160-165 reading only 3 passages?

jason8821
Posts: 212
Joined: Tue Oct 20, 2009 12:42 am

160-165 reading only 3 passages?

Postby jason8821 » Thu Jan 14, 2010 4:44 pm

Just tried reading 3 passages instead of all 4. Scores on about 10 RC passages were.

3 1/2- 15/16 average (3-4 sections)
4 passages- 12-14 average (3-4 sections)
3 passages plus main point on 4th-19 (1st time)

If this is my worse section and my ultimate goal is mid 160's is this a smart strategy or should I try to get reading speed up?

User avatar
IHaveDietMoxie
Posts: 137
Joined: Wed Dec 10, 2008 3:54 am

Re: 160-165 reading only 3 passages?

Postby IHaveDietMoxie » Thu Jan 14, 2010 4:49 pm

just read more, this is a bad idea.

sbarot
Posts: 3
Joined: Sat Aug 29, 2009 6:47 pm

Re: 160-165 reading only 3 passages?

Postby sbarot » Thu Jan 14, 2010 4:52 pm

I was in the same boat as you. It's best to shoot for accuracy rather than trying to get through all 4 passages. Improving your reading comprehension takes years, so it's better if you try to get all the questions that you are answering correct instead. On the passage that you skip, answer the same letter for each question. You are more likely to pick up a couple points by guessing that way. Hope this helps!

jason8821
Posts: 212
Joined: Tue Oct 20, 2009 12:42 am

Re: 160-165 reading only 3 passages?

Postby jason8821 » Thu Jan 14, 2010 5:00 pm

sbarot wrote:I was in the same boat as you. It's best to shoot for accuracy rather than trying to get through all 4 passages. Improving your reading comprehension takes years, so it's better if you try to get all the questions that you are answering correct instead. On the passage that you skip, answer the same letter for each question. You are more likely to pick up a couple points by guessing that way. Hope this helps!


Did you find that you performed better when only reading 3 of the passages?

I agree that improving reading comprehension takes a long time to improve on. Although my scores decreased since I began doing four full passages, I still feel like I was reading more efficiently as a result of practice with the economist/sci-america, but it's weird how trying to answer a question just 5-10 seconds too fast can completely destroy my score.

Woozy
Posts: 159
Joined: Sun Oct 18, 2009 2:29 pm

Re: 160-165 reading only 3 passages?

Postby Woozy » Thu Jan 14, 2010 5:03 pm

OP, obviously this is not an ideal strategy, but sometimes you have to go with whatever works. If study time is limited and this gets you higher scores, go for it. I'd say it needs more testing - one result could be a fluke.

sbarot wrote:On the passage that you skip, answer the same letter for each question. You are more likely to pick up a couple points by guessing that way.


This is one of the ways in which our intuitive thinking fails in understanding statistics. The probabilities remain constant regardless of the letters you pick.

studylaw7
Posts: 99
Joined: Thu Jan 14, 2010 2:14 am

Re: 160-165 reading only 3 passages?

Postby studylaw7 » Thu Jan 14, 2010 5:11 pm

jason8821 wrote:Just tried reading 3 passages instead of all 4. Scores on about 10 RC passages were.

3 1/2- 15/16 average (3-4 sections)
4 passages- 12-14 average (3-4 sections)
3 passages plus main point on 4th-19 (1st time)

If this is my worse section and my ultimate goal is mid 160's is this a smart strategy or should I try to get reading speed up?


If you have had difficulty with time on the RC I think you should try to master 3.5 passages instead of 4. I think over time you can really up that 15/16 average to above 19. after you have mastered this, then try to take on the full 4.

User avatar
bceagles182
Posts: 615
Joined: Fri Oct 16, 2009 10:53 pm

Re: 160-165 reading only 3 passages?

