Is anyone else unable to read?

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180asBreath
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Is anyone else unable to read?

Postby 180asBreath » Sat Oct 08, 2011 2:57 pm

Man, RC is kicking my butt (-8, -8, -7, -13, -9 in my last 5 PT's).

I partially attribute it to my having slowed down, considerably; I have to skip 1 passage (except for the directive questions) and rush on 1.

I hope the speed will come, I do have 8 weeks to improve.

Anyone else in a similar boat?

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gaud
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Re: Is anyone else unable to read?

Postby gaud » Sat Oct 08, 2011 3:09 pm

180asBreath wrote:Man, RC is kicking my butt (-8, -8, -7, -13, -9 in my last 5 PT's).

I partially attribute it to my having slowed down, considerably; I have to skip 1 passage (except for the directive questions) and rush on 1.

I hope the speed will come, I do have 8 weeks to improve.

Anyone else in a similar boat?



Do you have a strategy or plan of attack while doing RC passages?

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180asBreath
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Re: Is anyone else unable to read?

Postby 180asBreath » Sat Oct 08, 2011 3:23 pm

Yeah, that's why I am a lot slower. I try to map out the passage with the Velocity system and I try to keep a ton of things, my tutor has said, in mind.

It's hard for me to map well, while also creating a well-formed narrative or image of the passage. I'm good at locating questions in the passages and I am probably at -2 to -4 untimed, I just need to get a lot quicker.

I feel it will come with time; it's just a bit scary to see how weak I am in one section.

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gaud
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Re: Is anyone else unable to read?

Postby gaud » Sat Oct 08, 2011 3:29 pm

Are those five past RC scores from the ONLY 5 that you have done while using Velocity's system? If so, then you are probably right about speed improving as time progresses.

I am not too familiar with Velocity's system so I cannot say whether or not it is useful, but Dave certainly knows a thing or two so it probably is a very efficient plan of attack and you more than likely just need more practice using his (Velocity's) system.

If, however, it does not seem to pick up I would maybe look into Manhattan's RC book. It really helped me reduce my mistakes on RC.

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northwood
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Re: Is anyone else unable to read?

Postby northwood » Sat Oct 08, 2011 3:33 pm

keep experimenting with diffferent methods. Try to figureout how the passages are structured, as well as the questions. mayeb go over some techiques to figure out this? Keep track of the big idea of each paragraph, and note trends and language shifts. It took me a long time and a lot of expirments to get RC to a respectable level on game day.

It takes a lot of work and effort, but right now focus on accuracy.. then work on speed. There is still time.

and dont neglect LR and LG in this pursuit.

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180asBreath
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Re: Is anyone else unable to read?

Postby 180asBreath » Sat Oct 08, 2011 3:36 pm

Hmm, that might be something to look into. Dave's system is, bar none, the best for identifying the parts of the passage that will be used for questions. It's amazing how often every single question, in a passage, is on a part that I've already marked; it's not only his official notations, I put an asterisk next to areas that I have a sense will be asked - and every passage, one of my asterisks are right on.

The biggest thing is my speed; while going untimed in the Velocity book, I would miss 0-1 on each passage. However, I don't think it's only a timing issue; I think I need to improve my use of creating a narrative and being able to give a good synopsis, once I'm done reading the passage.

Oh, I've also been bad about remembering to prephrase; my tutor taught me how to put my hand over the AC's before I attack each problem, haha!

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180asBreath
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Re: Is anyone else unable to read?

Postby 180asBreath » Sat Oct 08, 2011 3:38 pm

northwood wrote:keep experimenting with diffferent methods. Try to figureout how the passages are structured, as well as the questions. mayeb go over some techiques to figure out this? Keep track of the big idea of each paragraph, and note trends and language shifts. It took me a long time and a lot of expirments to get RC to a respectable level on game day.

It takes a lot of work and effort, but right now focus on accuracy.. then work on speed. There is still time.

and dont neglect LR and LG in this pursuit.


Thanks.

And yeah, I won't make that mistake again. In trying to get my LG respectable, I let my LR fall off - last year. While I am in a pretty good place (just did -3 between LR1,2 and LG), I still need to keep practicing LG and truly master each LR type. I will be taking 2 PT's a week for the next 4 weeks, and 3 a week in the last 4 weeks.

