Speed Improvement

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LSAT Taker
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Speed Improvement

Postby LSAT Taker » Fri May 14, 2010 12:17 pm

I know this question has already been asked by several others many times, but what can I do now, with the June test only a few weeks ahead, to improve my reading speed? My problem stemming from the slow pace is killing my score on all three sections, meaning that I tend to spend way too much time trying to figure out what's going on (both LG and LR, not to mention RC). When I first started taking PTs, I used to score between 165 and 173, but now below 160. I rarely get to even read the last passage on RC, and usually finish #19 or #20 on LR within 35 minutes. LG is the same story -- once I get the point, no problem, but it usually takes me 3+ minutes understanding the stimulus and rules... Should I decide not to take the June test, and give up applying for a law school? I am really discouraged, and in deep despair. Perhaps, I don't deserve to live.

09042014
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Re: Speed Improvement

Postby 09042014 » Fri May 14, 2010 12:20 pm

LSAT Taker wrote:I know this question has already been asked by several others many times, but what can I do now, with the June test only a few weeks ahead, to improve my reading speed? My problem stemming from the slow pace is killing my score on all three sections, meaning that I tend to spend way too much time trying to figure out what's going on (both LG and LR, not to mention RC). When I first started taking PTs, I used to score between 165 and 173, but now below 160. I rarely get to even read the last passage on RC, and usually finish #19 or #20 on LR within 35 minutes. LG is the same story -- once I get the point, no problem, but it usually takes me 3+ minutes understanding the stimulus and rules... Should I decide not to take the June test, and give up applying for a law school? I am really discouraged, and in deep despair. Perhaps, I don't deserve to live.


Do you mean untimed you were getting 173?

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LSAT Taker
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Re: Speed Improvement

Postby LSAT Taker » Fri May 14, 2010 12:25 pm

My previous scores 165-173 were from timed PTs. The only difference is that I am bubbling now. That said, when I didn't bubble, I gave myself 32 minutes, not full 35 minutes. So I really don't know what the problem is. I tend to blank out more now. More often now, I find myself re-reading a stimulus or passage over and over again because the information doesn't get through to me. Should I conclude that I lack aptitude for law school?

09042014
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Re: Speed Improvement

Postby 09042014 » Fri May 14, 2010 12:29 pm

LSAT Taker wrote:My previous scores 165-173 were from timed PTs. The only difference is that I am bubbling now. That said, when I didn't bubble, I gave myself 32 minutes, not full 35 minutes. So I really don't know what the problem is. I tend to blank out more now. More often now, I find myself re-reading a stimulus or passage over and over again because the information doesn't get through to me. Should I conclude that I lack aptitude for law school?


Take 4 days off then go again. Sounds like you burned out.

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LSAT Taker
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Re: Speed Improvement

Postby LSAT Taker » Fri May 14, 2010 12:32 pm

Thanks for your diagnosis and advice. Do you think I can afford to take time off now? I really don't want to see my score drop further, i.e. below 155 or under. Also, if anyone out there with some empathy, what are you doing to improve speed, or how did you succeed in improving?

09042014
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Re: Speed Improvement

Postby 09042014 » Fri May 14, 2010 12:36 pm

LSAT Taker wrote:Thanks for your diagnosis and advice. Do you think I can afford to take time off now? I really don't want to see my score drop further, i.e. below 155 or under. Also, if anyone out there with some empathy, what are you doing to improve speed, or how did you succeed in improving?


If you are smart enough to get a 165, you aren't going to drop below 155 unless you stress yourself out until you fry your brain. Take time off. You have to.

Try taking individual passes of RC and LG time within 8:30 min. A bunch, over and over. It teaches you how to go faster. I have no clue about LR, I always finished those with time to spare.

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Bert
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Re: Speed Improvement

Postby Bert » Fri May 14, 2010 12:39 pm

LSAT Taker wrote:Thanks for your diagnosis and advice. Do you think I can afford to take time off now? I really don't want to see my score drop further, i.e. below 155 or under. Also, if anyone out there with some empathy, what are you doing to improve speed, or how did you succeed in improving?


DF is correct. You really need to take some time away from the LSAT. Only after the break will you be able to realistically assess where you are in relation to the June test.

d34d9823
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Re: Speed Improvement

Postby d34d9823 » Fri May 14, 2010 12:40 pm

Desert Fox wrote:
LSAT Taker wrote:Thanks for your diagnosis and advice. Do you think I can afford to take time off now? I really don't want to see my score drop further, i.e. below 155 or under. Also, if anyone out there with some empathy, what are you doing to improve speed, or how did you succeed in improving?


