Should I retake?

mm12
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Joined: Thu Jan 06, 2011 9:35 pm

Should I retake?

Postby mm12 » Thu Jan 06, 2011 9:55 pm

Dec11 lsat 160 (gpa 3.9) - first time taking the lsat
Hoping for 165+
Practice Test range 160-167

RC -12
LR1 -11
LG -3
LR2 -3

I was on a great sleep schedule the weeks prior to the lsat. The night before I went to bed as usual at 9pm. However, at 11pm I woke up feeling wide awake. I fell back asleep for only another two hours. A total of 4 hours of sleep. Never had a problem of not being able to sleep before an exam.

I wasn't nervous as I usually perform well on important exams. Felt extremely tired during the RC and LR1. After the break I felt great.

On PT's I average about -7 on RC , -5 on LR, and -3 on LG

I'd be content going to a school within the range of my score. It is just killing me how poorly I did on the first two sections.

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joebloe
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Re: Should I retake?

Postby joebloe » Thu Jan 06, 2011 10:00 pm

I'd say retake. I'd kill for your GPA, and I wouldn't piss it away on a score like that for all the tea in China.

mm12
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Joined: Thu Jan 06, 2011 9:35 pm

Re: Should I retake?

Postby mm12 » Thu Jan 06, 2011 10:25 pm

joebloe wrote:I'd say retake. I'd kill for your GPA, and I wouldn't piss it away on a score like that for all the tea in China.


Are you retaking? If so which month?

Manhattan LSAT Noah
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Re: Should I retake?

Postby Manhattan LSAT Noah » Thu Jan 06, 2011 10:37 pm

Did you take tests with 5 sections and under strict conditions? And how much studying did you do?

From the numbers, looks like you should retake.

mm12
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Re: Should I retake?

Postby mm12 » Thu Jan 06, 2011 10:43 pm

I just did 2 sections back to back. Took a 15 minute break and then did the other two sections. Timed with a stopwatch beeping at 35 minutes. I used the lsac bubbling sheets too.

Canadiana
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Re: Should I retake?

Postby Canadiana » Thu Jan 06, 2011 10:45 pm

Yeah you should consider upping the intensity. Do the full 5 section test, try doing 30 minute sections at least on LR, etc.

Manhattan LSAT Noah
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Re: Should I retake?

Postby Manhattan LSAT Noah » Thu Jan 06, 2011 11:11 pm

mm12 wrote:I just did 2 sections back to back. Took a 15 minute break and then did the other two sections. Timed with a stopwatch beeping at 35 minutes. I used the lsac bubbling sheets too.

If you go for it again, be more rigorous on that. 5 sections, 1 break, do the experimental as your second section (or have someone hide it)

mm12
Posts: 13
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Re: Should I retake?

Postby mm12 » Fri Jan 07, 2011 2:26 am

Keep going back and forth.

I might just stick with the 160.

I am over the 50th percentile for lsat and gpa enrolled students for the school in the city I wanted to live anyways. I am extremely excited and happy now thinking of attending this school!

My grandma won the lottery a few years back and is paying for my legal education and living expenses.
So scholarship is not as important of a factor in order to retake.

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Agitprop
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Re: Should I retake?

Postby Agitprop » Fri Jan 07, 2011 12:00 pm

I am contemplating the same thing. I took the LSAT in October and got a 158. Felt like sheeeeeyit because it was way below my PT averages. I retook the test in December and I got a 165. My nerves got the better of me in both cases, but I am happy with the 165 because I mainly walked into the test trying to prove something to myself. Deal is, I am not 100% sure about going to law school, and if I really could do whatever I wanted to do in life, it would be a professor of history, sociology or education (I graduated from college with four social science majors and I already have two master's degrees, all of which are testaments to how much of an indecisive freak I am). The average salary of a lawyer is pretty tempting, but honestly I do not care that much about making a lot of money. I can be totally happy with financial stability alone so long as I am doing something that I enjoy.