Mitterrand
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Re: Is anyone else unable to read?

Postby Mitterrand » Sat Oct 08, 2011 4:01 pm

I used to have a lot of trouble in reading as well. My testmasters teacher suggested not making any notes, just reading the passage slowly and understanding the arguments, structure etc. That seemed to work for me, I went from about -6 on average to -2.

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ss3825
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Re: Is anyone else unable to read?

Postby ss3825 » Sat Oct 08, 2011 4:51 pm

I was in the same boat as you and consistently going worse than -8 in RC. After that I just really practiced a lot and kind of got used to it. Also, if you are having problems with timing, try notating and underlining less. I had troubles with timing in the RC as well and used to only be able to finish 3 passages in the 35 mins. While practicing, I realized that I was underlining too much and reduced my underlining a lot. That really saved me a lot of time.
Hope this is helpful. Practicing lots of RC really helps. You will somehow know which parts of the passage are important and which are not.
http://www.top-law-schools.com/archives ... =6&t=71295
viewtopic.php?f=6&t=127185

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hyakku
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Re: Is anyone else unable to read?

Postby hyakku » Sat Oct 08, 2011 7:09 pm

I'm confused. You say while using Dave's system in the velocity book you go on average -0 - 1 one, untimed. So you then conclude that timing isn't the issue? It sounds like that's exactly the issue, you're finally understanding the technique, now you need to get faster at implementing it.

Also, I'm not sure what your tutor said, and I'm not saying to "forget it", but you shouldn't have too much "gunk" floating around in your head when trying to attack RC passages. Get your strategy down (whether its purely Velocity, purely your tutor, or a REASONABLE balance [don't try incorporating every element and combining them, it will likely lead to overload but I could be wrong]), and then get perfect at it.

I don't agree with the suggestion of switching up systems or styles. If you can go -0 - 1 untimed, then this is a matter of learning what your individual strengths and weaknesses are in regards to RC so you can maximize the time spent notating. For instance, if you can almost always remember attitudinal shifts and tonality, then you may want to cease unnecessarily underlining / boxing those words (I personally am relatively good at big picture ideas and summarizing nuanced arguments, so I would often instead focus on topic shifts, scope language, and attitudinal indicators as those are my weaker areas for example). Similarly, if you are someone that is relatively strong at "envisioning" the structure of a passage then structural clues can also be less emphasized.

Good luck.

josh43299
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Re: Is anyone else unable to read?

Postby josh43299 » Sun Oct 09, 2011 3:10 pm

The biggest mistake that people can make in RC is trying to rush through the passage and not having a good timing strategy in RC. It sounds like you have the latter (you skip one), but your strategy may not be necessary and it may be compromising your score. Try to figure out where all your time is going. For me, I would spend a couple minutes on the passage and end up spending an inordinate amount of time on the questions. To solve this problem, I broke down my timing for each passage, giving myself way more time up front and forcing myself to keep moving through the questions. I don't see how you are going to improve your score much unless you do all of the passages.

This is how I broke my time up, keeping in mind that statistically, the third and fourth are the most difficult.
Passage 1 - Read: 4 Minutes.....Questions: 3 minutes (7:00)
Passage 2 - Read: 4 Minutes....Questions: 4 Minutes (15:00)
Passage 3 - Read: 4.5 Minutes...Questions: 5 Minutes (24:30)
Passage 4 - Read: 5 Minutes... Questions: 5.5 Minutes (35:00)

I know that this seems like you are flying through the questions... you are. You should not have to keep checking back if you read well the first time, except for questions that directly reference the passage (line 4-6...). Some people start at different places in the section, this just worked for me. Of course you need to stay aware of author's attitude and structure, but it sounds like your time is being eaten. One thing I recommend was recommended by the velocity guy on a post, which I only tried a couple of times. Take a RC passage and read the passage, understand it well, then cover it up and answer the questions. You may be surprised at how well you do.

