help from those who can

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loser148
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help from those who can

Postby loser148 » Wed Dec 30, 2009 11:25 pm

I'm an older girl (38) and just asked for 1 month off to study for the December LSAT. It was always my proverbial dream to go to law school but life interjected and now trying to make up for lost time. Anyhoo, only got a 148 which was actually 54 questions correct. I brought myself up in one month from nothing to that score. But apparently that's not enough by what I'm reading. So, I'm asking for some honest help. I have a legally inclined mind along with a business acumen without the corresponding education. My lawyer friends are often impressed with my twist and abililty to 'one up' their expensive, full-time lawyers. But I don't know how to break past this marginal/pathetic score. I did take an LSAT prep course at the local U but did better on my own. HOW DO I GET THESE noteworthy scores in the 170s??? I'm not stupid and could recite everything learned. I just can't apply it well to multiple choice tests. Can anyone help with a semi idiot-savannt?

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Luis Gomez
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Re: help from those who can

Postby Luis Gomez » Wed Dec 30, 2009 11:43 pm

I am sorry to hear you have trouble with the test, sadly standardized tests are designed to measure certain abilities and they have no right or wrong answers. BEING ABLE TO RECITE EVERYTHING LEARNED IS USELESS
loser148 wrote:I'm not stupid and could recite everything learned.
try understanding the questions without timing and then work on reducing the time.

This might take a long time. It took me over 3 months to achieve a 166 and my first practice test was a 155. Also there are limits in everyone's capacity so keep practicing until you reach yours.

Edited to mention that this is valuable advice for those who actually have this problem and not only for the possible fake OP.
Last edited by Luis Gomez on Wed Dec 30, 2009 11:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Lurkster
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Re: help from those who can

Postby Lurkster » Wed Dec 30, 2009 11:49 pm

Image

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Luis Gomez
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Re: help from those who can

Postby Luis Gomez » Wed Dec 30, 2009 11:53 pm

Lurkster wrote:Image


Most likely

nycparalegal
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Re: help from those who can

Postby nycparalegal » Thu Dec 31, 2009 1:44 am

Honestly, this is probably a flame/troll, but here is my advice. I had trouble with the LSAT myself, and it took me awhile to get over the 140's. The most importent thing to do is

1) Figure out exactly what you are getting wrong. Is it logic games? Is it certain logic reasoning? Is it reading comprehension.

2) Once, you isolated the problem, come back and people can actually give you some advice that can really help you and isn't generalized.

tomwatts
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Re: help from those who can

Postby tomwatts » Thu Dec 31, 2009 4:34 am

I don't know why anyone thinks this isn't sincere. Sounds real enough to me. But yeah, the question isn't specific enough... I mean, the way to get super-duper scores generally involves taking at least 20-30 PTs, if not more like 50+, and carefully going over your work on each and every one. It's not surprising that a month didn't cut it, and it's not surprising that a course at the local university didn't cut it; people usually need at least 2 months and frequently more like 3 or 4, and you may consider working with a legitimate commercial test prep company. (Full disclosure: I teach for one.)

Guides abound, though. Take a look at the pinned topics in this forum for examples.

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loser148
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Re: HELP PLEASE from those who can

Postby loser148 » Sun Jan 03, 2010 5:13 pm

Wow. Thank you, I'm not a troller. I just didn't expect anyone to actually write! Thanks for being kind.
Actually, I put so much effort into that month, I was so proud of myself. I followed several books from beginning to end and then ordered every LSAT test available and started taking 2 tests a day and reviewing each answer and what I did wrong. BUT, without the answer keys, it wasn't ideal. The week before the test, I discovered most of the answers could be found and explained on YouTube and that was helpful but extremely time consuming.
Does it sound impossible to bring up those scores as long I keep studying? I didn't want to wait yet another year but the offers from unaccredited schools are so disheartening! It's also depressing to read posts about folks with 170 re-taking or getting a 170 on their first test without studying.
As for the breakdown of the test:
My first focus was on the logic games, since I couldn't complete even 1 under time constraints. Now I can plan on 1/2 of that section as correct. This is huge improvement! Guess some things get better with age! :mrgreen:
The LR sections are difficult. I practiced finishing every section and allocating time to guess on the unfinished ones. 1-10 are OK, depending on my focus and the last 7ish are good. The middle part is hit or miss. The study books claim the games are most susceptible to improvements, but I seem to need help with the LR. Is this all overcome with practice? I'm desperate to make up for lost time and just want to go to school. Thanks for being kind, Tom... :D

