing Center will be providing this summer.

Debbie Cartell, academic testing coordinator of the Career Services Center and Academic Testing Center, said more students appear to take the tests in the summer as opposed to the fall and spring semesters.

“We mostly see students come in for the ACT and CLEP tests more than any other in the summer,” Cartell said.

A lot of the students who have high scores from taking the PASS test take the CLEP test to start earning credit, she said.

The PASS test is a computerized placement test administered to students entering Kent State. The CLEP test allows students to earn college credit by testing prior knowledge they have gained through high school.

English major Ashley Howard is preparing to take the GRE this summer. The GRE is a test for students planning to attend graduate school. She said that taking academic tests in the summer is a good idea.

“I think summer is the best time to take these tests because you don’t have the burden of school getting in the way of study time,” Howard said. “And, for me, I am taking the GRE in August so if I don’t do well I can take it again in the fall.”

As for study preparation, Howard said she has been preparing for the GRE for several months now.

“I’ve been buying all the books that help you study and am just trying to ease into the whole thing so that I’m not overwhelmed,” Howard said.

She said right now she only studies once a week.

“I’m not too worried about the test right now, and because it is summer, I’m just not that motivated at the moment,” Howard said. “Once it gets closer to August, I plan to study a lot more.”

Other students, like Miller, are getting an early start on studying.

“I have not scheduled any summer classes or looked for a summer job because I want to give my LSAT preparation full attention,” Miller said.

Miller said he studies about 15 to 20 hours a week and will be taking a Kaplan LSAT prep course at University of Akron in July to further prepare for the test.

Cartell said most students who come into the testing center are serious about doing well on the tests.

“Because we are administering the tests to the students, we are not allowed to help them study and could get in serious trouble if we did,” Cartell said. “So we encourage students to seek study help from the Academic Success Center or to take practice tests.”

The Academic Testing Center offers the LSAT, ACT, MAT, MCAT, CLEP, PRAXIS 1 and 2 and the reinstatement test year round.

Students who are interested in taking the tests should visit the Career Services Center in room 261 in the Michael Schwartz Building for more information.

Contact student affairs reporter Michelle Poje at [email protected].