Also, if you are going to develop a strict timing strategy, you MUST learn to use your wristwatch during the whole RC section. I learned to check it every minute or so without letting it bother me, this helped big time last Saturday.

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Dr. Dreidel
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Re: Is anyone else unable to read?

Postby Dr. Dreidel » Sun Oct 09, 2011 6:18 pm

180asBreath wrote:Yeah, that's why I am a lot slower. I try to map out the passage with the Velocity system and I try to keep a ton of things, my tutor has said, in mind.

It's hard for me to map well, while also creating a well-formed narrative or image of the passage. I'm good at locating questions in the passages and I am probably at -2 to -4 untimed, I just need to get a lot quicker.

I feel it will come with time; it's just a bit scary to see how weak I am in one section.



Mapping is unnecessary and eats way too much time, and since it isn't working for you, maybe you should consider a completely different approach. Just train yourself to read the passage and digest all of the information that you can in one read-through. Then answer the questions. It's that simple.

Schang1
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Re: Is anyone else unable to read?

Postby Schang1 » Mon Oct 10, 2011 11:09 am

180asBreath wrote:Man, RC is kicking my butt (-8, -8, -7, -13, -9 in my last 5 PT's).

I partially attribute it to my having slowed down, considerably; I have to skip 1 passage (except for the directive questions) and rush on 1.

I hope the speed will come, I do have 8 weeks to improve.

Anyone else in a similar boat?


Man, I totally feel ya. That is exactly how my score looks in RC -8 through -13. My score is purely dependent upon that damn RC section. I get about -4 max wrong in LR section, 0 in LG, so it's just all about the RC... I just read all about the Dave's RC system, so I am going to try the whole "covering up answer choices and then answering the question" and I really agree with what josh43299 said in that if you read the passage carefully (like devote 4-5 minutes like he's doing) there is no need to keep going back to the passage to answer the questions since you have a clear understanding of it. I used to spend 2 minutes on the passage and 6-7 minutes on the questions, and that was just plain stupid because the questions don't make any sense to you since you don't REALLY know what the passage is about. So I was never able to eliminate more than 2 answer choices, so I'd be spending like 2 minutes on one question since I had to refer back to the passage to check which of the remaining 3 answer choices were "supported" or "inferred", etc. I definitely think you and I BOTH should incorporate what josh43299 said. I think it's an awesome idea. I'm going to start doing that covering up ACs thing. :)

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180asBreath
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Re: Is anyone else unable to read?

Postby 180asBreath » Mon Oct 10, 2011 3:37 pm

That's funny that you mention the "cover up the answer choices" thing; that's also what my tutor taught me to do, sorry if it was already mentioned in this thread. Another thing is that she taught me to cross out why every answer choice is wrong, on the answer choice. So it could say, "describe chemical..." - if it wasn't talking about anything chemical, you cross out that word. I notice that it is causing me to evaluate why each AC is wrong or right.

So, I took the previous poster's advice and did 3 passages without notating - at all. I did the three in only 26 minutes (which is super quick for me) and I only missed 2; I had a really solid grasp of the passages and I feel I have been putting too much emphasis on notating without putting enough on comprehension.

I won't abandon mapping altogether, but I will remember that I don't "need" to notate to do well; the notating is just supposed to map out certain important aspects of the passage to hasten and aid my search through the passage - when I need to find something. I notice that I notate everything so it's not a useful map, at all.

I really feel good about RC, now. I was starting to forget that I am able to do well on RC and that I was only doing so poorly because of this new method. I know I could stop notating altogether and have an average of -4 but I want an average of -0 to -1; that is why I will have to find the perfect amount of notating that helps me find things in the passage while not hampering my comprehension.

Today is the first day that I felt a 180 was actually possible; while I was trying to convince myself, today I am certain that I will get a 180 on a PT - it's just a matter of time.

And I still have almost 8 weeks left! So excite!

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180asBreath
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Re: Is anyone else unable to read?

Postby 180asBreath » Wed Oct 12, 2011 4:14 pm

I broke through the wall!

-2 on the RC section of PT 47!!!

Unfortunately for me, I got a phone call and was distracted in the LR after the break (the 3rd LR of the test) and got a -11 :(

-15 for a 166 :-/




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