Took my first diagnostic--What now?

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zdamico
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Took my first diagnostic--What now?

Postby zdamico » Tue Aug 02, 2011 11:58 pm

After a brief one-week read through of the Princeton Review study guide, I took one of the tests at the back. I got a 169, with 8 wrong on RC and 4 wrong total on both sections of the Arguments section.

I'm seeing all this literature on developing comprehensive strategies, in depth attack plans, researching each problem type, etc. etc. These include a minimum of three months, according to most of the stuff I'm reading.

My instinct tells me I should focus on the clear areas I am weak in, all the while trying to improve my time (I was over a little on RC and LR). I know I need to take an actual Prep Test for a more accurate picture but this is a good starting point.

I think I am letting all the reading material and guides psych me out that I am not doing enough. What do you all think? I could really use some advice here. Obviously one test isn't sufficient to tell me where I'm at, I know that.

On another note, I have purchased the Powerscore Bibles, and plan on using those to improve my weaknesses. I am a little worried about mixing Prep Companies, but I didnt spend much time on Princeton Review, so I'm hoping I should be fine.

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incompetentia
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Re: Took my first diagnostic--What now?

Postby incompetentia » Wed Aug 03, 2011 12:34 am

zdamico wrote:After a brief one-week read through of the Princeton Review study guide, I took one of the tests at the back. I got a 169, with 8 wrong on RC and 4 wrong total on both sections of the Arguments section.

This puts you in a decent place. Was this with -0 on LG? That LR combined score is already in the range for potential mid-170s, which leaves just RC to primarily worry about, although this is admittedly the most difficult to improve.

I'm seeing all this literature on developing comprehensive strategies, in depth attack plans, researching each problem type, etc. etc. These include a minimum of three months, according to most of the stuff I'm reading.

Not necessarily. Since your ceiling for improvement is about 10 points, you could probably study intelligently and knock it out in 2-3.

My instinct tells me I should focus on the clear areas I am weak in, all the while trying to improve my time (I was over a little on RC and LR). I know I need to take an actual Prep Test for a more accurate picture but this is a good starting point.

If you're already under 40 minutes, the timing will probably come with extra drilling. With that many wrong on RC, you may want to come up with a strategy that might work better for you depending on which question types are giving you trouble.

I think I am letting all the reading material and guides psych me out that I am not doing enough. What do you all think? I could really use some advice here. Obviously one test isn't sufficient to tell me where I'm at, I know that.

Take additional tests over the next couple of weeks and see if you stay in the high 160s range. If you do, you're not going to have much trouble bumping into the 170s. If you don't, then obviously depending on what causes you trouble you may have to re-assess.

On another note, I have purchased the Powerscore Bibles, and plan on using those to improve my weaknesses. I am a little worried about mixing Prep Companies, but I didnt spend much time on Princeton Review, so I'm hoping I should be fine.

The conventional wisdom around here is that Powerscore is much MUCH better than PR in terms of book material, with the exception of the RCB. You may want to look at the Manhattan RC guide, as it's one that's often recommended.

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zdamico
Posts: 167
Joined: Mon Aug 01, 2011 7:57 pm

Re: Took my first diagnostic--What now?

Postby zdamico » Wed Aug 03, 2011 2:13 am

Thanks so much for the response. Some awesome advice there, really is helping me focus more on preparation and less on the stress of the big picture. Also prompted me to look further into the Manhattan RC, and I will likely take your advice and purchase that to help me improve. Thanks a lot!

acrossthelake
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Re: Took my first diagnostic--What now?

Postby acrossthelake » Wed Aug 03, 2011 1:21 pm

I started off slightly higher, but in general I think if your diagnostic is this high then it's not worth it to rely highly on other people's strategies. Practice should speed you up with LR and LG and it will be natural--I don't think it's worth developing a strategy for either section for you. Just keep doing what you're doing and practice as much as you can for speed.
8 is a lot to get wrong on the RC in comparison with your other sections--here it might be worth it to develop some sort of idea, but I'd see what speeding up can do for you first.
I didn't develop any strategies--I just did a lot of practice(20+ full preptests, plus all the Logic Games I could find) to increase speed and found that that was all I needed. I did it on/off over 6 weeks.




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