Desperate Reading Comp Help

*Ari*
Posts: 47
Joined: Sun Dec 05, 2010 1:20 am

Desperate Reading Comp Help

Postby *Ari* » Thu Feb 03, 2011 11:27 pm

Hi,

I've purchased the Manhattan Reading Comp guide and have gone through it at least three times. I have also taken countless tests (25+) and am still struggling greatly on reading comp. I am scheduled to take the LSAT February 12th and LR + LG are roughly where I want them to be. I am hoping to achieve 158-160.

My scores on reading comp are somewhat random. My last test was 16/27, where the test prior was 14/27. I am not too sure what else to do given time is ticking away. I ALWAYS review my wrong answers on tests to see where I go wrong.

Any tips on how to improve my RC before the big day? I am willing to try anything at this point.

Thanks!

Manhattan LSAT Noah
Posts: 746
Joined: Tue Oct 12, 2010 8:43 am

Re: Desperate Reading Comp Help

Postby Manhattan LSAT Noah » Thu Feb 03, 2011 11:34 pm

Maybe your scores are variable because your interest in the passages varies a lot. I know that I have an easier time of it when the passage actually interests me. I'm enough of a geek that most of them do. Try "getting into" the passage to help you keep your interest up.

Another thing you might try to do is play around with your note-taking. If you're taking lots of notes, try backing off. More likely, you're not taking notes. Just jot a word or two next to a paragraph. It doesn't matter if it's legible, and you'll probably never look back at them, but the act of writing those notes may help you "seal in" what you've read.

I hope that helps!

*Ari*
Posts: 47
Joined: Sun Dec 05, 2010 1:20 am

Re: Desperate Reading Comp Help

Postby *Ari* » Thu Feb 03, 2011 11:39 pm

Manhattan LSAT Noah wrote:Maybe your scores are variable because your interest in the passages varies a lot. I know that I have an easier time of it when the passage actually interests me. I'm enough of a geek that most of them do. Try "getting into" the passage to help you keep your interest up.

Another thing you might try to do is play around with your note-taking. If you're taking lots of notes, try backing off. More likely, you're not taking notes. Just jot a word or two next to a paragraph. It doesn't matter if it's legible, and you'll probably never look back at them, but the act of writing those notes may help you "seal in" what you've read.

I hope that helps!

I am not sure whether my interest is a concern, but I am weary of my note taking. I have tried using just the notation symbols that the strategy guide suggests, but I found myself unable to remember what the evidence or opinion is aimed toward supporting. I'll try a brief couple of words, but then I am weary what exactly to summarize? Two words isn't enough to relay the point of the paragraph. I guess it could help trigger a mental switch though perhaps.

I'll try the above suggestions. Thanks! Got anything at all else I should try? Do you suggest I should be doing one RC section minimum per day up to the test? Do you think that'd help?

Manhattan LSAT Noah
Posts: 746
Joined: Tue Oct 12, 2010 8:43 am

Re: Desperate Reading Comp Help

Postby Manhattan LSAT Noah » Fri Feb 04, 2011 12:35 am

Yeah, I'd keep pushing this week. From what you just wrote, I get the sense you still haven't absorbed the idea of reading for the scale. I like your focus on reviewing the wrong answers, but maybe you need to do a bit more work on keeping the sides of the passage clear. In many ways, a good read is more important than good handling of the questions.

Try "self-talk" - it's where you are re-stating what you're reading as you read it. I often model this for my students so that they can see what a spaz I am during the test. It sounds something like this: "Oh, so he's saying quantum theory sucks - why? Oh, because there's some rule about it that didn't test in some black box thingy. Oh, wait, then Max Plank changed it all - Boom!"

See how that goes (and practice saying things out loud but silently, if you know what I mean).

Tell me how it goes, and don't blame me if you end up going crazy.

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EarlCat
Posts: 610
Joined: Mon Mar 12, 2007 4:04 pm

Re: Desperate Reading Comp Help

Postby EarlCat » Fri Feb 04, 2011 12:44 am

*Ari* wrote:I am not sure whether my interest is a concern, but I am weary of my note taking. I have tried using just the notation symbols that the strategy guide suggests, but I found myself unable to remember what the evidence or opinion is aimed toward supporting. I'll try a brief couple of words, but then I am weary what exactly to summarize? Two words isn't enough to relay the point of the paragraph. I guess it could help trigger a mental switch though perhaps.