Postby bceagles182 » Thu Jan 14, 2010 5:11 pm

My bet would be that if you guess different answers, over infinite time your average # correct would be the same. However, we're talking about a single instance (the actual test) in this case, so you are better off answering the same answer choice repeatedly (whichever answer choice appears least frequently in your answers) as most likely LSAC will try to even out the answers across sections.

lawduder
Posts: 483
Joined: Sun Jun 28, 2009 10:56 am

Re: 160-165 reading only 3 passages?

Postby lawduder » Thu Jan 14, 2010 5:14 pm

FWIW I scored a 167 and got -8 in reading which is probably more than I would have gotten wrong if I had made sure the first three passages were perfect.

Woozy
Posts: 159
Joined: Sun Oct 18, 2009 2:29 pm

Re: 160-165 reading only 3 passages?

Postby Woozy » Thu Jan 14, 2010 5:23 pm

bceagles182 wrote:as most likely LSAC will try to even out the answers across sections.


Why would they do this, and more importantly, do you have any evidence that they are doing this?

jason8821
Posts: 212
Joined: Tue Oct 20, 2009 12:42 am

Re: 160-165 reading only 3 passages?

Postby jason8821 » Thu Jan 14, 2010 5:23 pm

I know that there is such a thing as a fluke, and i will be pissed if the next result comes back lower, but I try to limit the variables by only doing intense timed practice sections during certain hours of the day, and even if say you knock of 2 answers, 17 is still higher than almost all previous attempts. I would like to think I could work my reading speed up to 4 passages, but as mentioned in another post reading comp was by far my worst part of verbal, and in fact the entire SAT, as I scored less than the 50th percentile.

I have had horrible problems concentrating my whole life, and still opted to get off ADD meds and try to use self-discipline. (took them from freshmen year of college to graduation) kind of sucks now.

User avatar
OperaSoprano
Posts: 4410
Joined: Tue Nov 25, 2008 1:54 am

Re: 160-165 reading only 3 passages?

Postby OperaSoprano » Thu Jan 14, 2010 5:25 pm

OP, I got a 164 and did not even attempt the final logic game. (I put all Ds). I am not endorsing this strategy, but what you are asking is possible.

sbarot
Posts: 3
Joined: Sat Aug 29, 2009 6:47 pm

Re: 160-165 reading only 3 passages?

Postby sbarot » Thu Jan 14, 2010 5:27 pm

jason8821 wrote:
sbarot wrote:I was in the same boat as you. It's best to shoot for accuracy rather than trying to get through all 4 passages. Improving your reading comprehension takes years, so it's better if you try to get all the questions that you are answering correct instead. On the passage that you skip, answer the same letter for each question. You are more likely to pick up a couple points by guessing that way. Hope this helps!


Did you find that you performed better when only reading 3 of the passages?

I agree that improving reading comprehension takes a long time to improve on. Although my scores decreased since I began doing four full passages, I still feel like I was reading more efficiently as a result of practice with the economist/sci-america, but it's weird how trying to answer a question just 5-10 seconds too fast can completely destroy my score.


Definitely did better. What makes this strategy difficult is choosing the 3 passages you want to do. It is possible that one of those 3 is extremely difficult, and you end up missing most of them. Then you missed most questions on 2 passages (the difficult passage plus the one you decided to skip). Try identifying which passages are easiest for you by looking at the passage content and question types. This will take a few more seconds but I think it's worth the investment.

jason8821
Posts: 212
Joined: Tue Oct 20, 2009 12:42 am

Re: 160-165 reading only 3 passages?

Postby jason8821 » Thu Jan 14, 2010 5:31 pm

sbarot wrote:
jason8821 wrote:
sbarot wrote:I was in the same boat as you. It's best to shoot for accuracy rather than trying to get through all 4 passages. Improving your reading comprehension takes years, so it's better if you try to get all the questions that you are answering correct instead. On the passage that you skip, answer the same letter for each question. You are more likely to pick up a couple points by guessing that way. Hope this helps!


