Meltdown cannot get to 160

ss27
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Meltdown cannot get to 160

Postby ss27 » Sat Sep 25, 2010 4:27 pm

Hello everyone,
I am in desperate need of some advice for the lsat. I took the testmasters prep course last year (initially scoring 149) and retook it this year and I have no idea why I can't seem to break 153. I have taken three practice tests in the last two weeks and I consistently seem to score the same score. Yesterday I scored 152, today I scored 153, but i scored horribly in the games section which I usually score best in, so I did have improvement in logical reasoning and reading comprehension. I have been devoting this whole month nonstop to lsat, and the previous summer but I only started working on timing and preptests last sunday.

I am having a meltdown and I don't know what to do, the lsat is two weeks away and I need to increase my score at least one point everyday to have a chance of getting into a good law school. I want to be able to score at least mid 160's, but I know i'd have to be dreaming to get to 170. I know I can devote as many hours of the day to the LSAT as I have to. I understand and know the basic types of LR questions, logic games, and RC's but i don't know what why I'm not scoring well. I go to a top tier and competitive undergraduate school, and I do pretty well in my classes, so it can't be a matter of intellect.

I don't know what to do, is there any hope?

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Patriot1208
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Re: Meltdown cannot get to 160

Postby Patriot1208 » Sat Sep 25, 2010 4:32 pm

ss27 wrote:Hello everyone,
I am in desperate need of some advice for the lsat. I took the testmasters prep course last year (initially scoring 149) and retook it this year and I have no idea why I can't seem to break 153. I have taken three practice tests in the last two weeks and I consistently seem to score the same score. Yesterday I scored 152, today I scored 153, but i scored horribly in the games section which I usually score best in, so I did have improvement in logical reasoning and reading comprehension. I have been devoting this whole month nonstop to lsat, and the previous summer but I only started working on timing and preptests last sunday.

I am having a meltdown and I don't know what to do, the lsat is two weeks away and I need to increase my score at least one point everyday to have a chance of getting into a good law school. I want to be able to score at least mid 160's, but I know i'd have to be dreaming to get to 170. I know I can devote as many hours of the day to the LSAT as I have to. I understand and know the basic types of LR questions, logic games, and RC's but i don't know what why I'm not scoring well. I go to a top tier and competitive undergraduate school, and I do pretty well in my classes, so it can't be a matter of intellect.

I don't know what to do, is there any hope?


Is english your second language? That is the only thing I can think of in a lot of these issues. Generally, a lot of LR and RC questions are just noticing intricacies in the english language which is why it can be hard for some ESL people. I'm not sure what else to tell you.

ss27
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Re: Meltdown cannot get to 160

Postby ss27 » Sat Sep 25, 2010 4:42 pm

I speak about five languages, but am fluent in English. I learned English as my third language when I was in first grade in the United States, so I don't think that applies.

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acrossthelake
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Re: Meltdown cannot get to 160

Postby acrossthelake » Sat Sep 25, 2010 4:45 pm

ss27 wrote:Hello everyone,
I am in desperate need of some advice for the lsat. I took the testmasters prep course last year (initially scoring 149) and retook it this year and I have no idea why I can't seem to break 153. I have taken three practice tests in the last two weeks and I consistently seem to score the same score. Yesterday I scored 152, today I scored 153, but i scored horribly in the games section which I usually score best in, so I did have improvement in logical reasoning and reading comprehension. I have been devoting this whole month nonstop to lsat, and the previous summer but I only started working on timing and preptests last sunday.

I am having a meltdown and I don't know what to do, the lsat is two weeks away and I need to increase my score at least one point everyday to have a chance of getting into a good law school. I want to be able to score at least mid 160's, but I know i'd have to be dreaming to get to 170. I know I can devote as many hours of the day to the LSAT as I have to. I understand and know the basic types of LR questions, logic games, and RC's but i don't know what why I'm not scoring well. I go to a top tier and competitive undergraduate school, and I do pretty well in my classes, so it can't be a matter of intellect.

I don't know what to do, is there any hope?


To improve your score one point a day for 2 weeks? Not really....might you try postponing?

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gdane
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Re: Meltdown cannot get to 160

Postby gdane » Sat Sep 25, 2010 4:46 pm

This is a toughie to explain. You took a prep course and those usually do wonders. Did you actually learn from this course? Do you know all the different flaws that an LSAT argument can make? Do you know the difference between necessary and sufficient conditions? Do you know how to spot an assumption? Do you know how to make inferences and deductions?