spearnreel
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Re: help from those who can

Postby spearnreel » Sun Jan 03, 2010 5:53 pm

If you are planning to take the FEB test I would look into a tutor or pehaps a quick crash prep course, not too confident on the latter. If postponing til a further date I would acquire the Powersource materials beginning with the LR, LG, and RC bibles. Probably a bit too late to begin them now for the FEB test but these are the only prep books besides actual PTs that I have utilized and most recommended books on TLS.

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loser148
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Re: help from those who can

Postby loser148 » Sun Jan 03, 2010 6:45 pm

Hi spearnreel ...

I went through all of the powerscore bibles and a princeton prep book. I picked up EVERY test prep publisher from the library and that was too much at the time. I took the December test to see where I was after my best friend died 2 days before the test and was feeling sort of lost.

Would you recommend a February test OR June and yet another year delayed?

I'm currently thinking classes for an MBA, LSAT prep course and a june test. That may be too much but my life is passing along too quickly to wait for tests and my scores to improve. Or, just focus on the test? And are there tutors that don't charge excessive amounts? I haven't look at that option yet.

What is your history with the test if I may ask?

lawhawk
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Re: help from those who can

Postby lawhawk » Sun Jan 03, 2010 6:58 pm

testmasters is what you need. You are the ideal candidate for a prep course -- low score with a lot of "want to." The $1500 will be well worth it in your case.

UTexas
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Re: help from those who can

Postby UTexas » Sun Jan 03, 2010 6:59 pm

If you're willing to keep putting in the work, I think substantial score increases are still possible. But you have a lot of work to do. One month is not even close to enough time.

One thing: Slow down on the PTs. Way down. With your scores, you need to be spending significantly more time reviewing each PT than you did taking it. Also, it takes time to make gains. Don't exhaust all of the opportunities for exposure to questions you haven't seen before. In fact, don't do any new PTs for now. Retake and review the ones you've already done. You need to extract the maximum possible benefit from each chunk of the material.

Here's my (daunting) recommendation: It sounds like you'll be balancing this with full-time work, so plan to take the test again in Sept/Oct 2010. I think you would really benefit from a full-length prep course, as long as you're willing to put in time to do all of the work. If you're a good note-taker (and you will have to be one in law school, anyway), I strongly recommend TestMasters (http://www.testmasters.net). Sign up for the spring course, not the summer course. You will have access to every LSAT problem released since 1991 (same goes for most other big-name prep courses). You will also have access, while you're enrolled, to help from TM instructors over the phone from 12pm to 3pm (CST). Save the PTs for later. Take thorough notes in the TM class and review them periodically. Do the TM drills and homework lessons in full. For each problem (possibly excepting the cupcake ones after a while), you should write out on a separate piece of paper your justification for choosing the answer you chose, at the very least. It would be better if you would do this and write a coherent justification for eliminating appealing but incorrect/less strongly supported answer choices. You really need to go microscopic if you want to achieve the kinds of gains I think are possible for you (15-20+ points). This will obviously take a hell of a lot of time. Anyway, note the problems you miss in the book and/or on your paper, but don't circle answer choices in the HW books themselves. After you've finished all of the HW lessons, an important part of your later study will be redoing and reviewing every problem you missed. Print out all supplemental materials (assorted LSAT problems and 12 of the latest PTs) from the course website before you lose access to it (the morning of the June LSAT). If you want access to the website after that date for answer explanations, PT scoring, etc., you'll have to pay another $300 or $350, I think.

