I just took my diagnostic = 154 :( advice?

splitterfriendly
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I just took my diagnostic = 154 :( advice?

Postby splitterfriendly » Sun Mar 06, 2011 6:55 pm

i just started a prep class with Blueprint (not sure if anyone's familiar with them). having had no exposure whatsoever to all things LSAT, i ended up with a 154 on the diag. i had by far the most difficulty with logic games; logical reasoning was a strong(ish) point; and the reading comp section revealed to me that i read way too slowly for this test -- i did well on what i answered, but fudged my score skimming / answering to the best of my abilities during the last 5 minutes of each of the two sections. so far as reading speed is concerned, i'm optimistic that i can improve significantly by june.

after a prep class, did any of you who diag'ed mid 150's score 170+ on the actual test?

if so, how did you do it?
if not, how did you do?

what were your initial weaknesses / strengths?

advice???



any general words of wisdom are appreciated. thanks.

FloridaCoastalorbust
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Re: I just took my diagnostic = 154 :( advice?

Postby FloridaCoastalorbust » Sun Mar 06, 2011 6:58 pm

splitterfriendly wrote:i just started a prep class with Blueprint (not sure if anyone's familiar with them). having had no exposure whatsoever to all things LSAT, i ended up with a 154 on the diag. i had by far the most difficulty with logic games; logical reasoning was a strong(ish) point; and the reading comp section revealed to me that i read way too slowly for this test -- i did well on what i answered, but fudged my score skimming / answering to the best of my abilities during the last 5 minutes of each of the two sections. so far as reading speed is concerned, i'm optimistic that i can improve significantly by june.

after a prep class, did any of you who diag'ed mid 150's score 170+ on the actual test?

if so, how did you do it?
if not, how did you do?

what were your initial weaknesses / strengths?

advice???



any general words of wisdom are appreciated. thanks.



Devour this article: viewtopic.php?f=6&t=396. If you absorb the tips your PT avg will skyrocket. RC and (especially) LG are quite learnable. With hard work you will be pushing 170s in a couple months: I diaged 3 weeks ago at 153 and hit 169 this morning.

FloridaCoastalorbust
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Re: I just took my diagnostic = 154 :( advice?

Postby FloridaCoastalorbust » Sun Mar 06, 2011 7:00 pm

Oh, and imitate the patterns of 180ers. This means throwing away your old goal and replacing it with: "I will score a 180." Start out by reading everything TLS1776 has posted on, including viewtopic.php?f=22&t=120471

justadude55
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Re: I just took my diagnostic = 154 :( advice?

Postby justadude55 » Sun Mar 06, 2011 7:00 pm

A 154 is a very good diagnostic score. If you don't score 165 plus, it means you did not study enough/effectively.

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Ialdabaoth
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Re: I just took my diagnostic = 154 :( advice?

Postby Ialdabaoth » Sun Mar 06, 2011 7:04 pm

First, what do you mean by this: "but fudged my score skimming / answering to the best of my abilities during the last 5 minutes of each of the two sections" ?

And don't be discouraged by a 154 diag! The LSAT is a very learnable exam, and I've heard good things about Blueprint.

I went 154 (absolutely cold, Kaplan-proctored) diag --> 168 on December 2010. I took a prep class and did all the required assignments/homework plus 9 (I think) total PTs. That's really not a lot of prep by TLS standards, so I think you should be confidant that you can hit 170 with a lot of work.

My initial strengths and weaknesses were very similar to yours. In fact, I still suck at LG, but many people improve exponentially in this area. IIRC, I went -13 LG, -3 LR (total), -1 RC in December, haha.

Best of luck!

pfarag
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Re: I just took my diagnostic = 154 :( advice?

Postby pfarag » Sun Mar 06, 2011 7:13 pm

A 154 isn't bad at all for a first diag. My real first diag was in the low 140's, and after a testmasters course (and a couple months of preparation) i scored a 163 on test day. Logic games are the easiest to correct; trust me on this. The key is not to rush in studying for them and you will begin to see a pattern as there are only so many games/questions they can use. For the first month I did not do well on logic games (like -10 per section) and then suddenly they began to click. Just don't get frustrated and be patient and you will find this to be true. Good luck

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LLB2JD
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Re: I just took my diagnostic = 154 :( advice?

Postby LLB2JD » Sun Mar 06, 2011 7:18 pm

justadude55 wrote:A 154 is a very good diagnostic score. If you don't score 165 plus, it means you did not study enough/effectively.


