Does it really take a shitload of time and preparation...

JustSomebody
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Does it really take a shitload of time and preparation...

Postby JustSomebody » Mon Apr 25, 2011 2:25 pm

and dedication to get an LSAT score in the mid-170s at least?

Sorry if there are other questions like this. People will probably get on me for not searching properly, but I'm going to ask anyway, because I want to give details that pertain to me specifically.

I'm planning on self-studying a LOT this summer and taking the October LSAT. So basically, this summer is all I have to study. I'm not planning on taking a prep course because there are no good ones offered in my area. I could take a Kaplan one, but I've heard from very many people that it absolutely sucks and actually has the potential to lower your score, so I think I'm gonna stay away from it.

But even though I plan to self-study a lot this summer, I don't think I'm going to spend every single day all day with breaks only to eat and sleep. I don't know if I'll be taking like 25 practice tests. I just don't really have the patience/dedication for that.

So is it impossible for me to get a really good (mid 170s) score on the LSAT without a prep course and ENDLESS self-studying?

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buckilaw
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Re: Does it really take a shitload of time and preparation...

Postby buckilaw » Mon Apr 25, 2011 2:29 pm

Check out special little snowflake's guide to scoring over 170 without really working. Can't find the link at the moment but it's real good stuff.

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Jeffort
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Re: Does it really take a shitload of time and preparation...

Postby Jeffort » Mon Apr 25, 2011 2:33 pm

Unless you are one of the few rumored to exist 'LSAT naturals', scoring 170+ requires a lot of study and practice time in order to perfect your performance on test day abilities.

How much time and effort it takes to get there (if you can, not everyone is capable of breaking 170) varies person by person. The only way to know where you stand is to take a timed practice test first without prep to determine your baseline/starting point score range.

In the 10 years I've been teaching and tutoring LSAT prep I've never heard of a verified case of somebody scoring 170+ on test day with little or no intensive prep. All of the hundreds of people I've known and worked with that have scored 170+ on the real thing have worked their arses off to earn the score.
Last edited by Jeffort on Mon Apr 25, 2011 2:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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gbpackerbacker
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Re: Does it really take a shitload of time and preparation...

Postby gbpackerbacker » Mon Apr 25, 2011 2:35 pm

JustSomebody wrote:and dedication to get an LSAT score in the mid-170s at least?

Sorry if there are other questions like this. People will probably get on me for not searching properly, but I'm going to ask anyway, because I want to give details that pertain to me specifically.

I'm planning on self-studying a LOT this summer and taking the October LSAT. So basically, this summer is all I have to study. I'm not planning on taking a prep course because there are no good ones offered in my area. I could take a Kaplan one, but I've heard from very many people that it absolutely sucks and actually has the potential to lower your score, so I think I'm gonna stay away from it.

But even though I plan to self-study a lot this summer, I don't think I'm going to spend every single day all day with breaks only to eat and sleep. I don't know if I'll be taking like 25 practice tests. I just don't really have the patience/dedication for that.

So is it impossible for me to get a really good (mid 170s) score on the LSAT without a prep course and ENDLESS self-studying?



No it certainly isnt impossible. If you don't have the dedication to take x many practice tests, how much dedication will you have for law school?

JustSomebody
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Re: Does it really take a shitload of time and preparation...

Postby JustSomebody » Mon Apr 25, 2011 2:36 pm

I think I should clarify that I'm not asking if it's possible to score 170+ without any prep whatsoever. I am planning on studying and I'm planning on studying a lot. But I've heard from some people that it takes basically 24/7 LSAT prep to get a score like that, and that only 3 months isn't enough time to study. So if that's the case, then I'm screwed.

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JamMasterJ
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Re: Does it really take a shitload of time and preparation...

Postby JamMasterJ » Mon Apr 25, 2011 2:39 pm

It's a better use of your time in the long run than working a $10 or even $20 per hr job and if your concerned more about getting a tan and going on vacation, next summer is when you really want to be doing that.

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Jeffort
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Re: Does it really take a shitload of time and preparation...

Postby Jeffort » Mon Apr 25, 2011 2:40 pm

JustSomebody wrote:I think I should clarify that I'm not asking if it's possible to score 170+ without any prep whatsoever. I am planning on studying and I'm planning on studying a lot. But I've heard from some people that it takes basically 24/7 LSAT prep to get a score like that, and that only 3 months isn't enough time to study. So if that's the case, then I'm screwed.


It varies person by person. The only way to know is to get started and see how well you are already able to score on a fully timed practice test. If you start off with something in the 160 range you certainly aren't going to have to work as long and hard as others that start with a cold practice test score in the 140's or 150's.

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bostonlawchick
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Re: Does it really take a shitload of time and preparation...

