Chilling before TestMasters

tourdeforcex
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Chilling before TestMasters

Postby tourdeforcex » Fri Jun 11, 2010 5:00 pm

Hello all,

I am enrolled in the Early Summer TestMasters course. It starts June 22. Just received an e-mail from TestMasters saying that my materials have been shipped and (paraphrased) "Please do not preview or you will waste all your money."

    What shall I do for the next 11 days?
    What suggestions might you have for those taking a TestMasters course?
    What kind of improvement can one expect if one dedicates 80-90% time-energy on the LSAT from now until October 9, 2010? (to be more specific: I took the June 1996 LSAT on Monday and got raw of 74, scaled of 160)

Thanks,
tdfx
Last edited by tourdeforcex on Fri Jun 11, 2010 5:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.

savesthedayajb
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Re: Chilling before TestMasters

Postby savesthedayajb » Fri Jun 11, 2010 5:05 pm

Just relax right now. Once TM starts just make sure you do all the hw and all the extra supplemental materials and you'll most likely be fine. But one thing, do A LOT more PTs than the course requires.

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dominkay
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Re: Chilling before TestMasters

Postby dominkay » Fri Jun 11, 2010 5:07 pm

savesthedayajb wrote:Just relax right now. Once TM starts just make sure you do all the hw and all the extra supplemental materials and you'll most likely be fine. But one thing, do A LOT more PTs than the course requires.


Well, you can't do all the homework AND do more PTs, because the homework is the old PTs chopped up and categorized by question type.

mst
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Re: Chilling before TestMasters

Postby mst » Fri Jun 11, 2010 5:08 pm

Depends. If you are already scoring 180, you won't see any improvement at all, lol.

But let's be serious. It depends on various things, but at the least when people take courses I usually find that they improve at the very least from their original diagnostic points by at least 5 points, with standard amount of work. With a lot of work, you can expect around 10 points improvement usually. But this is not guaranteed. And it DOES require a lot of work.

nax425
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Re: Chilling before TestMasters

Postby nax425 » Fri Jun 11, 2010 5:27 pm

You'll do fine. Just chill and worry about LSAT when the course begins. You'll be enslaved to studying it for the next three months, so take your freedom now. I did the same summer course, took LSAT in September, and went from 156 blind to 170 on test day. Practice tests wavered all over the place. I think the key is doing as much of the practice questions and tests as they provide. I didn't even get through all of it, so there will be PLENTY of material to work with. Of course, you can do much better than I did and study much harder (or perhaps you'll just have more natural ability ; ). Good luck!

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sundance95
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Re: Chilling before TestMasters

Postby sundance95 » Fri Jun 11, 2010 5:42 pm

I just took TestMasters in advance of the June 7 test--Wait. There's no explanation at all in the materials, probably intentionally to prevent resale (TestMasters seems to be really concerned with this; hence the confidentiality agreement you had to sign to enroll). And anyways, you've purchased the instruction, which from my experience was excellent, so you might was well use and benefit from it. Otherwise you would have saved a bucket of money just buying LSAC's PTs instead.

You'll be plenty busy if you do the homeworks once the class rolls around.

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sundance95
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Re: Chilling before TestMasters

Postby sundance95 » Fri Jun 11, 2010 5:44 pm

dominkay wrote:
savesthedayajb wrote:Just relax right now. Once TM starts just make sure you do all the hw and all the extra supplemental materials and you'll most likely be fine. But one thing, do A LOT more PTs than the course requires.


Well, you can't do all the homework AND do more PTs, because the homework is the old PTs chopped up and categorized by question type.


TestMasters Volume 5 contains 8 of the most recent released tests intact (only the ones you take in a proctored setting in the course are newer).

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dominkay
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Re: Chilling before TestMasters

Postby dominkay » Fri Jun 11, 2010 5:51 pm

sundance95 wrote:
dominkay wrote:
savesthedayajb wrote:Just relax right now. Once TM starts just make sure you do all the hw and all the extra supplemental materials and you'll most likely be fine. But one thing, do A LOT more PTs than the course requires.


