As disappointing as it gets!

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MdmMoisel
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As disappointing as it gets!

Postby MdmMoisel » Tue Nov 02, 2010 6:40 am

On my practice tests, I never get even 1 Assumption answer right. I've also finished working on Kaplan's LSAT Mastery Assmpt stack of questions. I got most of them wrong. Not losing hope, I re-did Qs I got wrong. I again got Most of them wrong. God, I could kill myself but can't believe why the right answers are right!! Kaplan's explanations don't help much either.

Any suggestions? I tried the Negation technique, without much success. Taking Dec test. Feel like I'm not getting the concepts right. After all these months of practice..

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rahimali
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Re: As disappointing as it gets!

Postby rahimali » Tue Nov 02, 2010 7:24 am

keep at it. just don't lose confidence...trust me, it'll come to you. :lol:

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DieAntwoord
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Re: As disappointing as it gets!

Postby DieAntwoord » Tue Nov 02, 2010 7:37 am

Yeah your missing some fundemental thing about it, dont just keep at it. Save your practice question for when you know what you are doing.
Doyou understand the difference between defenders and supporters?
Also dont get assumption and justify questions mixed up. If it says "IF" it is not an assumption question. I think some prep books lump them together.

Stop assuming we can read english :D

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typ3
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Re: As disappointing as it gets!

Postby typ3 » Tue Nov 02, 2010 8:42 am

MdmMoisel wrote:On my practice tests, I never get even 1 Assumption answer right. I've also finished working on Kaplan's LSAT Mastery Assmpt stack of questions. I got most of them wrong. Not losing hope, I re-did Qs I got wrong. I again got Most of them wrong. God, I could kill myself but can't believe why the right answers are right!! Kaplan's explanations don't help much either.

Any suggestions? I tried the Negation technique, without much success. Taking Dec test. Feel like I'm not getting the concepts right. After all these months of practice..


You could try the Manhattan LR Strategy Guide.

The negation technique is only needed on really tough problems. Even then I rarely rarely use it and I'm pretty solid at LR.

Also, on assumptions take a more mechanical approach.

First, find the conclusion first and then work backwards. Compare the conclusion to the premises. Did the stimulus make a big jump in reasoning or wording.

Recent studies show highschool students are sleep deprived. This study was conducted over one month in the town of TLSville. My friend Ned is a highschool student and he seems sleepy. Therefore All students are sleepy.


Here's an example. Conclusion: Therefore all students are sleepy. Premises: Studies show high school students are sleep deprived.

What jump did I make in the logic?

Well, is sleepy being the same thing as sleep deprived? No.
Are high school students representative of ALL students? No. (What about 1st graders, preschool students, graduate students, etc. They may get more sleep. We just don't know)

Before going to the answers, find the assumption or flaw in the argument.

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MdmMoisel
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Re: As disappointing as it gets!

Postby MdmMoisel » Tue Nov 02, 2010 1:15 pm

Thanks Rahimali. I don't think there's a magic potion, but I hope it will come to me, BEFORE test day!

DieAntwoord wrote:Stop assuming we can read english :D
Yeah your missing some fundemental thing about it, dont just keep at it. Save your practice question for when you know what you are doing.
Doyou understand the difference between defenders and supporters?
Also dont get assumption and justify questions mixed up. If it says "IF" it is not an assumption question. I think some prep books lump them together.

Stop assuming we can read english :D


DieAntwoord, I can differentiate between Assmpt and Justify Qs, but what are defenders and supporters? Oh, ^ I'm wrong at Assmpt again, there you go! :) But its so much easier to abreviate.

typ3, thanks for your insightful advice. Don't have Manhattan LR Strtg (for Dec test, do I have the time to review that??) :( I also use Negation test after crossing out three answers, but that don't help either. I ALWAYS identify conclusion (in any stimls containing arg.- can do that pretty fast). I think my problem is, the assmpt I come up with is not the valid one, and that is usually among the answer choices as deceivers. Here's an example-

PT 5 Section 1, Qs 16:
Animals with certain..treated with the compound.

Qs--> Arg. is based on which assmpt?

