LSAT master trainer taking Q's

Audio Technica Guy
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LSAT master trainer taking Q's

Postby Audio Technica Guy » Tue Jun 29, 2010 5:27 pm

I train LSAT teachers for a large test prep company (if you're familiar with the company, I likely have given it away with my title).

Ask Q's if you would like.

jhare
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Re: LSAT master trainer taking Q's

Postby jhare » Tue Jun 29, 2010 5:35 pm

I took the LSAT in June and scored 162-6 points below my pt average. Some things in my life have changed and now I don't plan on going to law school until 2013. How do you suggest I study for it? Should I continue to do practice questions casually, or forget about the test for the next 3 years, etc?
Thanks.

osmlpz
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Re: LSAT master trainer taking Q's

Postby osmlpz » Tue Jun 29, 2010 5:36 pm

Hey thanks for offering help and advice. My main concern regarding the LSAT has been the reading comprehension section. It is the area where I seem to be having the most difficulty with. I usually find the questions not to be that difficult but when I check my answers I find myself disappointed. Although I haven't really studied this section in depth, which books or what advice would you recommend in improving my score in this section?

Thank you for your time

Bryan
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Re: LSAT master trainer taking Q's

Postby Bryan » Tue Jun 29, 2010 5:42 pm

Do you allow (or even encourage) your teachers to share their own study methods and strategies with their classes? Or are they forced to strictly adhere to your company's approach?

Did many of your teachers take prep courses themselves?

Have you noticed any correlation between test scores and teaching effectiveness? (perhaps those with higher scores have greater mastery of the test; perhaps those with slightly lower scores are better able to identify with their students' struggles)

I'm not sure if you are involved with hiring but if so, what criteria-- other than LSAT score and public speaking ability-- do you use to evaluate candidates? What criteria do you use to evaluate teachers' performance?

Thank you!

Audio Technica Guy
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Re: LSAT master trainer taking Q's

Postby Audio Technica Guy » Tue Jun 29, 2010 5:44 pm

jhare wrote:I took the LSAT in June and scored 162-6 points below my pt average. Some things in my life have changed and now I don't plan on going to law school until 2013. How do you suggest I study for it? Should I continue to do practice questions casually, or forget about the test for the next 3 years, etc?
Thanks.


Both if possible. I'd say do some here and there casually until 5-8 months before you retake and then get serious again. Leave yourself at least the 8 most recent practice tests for that period. You can rework old material you've done before in the 2+ year run up to when you're ready to hardcore prep again.

Audio Technica Guy
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Re: LSAT master trainer taking Q's

Postby Audio Technica Guy » Tue Jun 29, 2010 5:50 pm

osmlpz wrote:Hey thanks for offering help and advice. My main concern regarding the LSAT has been the reading comprehension section. It is the area where I seem to be having the most difficulty with. I usually find the questions not to be that difficult but when I check my answers I find myself disappointed. Although I haven't really studied this section in depth, which books or what advice would you recommend in improving my score in this section?

Thank you for your time


RC is the oddest section. I had a tutoring student this last go round that in 3 weeks went from an avg of 6 wrong to an average of 1 wrong on RC. I've had students who put in 3 good months of dedicated study and moved very little with RC.

I don't like any of the books for RC, including the commercially (at bookstores) available versions of the ones put out by my company (and I even wrote some of those questions myself). I really recommend either a full class or private tutoring for RC if at all possible, because why a given student has trouble with RC varies tremendously.

If you want one single piece of advice that will make a difference on your RC scores, the thing students do more than anything else on RC is they pick answers that are too strong. That is, they pick an answer that says most people do X, when the passage only supports many people do X, etc.

Audio Technica Guy
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Re: LSAT master trainer taking Q's

Postby Audio Technica Guy » Tue Jun 29, 2010 5:58 pm

Bryan wrote:Do you allow (or even encourage) your teachers to share their own study methods and strategies with their classes? Or are they forced to strictly adhere to your company's approach?

Did many of your teachers take prep courses themselves?

Have you noticed any correlation between test scores and teaching effectiveness? (perhaps those with higher scores have greater mastery of the test; perhaps those with slightly lower scores are better able to identify with their students' struggles)

I'm not sure if you are involved with hiring but if so, what criteria-- other than LSAT score and public speaking ability-- do you use to evaluate candidates? What criteria do you use to evaluate teachers' performance?

Thank you!


1) At first no, because most of them are inferior methods. My company puts in lots and lots of money into R&D, that is done by lots and lots of people who have scored 178+ (what is required for the R&D team) and its pretty rare that a new teacher has a good method. As teachers get more experience they will naturally add things they have found worked for past classes, and that's fine.

2) A lot of the teachers I have trained have, simply because I recruited them from my classes. I will usually inquire any of the personable students who got 171+ on the LSAT about whether or not they'd be interested.

