How long do you guys take for reading a passage?

szk0034
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How long do you guys take for reading a passage?

Postby szk0034 » Fri Sep 09, 2011 10:35 pm

How long do you guys take for reading a passage of reading comprehension and Logical reasoning passage?

Is from 3 to 3 and half min. short for finding answer key on passage even after reading whole passage completely already?

and What about Logical reasoning section? Should I read an each question at least in 30 sec. (on average 70~80 words in each stimulus I guess)?

I am kinda trying to make a balance between reading speed and preciseness.

Is that really every guys hits over 170 to read super fast?

In addition, if you have any tip for reading habit for RC and LR, please let me know it.

Thanks.

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rinkrat19
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Re: How long do you guys take for reading a passage?

Postby rinkrat19 » Fri Sep 09, 2011 10:43 pm

I skimmed a RC passage in about 45 seconds. That got me a reasonably good understanding of the topic/the general tone/the author's position/etc. I have a good enough visual memory that I would remember where in the passage I saw something, so I could then skip back to the specific words and phrases mentioned in the questions in only a few seconds.

Reading a LR passage took almost the same amount of time (~30 sec?), but of course since they're much shorter than RC, I wasn't skimming.

Pretty sure I did it sort of backwards, however. Most people take longer to read an RC passage, but don't necessarily have to refer back to it for every question.

3-4 minutes per RC passage does seem a little slow, however. If you're spending 16 of your 35 minutes reading, you only have about 45 seconds to answer each question.

imjustjoking22
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Re: How long do you guys take for reading a passage?

Postby imjustjoking22 » Fri Sep 09, 2011 11:12 pm

I generally take around 7 min per passage (with questions)- I haven't timed myself on the individual passages separate from the Q's, but I tend to take a lot of notes as well- helps me answer the Q's quickly.

Obelisk18
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Re: How long do you guys take for reading a passage?

Postby Obelisk18 » Fri Sep 09, 2011 11:29 pm

I have a bad habit of reading LR questions way too quickly- probably 5 to 10 seconds for the shorter ones and 30 seconds or so for things like parallel reasoning. I don't, I repeat, don't recommend this. The average reading speed is probably around 200-250 wpm per minute and probably somewhat higher than that among LSAT test-takers. Which means the average LSAT reader could just plow through an ordinary stimulus in 10-20 seconds. But the LR stimuli are unusually dense- they don't lend themselves to speed reading. I can't tell you how many questions I've gotten wrong because I missed a key word. Or how many stimuli I've had to re-read, and sometimes re-re-read, because I failed to make sense of it the first go around. I find that if you have a decent working memory (i.e, can remember the beginning of a stimulus while you're off thinking of something else) clearly stopping to note the function each sentence might play in the argument ("this sentence might be a premise...or maybe background information") can slow down your reading, while allowing you to absorb the key points. Ideally, you want to be able to formulate SOME kind of pre-answer before moving on to the questions, and if you're able to do that as a result of slowing down, then the extra time you've spent will likely be recovered when you're going through the answer choices.

For RC I read pretty fast and I'm inclined to think there's nothing wrong with that. Main point questions don't get much harder if you've gone through the passage quickly and many of the other types of questions are, invariably, going to require that you look at the passage again. Very few people can hold all of the relevant details in their head on a first read. A RC passage takes me 1 minute to read, if it's something social sciency or humanities related, and closer to 2 minutes to read if it's a CR passage or a sciency passage.

imjustjoking22
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Re: How long do you guys take for reading a passage?

Postby imjustjoking22 » Fri Sep 09, 2011 11:54 pm

Obelisk18 wrote:I have a bad habit of reading LR questions way too quickly- probably 5 to 10 seconds for the shorter ones and 30 seconds or so for things like parallel reasoning. I don't, I repeat, don't recommend this. The average reading speed is probably around 200-250 wpm per minute and probably somewhat higher than that among LSAT test-takers. Which means the average LSAT reader could just plow through an ordinary stimulus in 10-20 seconds. But the LR stimuli are unusually dense- they don't lend themselves to speed reading. I can't tell you how many questions I've gotten wrong because I missed a key word. Or how many stimuli I've had to re-read, and sometimes re-re-read, because I failed to make sense of it the first go around. I find that if you have a decent working memory (i.e, can remember the beginning of a stimulus while you're off thinking of something else) clearly stopping to note the function each sentence might play in the argument ("this sentence might be a premise...or maybe background information") can slow down your reading, while allowing you to absorb the key points. Ideally, you want to be able to formulate SOME kind of pre-answer before moving on to the questions, and if you're able to do that as a result of slowing down, then the extra time you've spent will likely be recovered when you're going through the answer choices.

