Improve RC?

jeninamillion
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Improve RC?

Postby jeninamillion » Tue Jun 07, 2011 1:38 pm

I just took the June test and it really took my by surprise. I finished the LG section (my weakest) with time to spare to look over the answers. I was also really confident about the LR sections as well. During the PTs, my RC was my strongest—I never got more than 5 wrong. I felt the newer ones were harder and found myself guessing on some questions. During the actual test however, the RC section caught me totally off guard. I'm not planning to cancel my score, because I feel confident enough about the other sections. However, I am going to prep for a retake in October. If all the sections stay the same, in terms of difficulty, the RC is the only section that's in the way of me getting an amazing score (I was PTing low 170s getting at least 4 LG questions wrong). My question is, how do you prep for the new RC sections that seem to be impossible?

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wtrc
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Re: Improve RC?

Postby wtrc » Tue Jun 07, 2011 1:46 pm

This RC was, as you said, unusual in terms of difficulty. RC is generally my hardest section, and I might have gotten 8 or even 10 wrong in this one (worst-case), while my experimental RC was so easy. Something that has helped me is bringing a highlighter to the test (I do blue to make it stand out to me) and just highlight words that show the authors opinion or important and relevant facts. This way I really can limit the inevitable moments where I read a paragraph and then realize "what the fuck, I wasn't paying attention to my own reading"!!

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joebloe
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Re: Improve RC?

Postby joebloe » Tue Jun 07, 2011 1:47 pm

If you're going to do highlighter, or significantly change up your annotation practice in any way, I strongly recommend you get a lot of practice in, become consistent, and make good use of those annotations. In Dec. I tried to use a highlighter having never done it before and it slowed me down a LOT.

brownpride
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Re: Improve RC?

Postby brownpride » Tue Jun 07, 2011 1:52 pm

Agreed with OP, I have no idea how to prep for those. On the older exams (even in the 40s and 50s) I was scoring as low as -1 or -2 in RC, but yesterday's completely threw me off at the end of a pretty good test. Even considering cancelling because of it, and I have no idea how to make sure I don't screw up in the same place in October. I highlighted too, I just have no idea how to critically evaluate the answers and search through the passage to check for the specific ones in such a short amount of time.

bp shinners
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Re: Improve RC?

Postby bp shinners » Tue Jun 07, 2011 2:43 pm

We've been finding that the best way to evaluate the answers is to treat them as LR questions. The difficulty of the section seems to be coming more from the questions than the passages (though yesterday's test might have been an exception to the recent trend); treating the questions as (soft, i.e. most strongly supported) Must Be True, parallel, etc... can help you bring that level of scrutiny to the RC section.

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Bashy
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Re: Improve RC?

Postby Bashy » Tue Jun 07, 2011 3:02 pm

joebloe wrote:If you're going to do highlighter, or significantly change up your annotation practice in any way, I strongly recommend you get a lot of practice in, become consistent, and make good use of those annotations. In Dec. I tried to use a highlighter having never done it before and it slowed me down a LOT.


+1

I brought a highlighter to the exam even though I never practiced with one. It spent the entire exam sitting next to my pencil sharpener, because I wasn't sure how to use it effectively.

jeninamillion
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Re: Improve RC?

Postby jeninamillion » Tue Jun 07, 2011 6:45 pm

bp shinners wrote:We've been finding that the best way to evaluate the answers is to treat them as LR questions. The difficulty of the section seems to be coming more from the questions than the passages (though yesterday's test might have been an exception to the recent trend); treating the questions as (soft, i.e. most strongly supported) Must Be True, parallel, etc... can help you bring that level of scrutiny to the RC section.


For me, yesterday's test was extremely hard because the passages were really confusing and didn't directly mention the specific details that the questions were asking about.

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Bittner1989
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Re: Improve RC?

Postby Bittner1989 » Tue Jun 07, 2011 10:38 pm

I agree. The RC has always been my toughest (I'm rather odd, Logic Games has always and forever been my favorite topic) and save one passage, which I happened to take a class that discussed the particular subject over a couple of weeks in my undergraduate career that helped bolster my confidence, I would seriously consider canceling my score. But this RC really made me sweat more than others.

Audio Technica Guy
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Re: Improve RC?

Postby Audio Technica Guy » Wed Jun 08, 2011 9:04 am

bp shinners wrote:We've been finding that the best way to evaluate the answers is to treat them as LR questions. The difficulty of the section seems to be coming more from the questions than the passages (though yesterday's test might have been an exception to the recent trend); treating the questions as (soft, i.e. most strongly supported) Must Be True, parallel, etc... can help you bring that level of scrutiny to the RC section.


More or less agree with this. LSAC has been trending more towards answers on RC coming down to a single word difference between right and wrong. Especially strength indicator words. Pay EXTREMELY close attention to words like all, most, probably, usually, never, always, must, cannot, likely, etc

Remember, if in doubt, usually the vaguer, more wishy-washy answer is better on RC, unless its a "reverse" questions like "which if the following is the author LEAST likely to agree with" or "which of the following was not mentioned" in which case you want the stronger, more specific answer.

The major key to RC is finding the one word that makes a wrong answer wrong, not the right answer right.

This technique is so powerful that I can usually get around 60% correct on RC without even reading the passages at all. Just from reading the answer choices.

bp shinners
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Re: Improve RC?

Postby bp shinners » Wed Jun 08, 2011 6:03 pm

Audio Technica Guy wrote:This technique is so powerful that I can usually get around 60% correct on RC without even reading the passages at all. Just from reading the answer choices.


We actually have a day in our classes where we use this technique (just reading answers out of context) to show how powerful it can be. Sure, we cherry pick the questions to make a point, but if you use it to quickly eliminate answers in general and pick the right one between two you're stuck on, you'll definitely see a score improvement from it.

Audio Technica Guy
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Re: Improve RC?

Postby Audio Technica Guy » Wed Jun 08, 2011 6:09 pm

bp shinners wrote:
Audio Technica Guy wrote:This technique is so powerful that I can usually get around 60% correct on RC without even reading the passages at all. Just from reading the answer choices.


We actually have a day in our classes where we use this technique (just reading answers out of context) to show how powerful it can be. Sure, we cherry pick the questions to make a point, but if you use it to quickly eliminate answers in general and pick the right one between two you're stuck on, you'll definitely see a score improvement from it.


Yeah, it's crazy how powerful it can be, especially if you get really used to the way that LSAC words correct answers and incorrect answers. Usually there are only two answers on any given question that are even worded like correct answers. Especially if you focus on main idea, author most likely to agree, purpose of the line reference, what was mentioned, what can be inferred questions.




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