+1. You are in very good shape. With a little more familiarizing with the test, you'll be scoring in the 160s in no time.

justadude55
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Re: I just took my diagnostic = 154 :( advice?

Postby justadude55 » Sun Mar 06, 2011 7:23 pm

I would also say it matters where you lost your points.

A 154 diag with -15 in LG is more promising than a 160 with -0 in LG.

My diag was a 160, and it was not that much work to go up the first 10 points.

Most people start with about a 140, btw.

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Emeth!
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Re: I just took my diagnostic = 154 :( advice?

Postby Emeth! » Sun Mar 06, 2011 7:33 pm

splitterfriendly wrote:i just started a prep class with Blueprint (not sure if anyone's familiar with them). having had no exposure whatsoever to all things LSAT, i ended up with a 154 on the diag. i had by far the most difficulty with logic games; logical reasoning was a strong(ish) point; and the reading comp section revealed to me that i read way too slowly for this test -- i did well on what i answered, but fudged my score skimming / answering to the best of my abilities during the last 5 minutes of each of the two sections. so far as reading speed is concerned, i'm optimistic that i can improve significantly by june.

after a prep class, did any of you who diag'ed mid 150's score 170+ on the actual test?

if so, how did you do it?
if not, how did you do?

what were your initial weaknesses / strengths?

advice???



any general words of wisdom are appreciated. thanks.




My first dignostic = 151 and my stats were bascially the same as yours -its actually good news that you suck at logic games because they are by far the easist to improve on.

Actual LSAT = 170.

and your starting with a 3 point head start -keep at it and you'll be fine.

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huckster
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Re: I just took my diagnostic = 154 :( advice?

Postby huckster » Sun Mar 06, 2011 7:39 pm

My diagnostic was 150-154 (can't quite remember) and my initial performance on each section was basically identical to yours. I bought the Powerscore Bible trio and studied on my own (not necessarily recommending this) and by test day I was scoring 166-171 (with some outliers . . . top score was 173) on practice tests. I ended up with a 167.

The LG's section was by far the one I spent the greatest portion of my time practicing. When I first started studying I was only finishing two games . . . on test day, I missed around 4 or 5 questions.

splitterfriendly
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Re: I just took my diagnostic = 154 :( advice?

Postby splitterfriendly » Sun Mar 06, 2011 7:45 pm

wow. thanks for the quick responses!

- i was -15 on LG. as of now, it seems really daunting, but your comments seem hopeful.

- by "but fudged my score skimming / answering to the best of my abilities during the last 5 minutes of each of the two sections" i mean this: the proctor made an announcement at the five minute mark. after hearing that, seeing how much more i had left during each of the two RC sections in the test, (at the end of each section) i panicked and skimmed the remaining passages - rather than reading them closely, as i had the preceding passages - and rushed through answering the remaining questions. it's during those last questions that my RC score really took its beating. so, i figure if i can manage to speed up my reading, i'll see dramatic improvement without.



why is logic games 'the most learnable' section?

also, can anyone direct me to this cycle's splitter thread, if there is / you know of one?

thanks

blahb
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Re: I just took my diagnostic = 154 :( advice?

Postby blahb » Sun Mar 06, 2011 8:44 pm

156 --> 174 on test day

TestMasters Late (accelerated 6-week) course

My PTs in chronological order:
First half: 156* (cold), 161*, 164
After I "got it": 179*, 177
Burnout: 171, 170*
After rest, final week before test day: 176, 172 (taken in timed sections)

*Official proctored course diag
Full PTs with extra section as "experimental" except for that last one

- For optional PTs, take the more recent ones
- Do ALL the homework for AT LEAST the first half of the course, those are the most important for building your base.
- Don't worry about how many full PTs you take; focus instead on timed sections for accuracy. No need to take more than one full PT on the same day, or even on two consecutive days.
- DON'T burn out. This happened to me when I took two full PTs one day after the other.
- This might not be an option for you, but I focused on the course full-time. No school, no work, just LSAT.
- The point is to drill until on test day you function basically automatically.

RC was originally my best. The most important part of RC is learning to read for the right stuff, what's going to come up in the questions. LG is definitely the most learnable because any consistent techniques will cut your time by a lot. The key to RC and LR is learning to see the textual support for how 4 answers are definitely wrong and only 1 is definitely right.

On test day I finished all 5 sections early and did not blind guess any.

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mac35352
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Re: I just took my diagnostic = 154 :( advice?

