Question about Reading Comprehension Bible

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EdmundBurke23
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Question about Reading Comprehension Bible

Postby EdmundBurke23 » Sat Feb 20, 2010 9:04 pm

This wasn't that big of a problem for LRB. Nor was it that big of a deal for LGB. ... But are the benefits attributable to using up actual RC passages (by studying the RCB) oughtweigh the cost of tainting future Preptests?

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autarkh
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Re: Question about Reading Comprehension Bible

Postby autarkh » Sat Feb 20, 2010 9:15 pm

EdmundBurke23 wrote:This wasn't that big of a problem for LRB. Nor was it that big of a deal for LGB. ... But are the benefits attributable to using up actual RC passages (by studying the RCB) oughtweigh the cost of tainting future Preptests?


I think the "using up passages" aspect of it will only matter for comparative reading.

The criticism I've heard is that the RCB simply isn't as useful as the other two bibles, and I'm inclined to believe it. RC is more of an art -- you read well and it shows. There are things one can do to improve, but I think they are pretty independent of any specific methodology.

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EdmundBurke23
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Re: Question about Reading Comprehension Bible

Postby EdmundBurke23 » Sat Feb 20, 2010 9:21 pm

autarkh wrote:
EdmundBurke23 wrote:This wasn't that big of a problem for LRB. Nor was it that big of a deal for LGB. ... But are the benefits attributable to using up actual RC passages (by studying the RCB) oughtweigh the cost of tainting future Preptests?


I think the "using up passages" aspect of it will only matter for comparative reading.

The criticism I've heard is that the RCB simply isn't as useful as the other two bibles, and I'm inclined to believe it. RC is more of an art -- you read well and it shows. There are things one can do to improve, but I think they are pretty independent of any specific methodology.


I think you have a pretty good point. I definitely won't want to taint the CR passages. Neither should I touch any passages that are from PTs 40 and up. I want to keep a fresh supply of PTs towards the last month and a half...

I understand what you mean about RC being an art. I acknowledge the fact that there are tremendous deficiencies in my ability to absorb and retain information. After several months of trial and error, I find that I have no place to turn to.

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autarkh
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Re: Question about Reading Comprehension Bible

Postby autarkh » Sat Feb 20, 2010 9:47 pm

EdmundBurke23 wrote:
autarkh wrote:
EdmundBurke23 wrote:This wasn't that big of a problem for LRB. Nor was it that big of a deal for LGB. ... But are the benefits attributable to using up actual RC passages (by studying the RCB) oughtweigh the cost of tainting future Preptests?


I think the "using up passages" aspect of it will only matter for comparative reading.

The criticism I've heard is that the RCB simply isn't as useful as the other two bibles, and I'm inclined to believe it. RC is more of an art -- you read well and it shows. There are things one can do to improve, but I think they are pretty independent of any specific methodology.


I think you have a pretty good point. I definitely won't want to taint the CR passages. Neither should I touch any passages that are from PTs 40 and up. I want to keep a fresh supply of PTs towards the last month and a half...

I understand what you mean about RC being an art. I acknowledge the fact that there are tremendous deficiencies in my ability to absorb and retain information. After several months of trial and error, I find that I have no place to turn to.


RC is by far my best area (-1/-0 consistently) and I have some ideas that might help.

Do you find a specific type of passage harder to absorb? For me it was always the ones from the humanities. I nail the law, social science and natural science passages.

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EdmundBurke23
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Re: Question about Reading Comprehension Bible

Postby EdmundBurke23 » Sat Feb 20, 2010 10:57 pm

Thank you for offering help.

I don't know of any specific type of passage that gives me the hiccups. I think it has more to do with my innate strengths and weaknesses.

I actually majored in Philosophy back in undergrad, so reading a lot of dense material occupied a significant portion of my studies. Yet I found myself pressed by the time constraints of the test. I can render a strong assessment of long passages fairly well if I'm given a lot of time; and time is what a lot of philosophy majors are given when being assigned papers on some piece of literature covering esoteric material. In addition English is actually my second language; I may appear to be well-spoken and perhaps even better than some native speakers, I can still identify occasional quirks in my English. There is a clear reflection of this in my ability to read LSAT passages; since there are certain idioms, forms of expression, or even random words, that I'm unable to identify. Instead of focusing on the undersanding the relative implications of each sentence, I'm oftentimes distracted by these formidable obstacles...