3) Better scorers are better teachers, as a general rule, but there are a few exceptions. However, I really don't think anybody who can't score a 168 after going through training should teach, as they won't be able to think on their feet well enough to really teach a class very effectively. Lower scorers may be able to empathize, but they're going to struggle way too much with the material to be effective without thousands of hours of prepping. And this job isn't worth that much work.

4) I have the final say on who gets hired. They send me candidates for training and it's my decision on whether or not to certify them. The first thing is they absolutely must have a handle on our pedagogy and the content of the test. Then they mustn't be boring or confusing. Next I look for an ability to think on your feet and answer student questions effectively. Those are the basics you have to have to teach for my company. There are other things that make the difference between a good and great teacher, but aren't required (mostly because they're more developed with experience than something the candidate will have coming in).

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mottainai
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Re: LSAT master trainer taking Q's

Postby mottainai » Tue Jun 29, 2010 10:29 pm

I know that there is some concern to whether LSAC is adjusting to test prep companies pumping out strategies so that these methods either don't cover these questions or are more ineffective.

Do you find that the most recent LSATs actually do indicate this and if so, are test prep companies readjusting for these recent wrinkles, or is it a misapplication of existing methods by test takers that contribute to these recent difficulties?

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Jeffort
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Re: LSAT master trainer taking Q's

Postby Jeffort » Tue Jun 29, 2010 11:22 pm

mottainai wrote:I know that there is some concern to whether LSAC is adjusting to test prep companies pumping out strategies so that these methods either don't cover these questions or are more ineffective.

Do you find that the most recent LSATs actually do indicate this and if so, are test prep companies readjusting for these recent wrinkles, or is it a misapplication of existing methods by test takers that contribute to these recent difficulties?


ahhh, the age old urban legend that while developing test items for new test forms LSAC has been making changes to 'jinx'/outwit/defeat students using strategies learned in prep classes in ways so that the strategies don't work.

While it is a reasonable question to contemplate when choosing a prep method and getting started, it is ultimately a laughable question once you are acquainted with the substance of the test and understand the concepts and skills it tests you on.

It's a logic (rather basic logic in the scheme of things) and critical reading/thinking test. There is nothing LSAC can do to change rudimentary logic itself, nor can they change the English language and grammar or the logic of argumentation/persuasion/flawed vs sound methods of reasoning/relevance of information/etc. A conditional statement is what it is and the contrapositive of it will always hold true, logical parameters about cause and effect arguments/situations are what they are, deductive logic doesn't morph into an alternate reality in the testing room, etc.

Strategies and techniques taught by the quality LSAT prep providers are built on the underlying logical concepts and relationships the LSAT is designed to test you about in terms of your understanding of and skills reasoning with them, albeit in the context of the LSAT test format.

What many people get way too/unnecessarily worked up/stressed out about is gossip from the LSAT rumor mill concerning minor stylistic and emphasis changes that have slowly evolved in the administered test forms over many years.

Ok, reading comp is being emphasized a little bit more than before in a few ways, the average # of questions per section type has slightly shifted, the proportion of certain question types per test has fluctuated (more principle questions now than 10+ years ago), the scoring scales ('the curve') have shifted slightly (but has it really? -12 for a 170 for the June test compared to -9 for a 170 on some recent previous tests and even a -14 for 170 in the last few years!). But does that mean anything much has changed in terms of what skills are being tested and how you should prep for the test and go about solving the questions?

The answer is pretty much NO! Probably the most notable difference between PT's from the 90's through early-mid 2000's to more recent tests I can think of (aside from looser score scales from the 90's) is the style of the games sections. There were some weird types of games that appeared here and there on tests way back then (who has seen a mapping game or a weirdo pattern game on a test in years?). That is good news, much more consistent game types, less oddball/curve ball wacko games.

Anyway, the biggest thing that has changed is how much people freak out/stress out about every little tiny thing related to the test with the advent of instant global communication via the internet, discussion boards, TXT mssging, email, etc.

tomwatts
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Re: LSAT master trainer taking Q's

Postby tomwatts » Tue Jun 29, 2010 11:47 pm

mottainai wrote:I know that there is some concern to whether LSAC is adjusting to test prep companies pumping out strategies so that these methods either don't cover these questions or are more ineffective.

Do you find that the most recent LSATs actually do indicate this and if so, are test prep companies readjusting for these recent wrinkles, or is it a misapplication of existing methods by test takers that contribute to these recent difficulties?

The guy I talked to from LSAC a few months ago didn't even know which test prep companies used real questions and which didn't. LSAC has no idea what test prep companies are doing. They don't care. It doesn't affect their statistics much (amazingly enough).