Once the course is over, you will still have several months to prepare. Read or re-read and work through the PowerScore LG and LR bibles. The material is very similar to TM. What you read won't conflict in any serious way with what you've already learned; it should reinforce and complement what you learned from the TM course. Avoid doing games or LR from PTs or supplemental sections you have not yet taken; mark these and revisit them later on. After your first run through the bibles, work through all the supplemental materials organized by LR question type, using the same approach you did with the HW. Review problems you missed here and on the old HW lessons. After that, work the supplemental LR, LG, and RC sections under timed conditions. TM has around 8-12 full test sections of each pulled from previous exams. Review each meticulously. Your final phase of preparation should consist of taking timed PTs. The TM website has the latest ones (2004-present); the course content is a mixture of all the previous tests. Keep reviewing. Review your notes, too. I'd do every game over again, too, if I were you.

This is an exhaustive and extremely time-consuming approach. It's not the only one you can follow, but I think you're going to have to do this or something similarly exhaustive if you want a realistic chance at hitting the high 160s or better.
Last edited by UTexas on Sun Jan 03, 2010 7:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Sourpunch
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Re: help from those who can

Postby Sourpunch » Sun Jan 03, 2010 7:20 pm

Take an LSAT prep course. Blueprint is my reccomendation.

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tristanlxboyd
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Re: help from those who can

Postby tristanlxboyd » Sun Jan 03, 2010 7:24 pm

I was going to post a response, but there's no need to repeat UTexas' excellent advice. I can only emphasize the value of going slow and spending far more time reviewing the questions you got wrong, and understanding why you got them wrong, before trying more questions.

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Luis Gomez
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Re: help from those who can

Postby Luis Gomez » Sun Jan 03, 2010 7:35 pm

Good luck.

tomwatts
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Re: help from those who can

Postby tomwatts » Mon Jan 04, 2010 1:05 am

I suppose I should rep Princeton Review here. TPR rocks! Wooo!

Uh, anyway, classes + LSAT prep shouldn't be too overwhelming. If you do take a commercial course, make sure you find one that is decently spread out, so you can keep up with the homework, and make sure you set aside enough time each day to continue to work on the LSAT. June sounds like a reasonable goal. The February test is in less than five weeks, which is awfully soon.

thegor1987
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Re: help from those who can

Postby thegor1987 » Mon Jan 04, 2010 1:17 am

everybody wants a 170+ on their LSAT unfortunately only %1 to %2 of all test takers get this score, so obviously not everybody can have this score, in fact, a very great majority cannot have this score

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loser148
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Re: help from those who can

Postby loser148 » Mon Jan 04, 2010 11:03 am

WOW....THANK YOU SO VERY MUCH TO "UTexas"

JUST OUT OF CURIOSITY - Are classes the ONLY way to find explanations for ALL of the practice LSATs? I can find a lot of answers by searching prep-books and looking online, but it surely would be nice to find a comprehensive book that explains all tests. Or this is overkill and studying a few really well would suffice?

I'm going for it and will keep anyone who cares to know apprised of the progress.
Or, if there's a better place in this forum for that kind of stuff, please let me know.

Off to spend money I don't have on a future that I will have... :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen:

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Kiersten1985
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Re: help from those who can

Postby Kiersten1985 » Mon Jan 04, 2010 11:10 am

What are your career goals and top choices for law schools? It might be better to see what score you're aiming at.

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loser148
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Re: help from those who can

Postby loser148 » Mon Jan 04, 2010 11:59 am

I'd like to escape Utah and quite frankly, Boalt would be my dream school.
Arizona and Texas are the other places.
Utah is back-up but probably most realistic.

I'd like to attend a T1 school, of course. I'd prefer to not pay sticker price.

I'm interested in varying aspects of law but most likely to delve into IP, environmental law or business law.