I'm trying to use the RCB as a way to gain familiarity with the kind of question types and what not... hopefully it'll enhance my speed... Any thoughts on what I've said so far?? I know I've failed to address matters in a direct kind of way, but I hope I've offered enough information...

Thanks!

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autarkh
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Re: Question about Reading Comprehension Bible

Postby autarkh » Sat Feb 20, 2010 11:25 pm

EdmundBurke23 wrote:Thank you for offering help.

I don't know of any specific type of passage that gives me the hiccups. I think it has more to do with my innate strengths and weaknesses.

I actually majored in Philosophy back in undergrad, so reading a lot of dense material occupied a significant portion of my studies. Yet I found myself pressed by the time constraints of the test. I can render a strong assessment of long passages fairly well if I'm given a lot of time; and time is what a lot of philosophy majors are given when being assigned papers on some piece of literature covering esoteric material. In addition English is actually my second language; I may appear to be well-spoken and perhaps even better than some native speakers, I can still identify occasional quirks in my English. There is a clear reflection of this in my ability to read LSAT passages; since there are certain idioms, forms of expression, or even random words, that I'm unable to identify. Instead of focusing on the undersanding the relative implications of each sentence, I'm oftentimes distracted by these formidable obstacles...

I'm trying to use the RCB as a way to gain familiarity with the kind of question types and what not... hopefully it'll enhance my speed... Any thoughts on what I've said so far?? I know I've failed to address matters in a direct kind of way, but I hope I've offered enough information...

Thanks!


Almost always in RC, you're asked questions that test your understanding of the argument's structure and the points of view expressed. As such, your starting point should always be: 1) who is speaking? 2) what point of view are they advocating? 3) are there other points of view? 4) if so, what is the primary speaker's stance toward these points of view?

Next, you want to pay particular attention to rhetorical devices and words that indicate the author's attitude: how does the author go about making the point? Does he make a primary claim and lay out a sequence of interconnected facts to support it? Does he, instead, use a more parallel technique, giving independent reasons for accepting the claim? Notice questions the author may ask, and the answers given. Also, identify causal relationships, and any terms the passage defines. In general, as you are reading, you should be trying to construct a mental model of the argument.

I find that running a pencil lightly under the words as I read forces me to deliberate over every one rather than skimming. Going back to the passage is the biggest time waster, and if you skim, you'll have very little choice.

If you're really feeling the time pressure, try these drills:

1. Read the passage with time counting up rather than down. Take as much time as you need, but as little as possible. Aim for accuracy. Glance at the clock from time to time to get a sense of where you're at. Write down how long each passage took at the top of the page, then move on. Add up the times. Do several full sections using this technique, and get an idea of how long it is taking you. You should be getting upwards of 90-95% accuracy, or you are not taking enough time to read and really understand.

2. Once you've done this a couple of times, take away a few minutes from your average, and try again with the time counting down. It's OK if you're not quite at 35 yet. Repeat the process a couple of times, then take away even more time. Do this until you get down to 35. Gauge how much your accuracy is affected by the reduction in each case.

3. If endurance is also an issue, try doing two RC sections back to back. 8 passages in a row will build up your stamina.

4. Notice if there is a particular kind of question that gives you trouble. Do you do well on the ones that ask the author's attitude toward a particular view? How about the main point? Keep a log of which question types you miss, so that you can give them more attention. Whenever you get something wrong, go back to the passage and try to figure out why you got it wrong. If possible, have someone else grade the answer sheet so you can try to get the right answer on your own once you know you've missed the question.

Give this a try. Let me know how it goes. Good luck. =)

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EdmundBurke23
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Re: Question about Reading Comprehension Bible

Postby EdmundBurke23 » Sun Feb 21, 2010 12:12 am

Thanks a million. I'll print this out to have it with me while I drill on the RC's this week. I'll PM you with some follow-up questions if necessary:D

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autarkh
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Re: Question about Reading Comprehension Bible

Postby autarkh » Sun Feb 21, 2010 3:16 am

EdmundBurke23 wrote:Thanks a million. I'll print this out to have it with me while I drill on the RC's this week. I'll PM you with some follow-up questions if necessary:D


NP.

