LSAT Tea-Leaf Reading: September 2014 Edition

You heard that right, the October LSAT happened in September. Not sure why. Maybe it’s a thing; maybe it’s not. I seriously doubt holding the test a week early affected the number of takers.

Speaking of which … Only 30,943 people sat for the LSAT last month, breaking the record low set in 1998 (33,558). Last October’s administration came close to doing it, but it wasn’t quite enough. As far as I can tell, October 2014 is now the record low probably going back to 1986 or the year before when the end-of-year LSAT had fallen below 100,000 for the first time since 1969. The rate of decline, 8.1 percent, has decelerated from 10.9 percent last year. Take a look:

No. LSAT Takers, 4-Testing Period Moving Sum

The four-period moving sum has fallen to 100,607, also breaching the October 1998 record (~102,000). In fact, there are now fewer LSAT-takers than first-time LSAT-takers in the peak years of ’02, ’03, and ’09.

So the last time October LSATs were this low, you had just bought the tapes to something like … Wait for it … Wait for it … True Blue by Madonna and the soundtrack to Top Gun. If the previous October LSAT record was 1985, then you were certainly listening to the Back to the Future soundtrack (very appropriately given its sequel took us to 2015)—and I don’t blame you—or Songs From the Big Chair by Tears for Fears.

Although falling LSATs is still a good thing, the downside is that I know almost nothing about ’80s music.

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