My LSAT Odyssey

whodatis
Posts: 14
Joined: Wed Jul 08, 2009 8:02 pm

My LSAT Odyssey

Postby whodatis » Tue Aug 04, 2009 3:01 pm

I couldn't imagine that my attempt at the september lsat will be a must-read, but i'm writing this more so i can continually reflect on my performance.

So I've been studying for the LSAT for about a month. Really mest up at first. Bought the newest practice tests and did them all at the beginning, scoring a 155, 164 and a 155 on PTS 56, 55, 54. Then I found TLS, and realized a great deal of how to properly prepare for the test. But I guess I could've messed in a much more damaging way. Oh well. Anyways, my main weakness is the LR section. I started off horribly, missing 6-10 per section. Careless mistakes and misreading answers or questions really was messing me up. So I've focused only on that for the last month and have taken it down to -2-4 per section when I take the section.

Logical Games for some reason is my thing. I've never read anything and get a -0-1 on the section. I guess just as some people "just get" LR, I "just get" LG. weird.

Reading Comp.....yeah I'll get to that in a few weeks.

So I've used the Powerscore LR bible. Its good, but not great. My problem with it is that it gives a test taking strategy that is so drawn out. Don't get me wrong, some things are amazing in the book, but others aren't very didactic or revealing. Whats worked for me is creating my own way of attacking the LR questions. Agains the wishes of powerscore I read the stem first. I've tried it both ways, and the results weren't that diverse, but I feel the stem reading works better for me. So now I read the stem, circle the main word in the question, assumption, weakens, etc...and then make an arrow whether the stimulus is suspect or the answer choices. This just helps me get into the mindset of what to expect. But I guess different strokes for different folks.

But those abstract LR questions are a bitch. I hope I can master them but I think its an almost inherent trait. Remember those kids in elementary, middle and high school? They were always super-focused, not very creative but extremely logical. In high school they would do very well on english essays, not because of their writing skill but simply because they directly answered the question. They took AP music theory and probably were taking multi-variable calc in 11th grade. I think those are the kids that are masters at LR...cuz they've been thinking like that for their life. Thats just what I think.

Anyways, I began my Powerscore full length class the other day with a diagnostic. I'm actually pretty happy, cuz it was at night, I was abolutely worn out, watery eyes and thirsty. I would've been happy with a 155. I scored a 166, with a -0 in LG. So I don't know how much the class will help me get over the hump. But hopefully it adds about 5 points, and I can raise it another 5.

Physically and mentally I feel ok. I get watery eyes a lot, alergic reaction or something. I haven't gone to a doctor in 10 years, so I don't think im gonna start now. I try to work out 3-4 times a weak. What I really need to work on is waking up early. I plan to start the Kobe bryant regiment. See, he practices sore so that he feels more liberated in the real game. So I'm gonna start waking up around 5, taking a test at 6 so that taking a test around 9 will feel easier or better. Hopefully it works

So, I'll keep adding to this blog, hopefully no one reads it, and I can just monitor my own sanity. But anyways, I often have trouble going to sleep these days because I start thinking of the test. What I will do when I see my score. What if I get a 150, or a 179? Its not nerve wracking, but it builds anxiety. I've always been a perenial underachiever, so now this is my one and last shot to academically redeem myself.

I just want to prepare myself to a point where I can minimize all anxiety when I enter the test room. Sept 26th ought not be a day any different than any other.

PT's thus far

Used PTs 7-18 for the LR only

PT 19---164
PT 20---166

goal Sept 2009---180 (Why aim any lower?)

whodatis
Posts: 14
Joined: Wed Jul 08, 2009 8:02 pm

Re: My LSAT Odyssey

Postby whodatis » Thu Aug 06, 2009 12:00 pm

PT 21, with a section added from PT 11

LR -6
LG -2
RC -0 (added section)
LR -5
RC -2

169

Highest score ever, pretty happy about the RC, its not that bad really. I haven't gone over the LR, but upset about missing 11. It sucks because you always come away thinking you got them all right. And i'm finishing everything under time, had 10 minutes to spare in both RC, and about 5 in the other 3.

Review today

Tests tomorrow

powerscore class kind of sucks, maybe because it just started. But really it seems aimed at getting people a 160. I'm dissapointed, because I figured a teacher who did so well would push his students to aim for the top not settle for skipping questions.

whodatis
Posts: 14
Joined: Wed Jul 08, 2009 8:02 pm

Re: My LSAT Odyssey

Postby whodatis » Fri Aug 07, 2009 9:10 pm

Took Practice Test 22 at the bookstore. I thought it would be quiet, because it usually is, but once i started the test some people sat down and started talking really loud, so that messed me up during the first RC. And then i noticed during the 4th section that i had like 4 missed calls from the same person so that was troubling me the whole time. So I guess i took this in adverse conditions. Additionally, I took it from 2pm-5....need to start doing the morning stuff.