Postby mac35352 » Sun Mar 06, 2011 8:54 pm

+1 A cold diagnosis of 154 is not bad at all.
If you are taking the Blue Print course and do all the work you will probably get a good score in the high 160s-170s.
Practice, practice, practice and revise your answers after each Preptest.
Good Luck!

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mac35352
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Re: I just took my diagnostic = 154 :( advice?

Postby mac35352 » Sun Mar 06, 2011 9:01 pm

splitterfriendly wrote:wow. thanks for the quick responses!

- i was -15 on LG. as of now, it seems really daunting, but your comments seem hopeful.

- by "but fudged my score skimming / answering to the best of my abilities during the last 5 minutes of each of the two sections" i mean this: the proctor made an announcement at the five minute mark. after hearing that, seeing how much more i had left during each of the two RC sections in the test, (at the end of each section) i panicked and skimmed the remaining passages - rather than reading them closely, as i had the preceding passages - and rushed through answering the remaining questions. it's during those last questions that my RC score really took its beating. so, i figure if i can manage to speed up my reading, i'll see dramatic improvement without.



why is logic games 'the most learnable' section?
also, can anyone direct me to this cycle's splitter thread, if there is / you know of one?

thanks

It's the easiest to learn and to improve on because there are proven and efficient methods of diagramming every different type of game and solving them on a timely manner. LG was my worst section at first (-14 on my cold diagnosis), six weeks later I can finish all the games on time and get -1 to -4.
I thought I was going to have a hard time with RC because I read too slow at first but with practice you get the hang of it quickly. Pretty much you will already now what to look for when you read and answering the questions would not be that hard.
I find LR to be the hardest section because is so umpredictable but since this is your strongest area you might be just fine!
Best of luck
Last edited by mac35352 on Sun Mar 06, 2011 9:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.

splitterfriendly
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Re: I just took my diagnostic = 154 :( advice?

Postby splitterfriendly » Sun Mar 06, 2011 9:11 pm

^ yeah. there were a few LR questions seemed (to me) really ambiguous. those affected me the most, i think, because i lost my rhythm and spent extra time on them before eventually guessing (wrongly..) between narrowed options. those few questions aside, the LR section as a whole felt really intuitive. second nature-like, or something. is that common?

man.. this encouragement is great.

hazaah!

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mac35352
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Re: I just took my diagnostic = 154 :( advice?

Postby mac35352 » Sun Mar 06, 2011 9:19 pm

splitterfriendly wrote:^ yeah. there were a few LR questions that didn't seem (to me) to have one answer stick out as being correct. those affected me the most, i think, because i lost my rhythm and spent extra time on them before eventually guessing (wrongly..) between narrowed options.

man.. this encouragement is great.

hazaah!

I know the feeling but once you familiarize yourself with the test you will actually know what they are asking (hopefully :)) and identify the correct answers.

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Cupidity
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Re: I just took my diagnostic = 154 :( advice?

Postby Cupidity » Sun Mar 06, 2011 9:24 pm

I went from 157-->168

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Ialdabaoth
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Re: I just took my diagnostic = 154 :( advice?

Postby Ialdabaoth » Sun Mar 06, 2011 9:45 pm

I just want to say I think this is the most positive, upbeat thread I've ever seen on TLS. Way to go everybody, haha.

splitterfriendly
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Re: I just took my diagnostic = 154 :( advice?

Postby splitterfriendly » Mon Mar 07, 2011 12:18 am

^ i've been a lurker for a while.. agreed.



does anyone have any advice about integrating the bibles into my preparation? i mean, given that i've just begun a course, should i go through them along with the course's structured lessons, homework, etc? or will they just create confusion?

rubydandun
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Re: I just took my diagnostic = 154 :( advice?

Postby rubydandun » Wed Mar 09, 2011 2:56 am

also took blueprint at ucla, a few points of advice, please please take this to heart for your own sake:

1.) don't get caught up with the joneses - MANY people lie about their practice scores, compare with each other, freak each other out, use the BP class as a personal therapy session (kind of like this website lol) - you are NOT them. DOn't get caught in the emotional rollercoaster, and if it was me - don't even make friends with people in your class if you can.

2.) The blueprint class is good for giving you material, moral support, and some basic instruction

Here's the kicker and the best advice you'll ever get:

1.) this is a general course - you are not the average student - you are you. really identify your own problems and weaknesses.

2.) every single question you get wrong - really, really analyze why you got it wrong. Don't have the mindset of "oh damn i just screwed that up, won't happen next time this is an aberration" - no, it is not an aberration. you had a cognitive fart triggered by one of the 200 or so question templates created by law services. Write out why you get something wrong, keep track of your mistakes, find trends, and LEARN from mistakes, don't do them again.

