How to break out of the score plateau of 160-162?

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aliceydu
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How to break out of the score plateau of 160-162?

Postby aliceydu » Mon Apr 18, 2011 7:17 pm

My June LSAT is coming up really soon (I'm in college), and I'm doing 2-3 timed PrepTests a week. I've been consistently getting 160-162 on them, but can't seem to improve. My goal is to score around 170. Is that still realistic?

Reading Comprehension is always easy for me, but the logic games are always unpredictable. Sometimes I finish all of them under the time limit and do really well, and other times I can only finish 3 games. Also, I consistently miss around the same number of Logic Reasoning questions, but they don't belong to a same type of questioning. I always miss more questions near the end of the section. Could I be rushing?

Is the "score plateau" normal? How can I break out of that?

(I've gone through the Bibles and about 12 PrepTests already.)

Thanks guys! :)
Last edited by aliceydu on Sat Aug 20, 2011 12:16 am, edited 1 time in total.

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zozin
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Re: How to break out of the score plateau of 160-162?

Postby zozin » Mon Apr 18, 2011 8:29 pm

On LG, if you are having trouble with the setup of the game, and is taking you more than 1-2 minutes to diagram the whole thing, you need to move on to the next game. For all you know the easiest game on the entire section is #4, but you might not get to it, thus leaving 5-7 points wasted.

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SOCRATiC
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Re: How to break out of the score plateau of 160-162?

Postby SOCRATiC » Mon Apr 18, 2011 8:35 pm

I think when it comes to LG, you REALLY need to finish the easiest game within five minutes. This is actually possible, since at least one of the games on each PT (usually, that is) is pretty much a gimme. I always tried to finish two LGs within 12 minutes (ideally 10). That way, I have time to think slowly about the other ones.

When it came to the first two LGs, especially the first one, I'd scan the questions to find which ones I could easily shoot down by simple elimination tactics with my setup. I'd then try my best to use the answers to those questions as a basis for easing the other difficult questions. But that doesn't always work, but it helped me out a big deal.

EDIT:

One more thing about LR, I also tried my best to finish the first ten questions within ten minutes, and ideally the first 15 within 15~16 minutes. There's a kind of rhythm that you have to follow. But I think that the familiarity with the test helps out a lot. Once you start learning the test more, things just start to "click". I also look for the "catch" in each LR stimulus. I noticed that there was always something that either stimulated me or was appeared "contradictory". That's the part of the stimulus that the questions will address.

What I mean by "contradictory" is that stimulus literally "skips" a step in its logic, or makes a conclusion that is unwarranted. If it's a must be true question, I noticed that there's a very compelling implication of the facts stated.

I was scoring in the 171+ range the last four weeks before test day. But Unfortunately, I was one of those guys that had to dash out of the test room to go piss TWICE. I got a 165.

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mottainai
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Re: How to break out of the score plateau of 160-162?

Postby mottainai » Mon Apr 18, 2011 10:29 pm

SOCRATiC wrote:I think when it comes to LG, you REALLY need to finish the easiest game within five minutes. This is actually possible, since at least one of the games on each PT (usually, that is) is pretty much a gimme. I always tried to finish two LGs within 12 minutes (ideally 10). That way, I have time to think slowly about the other ones.

When it came to the first two LGs, especially the first one, I'd scan the questions to find which ones I could easily shoot down by simple elimination tactics with my setup. I'd then try my best to use the answers to those questions as a basis for easing the other difficult questions. But that doesn't always work, but it helped me out a big deal.

EDIT:

One more thing about LR, I also tried my best to finish the first ten questions within ten minutes, and ideally the first 15 within 15~16 minutes. There's a kind of rhythm that you have to follow. But I think that the familiarity with the test helps out a lot. Once you start learning the test more, things just start to "click". I also look for the "catch" in each LR stimulus. I noticed that there was always something that either stimulated me or was appeared "contradictory". That's the part of the stimulus that the questions will address.

What I mean by "contradictory" is that stimulus literally "skips" a step in its logic, or makes a conclusion that is unwarranted. If it's a must be true question, I noticed that there's a very compelling implication of the facts stated.

I was scoring in the 171+ range the last four weeks before test day. But Unfortunately, I was one of those guys that had to dash out of the test room to go piss TWICE. I got a 165.


This. +1

I was killing games during prep. Thank god I was getting through the easy ones in 5 minutes or so because the last game was a nightmare. I spent maybe 15 minutes on the last game, taking my time, all because I had plenty of extra time left. You never know what curveball the LSAT might throw you, but if you can take care of the easy stuff quickly, you'll have time to figure out the tricky parts.

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gaud
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Re: How to break out of the score plateau of 160-162?

Postby gaud » Tue Apr 19, 2011 5:51 pm

Try re-doing EVERY logic game at least 2-3 times. Mix up the ones you have done in a pile, grab one on your way to work or school and do it there. That helped me improve my LG significantly from before.