If you are smart enough to get a 165, you aren't going to drop below 155 unless you stress yourself out until you fry your brain. Take time off. You have to.

Try taking individual passes of RC and LG time within 8:30 min. A bunch, over and over. It teaches you how to go faster. I have no clue about LR, I always finished those with time to spare.

I was super frustrated a few days ago because my PTs had dropped about 6 points. Took a few days off, felt refreshed, jumped back up 8 points. Your brain does need a rest at some point.

CMDantes
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Re: Speed Improvement

Postby CMDantes » Fri May 14, 2010 12:46 pm

This sounds like burnout. It happened to me.

My solution: Get shitfaced and don't look at or think about the test the next day. On day three, with hangover cured and a fresh mind, dive back in.

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Deep Trench
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Re: Speed Improvement

Postby Deep Trench » Sat May 15, 2010 1:39 am

I agree with everyone that you will probably benefit from a couple of days off. Have a confidence that you can get back to where you used to score. I am a relatively slow reader, too, and here are some of the things that have helped me.

LR: Re-do the sections that you did several weeks ago. Do them untimed by question type. Focus on identifying the conclusions, key premises, flaws, and assumptions in the arguments. Try to prephrase before you look at the answer choices. As you read the answer choices, explain to yourself why each of the choices is either correct or incorrect. Do this everyday when you're not doing a PT. Also, do five or six questions this way before you begin a PT. When you are actually doing a timed PT, just trust yourself and go. If your prephrased answer is one of the choices, pick that one and don't even look at the rest of the choices. You have nothing to lose. If you have time left after finishing the section, you can come back to it later. If you don't have any time left, you did the right thing by not looking at all of the choices anyway.

RC: After doing a horrendous job on PT43, I decided go safe with RC. That is, accept the fact that I am a slow reader and that I don't have time to go back to the passage to check the answers. I now try to answer questions from my memory as much as I can. This has reduced my accuracy, but it has prevented another disaster of only finishing three passages.

LG: I normally don't have time issue with LG, but I suggest that you do the games that you have done before over and over again until you can do them at super speed. This will help you when you do the fresh games.

When you are not studying (by the way, I think LSAT preparation is more like training than studying), try to read magazine or newspaper articles. Don't just read them, but try to read them faster than your comfortable reading speed. I force myself to read quickly by tracing the sentences with my finger or a pen at the speed that I want. If you miss details, don't worry. Nobody is going to ask you questions about what you have just read.

Maybe my suggestions are too obvious, but I hope it helps. Good luck.

hopingforaJD
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Re: Speed Improvement

Postby hopingforaJD » Sat May 15, 2010 1:47 am

Desert Fox wrote:
LSAT Taker wrote:My previous scores 165-173 were from timed PTs. The only difference is that I am bubbling now. That said, when I didn't bubble, I gave myself 32 minutes, not full 35 minutes. So I really don't know what the problem is. I tend to blank out more now. More often now, I find myself re-reading a stimulus or passage over and over again because the information doesn't get through to me. Should I conclude that I lack aptitude for law school?


Take 4 days off then go again. Sounds like you burned out.


This is good advice. I took two weeks off and came back, tested again, and my score went up 6 points.

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LSAT Taker
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Re: Speed Improvement

Postby LSAT Taker » Sat May 15, 2010 9:08 pm

Thank you all for sharing great thoughts. I will take a few days off and return to the LSAT field with Deep Trench's advice in mind. Many thanks, and good luck to all!

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Cupidity
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Re: Speed Improvement

Postby Cupidity » Sat May 15, 2010 9:11 pm

do individual games in 8 minutes

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lostjake
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Re: Speed Improvement

Postby lostjake » Sat May 15, 2010 9:33 pm

Whats your situation? If you can blow the test off and take it in Oct and spend from now until then studying you're going to be better off. If you're going to be taking some hard core classes in the fall maybe thats not a good idea.

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lostjake
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Re: Speed Improvement

Postby lostjake » Sat May 15, 2010 9:34 pm

Cupidity wrote:do individual games in 8 minutes


This is bad advice btw, some games are designed to take longer than others, but sections are designed to be done in 35 minutes.




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