Retaking to mid 170s

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amc987
Posts: 568
Joined: Sat Aug 29, 2009 10:58 am

Retaking to mid 170s

Postby amc987 » Sun Mar 06, 2011 1:34 am

Hey all,

I got a 166 on the Feb LSAT. Unfortunately I was not so happy with my score. I had a PT avg of 171-173 after taking around 15 tests. (I took Testmasters so there weren't a lot of untouched tests available to me after I'd done the homework.) I think I am going to retake the test in June with the hope of getting 170+. I was wondering whether anyone had advice about how to structure the time. I have some minor problems (see below), but I don't have anything that's a huge conceptual problem. This sort of makes studying for a retake difficult. I don't want to gloss over problems, but I also don't want to try to reinvent the wheel on things that I do well. Has anyone else been in this situation and improved from a mid-high 160s score to a score in the 170s? How did you prepare differently? I've never used the bibles and I know that people on here swear by them. Do they seem like something I should spend a lot of time with or should I spend the majority of my time taking tests and reviewing them? I sort of want to chalk up my 166 in Feb to a bad testing day and move on. But as I prepare to take the test again, I also really want to make sure that I do everything I can to score 170+ in June so I don't end up feeling disappointed about my score.


I've been having some trouble with LG. I had a lot of time issues before and I thought I had worked out the majority of them by doing a lot of timed games section, but I didn't finish either LG (I had exp LG) on my test. I don't have tons of trouble with a specific game type, but I guess I just need to get faster at working through my hypotheticals, making deductions, and figuring out when to master the possibilities when things seem limited.

I also have a bit of trouble with some question types for LR. Specifically, flawed reasoning, strengthening and weakening questions. This can be hit or miss though--I've had tests where I've missed 0 on LR and tests where I've missed around 7 or 8 total. One of the LR sections in Feb had a ton of weakening questions and I found that one to be particularly difficult. I also could improve on my ability to eliminate wrong answer choices, to choose the correct of 2 remaining choices, and preempting answer choices after I read the stimulus.

For RC I don't seem to have too many problems. I generally end up between -0 and -2 on RC, but I do have occasional bad tests where I miss 4 or 5. I guess I'll just keep doing some of these timed sections for practice and try to continue reading carefully and avoiding careless mistakes.

I'd appreciate any advice or words of wisdom from people who have been in similar situations before. Thanks!

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well-hello-there
Posts: 320
Joined: Tue Oct 12, 2010 8:38 pm

Re: Retaking to mid 170s

Postby well-hello-there » Sun Mar 06, 2011 2:42 am

amc987 wrote:Hey all,

I got a 166 on the Feb LSAT. Unfortunately I was not so happy with my score. I had a PT avg of 171-173 after taking around 15 tests. (I took Testmasters so there weren't a lot of untouched tests available to me after I'd done the homework.) I think I am going to retake the test in June with the hope of getting 170+. I was wondering whether anyone had advice about how to structure the time. I have some minor problems (see below), but I don't have anything that's a huge conceptual problem. This sort of makes studying for a retake difficult. I don't want to gloss over problems, but I also don't want to try to reinvent the wheel on things that I do well. Has anyone else been in this situation and improved from a mid-high 160s score to a score in the 170s? How did you prepare differently? I've never used the bibles and I know that people on here swear by them. Do they seem like something I should spend a lot of time with or should I spend the majority of my time taking tests and reviewing them? I sort of want to chalk up my 166 in Feb to a bad testing day and move on. But as I prepare to take the test again, I also really want to make sure that I do everything I can to score 170+ in June so I don't end up feeling disappointed about my score.


I've been having some trouble with LG. I had a lot of time issues before and I thought I had worked out the majority of them by doing a lot of timed games section, but I didn't finish either LG (I had exp LG) on my test. I don't have tons of trouble with a specific game type, but I guess I just need to get faster at working through my hypotheticals, making deductions, and figuring out when to master the possibilities when things seem limited.

I also have a bit of trouble with some question types for LR. Specifically, flawed reasoning, strengthening and weakening questions. This can be hit or miss though--I've had tests where I've missed 0 on LR and tests where I've missed around 7 or 8 total. One of the LR sections in Feb had a ton of weakening questions and I found that one to be particularly difficult. I also could improve on my ability to eliminate wrong answer choices, to choose the correct of 2 remaining choices, and preempting answer choices after I read the stimulus.

For RC I don't seem to have too many problems. I generally end up between -0 and -2 on RC, but I do have occasional bad tests where I miss 4 or 5. I guess I'll just keep doing some of these timed sections for practice and try to continue reading carefully and avoiding careless mistakes.

