Only 2% get a 170+ on the LSAT

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jeremydc
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Re: Only 2% get a 170+ on the LSAT

Postby jeremydc » Wed Jun 16, 2010 7:13 pm

I agree with the above poster.

Being at/below the poverty lines gives us a different perspective on things because we lived it.

I aced the ASVAB - 89 (min is a 34 ish) but decided not to join. I think my score was more luck than anything else because I was not taught (correctly) math formulas etc in HS. I barely graduated HS because at the time, a job was more important than an education.

The wealthy do have certain advantages when it comes to k-12 education. My intermediate school barely had a comp lab and yet the wealthier schools had comp labs, media labs, recording studios, etc. The education system was biased because when the wealthy complained, things got done, when the poor complained, we were just whining. I am sure this is happens elsewhere but its my experience that an education is more obtainable to the wealthy than the poor.

My friends laugh when I say that I am in college because college was never an obtainable goal for us in HS. You should hear what they say when I say that I am trying to go to law school.

I feel the LSAT is not bias in any way shape or form for the rich. My family struggles yet I have enough material to get a good score on the LSAT. It is a test that anyone from any economic background can study for. Pts are cheap and free(frowned upon) and I am definitely not using my poor background as an excuse for a URM boost. The fee waiver was nice to obtain because it only GUIDES me in the right direction without having to worry about finances.

If I manage to get a URM boost (Native Hawaiian) then thats great but I am not banking on it. I know a 170+ with open some doors but the boost will open a few more. I feel poorer students should get some aid in this process whether it be financial or a URM boost because our experiences has already put us at a disadvantage that the wealthy did not have to face.

Hey-O
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Re: Only 2% get a 170+ on the LSAT

Postby Hey-O » Wed Jun 16, 2010 7:22 pm

jeremydc wrote:If I manage to get a URM boost (Native Hawaiian) then thats great but I am not banking on it. I know a 170+ with open some doors but the boost will open a few more. I feel poorer students should get some aid in this process whether it be financial or a URM boost because our experiences has already put us at a disadvantage that the wealthy did not have to face.



I agree. As a non URM who grew up in poverty it rankles a little to know that I get little or no boost, but I'm not disagreeing that it is necessary. It would be nice if they took financial circumstances into account, but it is too easy to fake being poor.

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sundance95
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Re: Only 2% get a 170+ on the LSAT

Postby sundance95 » Wed Jun 16, 2010 7:29 pm

lack of learnability would be a desirbale [sic] trait for the LSAT to have.


And how would one accomplish that? Any test that has such high stakes for the taker will be closely scrutinized and strategized for, and any test like that will inspire entrepreneurs to sell the strategies they developed to consumers willing to pay $ to be as prepared as they can possible be.

acrossthelake
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Re: Only 2% get a 170+ on the LSAT

Postby acrossthelake » Wed Jun 16, 2010 7:33 pm

sundance95 wrote:
lack of learnability would be a desirbale [sic] trait for the LSAT to have.


And how would one accomplish that? Any test that has such high stakes for the taker will be closely scrutinized and strategized for, and any test like that will inspire entrepreneurs to sell the strategies they developed to consumers willing to pay $ to be as prepared as they can possible be.


The only way I can see making the LSAT less learn-able is to remove the logic games section. RC is fairly difficult to learn and so is LR.

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jeremydc
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Re: Only 2% get a 170+ on the LSAT

Postby jeremydc » Wed Jun 16, 2010 7:34 pm

Hey-O wrote:
jeremydc wrote:If I manage to get a URM boost (Native Hawaiian) then thats great but I am not banking on it. I know a 170+ with open some doors but the boost will open a few more. I feel poorer students should get some aid in this process whether it be financial or a URM boost because our experiences has already put us at a disadvantage that the wealthy did not have to face.



I agree. As a non URM who grew up in poverty it rankles a little to know that I get little or no boost, but I'm not disagreeing that it is necessary. It would be nice if they took financial circumstances into account, but it is too easy to fake being poor.


Yes financial circumstances would help many non urm students. Never really took into account how easy it was to fake though.

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sundance95
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Re: Only 2% get a 170+ on the LSAT

Postby sundance95 » Wed Jun 16, 2010 7:35 pm

The only way I can see making the LSAT less learn-able is to remove the logic games section.