PT 22
RC -6
LR -1
LG -2
RC (from PT 14) -0
LR -2

Awesome score, really. Since I just learned that the experimental is always in the first three, i'll make the first RC the experimental, and that gives me a 177. Even if i still use the PT 14 RC as the experimental i get a 171. So either way i'm happy. Hopefully I can keep it up.

I'm really encouraged because i thought this test was tough. The LR wasn't so bad, but I thought the LG was really weird, but I still only missed two. While I was taking it I thought, maybe I should read the PS bible, or listen in class about the games. I'll probably still do that, but i still suprise myself with my ability to do well in LG.


Obviously my total -3 in LR is fantastic...i'm actually understanding stuff and putting it all together, although some of the questions i had seen before, of those i had only previously missed two....hopefully it has "clicked"

Review tonight, take another tomorrow morning.

whodatis
Posts: 14
Joined: Wed Jul 08, 2009 8:02 pm

Re: My LSAT Odyssey

Postby whodatis » Mon Aug 10, 2009 11:57 am

So on saturday, a day after taking PT 22 I decided to go on and take PT 23. I did ok, a 168. I obviously didn't expect to repeat my performance of PT 22, but I thought I could have gotten in the low 170s. Still a 168 is solid, and I feel that I've understood the test enough to feel reasonably well of getting at least that score.

PT 23
168
LG -3
LR -7
RC ex -3
LR -3
RC -4

That one lr sucked. Missed three in a row twice. My main error on this test was forgetting to attack the conclusion with the answer choices and focusing on some premise. The games I barely finished in time, and had some trouble with one of the games. I guess i should start reviewing a thing or two about games.

And this PT had a more lenient curve, a 96 was a 180.

RC was pretty good, missed some dumb questions.

Taking PT 24 today, class tonite, review today/tmrw

whodatis
Posts: 14
Joined: Wed Jul 08, 2009 8:02 pm

Re: My LSAT Odyssey

Postby whodatis » Tue Aug 11, 2009 8:22 pm

Yesterday took another Practice Test 24 yesterday at a library. Took it from 12-3, had watery eyes the whole time, gotta find something to get rid of that.

PT 24
170
RC -0
RC (ex) -5
LR -6
LR -2
LG -6

The games played games with me this time around. MAde some stupid mistakes, should have diagrammed them more than I did. Was pressed for time and had to guess.

Taking another one tomorrow, hopefully keep my LRs consistent and get back on track with the games.

whodatis
Posts: 14
Joined: Wed Jul 08, 2009 8:02 pm

Re: My LSAT Odyssey

Postby whodatis » Fri Aug 14, 2009 8:08 pm

So three tests have gone down since last time, all consecutively.

Wed-

Took PT 25 before my powerscore class....not my best work, a lot of dumb mistakes, espeically after the break

PT 25
164
Rc -3
LR -2
RC -2 (ex)
LG -9
LR -7

I think a lack of focus was a troubling issue, no coffee or anything the morning of, and got tired walking from my car and the library, like a mile in the sun.

LG is getting harder in this period, the games have many intricate rules, and i have not been able to finish.

Thurs-
Took PT 26 at a bookstore, around 1-4 I got a coffee there, drank most of it before the test saved some between section 3 and 4. It helped, but its a damn bookstore, there's already so much noise.
Got it to a 168, messed up again after the break, which used to be my strong time
PT 26
168
RC -2 (ex)
LG -3
LR -3
LR -4
RC -6

I found myself getting anxious in the last seciton. Just wanted to finish and grade the test. Lack of focus, or an ill effect of coffee. Games were still challenging, didn't finish, but got lucky with guessing.

So after two mediocre performances I went all over TLS looking for concentration tips and found a lot pointing towards the 5 hour energy. I have never been a proponent of energy drinks aside from coffee stuff, so I was skeptical. But I decided I'd give it a try on Friday.

Also I kind of began to have a feeling that the lack of concentration was due to a lack of exercise. So I pumped some iron.

