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Support For Law Admissions Test Grows

Thursday, 17 February 2011

Interest from UK universities in the National Admissions Test for Law (LNAT) is growing, with the University of Manchester's Law School becoming the latest to join. 

The consortium which runs the LNAT has seen interest from UK university law schools increase two-fold in the past 12 months. The increase in interest has been largely attributed to the rising demand for undergraduate places.

Dinah Crystal OBE, Director of External Relations and Clinical Legal Education for the University of Manchester, said: "There is a great demand for places on our undergraduate law courses so we need to make sure that places are being offered to the best candidates.

"We believe the LNAT will give us a medium to look at and beyond A Level results and identify students with raw talent, regardless of their educational or social background. 

"It will also give candidates a valuable opportunity to show off their abilities and flair for the study of law, and we look forward to implementing the LNAT as part of our admissions procedures for the 2012 academic year."

The LNAT is a computer-based test which measures the verbal reasoning skills required to study and practise law including: comprehension, interpretation, analysis, synthesis, and deduction. 

It is used alongside standard methods of selection such as A Level (or equivalent) results, university applications and admissions interviews, to give a more accurate and rounded impression of the student's abilities.

Dr Liora Lazarus, Chair of LNAT and Fellow at St Anne's College, Oxford, said: "For heavily subscribed courses like undergraduate law it's almost impossible for admissions tutors to pick the best candidates using A Level predicted results and UCAS applications alone".  

"Admissions tests, meanwhile, can be a very valuable evaluation tool as they can demonstrate a candidate's aptitude and skills rather than simply their knowledge, something which is especially useful with borderline cases and with widening participation".

Recent research conducted by the National Foundation for Educational Research (NFER) has identified a correlation between LNAT result and academic achievement. It also suggested that the new longer test format - introduced for the 2011/2012 academic year - will give the LNAT's most accurate indication yet of the level of students' future academic achievement in law.

The growing interest isn't limited to UK universities, however. The LNAT consortium has also seen an increasing number of enquiries from overseas universities, with Spanish-based IE University and National University of Ireland, Maynooth's law schools also signing up.

The LNAT test was developed in 2004 to help a group of universities to differentiate undergraduate law study applications, and is now sat by more than 7,000 students each year.





Editors Notes:  In the 2009-2010 academic year more than 7,000 people from the UK and overseas sat the National Admissions Test for Law (LNAT). 


The test assesses candidates' analytical and reasoning skills, their ability to construct a logical argument, their command of written English, inductive and deductive skills, and their comprehension and interpretation skills.


The LNAT does not replace A levels or their global equivalent but is used in conjunction with formal qualifications, university application form, the candidate's personal statement and, in some cases, performance at interview. Each LNAT university uses candidates' scores differently to suit its own admissions policy.

The LNAT was developed by Pearson VUE, the world's leading test and assessment company, on behalf of LNAT Consortium Ltd to measure a student's aptitude for studying law, rather than their knowledge of law or any other subject.

The LNAT Consortium Ltd was founded in 2004 to run the LNAT, and more generally to improve the process of university admissions in law.  The members of the company, who also nominate its board of directors, are seven of the Universities that use the LNAT as part of their law admissions process. They are the Universities of Birmingham, Bristol, Durham, Nottingham and Oxford, together with King's College London and University College London. Other Universities, including the University of Manchester and National University of Ireland, Maynooth, have adopted the LNAT as customers of LNAT Consortium Ltd.