should I cancel this close to gametime?

yurishima
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should I cancel this close to gametime?

Postby yurishima » Mon Jun 21, 2010 6:12 pm

I'm signed up for the June 27th LSAT. That gives me less than a week to finish up last-minute preparation. When it comes to LR and LG I feel I've reached my peak, normally scoring between -2/-4, and -0 respectively.

RC is another story. I've had multiple cases when I would 180 a PT (if I -0 RC) only to be robbed and brought down to as low as 172 by RC. I'm desperately seeking any game-changing strategies that are quick to adopt, but none seem to be working for me. The only way I see to improve my score is to either get lucky with the passages or to revamp my entire RC technique--i.e. read faster and better. And that is going to take way more than a week.

Thoughts? In the eyes of admissions, is there a difference between a low-170 then a high-170 and a cancel/absent then high-170? I really don't want to delay this test any longer, but I don't want my beautiful LR and LG to be wasted by RC.

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djjf39
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Re: should I cancel this close to gametime?

Postby djjf39 » Mon Jun 21, 2010 6:24 pm

OP, in PTs I was consistently getting -0RC sections but I started off around the 2-3 error mark. I think the biggest thing to pay attention to is presuppositions you hold coloring your read of the question.

For instance, I am a grad student in philosophy and every freaking test there would be at least one section that involved a philosophical oriented topic or a number of questions where my own understanding complicated matters. It is easier said than done to put aside that bias, but without knowing more about your particular situation, and given your other test section scores, I would bet you mess up the reading comp mostly on inference questions, which turn on your opinion/understanding of question and passage.

Best of luck, but I would probably roll the dice and take the test; there are no guarantees that the next test date would not have a ridiculously hard RC or that you would be able to improve RC and hold what you still have in LR and LG.

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FuManChusco
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Re: should I cancel this close to gametime?

Postby FuManChusco » Mon Jun 21, 2010 6:45 pm

I'd take it. Yes, there is obviously a difference between a 172 and a 180. I was literally in the same position as you when I took it June 7th. My LG was always perfect, LR was great and RC fluctuated. I studied for 6 months and I can honestly say I never made any great strides in RC. I became more consistent, but I never had the same feeling that I'd have after an LR or LG section. What is your GPA and what schools are you aiming for? If it's t6, then you're going to want a 175+ but a 172 isn't going to kill you anywhere else.

mst
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Re: should I cancel this close to gametime?

Postby mst » Mon Jun 21, 2010 7:09 pm

I was in your same position 3 weeks ago with rc, same numbrers and all. An easy tip for rc is just to grab a physical highlighted and actively highlight as you read. Sounds stupid but try it for 3 sections or so and see if you're score doesn't improve a few points... Several people have verified this approach.

yurishima
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Re: should I cancel this close to gametime?

Postby yurishima » Mon Jun 21, 2010 7:34 pm

FuManChusco wrote: What is your GPA and what schools are you aiming for? If it's t6, then you're going to want a 175+ but a 172 isn't going to kill you anywhere else.


The problem is that I need the LSAT to compensate for my GPA. I would otherwise be content with a 172 if I did not have merely a 3.4 GPA. The 175+ is to increase my chances of getting into a T14 at all, not to increase my chances at T6. If I get high enough (that is, a 179 or 180), then Columbia or Chicago seem nice. Otherwise Virginia and Northwestern are targets, and probably the latter the primary target because of my WE and splitter-status.

Everyone, thanks for the suggestions. Might I ask everyone (except for MST) if they used a highlighter or pencil? I recently switched from a highlighter to a pencil (with note-taking) during my PTs and I think I was actually performing better before. I suppose if I have an adequately thin highlighter, then I can also write down legible notes with that... maybe?

yurishima
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Re: should I cancel this close to gametime?

Postby yurishima » Mon Jun 21, 2010 7:36 pm

FuManChusco wrote:I'd take it. Yes, there is obviously a difference between a 172 and a 180.


I meant to ask if there is a difference between getting a 172 or so on the first test, then a deep 170 on the next, or being absent for the first test and a deep 170 on the next.

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FuManChusco
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Re: should I cancel this close to gametime?

Postby FuManChusco » Mon Jun 21, 2010 8:07 pm

In response to both of your questions, I'd stop worrying so much. The difference between a 172/175+ and a cancel/175+ is nothing. My guess is that they won't even bat an eye in either circumstance. As for your school choices, I don't think a 172 would hurt you at all. With that GPA, you're probably out at HYSCCNBD anyway. You might have a chance with a high enough LSAT, but HYS hates sub-3.8 and CCN rarely goes below 3.5. B and D are generally known as GPA whores. A 172 would probably get you into V, NU, GTTTown, and Cornell though. V and NU would probably be a guarantee with ED. I would only worry about needing a 175+ if you desperately want M or P. You'd probably be on the fence at those schools with a 3.4/172. Just take the test and rock the shit out of it.

yurishima
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Re: should I cancel this close to gametime?

