What becomes of the 5th Section on the LSAT?

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thelawschoolproject
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What becomes of the 5th Section on the LSAT?

Postby thelawschoolproject » Thu Sep 29, 2011 9:10 pm

So, I've pretty much heard that the fifth section on the LSAT is for recording purposes only, but is this true?

For example, I noticed that on a previous LSAT I took, rather than basing my score off of the first LG section I took (which was section 2) they gave me the score off of the second LG section (which was section 5). I know there's no way to determine what that fifth section will be, but how often is the fifth section substituted for one of the first four? And, why is this done?

Thanks!

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Bildungsroman
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Re: What becomes of the 5th Section on the LSAT?

Postby Bildungsroman » Thu Sep 29, 2011 9:13 pm

The "experimental" section will always be one of the first three sections you take. Its administration as an experimental section tests it for future use as a scored section on an LSAT. It won't affect your score, nor will your performance on it be disclosed to you or to law schools.

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thelawschoolproject
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Re: What becomes of the 5th Section on the LSAT?

Postby thelawschoolproject » Thu Sep 29, 2011 9:15 pm

And there's no way to know which section is the experimental one? Is that right?

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Kess
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Re: What becomes of the 5th Section on the LSAT?

Postby Kess » Thu Sep 29, 2011 9:19 pm

thelawschoolproject wrote:And there's no way to know which section is the experimental one? Is that right?


It depends. If you have 2 LG sections or 2 RC, and one is before the break and one is after, the one before doesn't count and the one after does. However if you have 2 RC, 2 LG, or 2 LR before the break and 1 after, it is kind of difficult to tell which one is exactly the experimental.

That, or you can ask your friends what kind of sections they had because from what I understand, not everyone gets the same experimental.

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Bildungsroman
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Re: What becomes of the 5th Section on the LSAT?

Postby Bildungsroman » Thu Sep 29, 2011 9:20 pm

thelawschoolproject wrote:And there's no way to know which section is the experimental one? Is that right?

It's not disclosed on the test which one is experimental; this way, LSAC gets as real a representation as possible of what score distribution that section will yield (because who wouldn't just blow off a section if they knew it didn't count for their score?). Some people claim that the experimental section is very obvious. These people are mostly full of shit.

Edit: of course, once you've completed the test you might know definitively whether one section was an experimental (e.g. you had logic games for sections 2 and 5, so section 2 was the experimental). but there's no way to know when you're taking it whether the section you're on is the experimental.

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Icculus
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Re: What becomes of the 5th Section on the LSAT?

Postby Icculus » Thu Sep 29, 2011 11:54 pm

Kess wrote:That, or you can ask your friends what kind of sections they had because from what I understand, not everyone gets the same experimental.


Be careful with this one, it's technically a violation of LSAC policy to do this at the testing center. I think it's also a violation even after the test, but usually TLS has it figured out pretty quickly.




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