LR- Read stem or stimulus 1st?

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Re: LR- Read stem or stimulus 1st?

Postby 3|ink » Tue Aug 03, 2010 4:32 pm

sanetruth wrote:I've noticed that people who tend to be better/do better at LR recommend stimulus first, but not because there is anything wrong with stem first. It's just because if you really are grasping the logic of the stimulus, then you will be prepared for any question they will ask you (flaws, main point, structure etc). Those who aren't as good at grasping all the elements right off the bat would rather focus on the exact issue in question.


That's how I feel. Shortcuts are an admission of weakness.

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Re: LR- Read stem or stimulus 1st?

Postby acrossthelake » Tue Aug 03, 2010 4:48 pm

3|ink wrote:
sanetruth wrote:I've noticed that people who tend to be better/do better at LR recommend stimulus first, but not because there is anything wrong with stem first. It's just because if you really are grasping the logic of the stimulus, then you will be prepared for any question they will ask you (flaws, main point, structure etc). Those who aren't as good at grasping all the elements right off the bat would rather focus on the exact issue in question.


That's how I feel. Shortcuts are an admission of weakness.


Hahaha, +1 minus the admission of weakness part. But yeah, if you're already good at logic, there's no need to do stem first...reading stimulus first makes more sense in that case. If you're weak at logic, then I can see how reading the stem first could help.

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Re: LR- Read stem or stimulus 1st?

Postby Sandro » Tue Aug 03, 2010 4:51 pm

I dont think its a shortcut. When you are on your 3rd LR section in a row and you have a stimulus about classical art that is half a page long... wouldn't it seem like knowing what the question wants you to look for would be helpful? I do.

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Re: LR- Read stem or stimulus 1st?

Postby 3|ink » Tue Aug 03, 2010 4:54 pm

Sandro777 wrote:I dont think its a shortcut. When you are on your 3rd LR section in a row and you have a stimulus about classical art that is half a page long... wouldn't it seem like knowing what the question wants you to look for would be helpful? I do.


Didn't you just describe a short-cut? So you'd read the stem first and focus only on the parts of the stimulus that you think would answer the question?

I agree that it could be a useful tool. It was wrong of me to call it a 'short-cut'. However, I think that learning to read logically is a far more productive way to study for the test than learning to read selectively based on the question stem.

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Re: LR- Read stem or stimulus 1st?

Postby Sandro » Tue Aug 03, 2010 4:57 pm

3|ink wrote:
Sandro777 wrote:I dont think its a shortcut. When you are on your 3rd LR section in a row and you have a stimulus about classical art that is half a page long... wouldn't it seem like knowing what the question wants you to look for would be helpful? I do.


Didn't you just describe a short-cut? So you'd read the stem first and focus only on the parts of the stimulus that you think would answer the question?

I agree that it could be a useful tool. It was wrong of me to call it a 'short-cut'. However, I think that learning to read logically is a far more productive way to study for the test than learning to read selectively based on the question stem.


But once you've learned to read logically wouldn't knowing EXACTLY what to look for (most types of LR questions ask the same types of questions, asking you to identify the same types of things) in the stimulus be beneficial? If you're reading for logic either way , why not have a target in mind when reading....

While I have never tried this on a PT ( will tomorrow) I think the results could be interesting.

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Re: LR- Read stem or stimulus 1st?

Postby 3|ink » Tue Aug 03, 2010 5:02 pm

Sandro777 wrote:
But once you've learned to read logically wouldn't knowing EXACTLY what to look for (most types of LR questions ask the same types of questions, asking you to identify the same types of things) in the stimulus be beneficial? If you're reading for logic either way , why not have a target in mind when reading....

While I have never tried this on a PT ( will tomorrow) I think the results could be interesting.


I suppose that is theoretically true. I'd still prefer the latter. Let us know how the experiment goes.

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Re: LR- Read stem or stimulus 1st?

Postby acrossthelake » Tue Aug 03, 2010 5:10 pm

Sandro777 wrote:I dont think its a shortcut. When you are on your 3rd LR section in a row and you have a stimulus about classical art that is half a page long... wouldn't it seem like knowing what the question wants you to look for would be helpful? I do.


I don't really feel like I'm "looking" for anything or need to look for anything. I read a short set of statements, sometimes an obviously deeply flawed one, then I answer a question about it. It's like...a few seconds to read it. Flaw questions are obvious without reading the stem---the flaw pops out like a glaring red flag as you read the stimulus. Knowing that it's a strengthen/weaken question won't help me because often times there's like a fairly large set of possibilities and I'd rather just deal with the limited options given by the answer choices. Assumptions also pop out...I don't know, I just feel like if you've got a strong grasp of logic, things like assumptions and flaws should pop out at you as you read the stimulus and before you even get to the stem.

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Re: LR- Read stem or stimulus 1st?

Postby Barbie » Tue Aug 03, 2010 5:11 pm

acrossthelake wrote:
3|ink wrote:
sanetruth wrote:I've noticed that people who tend to be better/do better at LR recommend stimulus first, but not because there is anything wrong with stem first. It's just because if you really are grasping the logic of the stimulus, then you will be prepared for any question they will ask you (flaws, main point, structure etc). Those who aren't as good at grasping all the elements right off the bat would rather focus on the exact issue in question.


That's how I feel. Shortcuts are an admission of weakness.


Hahaha, +1 minus the admission of weakness part. But yeah, if you're already good at logic, there's no need to do stem first...reading stimulus first makes more sense in that case. If you're weak at logic, then I can see how reading the stem first could help.