Right now, I am studying to retake the GRE. First time I took it, I did not really prepare. My verbal score was good, but I want a badass quantitative score so that I can make my application look pretty. If I retook the LSAT in February, I am not going to blow my brains out studying for it. I might take some practice tests in full to help with timing and brush-up on a few strategies, but I am tired of that test. Plus, I just do not have a lot of time or resources due to work, family, financial strain, etc. Still, it would be nice to have a 167 or so. I have a 3.71 UGPA, good work experience teaching at-risk teenagers, graduate education and a "life story." I want to have as many opportunities as possible open to me when I am ready to turn the page, and if I were able to bump it up a few points then I would certainly have more of those when it comes to law school admissions.

So, I am a little torn. I am leaning towards not retaking. The test is expensive, I am already digging another standardized exam and I really like my Saturdays. Who knows? I might even do worse the third time. Some friends of mine who went to law school are suggesting the same thing - especially because I am not enthusiastic about being a lawyer. Nevertheless, the LSAT continues to eat away at my brain. Would be cool to be a law professor. I could torture law students as in The Paperchase and then act like I don't know their names.

tomwatts
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Re: Should I retake?

Postby tomwatts » Fri Jan 07, 2011 1:19 pm

mm12 wrote:I am over the 50th percentile for lsat and gpa enrolled students for the school in the city I wanted to live anyways. I am extremely excited and happy now thinking of attending this school!

You know, it sounds as though you could get a higher score, but it sounds as though you don't need a higher score. You might consider using LSAC's UGPA/LSAT Search to determine your chances — if it looks as though you'd be better of with 75th percentile scores, you might consider a retake (because you probably could pull a 165 with more serious studying), but otherwise you're set.

To Agitprop: Do you have a school list in mind? If so, how big a difference would a 165 vs. a 167 really make at those schools? I'd be surprised if that affected your chances substantially. I could see a 165 vs. 170 being a pretty big deal, but less so the two-point jump.

Becoming a law professor is crazy hard, and you really want to go to Yale/Harvard to have a good shot at it, or to a lesser extent the others in the t6. It can be done from other schools, but it requires a little bit of luck (and, of course, a lot of hard wok) at that point.

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joebloe
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Re: Should I retake?

Postby joebloe » Fri Jan 07, 2011 1:28 pm

mm12 wrote:
joebloe wrote:I'd say retake. I'd kill for your GPA, and I wouldn't piss it away on a score like that for all the tea in China.


Are you retaking? If so which month?


I'm shooting for June now. I started this cycle late in the first place, and have made very poor progress on my apps. Coupled with piss-poor numbers and lame softs, I'd be fighting to get accepted to a T2, so retake is not only TCR, but the only choice. February is too soon to get back into gear, plus it's undisclosed.

By the way, another advantage of June is that it's later in the day.

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fastforward
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Re: Should I retake?

Postby fastforward » Fri Jan 07, 2011 1:46 pm

We encourage anyone considering a retake to carefully analyze just what went wrong, and then decide whether you are willing to solve the problem. An LSAC study reports an average of a 2.8 point increase on the first retake and another 1.9 points on the second retake. It's quite possible to do far better, but only if you're willing to change it up.

We wrote a blog post (LinkRemoved) about this the other day. It might help you start to walk through the analysis.

Frankly, a rocky start with a strong finish sounds more to me like nerves than endurance, especially given the trouble sleeping. Many "natural" test-takers don't expect to be affected by nerves at all, and often don't recognize it when it happens. The LSAT is a test like none other, and no one is exempt from nerves affecting performance. We encourage LSAT takers to give as much attention to this aspect of the test as the rest of your preparation. Nerves also can be partially the result of inadequate preparation.

I'd normally be with the other posters who say your golden GPA would be squandered on applying with a score of 160, but you seem to have unique circumstances, so it's a tough call that only you can make. Just be certain your decision is an informed one.

All the best whatever you decide.




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