For RC I read pretty fast and I'm inclined to think there's nothing wrong with that. Main point questions don't get much harder if you've gone through the passage quickly and many of the other types of questions are, invariably, going to require that you look at the passage again. Very few people can hold all of the relevant details in their head on a first read. A RC passage takes me 1 minute to read, if it's something social sciency or humanities related, and closer to 2 minutes to read if it's a CR passage or a sciency passage.


I've also found semi-speed-reading to be much more effective on RC if you take good notes (I tend to write notes while I continue to read, which speeds up the process). Then you don't have to worry overmuch about retention (which can be tougher when reading quickly).

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soj
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Re: How long do you guys take for reading a passage?

Postby soj » Sat Sep 10, 2011 12:28 am

I read at normal speed. I think for most people, normal speed is approximately the optimal speed. No need to speed up or slow down artificially (unless normal speed for you is 4+ min/passage).

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tyro
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Re: How long do you guys take for reading a passage?

Postby tyro » Sat Sep 10, 2011 12:33 am

soj wrote:I read at normal speed. I think for most people, normal speed is approximately the optimal speed. No need to speed up or slow down artificially (unless normal speed for you is 4+ min/passage).

Well you're up there with the prep experts but a lot of them do recommend reading *slightly* above normal/comfortable speed. Personally, I feel that reading above or below normal/comfortable speed can be distracting in itself but when you have 5-7 minutes remaining on a final passage or are short on time, you obviously have to speed it up above normal. I think people should experiment and find what works best for them overall.

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soj
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Re: How long do you guys take for reading a passage?

Postby soj » Sat Sep 10, 2011 12:45 am

You're probably right. With enough practice, you could speed up your "normal" pace (the pace that feels comfortable).

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tyro
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Re: How long do you guys take for reading a passage?

Postby tyro » Sat Sep 10, 2011 12:54 am

soj wrote:You're probably right. With enough practice, you could speed up your "normal" pace (the pace that feels comfortable).

Yeah I'm just going to elaborate a bit:

Now this is just me so it's clearly not going to be representative of everyone, but I find that RC is the section of the test that I have the most control over. I feel that with practice, we can speed through a passage and the questions in 5-6 minutes and still do well if we really have to. This gives us some flexibility and power in comparison to the other sections of the exam in my opinion. So basically what I'm saying is that it can be important to practice reading through a passage very very quickly and then skimming the quesitons and in some cases making semi-guesses.

A lot of times the final passage (and on that topic, the last game in LG also) is one that can be completed in 5-6 minutes which is not a coincidence.

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lrslayer
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Re: How long do you guys take for reading a passage?

Postby lrslayer » Sat Sep 10, 2011 1:01 am

I am finding a weird trend for me, that when I get to the final passage and realize I only have 5-6 minutes left to read and answer question, i speed through it all and.... WTF, typically get all the questions right! what do you all make of that?!

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tyro
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Re: How long do you guys take for reading a passage?

Postby tyro » Sat Sep 10, 2011 1:27 am

lrslayer wrote:I am finding a weird trend for me, that when I get to the final passage and realize I only have 5-6 minutes left to read and answer question, i speed through it all and.... WTF, typically get all the questions right! what do you all make of that?!

I see what you did here and your effort is impressive.

Attorney at Play
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Re: How long do you guys take for reading a passage?

Postby Attorney at Play » Sat Sep 10, 2011 4:33 am

lrslayer wrote:I am finding a weird trend for me, that when I get to the final passage and realize I only have 5-6 minutes left to read and answer question, i speed through it all and.... WTF, typically get all the questions right! what do you all make of that?!


Same here!

notaznguy
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Re: How long do you guys take for reading a passage?

Postby notaznguy » Sat Sep 10, 2011 5:58 am

On average, it takes me about 3 minutes and 10-12 seconds. For unusually difficult passages, I've taken 3 minutes and 30-45 seconds. On relatively easy passages, it takes me 2 minutes and 50 seconds.

Most of the time it's 3 minutes and 10-12 seconds though.




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