If youre scoring in the low 150's that points to a lack of understanding of the material. To be honest, a one point per day jump isnt going to happen. A 160 is possible, but you have to figure out whats going on.

ss27
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Re: Meltdown cannot get to 160

Postby ss27 » Sat Sep 25, 2010 4:52 pm

gdane5 wrote:This is a toughie to explain. You took a prep course and those usually do wonders. Did you actually learn from this course? Do you know all the different flaws that an LSAT argument can make? Do you know the difference between necessary and sufficient conditions? Do you know how to spot an assumption? Do you know how to make inferences and deductions?

If youre scoring in the low 150's that points to a lack of understanding of the material. To be honest, a one point per day jump isnt going to happen. A 160 is possible, but you have to figure out whats going on.


I get really nervous and then start speeding up too fast in the LR's. I know sufficient and necessary conditions and how to diagram them, and I know how to spot out the different types of questions, like weaken the argument, point out a flaw, what makes an argument true, what supports the conclusion etc etc. I know that type 2 questions (testmasters terminology) really kill me, and that I miss over 12 questions that are under that type which often ask to identify what would strengthen the conclusion, be necessary to make the conclusion true, and would be supported by a conclusion. I last scored 68% on both LR sections and 68% on RH section, but I froze on the games and made very stupid errors. When I looked back over my answers I could easily identify without knowing what the right answer is (and later checking) what my error was and how it could have been fixed in less than a minute.

I don't think it's lack of understanding, it might be anxiety, but I'm not sure.

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Patriot1208
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Re: Meltdown cannot get to 160

Postby Patriot1208 » Sat Sep 25, 2010 4:59 pm

ss27 wrote:
gdane5 wrote:This is a toughie to explain. You took a prep course and those usually do wonders. Did you actually learn from this course? Do you know all the different flaws that an LSAT argument can make? Do you know the difference between necessary and sufficient conditions? Do you know how to spot an assumption? Do you know how to make inferences and deductions?

If youre scoring in the low 150's that points to a lack of understanding of the material. To be honest, a one point per day jump isnt going to happen. A 160 is possible, but you have to figure out whats going on.


I get really nervous and then start speeding up too fast in the LR's. I know sufficient and necessary conditions and how to diagram them, and I know how to spot out the different types of questions, like weaken the argument, point out a flaw, what makes an argument true, what supports the conclusion etc etc. I know that type 2 questions (testmasters terminology) really kill me, and that I miss over 12 questions that are under that type which often ask to identify what would strengthen the conclusion, be necessary to make the conclusion true, and would be supported by a conclusion. I last scored 68% on both LR sections and 68% on RH section, but I froze on the games and made very stupid errors. When I looked back over my answers I could easily identify without knowing what the right answer is (and later checking) what my error was and how it could have been fixed in less than a minute.

I don't think it's lack of understanding, it might be anxiety, but I'm not sure.


Here's the deal, at that low of a score it is definitely a lack of understanding. Anxiety may be part of it but understanding is also a part of it. And again it may be english being your third language that you aren't picking up minute details. I guess I don't really know how to help you. I hope something can click for you.

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gdane
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Re: Meltdown cannot get to 160

Postby gdane » Sat Sep 25, 2010 5:04 pm

It seems like you might be overthinking things as well. You said that you know how to diagram necessary and sufficient conditions? You almost never need to do this on a LR section. Doing so would be a waste of time in a lot of cases.

I would postpone the test until December at least. If youre scoring this low, a huge jump probably wont occur in the next 2 weeks. I dont know what Testmasters teaches since I never took a prep course, but maybe try some other methods. Work with Powerscore if you can.

Good luck!

almostthereee
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Re: Meltdown cannot get to 160

Postby almostthereee » Sat Sep 25, 2010 9:36 pm

That's kind of hard to explain but I'll throw in my 2 cents here. I think everyone would agree that nerves are a huge part of the LSAT, I'm sure that's a psychological reason why the time is so restricted as it is. In the heat of the moment under the time crunch, we tend to panic (LG) and forget what we already know and start doubting our answers and forced to reread (LR). I had a similar meltdown last week. I was scoring in the 156-160 range relatively consistently and all of a sudden I fell to the low 150's. I was so discouraged and demoralized I couldn't study for the next two days. I took some time off and just caught my breath and today I'm starting to hit some of my regular numbers. Just practice your timing and how to control your nerves, managing all that can be just as important as knowing the strategies itself.

vampy
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Re: Meltdown cannot get to 160

Postby vampy » Sat Sep 25, 2010 10:56 pm

The Bad News: Only 50% of people score above a 151 on the test. If everyone studied for a few weeks that average might bump up another point or two. The simple truth is that people on the TLS forums are far above average and most people are not smart enough to score above a 160. Not a single person I know improved as much as the 'average' TLS scorer did, and I know a lot of people. What did you get on the SAT?