Postby yurishima » Mon Jun 21, 2010 9:32 pm

djjf39 wrote: It is easier said than done to put aside that bias, but without knowing more about your particular situation, and given your other test section scores, I would bet you mess up the reading comp mostly on inference questions, which turn on your opinion/understanding of question and passage..


Yes, inference questions can suck my balls. My own focus is in literature and there is occasionally a question about Mexican American authors or whatever. I usually find I can do best in those sections, however, because I can read through them much more quickly. Or maybe I just think I do best in them.

As a quick aside, do you highlight or underline?

Saltqjibo
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Re: should I cancel this close to gametime?

Postby Saltqjibo » Mon Jun 21, 2010 10:01 pm

Read actively (underline, circle etc.) and force yourself to enjoy and be interested in the subject matter. All of the passages are interesting to a certain extent (though some far more than others) try to read it in your head as if your most engaging lecturer at uni was speaking.

yurishima
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Re: should I cancel this close to gametime?

Postby yurishima » Mon Jun 21, 2010 10:50 pm

Saltqjibo wrote:try to read it in your head as if your most engaging lecturer at uni was speaking.


A very nice suggestion. I've had a few professors whose voices are certainly more exciting than the voice in my head. During those long paragraphs my eyes get bored and I just sort of glaze over everything.

Another consideration is that I only have time to PT in the evening after a long day of work. I know it would be optimal to practice during the actual test time (9 or so), but my job won't allow it. By the time I'm finished with work my mind is only able enough to focus in short bursts (LR stimuli and games). This Saturday will be my only chance to take it in the right time frame.

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djjf39
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Re: should I cancel this close to gametime?

Postby djjf39 » Mon Jun 21, 2010 11:12 pm

FuManChusco wrote:As a quick aside, do you highlight or underline?


I don't personally do either. I find that the best strategy for myself is to advance through the text as rapidly as possible, and then try to actively mark questions that require me to retrieve evidence from the text. I think the more time you can spend on the questions the better off you are overall.

Also, I know most people don't really bother with question-typing in RC, but I personally think all RC questions are easier if you apply the LR question-type framework; I like TPR's best, but I know people who dislike it adamantly. I don't think I waste much time with that activity, and I do find it easier, in general, to weed out traps with this method.

Although with all that said, there comes a point when your RC section depends on pure memory retention and rate of reading versus passage and question difficulty.

Looking at the original post, you might be better off trying to pick up a couple more consistent points in LR with some shifts in strategy. I think if you can go -2/-4 consistently you definitely could get to -1/-2 on the real deal. Out of curiosity, do you find yourself struggling in LR with "parallel" the 'whatever' questions? I found that if I skipped those questions during the PTs, then I would be able to get through LR with -3 and less (depending on the amount of the "parallel" Qs"

yurishima
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Re: should I cancel this close to gametime?

Postby yurishima » Mon Jun 21, 2010 11:49 pm

djjf39 wrote:
FuManChusco wrote: I think if you can go -2/-4 consistently you definitely could get to -1/-2 on the real deal. Out of curiosity, do you find yourself struggling in LR with "parallel" the 'whatever' questions? I found that if I skipped those questions during the PTs, then I would be able to get through LR with -3 and less (depending on the amount of the "parallel" Qs"


Along with RC inference questions, parallel reasoning can suck my balls. They can either each take one, or take turns. I actually do save those until the end because I am just so intimidated by their length. I think the problem is the same as my RC: out of fear for missing some vital, tiny point, I read too slowly. Unlike the RC, though, I never really run out of time to go back and pick off those skipped questions. But usually my LR time is up as I am justifying in my mind over and over again my answer on a parallel reasoning.

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djjf39
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Re: should I cancel this close to gametime?

Postby djjf39 » Mon Jun 21, 2010 11:55 pm

djjf39 wrote:Along with RC inference questions, parallel reasoning can suck my balls.


+1

Yeah, on my June LSAT I lucked out and caught an experimental LR as my first section; plus, I only got three total parallel questions. I was stoked, but then I botched a stupid LG. In the end I am biting my nails praying LSAC releases the scores much sooner than FRI.

Good luck on you LSAT man, I bet you will kill it.

acrossthelake
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Re: should I cancel this close to gametime?

Postby acrossthelake » Tue Jun 22, 2010 12:05 am

If you're applying this upcoming cycle, no, don't cancel. It'll put too much pressure on you in Sept. and you don't want to choke.

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FuManChusco
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Re: should I cancel this close to gametime?

Postby FuManChusco » Tue Jun 22, 2010 12:33 am

people keep misquoting ITT.

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