3.) Take the blueprint strategies for each LR question type - really apply them to every problem you do. Don't rely on your natural abilities or little tricks of your own. Because sure, you'll be able to figure out easy LR questions on your own without a structured strategy that you automatically, instinctually deploy. But when it comes to really hard ones on test day under time pressure, you have to have a reliable strategy and more than your own smarts to solve problems.

So basically, summarize the strategies for each type into a few bullet points and apply them to EVERY SINGLE QUESTION, if you have to write them next to every single question. Until it is 2nd nature and you can recite mentally how to attack every single question type.

4.) control your emotions. when you get 30 practice problems right, don't say HELL YES I AM THE MAN and imagine yourself strolling yale's manicured lawns, and when you get a low PT score a month from now don't say OH IM REALLY SCREWED NOW IM NEVER GETTING INTO T14. Don't get too happy or too sad.

hope that helps

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OnlyLivingBoyinNY
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Re: I just took my diagnostic = 154 :( advice?

Postby OnlyLivingBoyinNY » Wed Mar 09, 2011 5:02 pm

I took a couple diagnostics at the before reading the bibles, and they were roughly around where you are at. I have improved between 8 and 12 points just from going through the books. With some section work and just under three months to go, I hope to raise my score another 10 points. You can raise your score, but you just need to focus and take your studying seriously (i.e. at least a couple hours per day of studying)

dabbadon8
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Re: I just took my diagnostic = 154 :( advice?

Postby dabbadon8 » Wed Mar 09, 2011 5:04 pm

I went from a 152 to a 173 on the real deal in about 5 weeks. It really depends on where your weakness are, but you can definitely make it happen.

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99.9luft
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Re: I just took my diagnostic = 154 :( advice?

Postby 99.9luft » Wed Mar 09, 2011 5:07 pm

splitterfriendly wrote:^ i've been a lurker for a while.. agreed.



does anyone have any advice about integrating the bibles into my preparation? i mean, given that i've just begun a course, should i go through them along with the course's structured lessons, homework, etc? or will they just create confusion?


the bibles felt very redundant after a BP class.

also this:

rubydandun wrote:also took blueprint at ucla, a few points of advice, please please take this to heart for your own sake:

1.) don't get caught up with the joneses - MANY people lie about their practice scores, compare with each other, freak each other out, use the BP class as a personal therapy session (kind of like this website lol) - you are NOT them. DOn't get caught in the emotional rollercoaster, and if it was me - don't even make friends with people in your class if you can.

2.) The blueprint class is good for giving you material, moral support, and some basic instruction

Here's the kicker and the best advice you'll ever get:

1.) this is a general course - you are not the average student - you are you. really identify your own problems and weaknesses.

2.) every single question you get wrong - really, really analyze why you got it wrong. Don't have the mindset of "oh damn i just screwed that up, won't happen next time this is an aberration" - no, it is not an aberration. you had a cognitive fart triggered by one of the 200 or so question templates created by law services. Write out why you get something wrong, keep track of your mistakes, find trends, and LEARN from mistakes, don't do them again.

3.) Take the blueprint strategies for each LR question type - really apply them to every problem you do. Don't rely on your natural abilities or little tricks of your own. Because sure, you'll be able to figure out easy LR questions on your own without a structured strategy that you automatically, instinctually deploy. But when it comes to really hard ones on test day under time pressure, you have to have a reliable strategy and more than your own smarts to solve problems.

So basically, summarize the strategies for each type into a few bullet points and apply them to EVERY SINGLE QUESTION, if you have to write them next to every single question. Until it is 2nd nature and you can recite mentally how to attack every single question type.

4.) control your emotions. when you get 30 practice problems right, don't say HELL YES I AM THE MAN and imagine yourself strolling yale's manicured lawns, and when you get a low PT score a month from now don't say OH IM REALLY SCREWED NOW IM NEVER GETTING INTO T14. Don't get too happy or too sad.

hope that helps


+1

MillMouse
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Re: I just took my diagnostic = 154 :( advice?

Postby MillMouse » Thu Mar 10, 2011 2:24 am

First Diag:154

I had to cancel my first real test because of an issue with the proctor not being able to tell time. Then I scored a 163. That was low for me. This was because of a depression I was in that went undiagnosed for a while.

Lastest score: 176

Calm down, a 154 isn't bad...




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