The Good News: Unless you have taken 20-30 preptests, you still have plenty of room to improve. I suggest taking a preptest a day and going over your mistakes for the next 10 days before ramping that down before the test. Focus most on Logic Games and Logic and Reasoning as it is very difficult to substantially improve on Reading Comp and you therefore have a lower return on you time investment on that section.

2011Law
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Re: Meltdown cannot get to 160

Postby 2011Law » Sat Sep 25, 2010 11:39 pm

acrossthelake wrote:
ss27 wrote:I don't know what to do, is there any hope?


To improve your score one point a day for 2 weeks? Not really....might you try postponing?


+1. I'm only averaging 6 points behind my target score and I don't think I could get that by the Oct date, which is why I'm going for the Dec LSAT, you probably need to do the same if you want to get your target score and apply this cycle.

vampy wrote:The Bad News: Only 50% of people score above a 151 on the test. If everyone studied for a few weeks that average might bump up another point or two. The simple truth is that people on the TLS forums are far above average and most people are not smart enough to score above a 160. Not a single person I know improved as much as the 'average' TLS scorer did, and I know a lot of people. What did you get on the SAT?

The Good News: Unless you have taken 20-30 preptests, you still have plenty of room to improve. I suggest taking a preptest a day and going over your mistakes for the next 10 days before ramping that down before the test. Focus most on Logic Games and Logic and Reasoning as it is very difficult to substantially improve on Reading Comp and you therefore have a lower return on you time investment on that section.



I dunno about that first part that you said. Of course everyone has anecdotal evidence, but I wonder if there's ever been a study done on that, that'd be interesting to see. As to the relevance of the SAT, I'm sure they correspond pretty well if you study equally appropriately or inappropriately for both tests, but if you're like me and some people I know you probably didn't care much for the SAT b/c you were an immature idiot in high school, though you now realize you have a chance to make up for that with the LSAT.

I'd say if OP was going to take in Oct, that your advice is his best shot, though it'd be way smarter to take in Dec.

almostthereee
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Re: Meltdown cannot get to 160

Postby almostthereee » Sun Sep 26, 2010 12:05 am

I honestly believe there's a LSAT "ceiling" for everyone. There's just people that can read, absorb, and deduce information faster and more accurately than others and that's something no prep course or any amount of practice can teach. People that just pick up an LSAT book, do a preptest or two and hit 170+ or people who score 158 or higher on their diagnostic cold, for example. I believe those people are the ones that have the potential to even flirt with a 180. This is just purely from my observations but I haven't seen someone that scores say a 140 cold and end up with a 170+.

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3|ink
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Re: Meltdown cannot get to 160

Postby 3|ink » Sun Sep 26, 2010 12:24 am

almostthereee wrote:I honestly believe there's a LSAT "ceiling" for everyone. There's just people that can read, absorb, and deduce information faster and more accurately than others and that's something no prep course or any amount of practice can teach. People that just pick up an LSAT book, do a preptest or two and hit 170+ or people who score 158 or higher on their diagnostic cold, for example. I believe those people are the ones that have the potential to even flirt with a 180. This is just purely from my observations but I haven't seen someone that scores say a 140 cold and end up with a 170+.


There is no such thing as an LSAT ceiling IMO. Anyone can get a 180 with hard work. Some will just have to work harder than others.

Based on what you have described, your problem stems from anxiety. You need to see a doctor about that and get some medication ASAP. It's really nothing to be ashamed of. Cancel your score (if you're taking in October) and take in December.

ss27
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Re: Meltdown cannot get to 160

Postby ss27 » Sun Sep 26, 2010 12:34 pm

almostthereee wrote:That's kind of hard to explain but I'll throw in my 2 cents here. I think everyone would agree that nerves are a huge part of the LSAT, I'm sure that's a psychological reason why the time is so restricted as it is. In the heat of the moment under the time crunch, we tend to panic (LG) and forget what we already know and start doubting our answers and forced to reread (LR). I had a similar meltdown last week. I was scoring in the 156-160 range relatively consistently and all of a sudden I fell to the low 150's. I was so discouraged and demoralized I couldn't study for the next two days. I took some time off and just caught my breath and today I'm starting to hit some of my regular numbers. Just practice your timing and how to control your nerves, managing all that can be just as important as knowing the strategies itself.


