Studying with a full-time job

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1republic
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Studying with a full-time job

Postby 1republic » Wed Dec 22, 2010 6:23 pm

So I took the LSAT in October and took TM/self-studied during the summer and didn't do as well as I'd hoped. I want to retake in June, but ever since I got a job in November, it's been hard to study after work. I am so tired and the last thing I want to do is sit down and do a PT.

I study at work during my lunch break, but that is hardly enough. Any suggestions from people who have been in similar situations?

krad
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Re: Studying with a full-time job

Postby krad » Wed Dec 22, 2010 6:32 pm


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1republic
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Re: Studying with a full-time job

Postby 1republic » Wed Dec 22, 2010 6:35 pm

Sweet, thanks!

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dextermorgan
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Re: Studying with a full-time job

Postby dextermorgan » Wed Dec 22, 2010 6:40 pm

That other thread is full of good info, but I just wanted to add in that I make sure I study for at least two hours a day during the week (get off at 5, eat, study from 6-8).

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LSAT Blog
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Re: Studying with a full-time job

Postby LSAT Blog » Wed Dec 22, 2010 6:42 pm

I wrote an article for TLS about this. Hope it helps!

krad
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Joined: Mon Sep 13, 2010 10:33 am

Re: Studying with a full-time job

Postby krad » Wed Dec 22, 2010 6:45 pm

LSAT Blog wrote:I wrote an article for TLS about this. Hope it helps!


Steve! LSAT Blog is the best! OP definitely check this out!

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arism87
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Re: Studying with a full-time job

Postby arism87 » Wed Dec 22, 2010 6:46 pm

LSAT Blog wrote:I wrote an article for TLS about this. Hope it helps!


+1 great article! That's exactly how I did it, about 15 hours/week for 3-4 months. I don't think I was at my peak yet, but that said, I'm not retaking. Definitely feasible! Good luck!

zeke18
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Re: Studying with a full-time job

Postby zeke18 » Wed Dec 22, 2010 7:02 pm

If possible, try studying in the mornings before work. I did so to prepare for my retake in Oct while I was working full time. I would do a few sections in the morning and maybe a few more during my lunch break if I had time. I would then take a PT on the weekend. This method might not have worked if it was my first time taking the test , but it worked very well for me because I was already familiar with the material. I know it's not feasible for everyone (my commute is only 10 minutes on a bad day), but the sacrifice of waking up early is definitely worth it if you can. Good luck!

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hokie
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Re: Studying with a full-time job

Postby hokie » Wed Dec 22, 2010 7:06 pm

As soon as work ended, I went to my local college library and studied. There were some weeks where work was busy and I was able to study less (and vice versa), but the main thing was just to come to terms that my life would be hell for ~2 months. I would study pretty much all weekend but made sure I took a break from Saturday evening to Sunday around noon. Just make sure you set up some sort of deadlines to keep track (I had a calendar made), or else it may be hard to stay focused and on track. GL!

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yardsale
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Re: Studying with a full-time job

Postby yardsale » Wed Dec 22, 2010 8:26 pm

I studied for my second LSAT while working full-time. I took it for the first time while in college and wasn't happy with the results (162), so I delayed applying and instead got a job to be sure I really wanted to go to law school.

It's very tough to fit in the time to study while working, and some days you just feel too exhausted, but it definitely can be done with great success (I'm hoping...we'll see what I got on the test). I took a cold test the third weekend in August and scored a 155...I had forgotten nearly everything about the test.

Starting that week I began an intense studying regimen, intending to take the test in October. I would study from 6pm until between 9 or 11pm Monday through Friday (yes, Friday - I did not drink from August until December after the test...sad; I found not going out on weekends was the best policy because I cannot drink without getting hungover, which may be due to my biology or lack of self-control; either way, I knew that I would waste precious studying time nursing a hangover if I went out drinking). Then, I would take a 5-section practice test on either Saturday or Sunday. I recommend doing the test Saturday so that if you don't feel like going over it on the same day, you can review your answers on Sunday and not lose study time come Monday.

The first time around I took a Kaplan course and did not find it very helpful. Their material is chock full of mistakes and typos; I even found typos in answer keys on more than one occasion. This is simply unacceptable for an LSAT prep company. I also didn't like the class setting; you are forced to go at the pace of the slowest person in the class which I found incredibly frustrating. I ordered the three Powerscore Bibles and hired a local Powerscore tutor for 5 hours of help on logic games. I also ordered every prep test from LSAC and did almost every question, whether just for untimed or timed section practice, or a practice test. I found Powerscore to be invaluable and infinitely better than Kaplan. I highly recommend the books and at least an hour or two with a tutor if you struggle with logic games. A tutor can show you how to look at questions from a different perspective and give you a world of new tools to attack them with.

Come mid-September I did not feel ready to take the test in October. I was still scoring around my first score, got very sick and had to travel for work. So, I postponed the test until December - one of the best decisions I've ever made. With work, you NEVER know what is going to happen and things will probably come up at the most inopportune of times. Even for the December test I ended up having to travel the 2 weeks prior to the test, but because I was already prepared I did not need to do intensive studying those last two weeks so it wasn't a problem.

