I'm a year behind you and will be taking the test next June, and I really admire your work ethic. I was hoping you might want to help me clear something up.
I have the powerscore bibles and I am definitely willing to do whatever it takes to attain a top score, especially by taking 40+ tests, but I don't know how to set up learning the material without distorting my scores later. In other words, how did you structure your studying so that you didn't end up seeing sections in PT's that you had seen/studied before?
Or is this not a serious concern? It seems like there would be score inflation in the PTs if familiar sections come up, but I could be wrong. Like I said, I'm just in the planning stages for next June, so I'm just hoping for some tips on planning out a study schedule as you seem like someone to ask.
I hope this was clear lol thanks!!
I would do the Powerscore Bibles. You're going to use some more recent material, but it's worth it to work through the Bibles.
What I would recommend is work through a chapter of a Bible, say basic linear games. Then go do all the basic linear games from 10 Actual, Official Preptests (PT's 7-18 with 8 and 17 missing) or the next 10 one. I'd probably go with the 1st set of 10 book, but it doesn't really matter. Pick one of those, and then go find a spreadsheet that breaks down the question types, I found mine at the LSAT Blog (that guy who posted above; I think he has a link to his blog on his profile, check it out). I found the link, hope you don't mind the plug: http://lsatblog.blogspot.com/
. This is a really great resource, and I highly recommend reading around, and checking out some of his study schedules, spreadsheets, and other articles. Do this until you've answered all the question types of LR and all the games of LG.
At this point, you should do sections completely untimed, taking as long as you need to finish the section, and being as sure as you can be that you got the answer correct (this eliminates any mistakes you may make due to trying to finish in the time limit; you can figure out what your weaknesses are, and what you need to work on). Do this until you get to a point where you are comfortable with all the question types, and are missing about as many as you would be realistically aiming for.
If you're still missing more than you want to miss, keep on working untimed sections until you've reduced the number of your misses to your realistic goal level.
Now, start doing timed sections, pulling them from oldest PT's, and work your way to the more recent ones. Here is the important trick. Don't countdown/stopwatch; instead, time how long it takes you to work through all the questions, taking as long as you need to be reasonable sure you've gotten them all correctly; work at a reasonable pace, but don't rush. See how long it takes you to complete each section. From this point, you need to repeat this step, slowly speeding up and working faster, maintaining your accuracy. Work until you can do sections most of the time in 35 minutes or less without sacrificing accuracy.
Now you got to put it all together. Start stringing together timed sections. Depending on your level of endurance, you may only be able to do 2 timed sections back to back; keep stringing timed sections until you can get to 4 sections without sacrificing accuracy;
If you're roughly near your goal score, now is time to add in a 5th experimental section. My advice at this point would be to plan everything out on google calendar. Count up how many PT's you have left, how many days you have until test day (giving yourself a good 2 full day break before the actual test), and then space out the PT's "evenly" throughout your remaining time. Ideally, you'd want to spend PT's 7-18 learning sections, PT 19-28 doing untimed and timed sections, leaving yourself 29-59 to do full timed tests.
Working with those numbers, you have 30 PT's. Doing a little bit of math (which I suck at so hopefully I don't mess this up), you'll end up with 24 4-section PT's, and 6 PT's to be divided into 24 experimental sections. So take your 6 older PT's, in this case 29-35 and then assign each section to a PT. So 29.1 would go with PT 36, 29.2 with PT 37, and so on and so forth. Experimental tests come in the 1st 3 sections, so I would rotate putting the experimental sections in all 3 of the slots (for your first test, put the experimental in the 3rd section, the next put it in the 2nd section, the next put it in the 1st section, etc.).
Work through these PT's timed, making a spreadsheet and keeping track of all important data. I record test # (how many tests i've taken), PT #, date, scores for each of the 4 sections recorded as number of misses (-X LR -X RC -X LR -X LG), raw score, scaled score, "curve" (number of misses to get 170), and then additional notes (I usually noted whether it was 5 section or 4 section, what experimental section I used and where I placed it).
You also need to review every PT you do, and every section you do. I highly recommend typing it out. I posted a sample review earlier in this thread. I'll post it at the end of this post.
Hope this helped, I'd be glad to elaborate if you want. And thanks for the encouragement on your other post! Good luck!
Sample Review wrote:PT #25 Review
Section 1: -0 RC
Section 2: -2 LR
#10: Correct answer was E, I chose D. I circled this question as uncertain when I answered it.
Stimulus: Insects can see ultraviolet light and are known to identify important food sources and mating sites by sensing the characteristic patterns of ultraviolet light that these things reflect. Insects are also attracted to Glomosus spiderwebs, which reflect ultraviolet light. Thus, insects are probably attracted to these webs because of the specific patterns of ultraviolet light that these webs reflect.
Question Stem: Which one of the following, if true, most strongly supports the argument?
