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RC Encouragement?

Posted: Fri Aug 05, 2011 9:18 am
by vahopeful2012
I'm signed up to take the October 2011 LSAT and have been studying off and on all summer (I've worked through the Powerscore Bibles and a few LG, LR, and RC sections in "10 Actual, Official LSAT Preptests"). While I've been narrowing the number I miss on the LG section down to an average of -2 to -3 (still not what I want, but not too bad!), my RC # missed seems to be on a roller coaster. I can go from -3 on one test to a -8 on another. Is there any encouragement out there for me? Did anyone else who eventually got better at RC experience this to begin with? I'm hoping with time, the numbers will even out. I've only done about 5-6 actual RC sections in the preptests.

Re: RC Encouragement?

Posted: Fri Aug 05, 2011 10:37 am
by ejh22
Your RC fluctuations are normal, especially between older and newer tests. It is a common question in this forum. The more recent tests, I think, have somewhat trickier questions in that they are focused on the skills used in logical reasoning (you will see more questions asking you to strengthen/weaken, identify the assumption etc.). Your number of misses should even themselves out as you get exposed to more material but there still might be the occasional fluctuation. What is really important is to review your mistakes and see if there are question types or passage types where you get tripped up more often than not, and then to focus on those.

This will be my third time preparing for the test (I've already sat for it once and postponed the June administration) and I am focusing a lot on RC. I would recommend the method/philosophy in Manhattan's RC guide. However, I think that each person needs to experiment and come up with a method that works for them. What I found most helpful is to read the passage for structure, focusing on the role each element of the passage plays in the author's overall main point. I also underline important words and notate in the margins the various opinions and any definitions in the passage. I circle so-called key words that tell me where the passage is going like "but", "however", "some" etc., and box any names or dates so I can find them easily when the questions refer to them.

I hope this helps if only to give you some reassurance that RC fluctuations are normal. Unfortunately, it is the hardest section to improve but certainly not impossible so keep at it! :)

Re: RC Encouragement?

Posted: Sun Aug 07, 2011 5:51 am
by echo
vahopeful2012 wrote:I'm signed up to take the October 2011 LSAT and have been studying off and on all summer (I've worked through the Powerscore Bibles and a few LG, LR, and RC sections in "10 Actual, Official LSAT Preptests"). While I've been narrowing the number I miss on the LG section down to an average of -2 to -3 (still not what I want, but not too bad!), my RC # missed seems to be on a roller coaster. I can go from -3 on one test to a -8 on another. Is there any encouragement out there for me? Did anyone else who eventually got better at RC experience this to begin with? I'm hoping with time, the numbers will even out. I've only done about 5-6 actual RC sections in the preptests.


If you have only done 5-6 prep tests don't worry. RC is the hardest to improve on, but I do think that it is possible. It was my toughest section for a long time, but did the RC Bible and a bunch of Prep Tests and wound up -1 on test day. It's doable.

Re: RC Encouragement?

Posted: Mon Aug 15, 2011 4:07 pm
by vahopeful2012
Sorry I haven't responded sooner. I was on vacation at a beach house that was supposed to have internet access, but didn't. I have improved slightly on the RC sections over my vacation (I didn't study too much!), so hopefully I'll continue to improve. Thanks for the encouragement.

Re: RC Encouragement?

Posted: Tue Aug 16, 2011 3:29 am
by bountyxhunter
Considering the fact that you've only done 5 or 6 I'm sure that you can improve on RC. I think that timing is what's most important when it comes to RC, and that's something that'll develop with practice.