People talk about endurance...

emoney8907
Posts: 37
Joined: Sat Mar 06, 2010 5:50 pm

People talk about endurance...

Postby emoney8907 » Thu Aug 12, 2010 4:41 pm

Is it absolutely necessary to take full-length practice tests in preparing? Sounds like a stupid question at first, but I'm asking because I have not done so. I know many people even do 5 sections in one sitting to account for the experimental section. I have only done 4 sections once or twice until now, and plan to do that once or twice more until my exam in October.
I do 2 sections almost daily, both timed.
I'm just wondering if I should study every other day instead, but do full length tests.
I'm asking because I just can't focus when I take practice tests - I don't have a concentration problem or anything, this has been the same ever since the SAT days, and even on school exams - I have no trouble focusing when I take the test itself...but when I take practice tests, I tend to lose focus after a while...especially since I know there are other things I'd rather be doing instead :P

So what's everyone's advice? Continue doing 2 sections every day, or just suck it up and do full length tests every other day? Am I just weird, or are there other people out there on my boat? I just want to see what's the better study tactic.

And again, to emphasize, I have no concentration issues on test days. I can focus like a maniac then...it's just when I study I lose focus. If I couldn't focus on test day, of course I'll be practicing my stamina as well.

Inputs would be greatly appreciated :)

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gdane
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Re: People talk about endurance...

Postby gdane » Thu Aug 12, 2010 4:47 pm

You need to do it. You say you cant focus as it is? This is a HUGE problem. The LSAT is a 3 hour test that takes close to 5 hours with all the stuff in between. You need to start timing yourself and taking practice tests according to test day conditions. There is no way around this. If you feel like you cant concentrate or focus for 3 hours, then you need to re-evaluate whether taking the LSAT is for you.

Good luck!

ThePrincetonReview
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Joined: Tue Jun 29, 2010 6:21 pm

Re: People talk about endurance...

Postby ThePrincetonReview » Fri Aug 13, 2010 4:42 pm

Hi emoney8907,

I agree with gdane5 - you should do the full length test. If you're not able to keep focus during the practice tests, then it is likely your stamina will not hold during the real thing. Practice makes permanent. If during your practice, you let yourself lose concentration after a certain amount of time, you will do the same during the real test. I wish you luck!

Best Regards,
Anthony Russomanno
National Director of Educational Partnerships
The Princeton Review
anthonyr@review.com

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3|ink
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Re: People talk about endurance...

Postby 3|ink » Fri Aug 13, 2010 4:47 pm

Simulating test conditions definitely gives you a better idea of where you stand. No argument here. However, does it really help to improve stamina? If anything, I've noticed a significant loss of stamina since I started taking 5 section tests. Is improvement bound to follow?

I would say that I have to re-read about 4/5 of every LR stimuli while testing. Would you say that is excessive?

albanach
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Joined: Tue Jul 08, 2008 10:05 pm

Re: People talk about endurance...

Postby albanach » Sat Aug 14, 2010 9:16 am

Surely it's pretty straightforward to work out what you need to do?

If you've been taking plenty of timed sections, you should have a rough idea where you are scoring when taking a section at a time.

Set aside time and do three full (four or five section) tests. If you see any significant drop in your score over three full tests, you can attribute it to the change and start doing more full-length PTs. If your score remains the same, then your current strategy is working for you.

I'd still recommend doing full-length Saturday am tests for the four or five weeks before test day. That will get your body used to the rhythm.

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kazu
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Re: People talk about endurance...

Postby kazu » Sat Aug 14, 2010 9:27 am

albanach wrote:I'd still recommend doing full-length Saturday am tests for the four or five weeks before test day. That will get your body used to the rhythm.


+1. Full-length meaning 5 sections, since the fifth one on the real thing always counts towards your score (the experimental is among the first 3).

I wouldn't do full-length every other day though. I'd suggest doing 2 sections every day, and maybe 2 full-length PTs a week.

Don't depend on the "I never have trouble with endurance on test days" thing too much. The LSAT was like no other standardized test I'd ever taken before. Remember, after you're seated & ready in your chairs at 8:30 sharp it can and will take another 1~2 hours for the proctors to hand everything out, announce the instructions etc. and your adrenaline buzz pretty much wears off by the time you actually start.

whymeohgodno
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Re: People talk about endurance...

Postby whymeohgodno » Sat Aug 14, 2010 9:30 am

kazu wrote:
albanach wrote:I'd still recommend doing full-length Saturday am tests for the four or five weeks before test day. That will get your body used to the rhythm.


+1. Full-length meaning 5 sections, since the fifth one on the real thing always counts towards your score (the experimental is among the first 3).

I wouldn't do full-length every other day though. I'd suggest doing 2 sections every day, and maybe 2 full-length PTs a week.

Don't depend on the "I never have trouble with endurance on test days" thing too much. The LSAT was like no other standardized test I'd ever taken before. Remember, after you're seated & ready in your chairs at 8:30 sharp it can and will take another 1~2 hours for the proctors to hand everything out, announce the instructions etc. and your adrenaline buzz pretty much wears off by the time you actually start.


Wait, it takes from 1-2 hours just to start the test? wow...

Can you bring any snacks to the LSAT that you can eat during the break?

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kazu
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Re: People talk about endurance...

Postby kazu » Sat Aug 14, 2010 9:36 am

whymeohgodno wrote:Wait, it takes from 1-2 hours just to start the test? wow...

Can you bring any snacks to the LSAT that you can eat during the break?


Yeah it takes a while... They have like a million lines of instructions that they have to read out & stuff. I was pretty taken aback by that on test day as well :cry: .

Check your admissions ticket if it's available yet, or the lsac.org website. You're allowed to bring a snack + a beverage but I think they had restrictions on how much & stuff. You're not allowed to take the snack/beverage out during test time, only during break. Plus don't forget to bring your own ziplock!




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