General advice + preptest 21 section 3 question 24

avemundi
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Joined: Thu May 12, 2011 12:59 pm

General advice + preptest 21 section 3 question 24

Postby avemundi » Thu May 12, 2011 1:14 pm

Hi- I'm new, scheduled to be taking the LSAT in Asia on Sunday, June 26th and am absolutely terrified. :(

I was wondering if anyone could give me some general advice, plus advice on a prep test question that has me stumped.

First, general advice:

I'm scoring around 169-177 on my timed prep tests; what bothers is me how big my score gap seems to be. My scores seem to be fluctuating a lot - sometimes i'll get 1-2 wrong on LR and LG, other times I'll get 4-5. Naturally, whenever the latter happens, I just hate myself but can't seem to figure out a good reason why.
Anyhow, seeing as how unstable my scores are right now, is it a good idea to postpone until October? I really want to get my apps done early, but bleh...I'm having doubts after a demoralizing prep test and am wondering if I'll be ready by June. :cry:

Second, question 24 on preptest 21, section 3 has me stumped.
I cannot for the life of me figure out why:
(C) Some psychologists believe that the justification for an action never forms an essential part of its explanation is not the correct answer, and (E) If any humans are rational, then reasons must sometimes be causes of actions. is.
Well ok, I can see why (E) could be the answer, but I don't understand why (C) is incorrect. Somebody help! Thanks so much!

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Older Chest
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Re: General advice + preptest 21 section 3 question 24

Postby Older Chest » Thu May 12, 2011 1:28 pm

I would be happy to help you with the PrepTest question, but do you mind writing at least part of the stem and the question? From the looks of it, it sounds like an assumption question, which is partially why the If -> Then format of answer E is the correct in this case.

As for your scoring range, it is perfectly reasonable to have scores that fluctuate within that type of range. The problem with a score that high is that a few questions have a big impact on your final score. If you stumble on one RC passage or a handful of LR questions, you can easily drop 4-6 points. I don't think it is necessary to postpone till October because you are doing very well. The biggest thing is that you need to bring your game face on test day.

If it makes you feel any better, my scores ranged from 168-177, and I ended up near the top of my range. With that said, I'm sure there are a lot of people who score consistently within 2-3 points on every test, but it just didn't work that way for me.

avemundi
Posts: 108
Joined: Thu May 12, 2011 12:59 pm

Re: General advice + preptest 21 section 3 question 24

Postby avemundi » Thu May 12, 2011 1:33 pm

oh, of course, how dumb of me :D thanks, here's the prompt and question:

Explanation must be distininguished from justification. Every human action potentially has an explanation; that is, with sufficient knowledge it would be possible to give an accurate description of the causes of that action. An action is justified only when the person performing the action has sufficient reasons for the action. According to many psychologists, even when there is jusification for an action, that justification often forms no part of the explanation. The general principle, however, is that only an action whose justification, that is, the reasons for the action, forms an essential part of its explanation is rational.

If the statements in the passage are correct, which one of the following can be properly concluded from them?

Also, I'm kinda worried on how reliable my preptest scores are - I time them and take four sections in a row basically, but they're from the LSAC books and don't come with the unscored section. Arrgghhhhh. Am i overreacting?

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510Chicken
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Re: General advice + preptest 21 section 3 question 24

Postby 510Chicken » Thu May 12, 2011 2:19 pm

avemundi wrote:According to many psychologists, even when there is justification for an action, that justification often forms no part of the explanation. The general principle, however, is that only an action whose justification, that is, the reasons for the action, forms an essential part of its explanation is rational.


avemundi wrote: (C) Some psychologists believe that the justification for an action never forms an essential part of its explanation

Also, the sentence does not specify whether or not the "part of the explanation" the psychologists refers to is "an essential part" or not.

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Older Chest
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Re: General advice + preptest 21 section 3 question 24

Postby Older Chest » Thu May 12, 2011 2:21 pm

avemundi wrote:According to many psychologists, even when there is jusification for an action, that justification often forms no part of the explanation.

If the statements in the passage are correct, which one of the following can be properly concluded from them?

Also, I'm kinda worried on how reliable my preptest scores are - I time them and take four sections in a row basically, but they're from the LSAC books and don't come with the unscored section. Arrgghhhhh. Am i overreacting?


I redacted the stem so that it contains the only line that discusses what some psychologists think.

When considering what can be concluded from the passage (in other words, what is without a doubt true if everything in the passage is correct), it is important that no assumptions are made on your part. Based on the passage, all we know is that, according to many/some psychologists, when there is justification for an action, that justification OFTEN forms no part of the explanation. The word "often" does not infer that psychologists never think something, so answer C is too strong of a statement that cannot be proven based on the information provided.

(I apologize if that explanation is confusing, but hopefully it helps).

As for your scoring, one thing to consider is that you can always retake if the test doesn't go according to plan. Personally, I took the LSAT twice, and my first score did not seem to impact my admissions chances from Columbia on down (disclaimer: I did not apply to YHS, which all say that they will average multiple LSATs).

I am not sure how many practice tests you have completed, but I would recommend taking as many as you can prior to the test. Your score should stabilize as you take more tests, but know that fluctuations on a test-to-test basis can happen. Also, I would advise that you save 10-15 PrepTests in case you need to prepare for the October test. You will want fresh material that you haven't seen because you will be surprised how many LSAT questions you remember a few months down the road.

To increase your stamina, I would recommend that you take 5, 6, 7, 8 sections in a row when practicing. Once you get closer to the big test, take 2 PrepTests a day if you can, perhaps with a lunch break in between. I did not practice with an experimental section, but I know that a lot of people on TLS do. It would be your preference as to whether or not you think adding an additional section would help. If you do decide to add the experimental though, you can always score them once you have completed the 4 "experimental" sections.

Feel free to PM me if have any other questions.




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