I'd appreciate any advice or words of wisdom from people who have been in similar situations before. Thanks!

I did what you are hoping to do.
I found the Powerscore LR & LG bible to be quite helpful. IMO the RC bible isn't that great.

The LR bible helped me to consciously know every type of question. I think it's important to know the question types so well that you can practically write each kind out in a list from memory. It also taught me a bit of formal logic which was good because I had never before seen that.

The LG bible taught me the fundamentals but what got me dialed in on games was the repetition of doing EVERY game available and doing my hardest game sections multiple times. I did the AR section with the mauve dinosaurs at least 5 times. I did many other sections 3 or 4 times. After a while, I got a 6th sense and was able to DESTROY them. The DEC. 2010 AR was a joke to me. I did miss one question but that was due to carelessness.

Don't take 3 or 4 practice tests per week for weeks at a time. You won't have time to improve in your weak areas and you will just be wasting prep. material.

Keep in mind that your individual performance on the real LSAT may be adversely affected by a test that is particularly hard for you. LSAC does a good job of keeping the aggregate LSAT performance of all testers relatively stable from test to test but that doesn't mean that you are locked in near the range of 166. From your practice test results, it seems to me that your under-performance on the Feb. 2011 test might be explained by test content/subject matter that you have a difficult time with. Some prep-tests were full of material that I owned, and others were full of stuff that owned me. Be prepared to take the June and October tests. I think it is highly unlikely that you will get three tests in a row that are full of subject matter that throws you for a loop.

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minnbills
Posts: 3153
Joined: Thu Sep 02, 2010 2:04 pm

Re: Retaking to mid 170s

Postby minnbills » Sun Mar 06, 2011 10:55 am

well-hello-there could you elaborate on what you mean by not taking 3-4 preptests a week?

Do you mean drilling sections instead?

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

Re: Retaking to mid 170s

Postby EarlCat » Sun Mar 06, 2011 1:23 pm

amc987 wrote:Has anyone else been in this situation and improved from a mid-high 160s score to a score in the 170s?


viewtopic.php?f=6&t=149213

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sanetruth
Posts: 358
Joined: Thu Apr 29, 2010 12:26 pm

Re: Retaking to mid 170s

Postby sanetruth » Sun Mar 06, 2011 2:30 pm

We have a lot in common. I took testmasters, and I scored a 165 soon after the course ended. I had been testing in the 170 range so I was disappointed with this. After addressing my issues, however, I scored a 171 in February.

I agree that Testmasters' problem is that they don't give you a lot of practice with actual tests, and so the problem I had couldn't be addressed by them. I wasn't able to get through LR sections in time and ended up guessing/rushing at the end. In classes, I was getting 99% of questions right, but they really didn't help in addressing speed.

This is not your problem though, and I think you're in a much better position. Games are the easiest to improve on, so I suggest you buy the games bible and go through that.

I don't suggest you get any other bibles, you clearly know what you're doing with RC and LR so what I would do is just buy PT's 50-62 and the LG bible, and after doing the LG bible do 1-2 PT's a week with thorough review. I know you have already done some of these tests, but unlike other people I think retaking tests you have done before is fine (just be aware that the score may not be 100% predictive).

Also, I don't know if you're doing this already but I strongly recommend practicing with a watch and becoming religious about it. On test day, it's easy to get distracted or stressed and before you know it you can have 5 minutes left with 10 questions, but if you're religious about the watch this won't happen. Also, don't be afraid to skip questions and come back to them. I did this on test day (it was terrifying), but now i'm confident its why i have above a 170.

BrianOz1
Posts: 44
Joined: Fri Jan 07, 2011 11:06 pm

Re: Retaking to mid 170s

Postby BrianOz1 » Sun Mar 06, 2011 2:31 pm

I retook a Mid 160's and improved to a 170 without doing much other than going into my retake with a more relaxed attitude.

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well-hello-there
Posts: 320
Joined: Tue Oct 12, 2010 8:38 pm

Re: Retaking to mid 170s

Postby well-hello-there » Sun Mar 06, 2011 4:12 pm

minnbills wrote:well-hello-there could you elaborate on what you mean by not taking 3-4 preptests a week?

Do you mean drilling sections instead?

Doing 3-4 per week is overkill and I was burned out after doing that for 2 months. I didn't have time to properly review my mistakes or the things I was doing right on each question. It takes a while for things to "sink in" to my brain and doing a new test every couple days was just wasting virgin test questions without giving myself time to implement the things I was learning. My time could have been spent much more effectively if I wasn't so focused on the amount of time I spent studying but rather the quality of my study methods.

Finding what will work for you is very important. Use all the resources that TLS has to find the right methods for you.




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