Friday-
Bought one of them two packs of 5 hour, started PT 27 at 9:15am. Again in the bookstore, cuz the local library doesn't open until 10. I found a table in the back of the bookstore, thought it would be quieter, but apparently not, because the speaker was right above me. So I kept hearing Frank Sinatra, Michael Jackson over and over. It was ok at first, but the more I recognized a song, the harder it was not to pay attention.

Drank about half of the 5 hour energy, tasted nasty and it tingles when u swallow it. I felt alert, but it feels artificial. There are times when you are focused because you care, but this wasn't one of those times. But I got a 173, although the curve was generous, had trouble with the games, but i have a feeling that its just the time period. and I finished fairly strong.

PT27
173
LG -1 ex from PT 11
LR -3
LG -6
RC -2
LR -2

Clearly there was a difference in the games from PT 11 and 27, because I finished with minutes to spare in section 1, but couldn't even finish. I've noticed that the games aren't that hard, just that there are so many nuances that I mistake one.

I have a feeling that the good score didn't come from the 5 hr energy focus, but the fresh feeling from exercising the night before. Woke up alert and everything.

Well not gonna take a test over the weekend. Monday I'll try again with the 5hr, but this time I'll drink it an hour or so before, see if that works. Otherwise its back to the tea that got me a 177.

whodatis
Posts: 14
Joined: Wed Jul 08, 2009 8:02 pm

Re: My LSAT Odyssey

Postby whodatis » Tue Aug 18, 2009 2:15 pm

Took PT 31, using 28, 29, and 30 as experimental sections for the rest of the tests.

Did fairly well a 171, games were weird, but made some careless mistakes, i've started to get a little tense too when i do an LG section.

PT 31
171
LG -5
LR -3
LG -2 ex from PT 15
LR -3
RC -2

Trying to take 5 tests a week, so PT 32 wed, 33, thurs, 34 friday and powerscore preptest on sat.

whodatis
Posts: 14
Joined: Wed Jul 08, 2009 8:02 pm

Re: My LSAT Odyssey

Postby whodatis » Thu Aug 20, 2009 1:01 am

Awful day, took PT 32 at a new bookstore, thought I'd change it up so I don't ever get a homecourt boost when taking PTs. But I guess my eyes didn't agree with the place and I had terrible watery eyes the whole time. But I don't think that bothered me, but i definitely made some careless errors in LG/RC. Dissapointed that I couldn't stay on my streak of 170+, same thing happened last wednesday with a 164.

PT 32
165
LR -3
RC -9 sweet jesus
RC -1 (ex)
LG -6
LR -2

That RC seemed difficult while i was taking it, a lot of questions that i boiled down to 2 answers. But three times I misread a question.

LG I fucked up big time, completely failed on the set up of the last game. I don't know whats changed, I think im getting too anxious when I see LG, or i always feel i spent too long on the first two games.

Looking good with LR, 4 tests in a row where i've kept my mistakes down to -5-7, need to get it down to -3-4 total.

gonna buy something for these watery eyes tomorrow

PT 33 tmrw, hopefully can get a 175+ and keep it there from then on.

whodatis
Posts: 14
Joined: Wed Jul 08, 2009 8:02 pm

Re: My LSAT Odyssey

Postby whodatis » Sat Aug 22, 2009 2:26 am

The inconsistency is killing me

Thursday, at the bookstore, noisy even though it was 9am.....drank tea and a little bit of a 5 hr. That doesn't work, it makes me too alert...ended up with a 167

PT 33
167
LR -3
RC -5
LG -1 ex
LR -6
LG -3

Not so hot. Got really discouraged, and though maybe the 170s i had gotten were a fluke of the old tests but.....

Today, PT 34: 174. This was a much needed confidence booster. Only drank tea before and that was enough to get me through. I guess i'm back in the game.

5 tests a week wasn't that bad, 171, 165, 167, 174. I just need to gain some consistency.

I also realized my mistakes on 32 and 33 were largely from misreading the questions or not remembering how to attack different types of questions, knowing that i did much better on 34.

Taking the pt 54 tmrw at powerscore, but i already took it in june so it won't really be worth mentioning. Otherwise nothing till monday.

whodatis
Posts: 14
Joined: Wed Jul 08, 2009 8:02 pm

Re: My LSAT Odyssey

Postby whodatis » Tue Aug 25, 2009 7:32 pm

Took PT 35 at a different library. Did pretty well, made one mistake on one rule on LG that messed me up but otherwise did pretty well.

PT 35
171
LR -2
LG ex (haven't scored this yet)
RC -2
LG -5
LR -2

Taking 36 tomorrow, hopefully i don't drop into the 160s again.




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