New member in need of cancellation advice.

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Kandahar
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Joined: Tue Jun 28, 2011 12:10 am

New member in need of cancellation advice.

Postby Kandahar » Tue Jun 28, 2011 12:36 am

I just took the LSAT for the first time, two days ago, and I am contemplating cancelling my score.

Some background information:

I have middling grades (3.8 from a good 4 year college and 3.3 from the junior college before it), and a year ago, when I began thinking about law school, I already abandoned the hope for HLS--or even T14.

I signed up for the December, 2010 LSAT, and took one practice test, my first ever, and got a 167. (I missed, roughly, 10 on the logic games section and 2 on each of the other sections.) I reasoned that this was good enough to get me in a halfway decent school in California like Hastings or USC; however, on the day of the test, I was extremely ill, and I decided to reschedule it. As such, I have one ABSENT notation for that day.

Instead of using the last 7 months to study, I squandered my time, and took a second practice test about a week ago. This time I got 165--missing 0 on RC, 1-2 each on the other two, and a whopping 15 on the logic games. Still, 165 is probably good enough for me, so I went in and took it two days ago.

Well, the real test was much harder than the two practice tests for a variety of reasons, not the least of which was an extremely irritating overseas proctor. For the firs time, I ran out of time on the RC section (my best section both times on the practice tests) and ended up having to bubble 5 answers without even reading the questions. I was so irritated at this that I spent the rest of the test highly distracted. As my logic games section was dismal as always, I estimate my score at somewhere in the 150s.

Given that I already have an absent, and how dreadful I seem to be at the logic games, does anyone think I should cancel and retake? It's tempting to just leave it to fate and see if I get really lucky on the 15 or so answers I bubbled at random. (10 of which were on the logic games portion, as usual. I think I can get 3-4 right on the first two games, but it takes almost all my time, and I barely have any time left to even glance at the last two.)

I would particularly be very interested in hearing from people who raised their logic games score significantly. I did some searching on this site, and I see a number of people who report getting perfect scores on the logic games, which is absolutely incredible to me, but they don't say how well or poorly they did the first time. Maybe their brains are just wired for those games?

Thanks for any advice that you may have. I realize that this was a lot to read--or even skim!

Edit: Oh, I guess option C would be waiting for my score and just retaking it if Lady Luck was unkind to me.

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JoeFish
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Re: New member in need of cancellation advice.

Postby JoeFish » Tue Jun 28, 2011 1:03 am

Some peoples brains are indeed wired for LG, but that might not be as big an advantage as you think, because LG is the section that, many would argue, is easiest to learn.

I would cancel and retake, but ONLY IF you can bring yourself to study. Honestly, get your hands on the Logic Games Bible, or some other LG prep tool, and get the whole way through it, taking every possible practice opportunity. Seriously, if you got -10 in LG in your first test, and -2 in the other sections, there is absolutely no reason you shouldn't be aiming for 173+, even if you're not looking at T14. I didn't really, and still aimed for (and scored in) the high 170s. And it got me $$$ at a T25 that I love.

Retake (whether or not you cancel), and PROMISE that you will work on getting those PTs up past 170. If you're PTing at 173, say, and you have a test day snafu... well, you're back where you started with a 165 and some back-up options, not down and out with 154 and no scholarships.

Kandahar
Posts: 10
Joined: Tue Jun 28, 2011 12:10 am

Re: New member in need of cancellation advice.

Postby Kandahar » Tue Jun 28, 2011 1:15 am

Thanks for your input. Did you personally improve on the logic games portion, or were you pretty good at that to begin with?

How much better is a cancellation + higher score than a low score + higher score? IE:

ABSENT
CANCELLED
170

versus

ABSENT
155
170

Thanks.

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Tiago Splitter
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Joined: Tue Jun 28, 2011 1:20 am

Re: New member in need of cancellation advice.

Postby Tiago Splitter » Tue Jun 28, 2011 1:33 am

I got a 166 the first time and ran out of time on logic games. Ended up scoring a 178 in June, and found that logic games is by far the easiest section. If you can miss just two questions on the other sections with minimal practice you owe it to yourself to hammer out a ton of practice games and retake the damn thing.

Kandahar
Posts: 10
Joined: Tue Jun 28, 2011 12:10 am

Re: New member in need of cancellation advice.

Postby Kandahar » Tue Jun 28, 2011 3:55 am

If I'm resigned to retaking in October or December, would you recommend cancelling the score, or simply having two scores reported? From other posts, it seems like most schools do take your highest score, so I'm not sure what real benefit cancelling gives you.

BeaverHunter
Posts: 98
Joined: Fri Mar 04, 2011 1:05 am

Re: New member in need of cancellation advice.

Postby BeaverHunter » Tue Jun 28, 2011 2:26 pm

You will do better in life and in law school if you stop making pathetic excuses for yourself. You blame your low score on your proctor, seriously???

That said, just wait for your score and if it sucks take it again. No big deal. Buck up!

parsi
Posts: 167
Joined: Mon Dec 13, 2010 4:16 am

Re: New member in need of cancellation advice.