Did you find that you performed better when only reading 3 of the passages?

I agree that improving reading comprehension takes a long time to improve on. Although my scores decreased since I began doing four full passages, I still feel like I was reading more efficiently as a result of practice with the economist/sci-america, but it's weird how trying to answer a question just 5-10 seconds too fast can completely destroy my score.


Definitely did better. What makes this strategy difficult is choosing the 3 passages you want to do. It is possible that one of those 3 is extremely difficult, and you end up missing most of them. Then you missed most questions on 2 passages (the difficult passage plus the one you decided to skip). Try identifying which passages are easiest for you by looking at the passage content and question types. This will take a few more seconds but I think it's worth the investment.


Great, Thanks for the advice. It's really nice if there are sections that have disproportionate questions such as one with 3 with 7, and one with 5-6. I mean if you can answer 20/21 right taking time, and one more lucky one, that's 22 which is still a damn good RC score, especially if you are up to par on the other sections.

vassarman
Posts: 9
Joined: Sun Jan 03, 2010 11:24 pm

Re: 160-165 reading only 3 passages?

Postby vassarman » Thu Jan 14, 2010 5:35 pm

FWIW, if you can document your ADD etc etc--do you think you could get some extra time for the test?

If not, you might want to try in the next few weeks not just reading test prompts but picking up the new yorker, or the economist or something. Are you prepping for the February test? If not--the strategy of just reading as much as possible--even if only an extra hour or two a day--might really help. If you are, well, reading the economist can't hurt--article lengths are about right, and you'll be better informed about world-affairs.

Just a thought.

jason8821 wrote:
sbarot wrote:
jason8821 wrote:
sbarot wrote:I was in the same boat as you. It's best to shoot for accuracy rather than trying to get through all 4 passages. Improving your reading comprehension takes years, so it's better if you try to get all the questions that you are answering correct instead. On the passage that you skip, answer the same letter for each question. You are more likely to pick up a couple points by guessing that way. Hope this helps!


Did you find that you performed better when only reading 3 of the passages?

I agree that improving reading comprehension takes a long time to improve on. Although my scores decreased since I began doing four full passages, I still feel like I was reading more efficiently as a result of practice with the economist/sci-america, but it's weird how trying to answer a question just 5-10 seconds too fast can completely destroy my score.


Definitely did better. What makes this strategy difficult is choosing the 3 passages you want to do. It is possible that one of those 3 is extremely difficult, and you end up missing most of them. Then you missed most questions on 2 passages (the difficult passage plus the one you decided to skip). Try identifying which passages are easiest for you by looking at the passage content and question types. This will take a few more seconds but I think it's worth the investment.


Great, Thanks for the advice. It's really nice if there are sections that have disproportionate questions such as one with 3 with 7, and one with 5-6. I mean if you can answer 20/21 right taking time, and one more lucky one, that's 22 which is still a damn good RC score, especially if you are up to par on the other sections.

jason8821
Posts: 212
Joined: Tue Oct 20, 2009 12:42 am

Re: 160-165 reading only 3 passages?

Postby jason8821 » Thu Jan 14, 2010 5:52 pm

I am not prepping for February because I don't believe I will meet my goals by then, but I am planning to take the test in June. As far as the ADD goes, I opted to get off the medication because I lost my insurance and then eventually I decided to join the coast guard, and although it's not looking bright at the moment I am still trying to hash things out with doctors and prove that I am capable despite my previous diagnosis. Although many people have problems focusing in class and reading for a long time, I honestly do believe that I experience a bit more trouble in these areas as as a result of having ADD and have had to compensate, but besides that I am able to function pretty well. I played two college sports, and got decent grades even during the semesters where I was not taking adderall. Also, I have always been pretty good at things that involve short term intense concentration (I.E math) In my opinion, it would sort of be cheating the test to ask for a time allowance, but that time would help.

vassarman
Posts: 9
Joined: Sun Jan 03, 2010 11:24 pm

Re: 160-165 reading only 3 passages?