Perhaps less learnable, but LR are still very very learnable. RC, I suppose familiarity with the question types is learnable, but it is still mostly about reading comprehension and speed.

acrossthelake
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Re: Only 2% get a 170+ on the LSAT

Postby acrossthelake » Wed Jun 16, 2010 7:37 pm

sundance95 wrote:
The only way I can see making the LSAT less learn-able is to remove the logic games section.


Perhaps less learnable, but LR are still very very learnable. RC, I suppose familiarity with the question types is learnable, but it is still mostly about reading comprehension and speed.

LR is just...logic. If people learn logic through studying for the LSAT, good for them I guess. You can't remove LR, though, you're removing 50% of the exam and then it probably is a weaker predictor. :lol:

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3|ink
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Re: Only 2% get a 170+ on the LSAT

Postby 3|ink » Wed Jun 16, 2010 7:40 pm

jeremydc wrote:
Hey-O wrote:
jeremydc wrote:If I manage to get a URM boost (Native Hawaiian) then thats great but I am not banking on it. I know a 170+ with open some doors but the boost will open a few more. I feel poorer students should get some aid in this process whether it be financial or a URM boost because our experiences has already put us at a disadvantage that the wealthy did not have to face.



I agree. As a non URM who grew up in poverty it rankles a little to know that I get little or no boost, but I'm not disagreeing that it is necessary. It would be nice if they took financial circumstances into account, but it is too easy to fake being poor.


Yes financial circumstances would help many non urm students. Never really took into account how easy it was to fake though.


URM's have it easy. A UMR with a 160 is basically a free ride anywhere. You know who really gets screwed? Poor (as in socioeconomically disadvantaged) white people.
Last edited by 3|ink on Wed Jun 16, 2010 7:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Tautology
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Re: Only 2% get a 170+ on the LSAT

Postby Tautology » Wed Jun 16, 2010 7:42 pm

sundance95 wrote:
lack of learnability would be a desirbale [sic] trait for the LSAT to have.


And how would one accomplish that? Any test that has such high stakes for the taker will be closely scrutinized and strategized for, and any test like that will inspire entrepreneurs to sell the strategies they developed to consumers willing to pay $ to be as prepared as they can possible be.


I don't know what is feasible, but having a large number of interchangeable types of sections, a random selection of which would appear on each test is one imperfect possibility.

The suggestion above about logic games is a fair point. Reading comprehension seems to be the hardest to improve one's score in and that may be because improving one's score requires actually improving one's reading comprehension. To the extent that sections can be designed like RC and in contrast to LG such that familiarity with the format and type of question, rather than underlying skills, play as small a part as possible in that section's learnability, that at least is a more desirable kind of learnability.

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3|ink
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Re: Only 2% get a 170+ on the LSAT

Postby 3|ink » Wed Jun 16, 2010 7:47 pm

acrossthelake wrote:
sundance95 wrote:
The only way I can see making the LSAT less learn-able is to remove the logic games section.


Perhaps less learnable, but LR are still very very learnable. RC, I suppose familiarity with the question types is learnable, but it is still mostly about reading comprehension and speed.

LR is just...logic. If people learn logic through studying for the LSAT, good for them I guess. You can't remove LR, though, you're removing 50% of the exam and then it probably is a weaker predictor. :lol:


I agree that LR is an essential part of the LSAT. However, it's more than 'just' logic. You could have the deductive skills of Mr. Spock and flunk the LR section if you have ADD, minor dyslexia or any of the other disabilities that won't qualify someone for that extra 15 minutes.

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Re: Only 2% get a 170+ on the LSAT

Postby acrossthelake » Wed Jun 16, 2010 7:53 pm

3|ink wrote:
I agree that LR is an essential part of the LSAT. However, it's more than 'just' logic. You could have the deductive skills of Mr. Spock and flunk the LR section if you have ADD, minor dyslexia or any of the other disabilities that won't qualify someone for that extra 15 minutes.


Lol, let me adjust then, for those who don't have ADD, minor dyslexia, etc. it's just logic. Obviously standardized tests and testing conditions aren't going to work as well with people who have disabilities that impact speed and test performance.

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sundance95
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Re: Only 2% get a 170+ on the LSAT

Postby sundance95 » Wed Jun 16, 2010 8:08 pm

I don't know what is feasible, but having a large number of interchangeable types of sections, a random selection of which would appear on each test is one imperfect possibility.