D: When Drosophila fruit flies were placed before a Glomosus web and a synthetic web of similar pattern that also reflected ultraviolet light and both webs were illuminated with white light containing an ultraviolet component, many of the fruit flies flew to the Glomosus web. This answer is incorrect because, if true, this answer choice tells us that the fruit flies are attracted to the Glomosus web for reasons other than the ultraviolet light. Because both webs reflect ultraviolet light, that variable is held constant, and thus can not be responsible for why the fruit flies are attracted to the Glomosus web.
E: When Drosophila fruit flies were placed before two Glomosus webs, one illuminated with white light containing an ultraviolet component and one illuminated with a white light without an ultraviolet component, the majority flew to the ultraviolet reflecting web. This is the correct answer because the argument concludes that the insects are probably attracted to these webs because of the ultraviolet light that these webs reflect. Since the webs were the same type, and only the variable of whether ultraviolet light was reflecting off the web, we know that that the ultraviolet light was the reason for why the fruit flies chose one web over another.
#25: Correct answer was D, I chose C.
Stimulus: Jack's aunt gave him her will, asking him to make it public when she died; he promised to do so. After her death, Jack looked at the will; it stipulated that all her money go to her friend George. Jack knew that if he made the will public, George would squander the money, benefiting neither George nor anyone else. Jack also knew that if he did not make the will public, the money would go to his own mother, who would use it to benefit herself and others, harming no one. After reflection, he decided not to make the will public.
Question stem: Which one of the following principles, if valid, would require Jack to act as he did in the situation described?
C: One must choose an alternative that benefits some and harms no one over an alternative that harms some and benefits no one. This answer choice is incorrect because if Jack made the will public, there is no indication that it will harm some, it would just simply not benefit anyone else.
D: When faced with alternatives it is obligatory to choose whichever one will benefit the greatest number of people. This answer choice is correct, because this principle, if valid, would require Jack to act as he did in this situation.
Section 3: -9 LG
Missed a key inference on game two, causing me to go 0/7, which was the numerical distribution. It either had to be 1-1-2-2 or 1-1-3-1.
#6: Correct answer is C. Because of numerical distribution, K and M can't both speak Russian.
#7: Correct answer was A. Numerical distribution again.
#8: Correct answer was B. Numerical distribution again.
#9: Correct answer was E. This answer comes as a byproduct of knowing about the numerical distribution.
#10: Correct answer was B. ND.
#11: Correct answer was E. Answer comes from the rule that is Klaus is assigned to Xerxes, then Michael speaks French.
#12: Correct answer was E, comes from the above rule.
Section 4: -2 LR
#11: Correct answer was D, I chose E. I also circled this one as uncertain during the test.
Stimulus: Taken together, some 2,000 stocks recommended on a popular television show over the course of the past 12 years by the show's guests, most of whom are successful consultants for multibillion-dollar stock portfolios, performed less successfully than the market as a whole for this 12-year period. So clearly, no one should ever follow any recommendations by these so-called experts.
Question stem: Each of the following, if true, weakens the argument EXCEPT:
E: The stock portfolios for which the guests were consultants performed better for the past 12-year period than the market as a whole. This answer is incorrect because this does indeed weaken the argument that no one should ever follow any recommendations by these so-called experts, by demonstrating that they are capable of choosing stocks that can perform better than the market as a whole. The correct answer needs to be neutral or strengthen the idea that no one should ever follow any recommendations by these so-called experts.
D: Performance of the stocks recommended on a television show was measured independently by a number of analysts, and the results of all the measurements concurred. This answer is correct because it is neutral to the argument that no one should follow any recommendations by these so-called experts.
#23: Correct answer was B, I chose D. I also circled this question as uncertain.
Stimulus: Only computer scientists understand the architecture of personal computers, and only those who understand the architecture of personal computers appreciate the advances in technology made in the last decade. It follows that only those who appreciate these advances are computer scientists.
Question stem: Which one of the following most accurately describes a flaw in the reasoning of the argument?
Premise 1: Only computer scientists understand the architecture of personal computers
(UAPC → CS)
Premise 2: Only those who understand the architecture of personal computers appreciate the advances in technology made in the last decade.
(AAT → UAPC → CS) Here is the flaw, just because they understand the architecture of personal computers (UAPC), and therefore are computer scientists (CS) doesn't mean they appreciate the advances in technology made in the last decade (AAT).
Conclusion: It follows that those who appreciate these advances are computer scientists.
(AAT → CS) FLAWED
D: The premises of the argument are stated in such a way that they exclude the possibility of drawing any logical conclusion. This answer is incorrect, because you it is possible to draw at least 1 logical conclusion from the premises, such as SOME people who AAT are CS.
B: The argument ignores the fact that some computer scientists may not appreciate the advances in technology made in the last decade. For reasons stated above.