Ans--> C. Introducing the compound into the brain tissue has no side effects.

That's the answer I picked. Isn't that supposed to be the assmpt? The Qs says that animals with behavioral disorder have unusually high levels of aluminum and silicon based compound that binds with aluminum and can prevent it from affecting the brain tissue. Animals can be cured...

How can we be sure that introducing that compound doesn't have side effects? What if that compound causes tumor in the brain and further accelerates the disorder, or something like that..

Also, the correct answer B (Alminum cause rather than effect), isn't that implied in stimulus? If aluminum didn't cause behavioral disorder, then why would you need to keep it away from the brain?

Can answer choices have two assumptions but only 1 right one? I find more than 1 assmpt in so many answer choices. Phew..wrote a whole story up there, anybody??

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omninode
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Re: As disappointing as it gets!

Postby omninode » Tue Nov 02, 2010 1:32 pm

My advice may be too vague or obtuse to be of any use to you, but I don't know how else to say it. Here goes:

Logical Reasoning clicked for me when I started thinking of each scenario as a physical structure, like a Jenga stack or something. That way I can visualize which pieces are missing to make an argument complete, or what information is superfluous, etc. It probably sounds ridiculous but that's all I can tell you. Logical Reasoning are always my best sections (-0 or -1) because for me, it lends itself to a visual representation in my mind much more easily than the other types of problems.

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JazzOne
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Re: As disappointing as it gets!

Postby JazzOne » Tue Nov 02, 2010 1:39 pm

Perhaps you could search the forum for the phrase "language shift." This is a term that is found in the Princeton Review materials. It is a model for recognizing subtle assumptions. I've discussed it before on this forum, but I'm in class, so I don't have time to find the threads right now.

Also, you could try searching "assumption" or "assumption question." This topic comes up frequently, and there is a lot of good advice in past threads.

fosterp
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Re: As disappointing as it gets!

Postby fosterp » Tue Nov 02, 2010 4:55 pm

First recognize the difference between sufficient and necessary assumptions.

Necessary means the assumption must be true or the argument falls apart. If a sentence could be false and the argument still stands, its not necessary for the argument. That's where the negation trick comes in. If you negate the answer choice, and the argument falls apart, then that assumption is necessary for the argument. On easy questions, prephrasing will usually yield a correct answer choices. On the tough ones, I notice their arguments are formed around general assumptions that most people make based on common sense, so the "missing part" isn't so obvious, and the correct answer identifies one of those common sense assumptions that is needed but you wouldn't really think about to pre-phrase your answer.

Example: A study of a random sample of lsat test takers shows the amount of time studied is correlated with lsat score. Therefore a person who studies more is more likely you have a higher lsat score than a person who studies less.

On the onset, this seems to be a pretty straightforward argument that could be generally accurate, however in accepting the conclusion we accept a large number of assumptions about the statement, such as the sample being large enough to be significant, that the people conducting the studies knew how to do it, that the mathmatical methods were sound, etc. Stuff that isn't glaringly obvious. Some tricky questions will put in one of those vague common assumptions but one that is still necessary for the argument to hold.

Sufficient is basically an assumption that will fill in the gaps of the argument. They aren't required for the argument, but if true it will make the argument necessarily true.

All cats are furry. Therefore all cats shed.

A sufficient assumption would be all furry things shed, however this assumption is not necessary. You could say not all furry things shed because gorillas are furry and don't shed, but the argument may still be true.

The two question types sound very similar but are very different in what they are really asking. So you really need to recognize the difference.

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Adjudicator
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Re: As disappointing as it gets!

Postby Adjudicator » Tue Nov 02, 2010 5:00 pm

I never used to use the "negation" technique during practice, but during the October LSAT I used it with great success on some of the more difficult LR questions.

Negation is absolutely brilliant. If an assumption is required, then if you negate it, it should completely invalidate the argument. Applying this technique will make it very obvious which answer choice is required and which ones are merely supportive.

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gbpackerbacker
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Re: As disappointing as it gets!