I'll try the above suggestions. Thanks! Got anything at all else I should try? Do you suggest I should be doing one RC section minimum per day up to the test? Do you think that'd help?


How often are you working off the clock? I would recommend doing several sections, even ones you've done before, with no time pressure. Try to not only get 100% of the answers right, but also write down the line numbers where you find the answers. Then look around those lines and see what clues the author gave you to flag those portions down. Were there transition phrases or segues into them? Are facts played up? Played down? Etc. Get to know the ways passages are commonly organized.

Try to see the passages as a mechanical structure apart from their literal subject matter--a catalog of information with a (purposely vague) indexing system. They're not testing you about Mexican artwork or the migratory habits of bees, they're just testing your ability to find and retrieve data.

Kurst
Posts: 448
Joined: Mon Aug 09, 2010 9:33 pm

Re: Desperate Reading Comp Help

Postby Kurst » Fri Feb 04, 2011 1:13 am

See the links in this post: viewtopic.php?f=6&t=127185#p3370904

Eight days is not enough time to incorporate the strategies, but at least you'll have an idea of what to do when you're studying for your retake.

nelaw2010
Posts: 253
Joined: Wed Jul 07, 2010 1:48 am

Re: Desperate Reading Comp Help

Postby nelaw2010 » Fri Feb 04, 2011 1:24 am

Six things that helped me:

1. How to Read Better and Faster by Norman Lewis
http://www.amazon.com/Read-Better-Faste ... 0690015283
-How fast do you read? 250 wpm? 300 wpm? Also, how well do you retain info when you try to read faster? This book will help you read faster and comprehend more.

2. PowerScore Reading Comp Bible (you must practice the techniques)

3. Doing "no look back" reading comp sections.
-Simply read the passage, then try to answer the questions based off of memory

4. Read daily. Read actively. Read aggressively.
-You must get into the correct reading habits.

5. At the end of every paragraph, write a quick note explaining the main point of that paragraph. Why did the author write that paragraph?

6. Always read for the main point, different viewpoints, and examples!!!

HTH.

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EarlCat
Posts: 610
Joined: Mon Mar 12, 2007 4:04 pm

Re: Desperate Reading Comp Help

Postby EarlCat » Fri Feb 04, 2011 3:16 am

nelaw2010 wrote:1. How to Read Better and Faster by Norman Lewis
http://www.amazon.com/Read-Better-Faste ... 0690015283

I will definitely check this out. I've heard great things about his other book, "Word Power Made Easy."

SchopenhauerFTW
Posts: 1793
Joined: Sun Oct 10, 2010 10:22 pm

Re: Desperate Reading Comp Help

Postby SchopenhauerFTW » Fri Feb 04, 2011 8:22 am

This short little guide helped tremendously.

viewtopic.php?f=6&t=7240

accuratesite2020
Posts: 42
Joined: Thu Dec 23, 2010 12:26 pm

Re: Desperate Reading Comp Help

Postby accuratesite2020 » Fri Feb 04, 2011 8:38 am

Definetly Use Voyager's Plan. What has helped me tremendously is tracking the Viewpoints closely. Everytime passage moves with viewpoints mark it, giving each new view a new number (V1, V2, V3, etc.) When the view is the Author's and it is usually obvious write in (Au !) and sometimes this can also be a main point (MP!).
Also, when you run into a really long and drawn out paragraph you need to see the breaks in it and bracket it off and make it into your own paragraphs. If you do 2 RC sections a day timed focusing on tracking the viewpoints and capturing the main point, you will do fine on test day.

SchopenhauerFTW
Posts: 1793
Joined: Sun Oct 10, 2010 10:22 pm

Re: Desperate Reading Comp Help

Postby SchopenhauerFTW » Fri Feb 04, 2011 9:04 am

I thought it also helped to combine Voyager's shorthand outlining with the lsatblog concept of approaching each RC passage like a big LR stimulus.

Also, make sure you work with real RC passages. I'm kind of getting annoyed with people suggesting that one should read the economist to improve their score. I am guilty of having recommended this in the past, and the truth is that I didn't see the score increase I wanted until I was going through stacks of actual RC passages.




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