But then the LSAT would no longer be a standardized test.

acrossthelake
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Re: Only 2% get a 170+ on the LSAT

Postby acrossthelake » Wed Jun 16, 2010 8:15 pm

sundance95 wrote:
I don't know what is feasible, but having a large number of interchangeable types of sections, a random selection of which would appear on each test is one imperfect possibility.


But then the LSAT would no longer be a standardized test.


If anything, then it would be even more advantageous those with free time and resources. I can see an exam with a larger number of interchangeable types of sections being possible to prep for with a ridiculous amount of prep time.

WestOfTheRest
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Re: Only 2% get a 170+ on the LSAT

Postby WestOfTheRest » Wed Jun 16, 2010 8:16 pm

acrossthelake wrote:
3|ink wrote:
I agree that LR is an essential part of the LSAT. However, it's more than 'just' logic. You could have the deductive skills of Mr. Spock and flunk the LR section if you have ADD, minor dyslexia or any of the other disabilities that won't qualify someone for that extra 15 minutes.


Lol, let me adjust then, for those who don't have ADD, minor dyslexia, etc. it's just logic. Obviously standardized tests and testing conditions aren't going to work as well with people who have disabilities that impact speed and test performance.


This is exactly the point. None of these conditions will prevent someone from excelling in law school or in a legal career. While it may impact their ability to perform under timed conditions, this is not an essential part of life. So in this condition the test is biased since it doesn't accurately predict a persons ability.

The problem is compounded when you take into account the fact that law schools only really look at LSAT scores. Nothing else really matters in comparison.

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Re: Only 2% get a 170+ on the LSAT

Postby acrossthelake » Wed Jun 16, 2010 8:19 pm

CastleRock wrote:
acrossthelake wrote:
3|ink wrote:
I agree that LR is an essential part of the LSAT. However, it's more than 'just' logic. You could have the deductive skills of Mr. Spock and flunk the LR section if you have ADD, minor dyslexia or any of the other disabilities that won't qualify someone for that extra 15 minutes.


Lol, let me adjust then, for those who don't have ADD, minor dyslexia, etc. it's just logic. Obviously standardized tests and testing conditions aren't going to work as well with people who have disabilities that impact speed and test performance.


This is exactly the point. None of these conditions will prevent someone from excelling in law school or in a legal career. While it may impact their ability to perform under timed conditions, this is not an essential part of life. So in this condition the test is biased since it doesn't accurately predict a persons ability.

The problem is compounded when you take into account the fact that law schools only really look at LSAT scores. Nothing else really matters in comparison.


It's biased against a very specific population(those with cognitive disabilities) that is best dealt with by informing the law schools themselves of said disabilities so that the law school admissions committees can temper the value of the LSAT against that knowledge, not by discarding the LSAT for the rest of the population for whom it works better than any other predictor.

The LSAT is not the problem. The problem is how the admissions committees use it. The LSAT works really well for the majority of the population to do what it's supposed to do--and it does a better job than anything else out there. There are factors that can make it more difficult for certain populations. The poor don't have as much time/resources or the cognitively disabled can't be tested properly at standardized conditions. It should be the responsibility of the admissions committee to give special attention to those specific populations.

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Re: Only 2% get a 170+ on the LSAT

Postby WestOfTheRest » Wed Jun 16, 2010 8:24 pm

acrossthelake wrote:
CastleRock wrote:
acrossthelake wrote:
3|ink wrote:
I agree that LR is an essential part of the LSAT. However, it's more than 'just' logic. You could have the deductive skills of Mr. Spock and flunk the LR section if you have ADD, minor dyslexia or any of the other disabilities that won't qualify someone for that extra 15 minutes.


Lol, let me adjust then, for those who don't have ADD, minor dyslexia, etc. it's just logic. Obviously standardized tests and testing conditions aren't going to work as well with people who have disabilities that impact speed and test performance.


This is exactly the point. None of these conditions will prevent someone from excelling in law school or in a legal career. While it may impact their ability to perform under timed conditions, this is not an essential part of life. So in this condition the test is biased since it doesn't accurately predict a persons ability.

The problem is compounded when you take into account the fact that law schools only really look at LSAT scores. Nothing else really matters in comparison.