Postby gbpackerbacker » Tue Nov 02, 2010 5:01 pm

MdmMoisel wrote:On my practice tests, I never get even 1 Assumption answer right. I've also finished working on Kaplan's LSAT Mastery Assmpt stack of questions. I got most of them wrong. Not losing hope, I re-did Qs I got wrong. I again got Most of them wrong. God, I could kill myself but can't believe why the right answers are right!! Kaplan's explanations don't help much either.

Any suggestions? I tried the Negation technique, without much success. Taking Dec test. Feel like I'm not getting the concepts right. After all these months of practice..

PM'd you.

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MdmMoisel
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Re: As disappointing as it gets!

Postby MdmMoisel » Wed Nov 03, 2010 1:08 pm

Thanks everyone for great advice!

JazzOne, I'll try using your technique, lets see if it helps.

Fosterp, after reading your response, my problem is probably not being able to recognize many assumptions any argument has (like the one you described below). I just read the stimulus straight and think, yea, that could be true :S But thanks for your explanations, I'll need to consciously seek assumptions in questions that aren't assmpt Qs. That seems like a good practice!

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JazzOne
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Re: As disappointing as it gets!

Postby JazzOne » Wed Nov 03, 2010 1:28 pm

MdmMoisel wrote:Thanks everyone for great advice!

JazzOne, I'll try using your technique, lets see if it helps.

Fosterp, after reading your response, my problem is probably not being able to recognize many assumptions any argument has (like the one you described below). I just read the stimulus straight and think, yea, that could be true :S But thanks for your explanations, I'll need to consciously seek assumptions in questions that aren't assmpt Qs. That seems like a good practice!

Take a look at this: http://www.nizkor.org/features/fallacies/

You really need to spend some time learning about logical fallacies. If you haven't recognized that 95% of the arguments on the LSAT are flawed, then your knowledge of informal logic needs to improve tremendously before law school.

I don't think of it as "looking for the assumption." I think of it as "looking for the flaw/fallacy of the argument."

Edit: I just thought I'd point out that the website I linked to has a particular agenda that I don't really care to discuss. I'm not promoting their agenda, but their descriptions of logical fallacies are spot on.

motiontodismiss
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Re: As disappointing as it gets!

Postby motiontodismiss » Wed Nov 03, 2010 2:32 pm

typ3 wrote:
MdmMoisel wrote:On my practice tests, I never get even 1 Assumption answer right. I've also finished working on Kaplan's LSAT Mastery Assmpt stack of questions. I got most of them wrong. Not losing hope, I re-did Qs I got wrong. I again got Most of them wrong. God, I could kill myself but can't believe why the right answers are right!! Kaplan's explanations don't help much either.

Any suggestions? I tried the Negation technique, without much success. Taking Dec test. Feel like I'm not getting the concepts right. After all these months of practice..


You could try the Manhattan LR Strategy Guide.

The negation technique is only needed on really tough problems. Even then I rarely rarely use it and I'm pretty solid at LR.

Also, on assumptions take a more mechanical approach.

First, find the conclusion first and then work backwards. Compare the conclusion to the premises. Did the stimulus make a big jump in reasoning or wording.

Recent studies show highschool students are sleep deprived. This study was conducted over one month in the town of TLSville. My friend Ned is a highschool student and he seems sleepy. Therefore All students are sleepy.


Here's an example. Conclusion: Therefore all students are sleepy. Premises: Studies show high school students are sleep deprived.

What jump did I make in the logic?

Well, is sleepy being the same thing as sleep deprived? No.
Are high school students representative of ALL students? No. (What about 1st graders, preschool students, graduate students, etc. They may get more sleep. We just don't know)

Before going to the answers, find the assumption or flaw in the argument.


TCR. I went from 10/15 pre-Atlas to 14/15 on the last assumptions problem set. What I do is write out the questions visually. Easier for me to read a flowchart than a paragraph and most of the time I see the gaps right away.

Oh, and when you do drills, SLOW THE FUCK DOWN. Get the technique perfect. Then practice doing it fast.

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joemoviebuff
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Re: As disappointing as it gets!

Postby joemoviebuff » Wed Nov 03, 2010 2:47 pm

OP, have you read the Bible?




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