I suppose it is a short cut. I am able to answer the question reading the stimulis first, but I seem to be able to do things much quicker reading the stem first (I can jump to the part I need to read). It just works faster for me I guess, but I don't think I am lacking anything with logic. I am a low 160's scorer though, but that's because I can't figure out a way to get through RC in enough time :( blast...

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Re: LR- Read stem or stimulus 1st?

Postby acrossthelake » Tue Aug 03, 2010 5:17 pm

Barbie wrote:
I suppose it is a short cut. I am able to answer the question reading the stimulis first, but I seem to be able to do things much quicker reading the stem first (I can jump to the part I need to read). It just works faster for me I guess, but I don't think I am lacking anything with logic. I am a low 160's scorer though, but that's because I can't figure out a way to get through RC in enough time :( blast...


I should add : "good grasp of logic and fast reading speed." Reading the stem first makes more sense with the RC section, I think, because the RC section tends to have a fair bit of irrelevant info, but I just feel like the stimuli of LR is so short that it's like...meh, it would take more time trying to jump around than to just read the entire thing.

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Re: LR- Read stem or stimulus 1st?

Postby Barbie » Tue Aug 03, 2010 5:20 pm

acrossthelake wrote:
Barbie wrote:
I suppose it is a short cut. I am able to answer the question reading the stimulis first, but I seem to be able to do things much quicker reading the stem first (I can jump to the part I need to read). It just works faster for me I guess, but I don't think I am lacking anything with logic. I am a low 160's scorer though, but that's because I can't figure out a way to get through RC in enough time :( blast...


I should add : "good grasp of logic and fast reading speed." Reading the stem first makes more sense with the RC section, I think, because the RC section tends to have a fair bit of irrelevant info, but I just feel like the stimuli of LR is so short that it's like...meh, it would take more time trying to jump around than to just read the entire thing.


I really don't even kow how to improve my RC. I get the ones I answer right.. but usualyl don't get to the entire last passage!! I'm a FREAKIN english (writing, in my defense) major!

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Re: LR- Read stem or stimulus 1st?

Postby acrossthelake » Tue Aug 03, 2010 5:26 pm

Barbie wrote:
acrossthelake wrote:
Barbie wrote:
I suppose it is a short cut. I am able to answer the question reading the stimulis first, but I seem to be able to do things much quicker reading the stem first (I can jump to the part I need to read). It just works faster for me I guess, but I don't think I am lacking anything with logic. I am a low 160's scorer though, but that's because I can't figure out a way to get through RC in enough time :( blast...


I should add : "good grasp of logic and fast reading speed." Reading the stem first makes more sense with the RC section, I think, because the RC section tends to have a fair bit of irrelevant info, but I just feel like the stimuli of LR is so short that it's like...meh, it would take more time trying to jump around than to just read the entire thing.


I really don't even kow how to improve my RC. I get the ones I answer right.. but usualyl don't get to the entire last passage!! I'm a FREAKIN english (writing, in my defense) major!


Sounds like you need to speed up your reading speed. Are you retaking? If so, between now and then, get off of TLS and put your nose into many books. Reading speed is a skill that fades when you don't use it and builds when you do.

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Re: LR- Read stem or stimulus 1st?

Postby Barbie » Tue Aug 03, 2010 5:33 pm

i'm taking 3 of my honors level lit courses this semester which means ill be balls deep in milton, shakespear, etc etc. i usually read these types of works slowly as to understand it all (not written in modern english) but it makes it hard for me to have time to get into a book (i read 4 or so over summer though). i think i just need to do, say, 300 RC sections. :( if only i had the time..


oh, and i am retaking. i didn't really want to, but what the hay.

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Re: LR- Read stem or stimulus 1st?

Postby acrossthelake » Tue Aug 03, 2010 5:37 pm

Barbie wrote:i'm taking 3 of my honors level lit courses this semester which means ill be balls deep in milton, shakespear, etc etc. i usually read these types of works slowly as to understand it all (not written in modern english) but it makes it hard for me to have time to get into a book (i read 4 or so over summer though). i think i just need to do, say, 300 RC sections. :( if only i had the time..


oh, and i am retaking. i didn't really want to, but what the hay.


It's still summer! Get off of TLS and start reading a book *right now* (unless you are posting from work).

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Re: LR- Read stem or stimulus 1st?

Postby Barbie » Tue Aug 03, 2010 5:44 pm

acrossthelake wrote:
Barbie wrote:i'm taking 3 of my honors level lit courses this semester which means ill be balls deep in milton, shakespear, etc etc. i usually read these types of works slowly as to understand it all (not written in modern english) but it makes it hard for me to have time to get into a book (i read 4 or so over summer though). i think i just need to do, say, 300 RC sections. :( if only i had the time..


oh, and i am retaking. i didn't really want to, but what the hay.


It's still summer! Get off of TLS and start reading a book *right now* (unless you are posting from work).


im actually on my way out to the gym, but im saying that throwing one extra book on top of the 4 ive already read this summer isnt going to change much.. its written to my understanding. the ones i struggle on are the science and social science whatever crap. being able to quickly read my books feels so much different then being able to quickly read and absorb what is being given to me on the lsat :(

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Re: LR- Read stem or stimulus 1st?

Postby acrossthelake » Tue Aug 03, 2010 5:50 pm

Barbie wrote:
im actually on my way out to the gym, but im saying that throwing one extra book on top of the 4 ive already read this summer isnt going to change much.. its written to my understanding. the ones i struggle on are the science and social science whatever crap. being able to quickly read my books feels so much different then being able to quickly read and absorb what is being given to me on the lsat :(


Hahaha I'm the reverse, I love the science & social science stuff and whiz through it and am like wtf who cares when they start talking about artists. I have to reread the stimulus for those sections because I glaze over in "not processing, I don't care, this is boring" mode.




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