Well, you can't do all the homework AND do more PTs, because the homework is the old PTs chopped up and categorized by question type.


TestMasters Volume 5 contains 8 of the most recent released tests intact (only the ones you take in a proctored setting in the course are newer).


They said, "do A LOT more PTs than the course requires." The tests in Vol. 5 are part of the course requirements.

CMDantes
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Re: Chilling before TestMasters

Postby CMDantes » Fri Jun 11, 2010 5:54 pm

My TM experience kind of sucked, and I ended up wishing I had done more prep BEFORE the course.

My suggestion (warning: My instructor pretty much sucked, hopefully yours is better, this is all anecdotal, blablabla):
I would work on some LG theory from the PS LG bible since their methods are basically identical. Testmasters doesn't cover LG until around lesson 4 or 5 I think and the course places a tremendous amount of emphasis on LR.

Not a good emphasis either. By emphasis I mean the instructor asks people to read every sentence of every answer choice aloud as if teaching a class full of kindergarten children.

Also, by putting such a bullshit mind-numbing emphasis on the LR, which is ALWAYS and WITHOUT FAIL the first thing covered in every lesson, the instructor then typically races through the LG part of the lession which, ironically and stupidly enough, is ALWAYS the last part of the lesson. Yeah, at around 9:00pm the testmasters curriculum begins teaching logic games. Everyones hardest section. Thanks, TM.

Your classes will likely go like this:

Instructor: Hey dumbs, let's read some shit out loud. Go ahead Joe, read the first sentence of the stimulus for us.
2.5-3 hours pass by, discussing LR/RC in this inane manner.
Instructor: Okay kids let's do LG now.
(By this point everyone in the fucking class is ready to go and is not paying attention)
Instructor: Let's do some challenges!
(He gives challenges and no one gives a shit, goes on to explain the logic games with lightning speed on the board, everyone is anxious and wanting to get out)

So yeah, do some LG theory before you begin this colossal waste of money.

tourdeforcex
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Re: Chilling before TestMasters

Postby tourdeforcex » Fri Jun 11, 2010 8:14 pm

Thanks for all the feedback.

I have the PS LG Bible. Definitely provides an efficient system. My main problem is speed. It takes me on average 10 minutes 20 seconds to get through a simple linear game. Just not seeing all the Not Laws immediately.

Hoping to have a good TM instructor.

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dominkay
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Re: Chilling before TestMasters

Postby dominkay » Fri Jun 11, 2010 9:42 pm

CMDantes wrote:My TM experience kind of sucked, and I ended up wishing I had done more prep BEFORE the course.

My suggestion (warning: My instructor pretty much sucked, hopefully yours is better, this is all anecdotal, blablabla):
I would work on some LG theory from the PS LG bible since their methods are basically identical. Testmasters doesn't cover LG until around lesson 4 or 5 I think and the course places a tremendous amount of emphasis on LR.

Not a good emphasis either. By emphasis I mean the instructor asks people to read every sentence of every answer choice aloud as if teaching a class full of kindergarten children.

Also, by putting such a bullshit mind-numbing emphasis on the LR, which is ALWAYS and WITHOUT FAIL the first thing covered in every lesson, the instructor then typically races through the LG part of the lession which, ironically and stupidly enough, is ALWAYS the last part of the lesson. Yeah, at around 9:00pm the testmasters curriculum begins teaching logic games. Everyones hardest section. Thanks, TM.

Your classes will likely go like this:

Instructor: Hey dumbs, let's read some shit out loud. Go ahead Joe, read the first sentence of the stimulus for us.
2.5-3 hours pass by, discussing LR/RC in this inane manner.
Instructor: Okay kids let's do LG now.
(By this point everyone in the fucking class is ready to go and is not paying attention)
Instructor: Let's do some challenges!
(He gives challenges and no one gives a shit, goes on to explain the logic games with lightning speed on the board, everyone is anxious and wanting to get out)

So yeah, do some LG theory before you begin this colossal waste of money.


