Should I Retake? Any advice appreciated...

consideringretake
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Should I Retake? Any advice appreciated...

Postby consideringretake » Mon Nov 01, 2010 5:19 pm

Here’s my situation: I self-studied for about a month and had a 169-171 pt average. I took the October test and knew that I messed up four questions on a game, and unsurprisingly, got a 166 which was pretty disappointing as my original diagnostic was a 161.

I would only consider T14; my profile is LDAS GPA 3.83 (from top-30 national university), and URM (Mexican).

Should I retake? I know that I can get a 170 if I don’t screw up. And if I retake, I would probably take a course/get a tutor and try to bring my pt average (and hopefully, my actual score) up. During my self-study I didn’t study skills/techniques – I mostly just took practice tests (around 20) and my scores remained stagnant, albeit reasonably high. The week before my actual test, I realized that I hadn’t had taken the most effective course of study.

I’m not applying this cycle anyways, so I would probably take a June test. Is it worth suffering through LSAT prep again? Or will my 166 be enough for me to get into T14?

I’m really struggling with what to do….

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JazzOne
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Re: Should I Retake? Any advice appreciated...

Postby JazzOne » Mon Nov 01, 2010 5:19 pm

Retake

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teaadntoast
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Re: Should I Retake? Any advice appreciated...

Postby teaadntoast » Mon Nov 01, 2010 5:21 pm

Absolutely retake.

ETA: Score in the 170s and the world is your oyster. Even with your current numbers, I'd say you look good for at least one T14 school, so it's really just matter of opening up possibilities at the higher end of the range.
Last edited by teaadntoast on Mon Nov 01, 2010 5:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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mjd
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Re: Should I Retake? Any advice appreciated...

Postby mjd » Mon Nov 01, 2010 5:23 pm

I’m not applying this cycle anyways, so I would probably take a June test. Is it worth suffering through LSAT prep again? Or will my 166 be enough for me to get into T14?


Since you're not applying this cycle, I recommend retaking only if (1) you are actually going to do some serious prep for the exam and (2) you are confident you are going to score at least a couple of points higher. As a URM with a very nice GPA, and a 166 LSAT score you'll probably get into most T-14's, all other things equal. With a couple more points on the LSAT, you're not looking so much at an admissions boost as at a financial aid boost.

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plenipotentiary
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Re: Should I Retake? Any advice appreciated...

Postby plenipotentiary » Mon Nov 01, 2010 5:28 pm

You have very little to lose by retaking and lots to gain. I think it's a no brainer. A few more points and you're looking at HYS or $$$$.

consideringretake
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Re: Should I Retake? Any advice appreciated...

Postby consideringretake » Mon Nov 01, 2010 5:47 pm

Thanks for the responses. They all pretty much confirm what I was thinking...

Any specific advice on what course of study (tutor/course/etc.) will be the most help to move me up from a 170ish pt average? It seems like most Kaplan/Powerscore classes won't be geared to addressing my specific needs. Is this accurate?

Thanks

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maxm2764
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Re: Should I Retake? Any advice appreciated...

Postby maxm2764 » Mon Nov 01, 2010 5:47 pm

consideringretake wrote:Thanks for the responses. They all pretty much confirm what I was thinking...

Any specific advice on what course of study (tutor/course/etc.) will be the most help to move me up from a 170ish pt average? It seems like most Kaplan/Powerscore classes won't be geared to addressing my specific needs. Is this accurate?

Thanks


Self study?

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teaadntoast
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Re: Should I Retake? Any advice appreciated...

Postby teaadntoast » Mon Nov 01, 2010 5:51 pm

consideringretake wrote:Thanks for the responses. They all pretty much confirm what I was thinking...

Any specific advice on what course of study (tutor/course/etc.) will be the most help to move me up from a 170ish pt average? It seems like most Kaplan/Powerscore classes won't be geared to addressing my specific needs. Is this accurate?

Thanks


Self study.

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fastforward
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Re: Should I Retake? Any advice appreciated...

Postby fastforward » Mon Nov 01, 2010 6:45 pm

Retake IF you are willing to prepare well this time. Here's my post from another thread.

The first step in a retake plan absolutely must be a clear-eyed look at what didn't work last time. Here's a cut-and paste of my perennial post-score-release-post. Hope this helps.

I'm an LSAT tutor. Below is what I posted after the June test. I truly hope that each of you who didn't do what you know was your best find a way to figure out what you need to do differently next time. Feel free to PM me and I'll be happy to talk it out with you. Take care.

Many of you mention that you hit well below your PT's. This is a certain indicator of the need for stress management. You should prepare for this aspect of the test with as much diligence as you devote to the test content. One stress management technique, developed as a treatment for anxiety but now popular with world-class athletes, is Progressive Muscle Relaxation, or PMR. Once mastered, it's a powerful tool for leveling your energy and freeing your brain to do its best. You'll find many free downloads of PMR programs if you Google the term. My favorite collection of PMR -- and other relaxation/breathing techniques for de-stressing -- is here:
--LinkRemoved-- ... elax07.htm
Regular practice of deep breathing techniques, combined with PMR, produces an automatic, muscle-memory response to relax at the onset of anxiety. The result is vastly improved clarity of thought, better sleep patterns, and a general sense of confidence and well-being. But it's an acquired skill, so it's best to begin at once.