It's biased against a very specific population(those with cognitive disabilities) that is best dealt with by informing the law schools themselves of said disabilities so that the law school admissions committees can temper the value of the LSAT against that knowledge, not by discarding the LSAT for the rest of the population for whom it works better than any other predictor.

The LSAT is not the problem. The problem is how the admissions committees use it. The LSAT works really well for the majority of the population to do what it's supposed to do--and it does a better job than anything else out there. There are factors that can make it more difficult for certain populations. The poor don't have as much time/resources or the cognitively disabled can't be tested properly at standardized conditions. It should be the responsibility of the admissions committee to give special attention to those specific populations.

The problem is that Law schools just discard this information because rankings are more important than candidates. Even LSAC has admitted (particularly lately) that the LSAT is weighted too heavily. A test can't really be biased on its own, but the process as a whole definitely is to some extent.

Edit: There's actually a test they have developed that correlates better, but it's unlikely to take over from the LSAT. But the LSAT is not the best predictor.

acrossthelake
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Re: Only 2% get a 170+ on the LSAT

Postby acrossthelake » Wed Jun 16, 2010 8:31 pm

CastleRock wrote:The problem is that Law schools just discard this information because rankings are more important than candidates. Even LSAC has admitted (particularly lately) that the LSAT is weighted too heavily. A test can't really be biased on its own, but the process as a whole definitely is to some extent.


Yes, the fine distinctions made between someone scoring a 174 and a 178 are ridiculous. The exam wasn't meant to be used that finely and its use in that manner is statistically improper due to the margin of error of the exam. The rankings are flawed-->the admissions process if flawed. That's where the brunt of the criticism should be aimed at. The test itself is IMO amazingly well constructed for a standardized exam and far and beyond the best one I've ever taken. (And I have taken 26+ state and/or nationally-standardized exams in my lifetime). No standardized exam that's trying to create the curve it creates can compensate for every possible disadvantage that has been mentioned(esp. cognitive disabilities)--that's impossible.

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Re: Only 2% get a 170+ on the LSAT

Postby Hey-O » Wed Jun 16, 2010 8:38 pm

I don't understand why people think that the LSAT shouldn't be learnable. A huge part of success in law school is the ability to study for hours at a time.

Although the test prep classes do help I don't think they are more helpful than a dedicated person who saves his/her money, buys the materials (or gets a waiver) and puts in the time to self-study. Personally, I think self-study is better because it is too easy to be lazy in a prep class.

The LSAT is much more learnable for a disadvantaged person than the SAT. It is very hard to teach yourself calculus, reading, writing, vocabulary, history if you have a bad school experience. But the LSAT isn't about knowledge its about skills. A bright person of any background can work themselves up to a score that gets them into the T14.

09042014
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Re: Only 2% get a 170+ on the LSAT

Postby 09042014 » Wed Jun 16, 2010 8:40 pm

CastleRock wrote:
acrossthelake wrote:
3|ink wrote:
I agree that LR is an essential part of the LSAT. However, it's more than 'just' logic. You could have the deductive skills of Mr. Spock and flunk the LR section if you have ADD, minor dyslexia or any of the other disabilities that won't qualify someone for that extra 15 minutes.


Lol, let me adjust then, for those who don't have ADD, minor dyslexia, etc. it's just logic. Obviously standardized tests and testing conditions aren't going to work as well with people who have disabilities that impact speed and test performance.


This is exactly the point. None of these conditions will prevent someone from excelling in law school or in a legal career. While it may impact their ability to perform under timed conditions, this is not an essential part of life. So in this condition the test is biased since it doesn't accurately predict a persons ability.

The problem is compounded when you take into account the fact that law schools only really look at LSAT scores. Nothing else really matters in comparison.


If ADD or dyslexia affects one's LSAT it will affect their law exams. Both are 3 hour long exams, where speed is a huge factor.

Also ADD and dyslexia can be reasons to get special accommodations for the LSAT. This eliminates the problem.

acrossthelake
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Re: Only 2% get a 170+ on the LSAT

Postby acrossthelake » Wed Jun 16, 2010 8:42 pm

Hey-O wrote:I don't understand why people think that the LSAT shouldn't be learnable. A huge part of success in law school is the ability to study for hours at a time.

Although the test prep classes do help I don't think they are more helpful than a dedicated person who saves his/her money, buys the materials (or gets a waiver) and puts in the time to self-study. Personally, I think self-study is better because it is too easy to be lazy in a prep class.