One other thing I forgot to mention: care about the argument and invest yourself in it.

I know that's sometimes easier said than done.

The way I do it is to either force myself to hate the argument when I think it's full of crap, or I'll actually try to learn something if I think it's worthwhile. Either way, I have to understand it -- to refute it or to commit it to long term memory. =)

If you do this, you'll find that you often will have a strong reaction to something the author says. Jot it down. Even if it's just an exclamation point. More often than not it will be useful.

09042014
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Re: Question about Reading Comprehension Bible

Postby 09042014 » Sun Feb 21, 2010 3:23 am

EdmundBurke23 wrote:This wasn't that big of a problem for LRB. Nor was it that big of a deal for LGB. ... But are the benefits attributable to using up actual RC passages (by studying the RCB) oughtweigh the cost of tainting future Preptests?


No. RCB was an epic waste on time IMO. I think it is designed for people who have severe reading problems.

Waste of a couple good, recent PTs. Don't.

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EdmundBurke23
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Re: Question about Reading Comprehension Bible

Postby EdmundBurke23 » Sun Feb 21, 2010 3:33 am

Desert Fox wrote:
EdmundBurke23 wrote:This wasn't that big of a problem for LRB. Nor was it that big of a deal for LGB. ... But are the benefits attributable to using up actual RC passages (by studying the RCB) oughtweigh the cost of tainting future Preptests?


No. RCB was an epic waste on time IMO. I think it is designed for people who have severe reading problems.

Waste of a couple good, recent PTs. Don't.


I've got severe reading problems. Therefore RCB will not be an epic waste on time IMO.

No, but in all seriousness. If the RC passages are from recent PTs, I refuse to use them. But I really want to take a cursory glance at the way they categorize things and break things down - just like they did for LRB.

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BigA
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Re: Question about Reading Comprehension Bible

Postby BigA » Sun Feb 21, 2010 3:56 am

autarkh wrote:
Almost always in RC, you're asked questions that test your understanding of the argument's structure and the points of view expressed. As such, your starting point should always be: 1) who is speaking? 2) what point of view are they advocating? 3) are there other points of view? 4) if so, what is the primary speaker's stance toward these points of view?

Next, you want to pay particular attention to rhetorical devices and words that indicate the author's attitude: how does the author go about making the point? Does he make a primary claim and lay out a sequence of interconnected facts to support it? Does he, instead, use a more parallel technique, giving independent reasons for accepting the claim? Notice questions the author may ask, and the answers given. Also, identify causal relationships, and any terms the passage defines. In general, as you are reading, you should be trying to construct a mental model of the argument.

I find that running a pencil lightly under the words as I read forces me to deliberate over every one rather than skimming. Going back to the passage is the biggest time waster, and if you skim, you'll have very little choice.

If you're really feeling the time pressure, try these drills:

1. Read the passage with time counting up rather than down. Take as much time as you need, but as little as possible. Aim for accuracy. Glance at the clock from time to time to get a sense of where you're at. Write down how long each passage took at the top of the page, then move on. Add up the times. Do several full sections using this technique, and get an idea of how long it is taking you. You should be getting upwards of 90-95% accuracy, or you are not taking enough time to read and really understand.

2. Once you've done this a couple of times, take away a few minutes from your average, and try again with the time counting down. It's OK if you're not quite at 35 yet. Repeat the process a couple of times, then take away even more time. Do this until you get down to 35. Gauge how much your accuracy is affected by the reduction in each case.

3. If endurance is also an issue, try doing two RC sections back to back. 8 passages in a row will build up your stamina.

4. Notice if there is a particular kind of question that gives you trouble. Do you do well on the ones that ask the author's attitude toward a particular view? How about the main point? Keep a log of which question types you miss, so that you can give them more attention. Whenever you get something wrong, go back to the passage and try to figure out why you got it wrong. If possible, have someone else grade the answer sheet so you can try to get the right answer on your own once you know you've missed the question.

Give this a try. Let me know how it goes. Good luck. =)


That seems like some really helpful info. Thanks. I was wondering what the RCB says about random guessing. I know the LGB and LRB says to pick D generally (except for a few specific instances). Does this advice to go with D hold true on RC?

Hopefully I will get through all the questions without having to randomly guess, but isn't always happening :roll:




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