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incompetentia
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Re: How to break out of the score plateau of 160-162?

Postby incompetentia » Tue Apr 19, 2011 6:01 pm

LG is usually considered the easiest section to learn for a reason.

Make sure you have a quick and effective method of diagramming things, and just drill game setups and make correct inferences.


With the LR, since you seem to know the material, it may be a time issue. Are you spending lots of time on the questions you're missing, or feel like you are rushing them?

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aliceydu
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Re: How to break out of the score plateau of 160-162?

Postby aliceydu » Wed Apr 20, 2011 5:20 pm

gaud wrote:Try re-doing EVERY logic game at least 2-3 times. Mix up the ones you have done in a pile, grab one on your way to work or school and do it there. That helped me improve my LG significantly from before.


I still have about 20 PrepTests that I can go through. Should I still go back and redo the old ones?

FiveSermon
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Re: How to break out of the score plateau of 160-162?

Postby FiveSermon » Wed Apr 20, 2011 5:22 pm

Drill LG only. Separate games into sequencing, grouping, etc etc and drill a particular type of game until you got them down. That's what I did.

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aliceydu
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Re: How to break out of the score plateau of 160-162?

Postby aliceydu » Wed Apr 20, 2011 5:23 pm

incompetentia wrote:LG is usually considered the easiest section to learn for a reason.

Make sure you have a quick and effective method of diagramming things, and just drill game setups and make correct inferences.


With the LR, since you seem to know the material, it may be a time issue. Are you spending lots of time on the questions you're missing, or feel like you are rushing them?


I'm actually right on time for the LR. I can usually finish about 3-4 minutes early. I've noticed that the LR questions that I miss have more complicated stimuli/context. Should I save those for last?

Ohh, so you're saying that I have the highest chance of improving on the games because they're more learnable? Kind of like the math section of the SATs?

FiveSermon
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Re: How to break out of the score plateau of 160-162?

Postby FiveSermon » Wed Apr 20, 2011 5:24 pm

aliceydu wrote:
incompetentia wrote:LG is usually considered the easiest section to learn for a reason.

Make sure you have a quick and effective method of diagramming things, and just drill game setups and make correct inferences.


With the LR, since you seem to know the material, it may be a time issue. Are you spending lots of time on the questions you're missing, or feel like you are rushing them?


I'm actually right on time for the LR. I can usually finish about 3-4 minutes early. I've noticed that the LR questions that I miss have more complicated stimuli/context. Should I save those for last?

Ohh, so you're saying that I have the highest chance of improving on the games because they're more learnable? Kind of like the math section of the SATs?


Yes.

Also piece of advice...try practicing LR section with 30 minute sections. It can be a lifesaver.

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aliceydu
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Re: How to break out of the score plateau of 160-162?

Postby aliceydu » Wed Apr 20, 2011 5:26 pm

SOCRATiC wrote:I think when it comes to LG, you REALLY need to finish the easiest game within five minutes. This is actually possible, since at least one of the games on each PT (usually, that is) is pretty much a gimme. I always tried to finish two LGs within 12 minutes (ideally 10). That way, I have time to think slowly about the other ones.

When it came to the first two LGs, especially the first one, I'd scan the questions to find which ones I could easily shoot down by simple elimination tactics with my setup. I'd then try my best to use the answers to those questions as a basis for easing the other difficult questions. But that doesn't always work, but it helped me out a big deal.

EDIT:

One more thing about LR, I also tried my best to finish the first ten questions within ten minutes, and ideally the first 15 within 15~16 minutes. There's a kind of rhythm that you have to follow. But I think that the familiarity with the test helps out a lot. Once you start learning the test more, things just start to "click". I also look for the "catch" in each LR stimulus. I noticed that there was always something that either stimulated me or was appeared "contradictory". That's the part of the stimulus that the questions will address.

What I mean by "contradictory" is that stimulus literally "skips" a step in its logic, or makes a conclusion that is unwarranted. If it's a must be true question, I noticed that there's a very compelling implication of the facts stated.

I was scoring in the 171+ range the last four weeks before test day. But Unfortunately, I was one of those guys that had to dash out of the test room to go piss TWICE. I got a 165.



Thanks for the advice! I'll definitely try it.

I haven't worried about the writing section yet. I know it's not scored, but I would still like to not bomb it. Is there a certain way/format I should write?

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incompetentia
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Re: How to break out of the score plateau of 160-162?

Postby incompetentia » Wed Apr 20, 2011 8:23 pm

Literally don't worry about it. Your writing mechanics seem fine enough based on what you've posted.


I agree with the 30-minute sections. If you get a decent speed worked up for the easier questions, this will allow you time to fully comprehend the more complex stimuli.

If you can recognize the types of questions that you may need extra time on, you may want to try skipping over them and then doing them last so that you have a better idea of how much time you can take.




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