Anyway, I basically held that regimen every week from August through the end of November, then a toned down version of it the week and a half leading up to the test. I also studied in the morning prior to work the last two weeks before the test in order to get my mind and body used to getting up that early. Didn't touch anything the day before the test. There aren't any tricks to make studying while working full-time easy. You simply have to decide how badly you want to improve, buckle down and do it. I knew I could score well if I just put in the time and seriously studied (my highest practice tests were 176 and 177; starting in October they all ranged from 167 to 177). The only thing that can help make it easier is not having to simultaneously work on applications. I wanted to get most of mine in before the test, which took a lot of work. I'm not sure if this was beneficial or a detriment. Since I wasn't doing anything anyway, and I like to be busy I actually think working on applications while studying helped me. It was a break from studying but was also something productive I could work on.

Moral of the story: I think the most important thing you can do is give yourself an appropriate amount of time to prepare. Also, leave no stone unturned. Try different things and find something that works. Since I was working full-time and wasn't going out, I had extra money to spend on effective books and a tutor. Without a doubt, they are absurdly expensive. But a 5 to 10 point difference in your LSAT score can mean the difference between getting into a great school and a mediocre school. It's a one-time cost and is worth it.

Feel free to PM me if you have any questions and best of luck! Studying for the LSAT while working is a royal pain and will destroy your social life, but being able to walk into the test with the utmost confidence and leave feeling good about your performance is beyond worth it.

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1republic
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Joined: Tue Oct 12, 2010 10:44 pm

Re: Studying with a full-time job

Postby 1republic » Thu Dec 23, 2010 3:04 pm

LSAT Blog wrote:I wrote an article for TLS about this. Hope it helps!


Thank you, Steve!

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1republic
Posts: 41
Joined: Tue Oct 12, 2010 10:44 pm

Re: Studying with a full-time job

Postby 1republic » Thu Dec 23, 2010 3:08 pm

yardsale wrote:I studied for my second LSAT while working full-time. I took it for the first time while in college and wasn't happy with the results (162), so I delayed applying and instead got a job to be sure I really wanted to go to law school.

It's very tough to fit in the time to study while working, and some days you just feel too exhausted, but it definitely can be done with great success (I'm hoping...we'll see what I got on the test). I took a cold test the third weekend in August and scored a 155...I had forgotten nearly everything about the test.

Starting that week I began an intense studying regimen, intending to take the test in October. I would study from 6pm until between 9 or 11pm Monday through Friday (yes, Friday - I did not drink from August until December after the test...sad; I found not going out on weekends was the best policy because I cannot drink without getting hungover, which may be due to my biology or lack of self-control; either way, I knew that I would waste precious studying time nursing a hangover if I went out drinking). Then, I would take a 5-section practice test on either Saturday or Sunday. I recommend doing the test Saturday so that if you don't feel like going over it on the same day, you can review your answers on Sunday and not lose study time come Monday.

The first time around I took a Kaplan course and did not find it very helpful. Their material is chock full of mistakes and typos; I even found typos in answer keys on more than one occasion. This is simply unacceptable for an LSAT prep company. I also didn't like the class setting; you are forced to go at the pace of the slowest person in the class which I found incredibly frustrating. I ordered the three Powerscore Bibles and hired a local Powerscore tutor for 5 hours of help on logic games. I also ordered every prep test from LSAC and did almost every question, whether just for untimed or timed section practice, or a practice test. I found Powerscore to be invaluable and infinitely better than Kaplan. I highly recommend the books and at least an hour or two with a tutor if you struggle with logic games. A tutor can show you how to look at questions from a different perspective and give you a world of new tools to attack them with.

Come mid-September I did not feel ready to take the test in October. I was still scoring around my first score, got very sick and had to travel for work. So, I postponed the test until December - one of the best decisions I've ever made. With work, you NEVER know what is going to happen and things will probably come up at the most inopportune of times. Even for the December test I ended up having to travel the 2 weeks prior to the test, but because I was already prepared I did not need to do intensive studying those last two weeks so it wasn't a problem.

Anyway, I basically held that regimen every week from August through the end of November, then a toned down version of it the week and a half leading up to the test. I also studied in the morning prior to work the last two weeks before the test in order to get my mind and body used to getting up that early. Didn't touch anything the day before the test. There aren't any tricks to make studying while working full-time easy. You simply have to decide how badly you want to improve, buckle down and do it. I knew I could score well if I just put in the time and seriously studied (my highest practice tests were 176 and 177; starting in October they all ranged from 167 to 177). The only thing that can help make it easier is not having to simultaneously work on applications. I wanted to get most of mine in before the test, which took a lot of work. I'm not sure if this was beneficial or a detriment. Since I wasn't doing anything anyway, and I like to be busy I actually think working on applications while studying helped me. It was a break from studying but was also something productive I could work on.

Moral of the story: I think the most important thing you can do is give yourself an appropriate amount of time to prepare. Also, leave no stone unturned. Try different things and find something that works. Since I was working full-time and wasn't going out, I had extra money to spend on effective books and a tutor. Without a doubt, they are absurdly expensive. But a 5 to 10 point difference in your LSAT score can mean the difference between getting into a great school and a mediocre school. It's a one-time cost and is worth it.

Feel free to PM me if you have any questions and best of luck! Studying for the LSAT while working is a royal pain and will destroy your social life, but being able to walk into the test with the utmost confidence and leave feeling good about your performance is beyond worth it.




Wow thanks so much for this. I feel in a very similar position as you, so it is encouraging. I hope you rocked dec!

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LSAT Blog
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Re: Studying with a full-time job

Postby LSAT Blog » Thu Dec 23, 2010 6:01 pm

1republic wrote:
LSAT Blog wrote:I wrote an article for TLS about this. Hope it helps!


Thank you, Steve!


Glad to help, and thanks for the kind words, everyone - happy holidays!




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