This was not my experience at all. But I think the benefit of a prep class is highly tutor dependent. My tutor was awesome at games, and really helped me in that department (though you're right, it was always the second half of the lesson). We had a substitute for one class who sucked, and I just walked out on her ass.

I think it would be better to let Testmasters teach you how to approach the material, and then do extra studying AFTER the class is over (I wish I had left myself time to do that before the June test).

PS What are "challenges?"

HOV
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Re: Chilling before TestMasters

Postby HOV » Fri Jun 11, 2010 9:57 pm

i don't think you should start studying until the course begins. if you start now you might become apt to approach certain questions in very particular ways that could be worlds apart from testmasters' techniques. just wait and practice with the right techniques. i suggest some light reading-- http://lsatblog.blogspot.com/2008/12/ls ... books.html -- either Bennett's or Weston's book can help you become acquainted with the fundamentals of logic and reasoning.

CMDantes
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Re: Chilling before TestMasters

Postby CMDantes » Fri Jun 11, 2010 10:06 pm

dominkay wrote:PS What are "challenges?"


They were just questions/games done individually and checked over after everyone was done.

I'm glad your experience was different, I wish I had drawn a better instructor. My instructor was a third year law student with a job already lined up who just didn't seem to care. Like when you would ask questions or come early he'd make you feel like an annoying gunner or something. Not the best experience.

Just make SURE you get a good grasp on the logic games. I did EVERY question released from the homeworks and the supplemental and the June 2010 LG section still kicked me in the FACE.

Rememeber: Logic games isn't about blindly following one method of attack, as I found out on Monday, but about developing a comprehensive, flexible system that often differs from what you're taught. That's when you'll get a flawless LG section, and that's where studying the PS method BEFORE the TM method comes in handy. They're similar enough not to mess with you, but I think the differences between them will get you thinking critically about the methods themselves.

For my next bout with the LSAT I'm going to focus about 70% on developing my own unique system for attacking the games. That means I have to pick up the PS bible and incorporate that into the stuff TM taught me.

My 2 cents.

tourdeforcex
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Re: Chilling before TestMasters

Postby tourdeforcex » Sat Jun 12, 2010 2:41 pm

CMDantes,

I am inclined to agree w/ you on beating LG w/ a comprehensive, flexible system that incorporates different styles that becomes your own (I think of Bruce Lee's Jeet Kune Do http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jeet_Kune_Do)

However, when I asked my friend who recommended that I take TM, he insisted that I follow their instructions, that when he used their system, he got correct answers, when he deviated he got wrong answers. This is from a 1L at GULC (included to offer some idea of his LSAT).

I will see. If the system is strong, accurate, and efficient, then I will adopt to the best of my ability. However, I am stubborn and I must be impressively convinced.

For anyone following the thread and cares to know, I will visit friends in Boston next week--relax completely, maybe throw in a few school visits.

tdfx

CMDantes
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Re: Chilling before TestMasters

Postby CMDantes » Sat Jun 12, 2010 4:30 pm

Definitely man, that sounds like a good idea.

It may very well work for you, but I ran into problems using their method on the actual test. I don't think I deviated from it at all, and I did every single logic game they provide. Perhaps it's more a matter of perception or the ability to step back and look at the big picture instead of just focusing on systematically applying their method. Maybe that's where I went wrong.

Either way, good luck to you and let us know how it goes.

nax425
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Re: Chilling before TestMasters

Postby nax425 » Sun Jun 13, 2010 3:46 pm

As with any class, it is dependent on the instructor...I had three throughout my course, and two of the three were great. One of those two was brilliant. The other's strength was Logic Games - so that was what we really mastered first. They teach you to diagram and it works very well. If your instructor is sub-par, maybe get in a few hours of tutoring with someone different. But I think Test Masters provided me great tools to do well.




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