The Law School Data Assembly Service (LSDAS) (link below) is a division of LSAC, and serves as a kind of clearinghouse of information related to your application. LSDAS centralizes all your data, including your academic record, your LSAT score(s) and your letters of recommendation. In addition, access to online law school applications is included with your LSDAS registration. All schools are encouraging the online completion and transmission of applications, and many are now requiring it.
In short, while you can take the LSAT without registering for LSDAS, if you are applying to law school, you must register with LSDAS. If you were granted a fee waiver for the LSAT, it will also apply to the LSDAS registration and a total of four LSDAS law school reports. Applications for the following year’s admission are generally available online by August.
After registering, you are responsible for having all undergraduate schools send your official transcript to LSDAS. Even if you only took one course at another institution, you must have an official transcript sent, unless you took the classes through a Ramapo Exchange program. Courses which were transferred to Ramapo appear on your Ramapo transcript as credit earned but LSAC needs the grade as well. Transcript request forms can be downloaded from the LSAC website. For information on ordering your Ramapo transcript, download the Official Transcript Request Form.
When you submit an application to a law school, the school will request a copy of your report from LSDAS. You are not responsible for sending transcripts to the law schools, only to LSDAS. The report that is sent out includes:
- your year-by-year grade and academic credit summary
- copies of all your transcripts
- your GPA for each year and a cumulative GPA
- a description of your overall grade distribution
- the mean GPA of other students at your undergraduate school who have registered with LSDAS and your percentile rank among those students
- your LSAT scores, including cancellations and absences
- an average LSAT score if you have taken the test more than once
- a copy of your LSAT writing sample
- the mean LSAT score for students from your undergraduate school
Your GPA as computed by LSDAS may not be exactly the same as your Ramapo GPA. This is because LSAC handles certain grades differently. The most common difference for Ramapo students is when you retake a class — Ramapo does not include the first time you took the class in calculating your GPA. LSAC does include that first grade, so your GPA as reported by LSAC may be lower.
LSDAS also acts as a clearinghouse for letters of recommendation. Recommenders only have to send one original letter to LSDAS which will send them out to the law schools you apply to. Most law schools either require or prefer that you submit your letters of recommendation through LSDAS. Please visit our letters of recommendation page for more information.
Online applications are relatively new, and only became essentially universal during the 2005-2006 admission season. The user interface is not always as self-explanatory as you’d like. Accordingly, it is strongly recommended that you check out the LSDAS online demo video and FAQ page before starting to fill out your applications. These will give you a detailed overview of the process, and greatly reduce your stress and confusion. For more information on the substance of your application, please visit our Applications page.