Postby vassarman » Thu Jan 14, 2010 6:15 pm

jason8821 wrote:I am not prepping for February because I don't believe I will meet my goals by then, but I am planning to take the test in June. As far as the ADD goes, I opted to get off the medication because I lost my insurance and then eventually I decided to join the coast guard, and although it's not looking bright at the moment I am still trying to hash things out with doctors and prove that I am capable despite my previous diagnosis. Although many people have problems focusing in class and reading for a long time, I honestly do believe that I experience a bit more trouble in these areas as as a result of having ADD and have had to compensate, but besides that I am able to function pretty well. I played two college sports, and got decent grades even during the semesters where I was not taking adderall. Also, I have always been pretty good at things that involve short term intense concentration (I.E math) In my opinion, it would sort of be cheating the test to ask for a time allowance, but that time would help.


It's not cheating if, with you not obfuscating at all, you are able to prove that this is time that you deserve to have. I would look into it.

As for the reading stuff--seriously consider the economist or new yorker. Like I said, it can't hurt, and with this much time, if you make it a drill to read the economist every single day and to then quiz yourself on the facts in the articles you will find yourself speeding up on the reading comp, guaranteed.

jason8821
Posts: 212
Joined: Tue Oct 20, 2009 12:42 am

Re: 160-165 reading only 3 passages?

Postby jason8821 » Thu Jan 14, 2010 9:33 pm

vassarman wrote:
jason8821 wrote:I am not prepping for February because I don't believe I will meet my goals by then, but I am planning to take the test in June. As far as the ADD goes, I opted to get off the medication because I lost my insurance and then eventually I decided to join the coast guard, and although it's not looking bright at the moment I am still trying to hash things out with doctors and prove that I am capable despite my previous diagnosis. Although many people have problems focusing in class and reading for a long time, I honestly do believe that I experience a bit more trouble in these areas as as a result of having ADD and have had to compensate, but besides that I am able to function pretty well. I played two college sports, and got decent grades even during the semesters where I was not taking adderall. Also, I have always been pretty good at things that involve short term intense concentration (I.E math) In my opinion, it would sort of be cheating the test to ask for a time allowance, but that time would help.


It's not cheating if, with you not obfuscating at all, you are able to prove that this is time that you deserve to have. I would look into it.

As for the reading stuff--seriously consider the economist or new yorker. Like I said, it can't hurt, and with this much time, if you make it a drill to read the economist every single day and to then quiz yourself on the facts in the articles you will find yourself speeding up on the reading comp, guaranteed.


I didn't mean to say cheating as if to sound pretentious. It's just that I feel as though for someone who has been able to function in many capacities that denote awareness and a keen sense of what is going on around them, it seems almost fraudulent for me to use the ADD rule even if I was allowed to do so.

Does anyone disagree with me? Would it be stupid not to try and prove that I did indeed have ADD?

I mean I guess my argument is that if a guy tore his acl in football and wanted to play again, he couldn't get the starting job next year because he now he had a deficient quality that put him at a loss, it just was the way it was, and he had to work harder.

ps494
Posts: 141
Joined: Tue Jan 05, 2010 4:50 pm

Re: 160-165 reading only 3 passages?

Postby ps494 » Thu Jan 14, 2010 9:44 pm

I also have trouble with RC, and I'm think I'm going to do several RC sections with the three passage strategy to see what happens. My only concern is that you could really screw yourself over if one of the passages you pick is a REALLY hard (i.e. sculptures, mites, etc.).

For those of you that only read three passages, do you just pick the passages with the most questions? The reason I ask is that while some passages only have 6 question or so, these are usually the easiest, while often times the passages with the most questions are the most difficult.

jason8821
Posts: 212
Joined: Tue Oct 20, 2009 12:42 am

Re: 160-165 reading only 3 passages?