In my teaching, I do respond to the most recent variations to some extent, but the fact of the matter is that there are two things that have happened in the time that I've been teaching that have given me even the slightest pause: Comparative Reading and the swap-a-rule question type. Neither one is a radical shift, but both were new enough that I had to think about the appropriate sub-strategies for dealing with them. That's two things in four years of LSAT, one of which is a quarter of the RC, and the other of which is 1 games question. That's just not enough to affect the fundamental strategies, even if we do talk briefly about the appropriate application of the strategies to these particular questions.

Bear in mind that we at Princeton Review (and I'm sure this is true of most of the other companies, too) have our students take the most recent tests as their practice tests during the course. So right now in a PR course, students take 54, 55, 56, 57, 58, and 59 as their practice exams. We also go over these tests in class. So we talk about how to deal with the most recent stuff by the very nature of the course format.

But no, LSAC doesn't care about us at all.

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mottainai
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Re: LSAT master trainer taking Q's

Postby mottainai » Tue Jun 29, 2010 11:54 pm

tomwatts wrote:
mottainai wrote:I know that there is some concern to whether LSAC is adjusting to test prep companies pumping out strategies so that these methods either don't cover these questions or are more ineffective.

Do you find that the most recent LSATs actually do indicate this and if so, are test prep companies readjusting for these recent wrinkles, or is it a misapplication of existing methods by test takers that contribute to these recent difficulties?

The guy I talked to from LSAC a few months ago didn't even know which test prep companies used real questions and which didn't. LSAC has no idea what test prep companies are doing. They don't care. It doesn't affect their statistics much (amazingly enough).

In my teaching, I do respond to the most recent variations to some extent, but the fact of the matter is that there are two things that have happened in the time that I've been teaching that have given me even the slightest pause: Comparative Reading and the swap-a-rule question type. Neither one is a radical shift, but both were new enough that I had to think about the appropriate sub-strategies for dealing with them. That's two things in four years of LSAT, one of which is a quarter of the RC, and the other of which is 1 games question. That's just not enough to affect the fundamental strategies, even if we do talk briefly about the appropriate application of the strategies to these particular questions.

Bear in mind that we at Princeton Review (and I'm sure this is true of most of the other companies, too) have our students take the most recent tests as their practice tests during the course. So right now in a PR course, students take 54, 55, 56, 57, 58, and 59 as their practice exams. We also go over these tests in class. So we talk about how to deal with the most recent stuff by the very nature of the course format.

But no, LSAC doesn't care about us at all.


I would think it wouldn't affect their stats too much considering they can adjust the curve based off the experimental sections. Still, interesting to hear evidence that LSAC doesn't really pay attention to prep companies.

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Jeffort
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Re: LSAT master trainer taking Q's

Postby Jeffort » Tue Jun 29, 2010 11:54 pm

Audio Technica Guy wrote:I train LSAT teachers for a large test prep company (if you're familiar with the company, I likely have given it away with my title).

Ask Q's if you would like.


Hey Audio Technica Guy,

You seem to be implying that you train and hire instructors and teach for Testmasters with your thread title and OP. Is that what you are insinuating since that is what it seems? If so, let's stop you in your tracks before you fool some gullible students. Unless aliens came down to earth, took over, sucked Robin Singh's brain out and put his body onto remote control to make your post, such an insinuation cannot be true.

So, what big company you talking about bro? If you want credibility, say it.

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LSAT Blog
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Re: LSAT master trainer taking Q's

Postby LSAT Blog » Wed Jun 30, 2010 12:01 am

I believe Princeton Review uses the term "Master Trainer."

viewtopic.php?f=6&t=108221#p2592857

tomwatts
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Re: LSAT master trainer taking Q's

Postby tomwatts » Wed Jun 30, 2010 12:33 am

LSAT Blog wrote:I believe Princeton Review uses the term "Master Trainer."

This is true. I'm a Master Trainer myself.

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bk1
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Re: LSAT master trainer taking Q's

Postby bk1 » Wed Jun 30, 2010 12:34 am

LSAT Blog wrote:I believe Princeton Review uses the term "Master Trainer."

viewtopic.php?f=6&t=108221#p2592857


I believe Pokemon Gyms use it as well.

/enddorkynerdymoment

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3|ink
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Re: LSAT master trainer taking Q's

Postby 3|ink » Wed Jun 30, 2010 12:44 am

bk1 wrote:
LSAT Blog wrote:I believe Princeton Review uses the term "Master Trainer."

viewtopic.php?f=6&t=108221#p2592857


I believe Pokemon Gyms use it as well.

/enddorkynerdymoment


I loled.

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Jeffort
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Re: LSAT master trainer taking Q's

Postby Jeffort » Wed Jun 30, 2010 1:01 am

tomwatts wrote:
mottainai wrote:I know that there is some concern to whether LSAC is adjusting to test prep companies pumping out strategies so that these methods either don't cover these questions or are more ineffective.