Postby parsi » Tue Jun 28, 2011 7:38 pm

I would cancel. I feel like an absent, cancel, 170+ would be better than an absent, 15x, 170+ because they will never even have that second score to consider.

I got -0 on LG and it had always been my strongest section. I would purchase the powerscore LG bible and work through that. The strategies are easy to follow and help a lot.

make sure you play games everyday... I always timed my games and put the time on the game I did. Since you only have 8min,45sec per game, I tried to bring my average single game time below that. Also make sure you use the hypotheticals from the first question of the game and those you make for other questions to help you answer the harder questions at the end of the game.

I would begin a day and do a couple single timed games, then I would do a full 4 game section

Kandahar
Posts: 10
Joined: Tue Jun 28, 2011 12:10 am

Re: New member in need of cancellation advice.

Postby Kandahar » Wed Jun 29, 2011 12:31 am

BeaverHunter wrote:You will do better in life and in law school if you stop making pathetic excuses for yourself. You blame your low score on your proctor, seriously???


This sort of condescending reply is not appreciated. But since this is LSAT related, let me just say that if my post were a reading comprehension or logical reasoning section, you would have gotten the answer wrong. In an effort to give back to the community, I'll try to enlighten you.

All I said was that the test was harder than my practice tests for a variety of reasons, including an irritating proctor. (Other reasons being more difficult, to my mind, questions (no doubt due to my very low sample size of practice tests--I probably got two easy ones), my own increased nervousness, distracting environs, etc.)

While it was not the main problem, I shouldn't need to list for you the ways in which a proctor or location could be poor, but I will if you need me too, both factually and hypothetically. In fact, if a proctor is bad enough, LSAC has a mechanism in place with which to deal with the issue. That wasn't the case here, which is why I only made a single, offhanded remark about it.

Since you missed it in the bulk of my posts when you fixated on a single sentence, the main problem here is my own inability to do logic games.

Kandahar
Posts: 10
Joined: Tue Jun 28, 2011 12:10 am

Re: New member in need of cancellation advice.

Postby Kandahar » Wed Jun 29, 2011 12:41 am

parsi wrote:I would cancel. I feel like an absent, cancel, 170+ would be better than an absent, 15x, 170+ because they will never even have that second score to consider.

I got -0 on LG and it had always been my strongest section. I would purchase the powerscore LG bible and work through that. The strategies are easy to follow and help a lot.

make sure you play games everyday... I always timed my games and put the time on the game I did. Since you only have 8min,45sec per game, I tried to bring my average single game time below that. Also make sure you use the hypotheticals from the first question of the game and those you make for other questions to help you answer the harder questions at the end of the game.

I would begin a day and do a couple single timed games, then I would do a full 4 game section


Thanks for the concrete advice. May I ask you what you averaged wrong on LG on your first few PTs or without any study?

I do think I'll cancel and retake, but I'm trying to reconcile all the people on here saying that you can improve through practice, especially on LG, with the fact that LSAC claims most people don't do substantially better on retakes. Maybe most people already studied a lot or didn't take the test while still averaging 10-15 wrong on a single section. I just feel like if it were a given that practice improved your score, the vast majority of people (who weren't already 170+ or something) would make marked improvements. As 150-160s, who have lots of room for improvement, probably do more retakes than 170+rs (the HYS gunners aside), I really am skeptical.

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Tiago Splitter
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Re: New member in need of cancellation advice.

Postby Tiago Splitter » Wed Jun 29, 2011 1:06 am

I have not gotten any indication from this thread that you studied a lot for the LSAT. There are certainly people who maxed out their studying and re-taking did them no good, but you do not fall into that group. Spend a couple solid months studying, for real, taking plenty of practice tests and do as many games as possible. Even just two weeks of intense studying can significantly improve a score for someone like you who hasn't prepared much in the past.

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JoeFish
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Re: New member in need of cancellation advice.

Postby JoeFish » Wed Jun 29, 2011 1:52 am

Kandahar wrote:Did you personally improve on the logic games portion, or were you pretty good at that to begin with?


I never had any problem with Logic Games, but I attribute that mostly to the fact that I majored in mathematics and was a bigtime Mathlete (ie had been thinking that way since beginning of high school, so it was natural). There are a lot of people on here who claim large jumps on the LG in particular and the whole test in general. I would recommend going to the LSAT Prep and Discussion forum and looking at the many guides and resources there. That would could also be a good place to specifically ask those who made huge jumps on retakes how they did it.

But as has been said, most people who didn't gain much on their retakes had probably taken 20-50 PTs before their first, and so were already near their ceiling. It appears, however, as though your ceiling's pretty high, so I would think that, when the LSAC says "retaking doesn't usually improve scores by a significant amount" they're not necessarily talking about you. There are hundreds of people on these forums who improved their scores by a significant margin (10-15) by studying with the help of TLS.

Kandahar
Posts: 10
Joined: Tue Jun 28, 2011 12:10 am

Re: New member in need of cancellation advice.

Postby Kandahar » Wed Jun 29, 2011 3:27 am

Fair enough, I will give it a shot. Thanks for your time.




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