Thank you so much, after reviewing my scores, I found out I had actually increased my LR by 11%'s or 16 points and my RH by 1%, the reason why I saw stagnation is that I had bombed the logic games' (which I usually score around 80% in) section. I took time off yesterday, and I do feel much better, I really appreciate your advice. Thank you!

ss27
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Re: Meltdown cannot get to 160

Postby ss27 » Sun Sep 26, 2010 12:35 pm

gdane5 wrote:This is a toughie to explain. You took a prep course and those usually do wonders. Did you actually learn from this course? Do you know all the different flaws that an LSAT argument can make? Do you know the difference between necessary and sufficient conditions? Do you know how to spot an assumption? Do you know how to make inferences and deductions?

If youre scoring in the low 150's that points to a lack of understanding of the material. To be honest, a one point per day jump isnt going to happen. A 160 is possible, but you have to figure out whats going on.


Thank you so much, after reviewing my scores, I found out I had actually increased my LR by 11%'s or 16 points and my RH by 1%, the reason why I saw stagnation is that I had bombed the logic games' (which I usually score around 80% in) section.

I'm hiring a tutor on monday to look over what my error is, because I do understand what the logic structures are, I just might be doing something that is hindering my thought process. Thank you

ss27
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Re: Meltdown cannot get to 160

Postby ss27 » Sun Sep 26, 2010 12:37 pm

vampy wrote:The Bad News: Only 50% of people score above a 151 on the test. If everyone studied for a few weeks that average might bump up another point or two. The simple truth is that people on the TLS forums are far above average and most people are not smart enough to score above a 160. Not a single person I know improved as much as the 'average' TLS scorer did, and I know a lot of people. What did you get on the SAT?

The Good News: Unless you have taken 20-30 preptests, you still have plenty of room to improve. I suggest taking a preptest a day and going over your mistakes for the next 10 days before ramping that down before the test. Focus most on Logic Games and Logic and Reasoning as it is very difficult to substantially improve on Reading Comp and you therefore have a lower return on you time investment on that section.


Thank you so much, after reviewing my scores, I found out I had actually increased my LR by 11%'s or 16 points and my RH by 1%, the reason why I saw stagnation is that I had bombed the logic games' (which I usually score around 80% in) section.

I haven't taken that many preptests, and I really appreciate your optimism, and I'm going to study full force and only take the tests and score them (but maybe look at my scores later) but look over my tests after i've taken them to identify (before knowing) what I might have done wrong, and then later check the score.

Thank you so much.

ss27
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Re: Meltdown cannot get to 160

Postby ss27 » Sun Sep 26, 2010 12:39 pm

2011Law wrote:
acrossthelake wrote:
ss27 wrote:I don't know what to do, is there any hope?


To improve your score one point a day for 2 weeks? Not really....might you try postponing?


+1. I'm only averaging 6 points behind my target score and I don't think I could get that by the Oct date, which is why I'm going for the Dec LSAT, you probably need to do the same if you want to get your target score and apply this cycle.

vampy wrote:The Bad News: Only 50% of people score above a 151 on the test. If everyone studied for a few weeks that average might bump up another point or two. The simple truth is that people on the TLS forums are far above average and most people are not smart enough to score above a 160. Not a single person I know improved as much as the 'average' TLS scorer did, and I know a lot of people. What did you get on the SAT?

The Good News: Unless you have taken 20-30 preptests, you still have plenty of room to improve. I suggest taking a preptest a day and going over your mistakes for the next 10 days before ramping that down before the test. Focus most on Logic Games and Logic and Reasoning as it is very difficult to substantially improve on Reading Comp and you therefore have a lower return on you time investment on that section.


Thank you, I'll see if I can improve, if I haven't, I'll go for the December date. But the rolling admissions process is a huge factor in my decision. I really appreciate your time.


I dunno about that first part that you said. Of course everyone has anecdotal evidence, but I wonder if there's ever been a study done on that, that'd be interesting to see. As to the relevance of the SAT, I'm sure they correspond pretty well if you study equally appropriately or inappropriately for both tests, but if you're like me and some people I know you probably didn't care much for the SAT b/c you were an immature idiot in high school, though you now realize you have a chance to make up for that with the LSAT.

I'd say if OP was going to take in Oct, that your advice is his best shot, though it'd be way smarter to take in Dec.

blsingindisguise
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Re: Meltdown cannot get to 160

Postby blsingindisguise » Sun Sep 26, 2010 12:39 pm

3|ink wrote:
There is no such thing as an LSAT ceiling IMO. Anyone can get a 180 with hard work. Some will just have to work harder than others.