Do you find that the most recent LSATs actually do indicate this and if so, are test prep companies readjusting for these recent wrinkles, or is it a misapplication of existing methods by test takers that contribute to these recent difficulties?

The guy I talked to from LSAC a few months ago didn't even know which test prep companies used real questions and which didn't. LSAC has no idea what test prep companies are doing. They don't care. It doesn't affect their statistics much (amazingly enough).

In my teaching, I do respond to the most recent variations to some extent, but the fact of the matter is that there are two things that have happened in the time that I've been teaching that have given me even the slightest pause: Comparative Reading and the swap-a-rule question type. Neither one is a radical shift, but both were new enough that I had to think about the appropriate sub-strategies for dealing with them. That's two things in four years of LSAT, one of which is a quarter of the RC, and the other of which is 1 games question. That's just not enough to affect the fundamental strategies, even if we do talk briefly about the appropriate application of the strategies to these particular questions.

Bear in mind that we at Princeton Review (and I'm sure this is true of most of the other companies, too) have our students take the most recent tests as their practice tests during the course. So right now in a PR course, students take 54, 55, 56, 57, 58, and 59 as their practice exams. We also go over these tests in class. So we talk about how to deal with the most recent stuff by the very nature of the course format.

But no, LSAC doesn't care about us at all.


I support this, LSAC doesn't think or care much about what prep companies are doing or what students are doing for prep/stressing about.

The only exception I can think of about them paying attention to test takers (other than stuff to administer the tests and report scores) is about cheating/test integrity which got them to become vigilant about monitoring discussion boards after each test to prevent 'post mortem' discussions/reconstructions of a test before it is disclosed.

They are hard-a$$ about that now and read this and the other LSAT related boards religiously right after each administration. Then, after scores come out, they go away and do whatever they do normally in their giant high security compound next to that cemetery in PA until the next test admin comes around and they start getting 1000's of frantic calls, emails and faxes everyday.

Even though December takers that really need their scores ASAP for application decisions and people trying to get their LSDAS file complete (which, BTW they recently re-named the Credential Assembly Service (CAS) WTF?? trying to confuse us even more now?) want stuff from them like yesterday and pester them relentlessly in late december for time sensitive reasons, I don't blame LSAC for shutting down and ignoring everyone for a week from ~X-mas until after the new year.

If I worked there, during that time of the year I would be thinking "Shut the place down and let's get the 'Fk out of here for a week+ for the holidays. I don't want my car tires slashed in the parking lot yet again right before I'm supposed to drive somewhere for a holiday get together like happened before... Tires are expensive and that cemetery next door I had to look at spooked me out while I waited for AAA to arrive that night, it was worse than the frantic calls and emails coming into the bldg!"

Image

Audio Technica Guy
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Re: LSAT master trainer taking Q's

Postby Audio Technica Guy » Wed Jun 30, 2010 8:23 am

Jeffort wrote:
Audio Technica Guy wrote:I train LSAT teachers for a large test prep company (if you're familiar with the company, I likely have given it away with my title).

Ask Q's if you would like.


Hey Audio Technica Guy,

You seem to be implying that you train and hire instructors and teach for Testmasters with your thread title and OP. Is that what you are insinuating since that is what it seems? If so, let's stop you in your tracks before you fool some gullible students. Unless aliens came down to earth, took over, sucked Robin Singh's brain out and put his body onto remote control to make your post, such an insinuation cannot be true.

So, what big company you talking about bro? If you want credibility, say it.


Um, I don't think I implied that in any way, shape or form. In fact, I was taking for granted that people would know that I wasn't Robin Singh and thus could safely rule out TM. I think others have already figured it out in this thread.

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Jeffort
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Re: LSAT master trainer taking Q's

Postby Jeffort » Wed Jun 30, 2010 4:09 pm

Audio Technica Guy wrote:
Jeffort wrote:
Audio Technica Guy wrote:I train LSAT teachers for a large test prep company (if you're familiar with the company, I likely have given it away with my title).

Ask Q's if you would like.


Hey Audio Technica Guy,

You seem to be implying that you train and hire instructors and teach for Testmasters with your thread title and OP. Is that what you are insinuating since that is what it seems? If so, let's stop you in your tracks before you fool some gullible students. Unless aliens came down to earth, took over, sucked Robin Singh's brain out and put his body onto remote control to make your post, such an insinuation cannot be true.

So, what big company you talking about bro? If you want credibility, say it.


Um, I don't think I implied that in any way, shape or form. In fact, I was taking for granted that people would know that I wasn't Robin Singh and thus could safely rule out TM. I think others have already figured it out in this thread.


Yeah, TPR. I wasn't aware they had a position they called master trainer, my mistake.




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