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Kiersten1985
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Re: help from those who can

Postby Kiersten1985 » Mon Jan 04, 2010 12:09 pm

loser148 wrote:I'd like to escape Utah and quite frankly, Boalt would be my dream school.
Arizona and Texas are the other places.
Utah is back-up but probably most realistic.

I'd like to attend a T1 school, of course. I'd prefer to not pay sticker price.

I'm interested in varying aspects of law but most likely to delve into IP, environmental law or business law.


and what's your LSAC GPA?

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loser148
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Re: help from those who can

Postby loser148 » Mon Jan 04, 2010 12:18 pm

148 (Very pathetic but up from practically a zero score with 1 month of full-time studying. I can't do that again, my employer was kind enough the first time around. Now it's full-time work plus studying and considering adding an MBA to the concoction.)
3.3 (Down because I took 10 years of random classes at the local community college just because I wanted to keep learning and figure out what to do when I grew up so the grades weren't important to me. Oh, the mistakes we make as we go through life...GRRRR.....)

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wardboro
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Re: help from those who can

Postby wardboro » Mon Jan 04, 2010 12:32 pm

If you're a white female, with a 3.3, I think you need at least a 157 to be seriously considered at the UU, non-trad factors notwithstanding. There are a fair number of female students in a similar age-range at the law school, but the ones I know have numbers that are comfortably within the 25%-75% range on both LSAT and GPA. Where your GPA isn't bad, but isn't particularly impressive, I think you should work to get as close to 160 as possible to have a shot at admission. Even a 160 3.3 is certainly not auto-admit, but where you're non traditional they may cut you a little slack. I would expect any non-trad boost you get to be in the range of about 3 LSAT points, tops.

With regard to you work, I think studying part time can be more effective anyway. You can only absorb so many LSAT strategies in a day. Keep busting your tail and prep for the June/September 2010 LSAT. Once you're ready for those tests and you have a score in hand then you can start to figure out where to apply. While you'll still need to make some significant LSAT score improvement, I'd also consider UNLV even though it's not T1. They even have a part-time program if you're interested, and the Vegas market is a decent place to be.
Last edited by wardboro on Mon Jan 04, 2010 12:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Kiersten1985
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Re: help from those who can

Postby Kiersten1985 » Mon Jan 04, 2010 12:33 pm

I would knock out the MBA part unless you desire a specific career path that you know will require it (or that will make having an MBA exceptionally worthwhile). Otherwise, studying for the GMAT will take away from your LSAT time and the second degree will cost you a lot of extra time and money.

I would certainly include an addendum for the GPA that explains how you took extra courses. I think you need to show AdComms that law school isn't just another way for you to "keep learning" like these classes were, though. They'll want to see what you want to use your degree for.

Tier 1 is definitely doable with the GPA (granted you raise your LSAT). Are you talking about schools in those states or those state schools? Boalt is going to be nearly impossible for you with that GPA unless you can strike a 180. (Still, they're big on GPAs).

tomwatts
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Re: help from those who can

Postby tomwatts » Mon Jan 04, 2010 2:14 pm

loser148 wrote:JUST OUT OF CURIOSITY - Are classes the ONLY way to find explanations for ALL of the practice LSATs? I can find a lot of answers by searching prep-books and looking online, but it surely would be nice to find a comprehensive book that explains all tests. Or this is overkill and studying a few really well would suffice?

If you sign up for pretty much anything with The Princeton Review, we give you access to our Online Student Center, and that has explanations for everything. You could sign up for the Online Course or (if it's available in your area) the Weekender and you'd get that. I imagine something similar is true of other companies, but I don't actually know.

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loser148
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Re: help from those who can

Postby loser148 » Mon Jan 04, 2010 3:15 pm

Tom...Thank you!

Thank you for being very kind to me.

I started to look at testmasters (after reviewing a nice suggestion) but prices were geared to those who don't need to decide whether or not they are going to pay their mortgates that month or put food on the table!

I'll check out your site and see what I think.
Last edited by loser148 on Mon Jan 04, 2010 9:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.




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