Postby jason8821 » Thu Jan 14, 2010 9:57 pm

My experience thus far is (after about 10-12 sections) is that I cannot differentiate between hard and easy RC. If I was able to get to all of the passages, I think I would score roughly just under 6, more like 5.5/7 in each one, say if I was given 40-42 minutes. Although there are some sections that are harder, it often seems like they have more questions which in effect makes it easier because if your doing three sections + main point on the fourth, you should try to do each section in 11 minutes, but can allow for 12 on a 7-8 question passage.

tesoro
Posts: 472
Joined: Fri Sep 11, 2009 8:10 pm

Re: 160-165 reading only 3 passages?

Postby tesoro » Thu Jan 14, 2010 10:05 pm

I got a 165. On average, I would make it through 3 passages semi-meticulously with 3 minutes remaining, spend 1.5 speed reading the last passage and spend 1.5 answering the 2 shortest/easiest questions correctly and bubbling in B for the rest. I would always make sure that this passage was the one with only 5 questions on it (or 6, if there was no passage with only 5).

I have no idea what my breakdown was because I took it in Feb. But it's likely representative of all of my other practice LSATs, which included -5 to -8 on RC consistently.

The weird part was, I read really quickly. I was done with every passage in under 2 minutes. I just for some reason had more trouble with RC questions than I did anywhere else on the exam. If your goal is mid 160s and you're good with LG and RC, then yes this can be done.

jason8821
Posts: 212
Joined: Tue Oct 20, 2009 12:42 am

Re: 160-165 reading only 3 passages?

Postby jason8821 » Thu Jan 14, 2010 10:17 pm

I'd love to hit 3 passages in 30 min, with 90-95% accuracy, and then knock out 2 more on the last section, that will probably be my goal.

User avatar
Stringer Bell
Posts: 1920
Joined: Wed Oct 21, 2009 9:43 pm

Re: 160-165 reading only 3 passages?

Postby Stringer Bell » Thu Jan 14, 2010 10:22 pm

What are you doing to prep? I would read constantly and see if you can get faster. Read some legit magazines. Scientific American, The Economist, The New Yorker, etc.

ps494
Posts: 141
Joined: Tue Jan 05, 2010 4:50 pm

Re: 160-165 reading only 3 passages?

Postby ps494 » Thu Jan 14, 2010 10:24 pm

The only problem with this technique is that you better be damn sure that you get nearly every question correct. Otherwise the RC section could completely ruin an entire test.

jaydizzle
Posts: 714
Joined: Sat Jan 17, 2009 6:28 pm

Re: 160-165 reading only 3 passages?

Postby jaydizzle » Thu Jan 14, 2010 10:28 pm

I did this on December and with sculptors. It did not end well. :( The passage seemed straightforward until I tried to answer the questions. Please learn from me and work on timing. I found I am doing much better by rushing with the reading and then going to the questions and rereading parts if I have to. Everyone is different, but with enough prep everyone should be able to finish every section of the test. This is exactly why I am retaking. I probably lost 10 points on the test just because of timing.

ps494
Posts: 141
Joined: Tue Jan 05, 2010 4:50 pm

Re: 160-165 reading only 3 passages?

Postby ps494 » Thu Jan 14, 2010 10:32 pm

jaydizzle wrote:I did this on December and with sculptors. It did not end well. :( The passage seemed straightforward until I tried to answer the questions. Please learn from me and work on timing. I found I am doing much better by rushing with the reading and then going to the questions and rereading parts if I have to. Everyone is different, but with enough prep everyone should be able to finish every section of the test. This is exactly why I am retaking. I probably lost 10 points on the test just because of timing.


Yeah the sculptures passage itself was not all that hard, but the questions were a killer.




Return to “LSAT Prep and Discussion Forum”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: applejacks888, Greenteachurro, JohnMaynardKeynes, njames1961, theboringest and 13 guests