Is it time for a prep course?

jason8821
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Is it time for a prep course?

Postby jason8821 » Sun Jan 10, 2010 11:08 pm

With the understanding that I post here far more than my fair share, because i have absolutely no social life because I am living in the middle of buttfuck no where, I want to say thanks in advance for anyone who responds to the following question/dilemma.

I recently recount my test score, I was certain I had a 158 on my last practice (it was really a 156). I believe it was a 157 before that. Most of these points came from my quick grasp on the games. However, after recounting, I came to understanding that I had only gained about an average of 1-2 points/section (raw score) on the logical reasoning/reading comp since my diagnostic.

Even at this point, I know there is a solution to this problem as there always is, but I have spent 2.5 months of hard studying, read and re-read LR bible, and NOVA test prep reading comprehension, and probably put 5 times as much time in LR/RC as Logic games. Does anyone have any suggestions or is breaking 160 going to be real tough pretty tough at this point?

I don't want to waste tests without getting anywhere.

and ultimately do I have to fork over the money for a legitimate course or tutor if I want to get into the 160's?

tomwatts
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Re: Is it time for a prep course?

Postby tomwatts » Sun Jan 10, 2010 11:28 pm

A prep course may be useful. Reading a book is one thing, but having someone right in front if you (or at least live on your computer, if you're in the middle of nowhere) is a different thing. And a tutor ought to be able to diagnose the problem and introduce solutions.

It may be possible to figure this out on your own, but essentially, you need to figure out why you're getting questions wrong and how not to do that in the future, and it sounds as though you've had little luck with that as yet.

So I suppose what I'm saying is that getting help may not be necessary but would probably be, well, helpful.

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hans3n
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Re: Is it time for a prep course?

Postby hans3n » Sun Jan 10, 2010 11:34 pm

You can get to the 160's on your own probably, but taking a prep class will get you there faster most likely

jason8821
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Re: Is it time for a prep course?

Postby jason8821 » Sun Jan 10, 2010 11:55 pm

Thanks for the replies, this is really disheartening though. I feel like I am close, but logical reasoning seems so random to me up until this point, sometimes I do sections and I score the same as my very first diagnostic.

I know I kind of have add, and I also know that if I practice tired I perform terribly, and then I get really frustrated. Has anyone else experienced this rut and then came out of it. I have always intuitively felt the "either you have it or you don't argument is bullshit in almost anything, but after 2.5 months of hard studying, it's difficult to keep up enthusiasm/ not lose a little faith.

PhofiB
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Re: Is it time for a prep course?

Postby PhofiB » Mon Jan 11, 2010 12:07 am

If I were you, I would take a course at this point. It seems as though you've hit a plateau in your studying. A new approach to the material may make a significant difference for you.

jason8821
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Re: Is it time for a prep course?

Postby jason8821 » Mon Jan 11, 2010 12:13 am

What course would you recommend? I don't know that it would be a good idea to do powerscore since I have went through LRB and LGB twice. Is it possible/probable that I could go without gaining more than a 2-3 points/section on LR/RC after my first diagnostic? Thanks for your help.

tomwatts
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Re: Is it time for a prep course?

Postby tomwatts » Mon Jan 11, 2010 3:34 pm

If you want a somewhat different perspective, you could take a class with Princeton Review (who I work for). If you want something similar to PS but not identical, TM or BP is probably pretty similar. If you're in a distant location, you probably want a LiveOnline class, which I know PR has, but the others may not (don't know).

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hans3n
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Re: Is it time for a prep course?

Postby hans3n » Mon Jan 11, 2010 3:40 pm

I did Testmasters. I know for sure you can get into the 160's with Testmasters. I had no idea what the lsat really was before I took their prep class. I went up 18 points from my first diagnostic to the actual test, and 20 points between worst and best diag. Unfortunately I did better on my last diag than the actual test. I would say you can at least get 5-6 points higher through their class. I dont have any info on other prep courses. A prep class for me was the best investment I could make.

jason8821
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Re: Is it time for a prep course?

Postby jason8821 » Mon Jan 11, 2010 4:20 pm

Thanks for the replies. Until recently I was considering not taking the lsat or at least taking a month or two off to allow myself to approach it with a fresh state of mind, If I cannot break 160 once with 2.5-3 months of hard studying, I don't know that law school is for me, but I will definitely look into those prep courses.

Do people think an online class would be useful or would it be a lot better to take it in person?

ajk
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Re: Is it time for a prep course?

Postby ajk » Mon Jan 11, 2010 4:33 pm

i also did Testmasters with no prior LSAT studying. Testmasters actually recommends that you don't try to study for the LSAT before you take their class so that you can best learn their methods. My first diagnostic was in the 140's (first day of class w/o any exposure to lsat) and my LSAT was in the 160's and they were two months apart. Its a pricey class but worth its weight in gold, imho.

jason8821
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Re: Is it time for a prep course?

Postby jason8821 » Mon Jan 11, 2010 4:52 pm

That kind of scares me, I'v been studying so hard for the lsat, and now every logical reasoning problem looks harder than it did before, It's like a chinese finger trap.

jason8821
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Re: Is it time for a prep course?

Postby jason8821 » Tue Jan 12, 2010 1:09 pm

Does anyone think a list of LSAT Vocabulary could be useful?

I noticed that some of the questions having reoccurring vocabulary. For instance, Circumvent is a words thats been used in a couple questions, but there much more difficult words that I have missed the answer on as a result of knowing the definition. I.E)Impetus

tomwatts
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Re: Is it time for a prep course?

Postby tomwatts » Tue Jan 12, 2010 1:14 pm

jason8821 wrote:Do people think an online class would be useful or would it be a lot better to take it in person?

All other things being equal, I like the in-person classes better (just because I like to be able to see the people I'm talking to), but it's more an aesthetic thing than a real difference in quality. Online will be perfectly adequate.

Oh, uh, that is, LiveOnline. Online (in TPR terminology) is just a bunch of recorded lessons, which is helpful for a lot of people but not what I would recommend for you personally.

On the vocabulary issue: I rarely have students have serious vocab problems on the LSAT (as opposed to the MCAT, where I sometimes do, or the SAT, where it's very, very common). Still, every now and then a word like "trenchant" comes up, and some people know it, and some people don't. I'd just recommend keeping track of words you don't know in PTs and looking them up on your own. That's usually the most effective method of learning vocabulary anyway.

jason8821
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Re: Is it time for a prep course?

Postby jason8821 » Tue Jan 12, 2010 1:33 pm

Thanks tom. I appreciate the advice.

Yeah I usually know what a word means when I have just a second to think about it. For instance, when I hear a word such as impiety, I will think it is referring to someone who is not pious, but it really helps to get the full definition so that I can understand it in multiple contexts.




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