The LSAT is much more learnable for a disadvantaged person than the SAT. It is very hard to teach yourself calculus, reading, writing, vocabulary, history if you have a bad school experience. But the LSAT isn't about knowledge its about skills. A bright person of any background can work themselves up to a score that gets them into the T14.


The SAT doesn't test calculus or history or emphasize vocab as much as it used to(though that's still there, just nowhere near as much as it used to be emphasized)....It does test math. Are you confusing the SAT with the ACT? And the LSAT tests reading and writing as well. :lol:

Hey-O
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Re: Only 2% get a 170+ on the LSAT

Postby Hey-O » Wed Jun 16, 2010 8:52 pm

acrossthelake wrote:
Hey-O wrote:I don't understand why people think that the LSAT shouldn't be learnable. A huge part of success in law school is the ability to study for hours at a time.

Although the test prep classes do help I don't think they are more helpful than a dedicated person who saves his/her money, buys the materials (or gets a waiver) and puts in the time to self-study. Personally, I think self-study is better because it is too easy to be lazy in a prep class.

The LSAT is much more learnable for a disadvantaged person than the SAT. It is very hard to teach yourself calculus, reading, writing, vocabulary, history if you have a bad school experience. But the LSAT isn't about knowledge its about skills. A bright person of any background can work themselves up to a score that gets them into the T14.


The SAT doesn't test calculus or history or emphasize vocab as much as it used to(though that's still there, just nowhere near as much as it used to be emphasized)....It does test math. Are you confusing the SAT with the ACT? And the LSAT tests reading and writing as well. :lol:


I took the SAT many moons ago, young pup.

LSAT tests the general SKILLS of reading and writing (plus people have four additional years of study and education that tends to level out differences in financial circumstances). LSAT is much less about content than the SAT.

09042014
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Re: Only 2% get a 170+ on the LSAT

Postby 09042014 » Wed Jun 16, 2010 8:58 pm

The biggest obstacle to a legal education for the poor is the undergraduate education required. How the fuck do poor people pay for school? Federal loans only cover 5 grand a year, and even the cheapest state schools are over 15K. Compared to that, 200 for prep is fucking nothing.

It's also one of the most unnecessary aspects of the admission requirements. 60 hours of geneds should be enough to apply for law school.

Hey-O
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Re: Only 2% get a 170+ on the LSAT

Postby Hey-O » Wed Jun 16, 2010 9:03 pm

You're forgetting grants, scholarships, work study. College is affordable for people if they are sure they want it, work hard, and do well in school. Having a big chunk of debt on graduation is not a huge financial burden. Most loans have reasonable monthly payments.

09042014
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Re: Only 2% get a 170+ on the LSAT

Postby 09042014 » Wed Jun 16, 2010 9:07 pm

Hey-O wrote:You're forgetting grants, scholarships, work study. College is affordable for people if they are sure they want it, work hard, and do well in school. Having a big chunk of debt on graduation is not a huge financial burden. Most loans have reasonable monthly payments.


Then the answer to the inequality in LSAT prep is to throw the course on your Visa card and shut up.

There is no way an average high school student is going to get scholarships enough to pay for college, I was a damn good student and I couldn't find shit. Work study is a pittance.

Apparently tens of thousands of dollars for a useless BA is not unfair, but 200 bucks for two powerscore bibles and some prep tests is unfair. That doesn't make sense.

Hey-O
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Re: Only 2% get a 170+ on the LSAT

Postby Hey-O » Wed Jun 16, 2010 9:17 pm

Desert Fox wrote:
Hey-O wrote:You're forgetting grants, scholarships, work study. College is affordable for people if they are sure they want it, work hard, and do well in school. Having a big chunk of debt on graduation is not a huge financial burden. Most loans have reasonable monthly payments.


There is no way an average high school student is going to get scholarships enough to pay for college, I was a damn good student and I couldn't find shit. Work study is a pittance.


Should the average high school student be going to law school in the first place? We're talking about above average students. (Aside from the argument: it is totally possible to pay for college if that is what you really want and you are gifted and willing to work hard).

I think you're misunderstanding my argument. I'm saying that the LSAT is far more fair than undergrad admissions. There is more to overcome and a it is hard to self-study a decent high school education. It is more affordable and easier to study your way to a good score on the LSAT than the SAT.




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