Best LSAT Prep Class

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jnw1184
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Re: Best LSAT Prep Class

Postby jnw1184 » Sat Jul 26, 2008 1:45 pm

Tome, I completely agree with you about the Kaplan crowd being for the 160-165 bracket. That is dead on.

As both a Kaplan student and later a Kaplan teacher, I would say that it is definitely NOT the place to go if you score in the 160s on your diagnostic (or the first test you take before studying at all). The key to Kaplan's program is that they force you to spend a lot of time on studying. This helps people who otherwise would not study a lot improve their scores from below average to average.

However, for those who are scoring in the 160s already, I do not think that Kaplan offers particularly helpful strategies to really boost anyone's score into the high 160s and 170s. At that point, you need higher-level techniques (like learning contrapositives, formal logic, etc). Kaplan touches on these, but really just caters to the masses, whereas from what I hear around here, Powerscore or Testmasters are much more effective for those with already high baseline scores.

If you get in the 130s, 140s, and low 150s on your diagnostic, Kaplan would be fine. If you are aiming to get a T14 quality score, go elsewhere.

bullbuster
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Re: Best LSAT Prep Class

Postby bullbuster » Fri Apr 24, 2009 5:11 pm

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tome
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Re: Best LSAT Prep Class

Postby tome » Fri Apr 24, 2009 11:26 pm

I saw this thread pop up again, and I thought I would give an update on my thinking about Kaplan after having worked there for a while.

I still think that Kaplan does very well for those hoping to score between about 155 and 165. I have had some students get into T14 schools, and I think the course certainly helped get them there, but I think there is less for them in the course. Are there other courses that might better cater to high-scoring students? It sounds like Testmasters and Powerscore do, but I think a lot of it just comes down to hard work an talent at that point.

Anyway, I think that I have ultimately come to agree with Ken's opening suggestion: that it is really the instructor that makes the difference, rather than the course. If the teacher understands the exam (really understands how it works) and is able to communicate complicated ideas clearly, then the course will help you a lot, otherwise it will not.

A lot of this has to do with experience teaching the LSAT. I had some teaching experience before working for Kaplan, but still, I feel my first class got a raw deal compared with subsequent classes.

The resources are out there to find a good, competent instructor--so do it!

lawschoolnobigdeal
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Re: Best LSAT Prep Class

Postby lawschoolnobigdeal » Sun May 10, 2009 11:55 pm

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lne
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Joined: Thu May 28, 2009 2:21 pm

Re: Best LSAT Prep Class

Postby lne » Thu May 28, 2009 2:30 pm

Getting ready to sign up for a prep class. Read thru this thread. Haven't been able to come to conclusion at all. Testmasters or not. Kaplan or not? Anybody want to chime in some more on actual experience. Back before college I took a SAT prep test from Kaplan. It was terrible! While the instructor might have gotten 800s, she clearly couldn't channel that info to the class.

Smoyf
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Joined: Thu Apr 23, 2009 7:45 pm

Re: Best LSAT Prep Class

Postby Smoyf » Thu May 28, 2009 3:55 pm

I took it with Kaplan and was lucky enough to have an instructor who had actually graduated law school already (UC Davis) and had already passed the bar. The reason he was teaching an lsat class instead of practicing law was that he had inherited money so he had no debt from law school, and didn't want to go full on into law quite yet. This actually helped tremendously because he had gone through the entire process entirely himself and more, and he was able to use those experiences to help his class.

My score rose from a 155 (the first practice test I took) to a 167 (what I scored on the actual test). Nearly all my mistakes came from the reading comp section on my final test, but I did MUCH better than I originally was doing and I was also able to near perfect my logical reasoning and logic games section (and by near perfect I really do mean that, the most I would ever miss on a practice logic games section was 2, and pretty much the same for each logical reasoning section).

Best advice I can give is to TAKE THE INTRO CRITICAL REASONING COURSE at your college and learn that stuff backwards and forwards (that's what provided me the foundation for doing well in logic games and logical reasoning), and then find a good instructor and enroll in his lsat prep class. My only regret was that I didn't study as much as I should have, but I got into an excellent school so I'm happy with my cycle!

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wiseowl
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Joined: Thu Jul 03, 2008 4:38 pm

Re: Best LSAT Prep Class

Postby wiseowl » Fri May 29, 2009 1:01 am

tome wrote:I saw this thread pop up again, and I thought I would give an update on my thinking about Kaplan after having worked there for a while.

I still think that Kaplan does very well for those hoping to score between about 155 and 165. I have had some students get into T14 schools, and I think the course certainly helped get them there, but I think there is less for them in the course. Are there other courses that might better cater to high-scoring students? It sounds like Testmasters and Powerscore do, but I think a lot of it just comes down to hard work an talent at that point.

Anyway, I think that I have ultimately come to agree with Ken's opening suggestion: that it is really the instructor that makes the difference, rather than the course. If the teacher understands the exam (really understands how it works) and is able to communicate complicated ideas clearly, then the course will help you a lot, otherwise it will not.

A lot of this has to do with experience teaching the LSAT. I had some teaching experience before working for Kaplan, but still, I feel my first class got a raw deal compared with subsequent classes.

The resources are out there to find a good, competent instructor--so do it!


a lot of this is true. most of your results in the test prep class depend on how much you're willing to put in.

I have gotten someone from 159 to 180 this year and 149 to 170...but both of them worked their asses off. I've also had students uninterested/too busy with other things who have stayed stagnant or even dropped a few points.

The LSAT isn't something you can half-ass, period.

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dexyloo
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Re: Best LSAT Prep Class

Postby dexyloo » Sun Jun 28, 2009 12:14 pm

At the beginning of this post, in 2005, Ken said,

"Just to let you know, I hope in the next two years to videotape myself teaching the LSAT and provide these videos to viewers for free. I really think the LSAT is an excellent test and can be quite fun to study for if you have a great instructor. I hate that most of these test prep programs are over $1000 and look forward to offering this valuable material for free to viewers."

Ken, did you ever do this? Does anyone know if he ever made these videos? I am gearing up to sign up for one of those 1k classes, but I would love to get some of Ken's insight on the LSAT.

Thanks!

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ToadGoDead
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Re: Best LSAT Prep Class

Postby ToadGoDead » Tue Jun 30, 2009 1:56 am

i took kaplan extreme....class was only 10 people, teacher was great and hot to boot....went from a 151 to 164....i think it was worth it....the cliche mantra = practice, understand wrong answers, practice, understand wrong answers, practice, chill out, no matter what you get on the lsat you will die some day

0L Hoping for 1
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Joined: Sun Jan 25, 2009 9:36 pm

Re: Best LSAT Prep Class

Postby 0L Hoping for 1 » Tue Jun 30, 2009 11:40 am

I think if you are a high scorer and have a Kaplan Advanced class in your area, it was a great help to me. I started at a 164 diagnostic, but the class really helped me perfect my studying and also helped me with the most difficult questions that I was missing.

I ended up with a 172 on the June LSAT, so I am very happy with the program. I think it comes down to your teacher, but I had a great teacher at the DC Kaplan Center.




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