Postby bostonlawchick » Mon Apr 25, 2011 2:55 pm

If you test well, you should probably be okay with three or so months of moderate prep. I only studied off and on for about four months and took maybe 7-8 whole timed tests. If you think and read quickly and are generally calm and confident during this sort of thing, you might be able to pull it off, especially starting from a 160+ diagnostic. If you tend to fall apart during tests or take a long time to think about your answers, or are starting from a 140ish diagnostic, it's a different story.

That said, the LSAT is a different beast than other tests. You need to sit down and learn it's nuances to be able to nail a 99th percentile score.

tomwatts
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Re: Does it really take a shitload of time and preparation...

Postby tomwatts » Mon Apr 25, 2011 7:24 pm

One thing that I don't think has been jumped on here yet: a 4-section test is only 2.5 hours (or a 5-section just over 3 hours), which is certainly easy enough to do once or twice a week. If you take a test twice a week for 3 months, you easily hit 25 tests taken. Now, you probably will only get to 15-20, but you'll still be taking a lot of tests, and in between those, you'll probably be doing a lot of timed and untimed sections. So you may work as many as 40+ tests even if you only put in 2-3 hours per day, 5 days per week, for the summer.

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birdlaw117
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Re: Does it really take a shitload of time and preparation...

Postby birdlaw117 » Mon Apr 25, 2011 7:30 pm

I never spent more than 4-5 hours on any given day, and probably averaged around 2-3. I prepped from late July until the October exam. If that's the kind of time you're willing to put into it, you'll be fine. If you were thinking about one hour per day... You probably need to do more work than that.

jd1969a
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Re: Does it really take a shitload of time and preparation...

Postby jd1969a » Mon Apr 25, 2011 7:39 pm

I think it depends on how you are with that type of test (which you can judge based on your practice tests). I did one practice test/week for the four weeks leading up to the test, with the sections out of order and not always even during the same day, and got a 172. I regret taking such a cavalier approach to the test as I think I could have done better with some effort. I especially wish I had practiced under timed conditions as I ran out of time in 2 sections and left a few blank. It can be done though. Just see how you are doing on your practice tests and go from there.

whymeohgodno
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Re: Does it really take a shitload of time and preparation...

Postby whymeohgodno » Mon Apr 25, 2011 7:40 pm

My friend who majored in physics and chemistry scored a 174 on the LSAT (real thing) with about a month of leisurely prep.

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Kabuo
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Re: Does it really take a shitload of time and preparation...

Postby Kabuo » Mon Apr 25, 2011 7:54 pm

Unless you're ridiculously brilliant, you should at least aim for 20. I used to think quite a lot of my test taking abilities as I had always hit the 99th percentile with no prep whatsoever, but I diagnosed at a 161 on the LSAT because games froze me. After taking 4 PTs, I ended up with a 165. Then I retook after taking ~25 and got a 172, but still messed up the games. After that, I decided to do the thing right and took every released LSAT in either parts or full and got a 176. You would be much better off to just put in the time before the first one.

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swc65
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Re: Does it really take a shitload of time and preparation...

Postby swc65 » Mon Apr 25, 2011 7:58 pm

JustSomebody wrote:I think I should clarify that I'm not asking if it's possible to score 170+ without any prep whatsoever. I am planning on studying and I'm planning on studying a lot. But I've heard from some people that it takes basically 24/7 LSAT prep to get a score like that, and that only 3 months isn't enough time to study. So if that's the case, then I'm screwed.



I don't think this is necessary true. I got a 169 cold on a timed preptest and worked a moderate amount while also having a job and getting straight A+s (read working my butt of there). I did a fair amount of work, but in no way did I or could I live and breathe the LSAT for 3+ months.

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incompetentia
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Re: Does it really take a shitload of time and preparation...

Postby incompetentia » Mon Apr 25, 2011 8:14 pm

Have you taken a cold diag yet? This will help frame the question for you.



My diag was about 10 points higher than I'd expected, and really opened some doors for me I wasn't thinking about.

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birdlaw117
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Re: Does it really take a shitload of time and preparation...

Postby birdlaw117 » Mon Apr 25, 2011 8:19 pm

incompetentia wrote:Have you taken a cold diag yet? This will help frame the question for you.



My diag was about 10 points higher than I'd expected, and really opened some doors for me I wasn't thinking about.

With an LSAT of 132 I don't think you should be giving advice :wink:

Seriously though, you'll have a better idea of whT you need to do once you get started.

ExcelBaller
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Re: Does it really take a shitload of time and preparation...

Postby ExcelBaller » Mon Apr 25, 2011 11:01 pm

probably need to study consistently for high scores unless you have had a lot exposure to logic and analytical reasoning (not just memorize and take a test).

consider where you want to be in fall 2012 and decide if its worth the extra effort.

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Easy-E
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Re: Does it really take a shitload of time and preparation...

Postby Easy-E » Tue Apr 26, 2011 12:53 am

JustSomebody wrote: I just don't really have the patience/dedication for that.


I've heard law school involves a pretty good deal of dedication.




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