Based on what you have described, your problem stems from anxiety. You need to see a doctor about that and get some medication ASAP. It's really nothing to be ashamed of. Cancel your score (if you're taking in October) and take in December.


This is absolute nonsense. Only about 1 in 5000 people get a 180. You might as well say that anyone could make the NBA with enough practice.

ss27
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Re: Meltdown cannot get to 160

Postby ss27 » Sun Sep 26, 2010 12:39 pm

almostthereee wrote:I honestly believe there's a LSAT "ceiling" for everyone. There's just people that can read, absorb, and deduce information faster and more accurately than others and that's something no prep course or any amount of practice can teach. People that just pick up an LSAT book, do a preptest or two and hit 170+ or people who score 158 or higher on their diagnostic cold, for example. I believe those people are the ones that have the potential to even flirt with a 180. This is just purely from my observations but I haven't seen someone that scores say a 140 cold and end up with a 170+.


Thank you so much, after reviewing my scores, I found out I had actually increased my LR by 11%'s or 16 points and my RH by 1%, the reason why I saw stagnation is that I had bombed the logic games' (which I usually score around 80% in) section.

I'm hiring a tutor on monday to look over what my error is, because I do understand what the logic structures are, I just might be doing something that is hindering my thought process. Thank you

blsingindisguise
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Re: Meltdown cannot get to 160

Postby blsingindisguise » Sun Sep 26, 2010 12:42 pm

I agree with the people that say you're probably not going to get where you need to be in the next two weeks. These things take more time to click. I would consider postponing.

blsingindisguise
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Re: Meltdown cannot get to 160

Postby blsingindisguise » Sun Sep 26, 2010 12:42 pm

Further, I think that the level of pressure you're going to feel to improve if you try to boost that much in the next two weeks is just going to be counterproductive.

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tehrocstar
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Re: Meltdown cannot get to 160

Postby tehrocstar » Sun Sep 26, 2010 2:40 pm

Just to add on, you have to believe that there truly isn't an "upper limit" for anyone. You can achieve a 180, with deliberate practice and hard work.

To began believing this, you can access research that has been done on the topic of achievement. One my of my favorite articles is "The Making of an Expert" published in the Harvard Business Review:

http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&source=w ... xg&cad=rja

The way that you study may not be the most efficient, try books on study and memory habits. One of my favorites is 'Learn More, Study Less' by Scott Young, there are also ton others.

It may take you some time, but 180 is definitely achievable, good luck!

rfadem
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Re: Meltdown cannot get to 160

Postby rfadem » Sun Sep 26, 2010 4:16 pm

I don't think anyone is bound to their own plateau or ceiling. I thought I was for a while, scoring consistently at the 152-154 range for 25 practice tests(about 1 every week), with no significant sign of improvement. I have been doing the powerscore course, and have been focusing on the concepts they taught me rather than emphasizing a practice test and review everyday for the past 3 months. The past week I took a practice test everyday under timed conditions and my score skyrocketed, my highest being 165, something that I thought i would never see in my score range. I think majority of this test is just having the discipline to sit down take a test everyday and boost one's mental endurance and getting in the routine of knowing what to look for on each question in a timely fashion. The concepts from the courses are just a means of making that a little bit easier. Keep at it!!

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acrossthelake
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Re: Meltdown cannot get to 160

Postby acrossthelake » Sun Sep 26, 2010 5:26 pm

Doesn't really matter if there is a ceiling or not since you have no way of knowing if you've hit it.

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3|ink
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Re: Meltdown cannot get to 160

Postby 3|ink » Sun Sep 26, 2010 5:39 pm

blsingindisguise wrote:
3|ink wrote:
There is no such thing as an LSAT ceiling IMO. Anyone can get a 180 with hard work. Some will just have to work harder than others.

Based on what you have described, your problem stems from anxiety. You need to see a doctor about that and get some medication ASAP. It's really nothing to be ashamed of. Cancel your score (if you're taking in October) and take in December.


This is absolute nonsense. Only about 1 in 5000 people get a 180. You might as well say that anyone could make the NBA with enough practice.


In a forum dedicated to a test of logic, this is a very surprising response. Your analogy requires the assumption that the limitations of physical prowess are similar in nature to the limitations of mental acuity. Moreover, your citation of the statistics of those who score a 180 is not a logical counter to my point, for it fails to consider the possibility that only 1 in 5000 people actually study as hard as I described in my original post.

Allow me to qualify my original statement. Barring a mentally crippling disability, it is 100% possible for any individual to legitimately score a 180 on the LSAT.




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