Some of you tanked on the fifth section. This probably indicates an endurance problem. Consider working many five-and six-section PT's, especially in the month before Game Day. They can be enough to make you gag, but I guarantee they do improve your mental toughness. If you don't feel you'll apply yourself if you know which are the "experimental sections" (which you put together from the older PT's), have a friend do a little cut-and-paste graphics job and put them together for you. It's a bit of a pain but worth it if you need that crutch. Cambridge LSAT has put together some 5-Section tests, and you can purchase them in pdf files (yes, they ARE legal and the publisher IS an LSAC licensee) instantly for download
http://www.cambridgelsat.com/product/ls ... section/18

Those who were hit by RC have mentioned reading this summer, especially complex materials such as The Economist. That's a great idea as far as it goes, but you also should commit to routinely tackling actual RC sections. This is so for at least two reasons: The most sophisticated periodicals out there are no match for those garbled RC passages. Try underlining the subject and predicate of the more complex sentences as you read; a favorite trick of lsac is to entwine these two components in a morass of subordinate clauses and prepositional phrases. Thus the next reason for faithfully tackling RC PT's: It's the only way you'll develop an intuitive sense of what the test-takers expect. That's why RC is the most challenging for tutors; it can be difficult to discern a pattern of weakness.

For LR, a great free resource is the podcast series, Logic in Everyday Life: http://www.princetonreview.com/lsat-logic.aspx
Each podcast takes an example of argumentation from a TV ad or a political speech and analyzes it in terms of LR. Please don't mistake my recommending something published by Princeton Review as any enthusiasm by me for that company (but to each his own of course; apologies to Admin Ken). Each 'cast is just a few minutes long and, if you listen daily, you will see your LR mindset improve.

As for LG: Know your conditional statements cold. You may think you already do, but you CAN improve. I'm convinced that one reason (of several) the dreaded dinosaur game from PT 57 threw so many test-takers is the phrasing of the conditional rules. Go through your LG's and note the phrasing of each conditional statement. You may want to make flash cards. I'm working on a set and I'll post a template when they're complete. Improving your recognition of the correct form of any conditional statement will improve both accuracy and speed on LG's. Of course, you must also practice, practice, practice. If a certain game type gives you trouble, consider getting a set of that type. Cambridge has them in sets for a very good price: http://www.cambridgelsat.com/product/ls ... c_games/23

I have a bias against classes, but I feel that they make especially little sense for the re-taker. You already know the basics. Einstein said that insanity is doing the same thing over and over, and expecting a different result. What this means for some of you is that just drilling through the PT's may not be the answer either. Re-takers need to "study smart." You each will need something different. I would suggest, as a first step, analyzing each missed question by type (e.g. LR Most Strongly Supported, RC Main Point, etc.). Do this on your actual test, and on your old PT's if you still have them. If you have trouble identifying your weaknesses, a tutor can be a valuable tool. There are many of us out there; be sure you can visit with one to see whether you will be compatible as to learning/teaching style AND your individual needs BEFORE you are required to pay for a session. The right tutor, the best teaching tools (PowerScore Bibles IMO), and of course plenty of actual LSAT PT sections, and timed PT's can be the most effective -- and cost-effective prep.

The point is: You have to figure out exactly what went wrong last time and change it up accordingly. The retake process actually can be quite satisfying if you view it as an opportunity to complete a work in progress.

My very best to you all.

sharpnsmooth
Posts: 141
Joined: Sun Mar 21, 2010 4:41 pm

Re: Should I Retake? Any advice appreciated...

Postby sharpnsmooth » Mon Nov 01, 2010 6:48 pm

consideringretake wrote:Here’s my situation: I self-studied for about a month and had a 169-171 pt average. I took the October test and knew that I messed up four questions on a game, and unsurprisingly, got a 166 which was pretty disappointing as my original diagnostic was a 161.

I would only consider T14; my profile is LDAS GPA 3.83 (from top-30 national university), and URM (Mexican).

Should I retake? I know that I can get a 170 if I don’t screw up. And if I retake, I would probably take a course/get a tutor and try to bring my pt average (and hopefully, my actual score) up. During my self-study I didn’t study skills/techniques – I mostly just took practice tests (around 20) and my scores remained stagnant, albeit reasonably high. The week before my actual test, I realized that I hadn’t had taken the most effective course of study.

I’m not applying this cycle anyways, so I would probably take a June test. Is it worth suffering through LSAT prep again? Or will my 166 be enough for me to get into T14?

I’m really struggling with what to do….


most schools only take your highest score, even in the t14.

if you drop and get a 140, you're still likely in to all of the schools a 166 will be good at minus a t14 if you are fortunate enough to get in one of them.

a 169-171 to a 166 isn't such a big failure.... that's a pretty common drop off. i think u should be prepping at about a 175 before you go again.




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