Six months too little or too much time to prep?

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Lt. Dan
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Six months too little or too much time to prep?

Postby Lt. Dan » Fri Oct 14, 2011 6:01 pm

Hey all,

I've been a lurker for quite some time, and now I'm more than likely going to be sitting for the June 2012 LSAT (set to graduate in the spring of 2013). That being said, I've read a lot of conflicting advice regarding LSAT prep and how long one should go about prepping so as not to burn out too soon.

My goal is a 180, and I hope that I can reach that or very near to it. I'm currently rocking a near perfect GPA at a Public Ivy, and I intend to keep it that way. My only concerns in the coming spring semester will be the LSAT and maintaining my current A average.

I've read over the various 180 guides and have glanced at the Pithypike thread. I'm going to buy the Powerscore bibles and as many official tests as I can.

My questions are: would starting right after Christmas be overkill? Would I burn out over six months? Or, is it better to spend the most time possible prepping and start now?

Thanks in advance.
Last edited by Lt. Dan on Fri Oct 14, 2011 6:09 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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bport hopeful
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Re: Six months too little or too much time to prep?

Postby bport hopeful » Fri Oct 14, 2011 6:05 pm

lulz at knowing you can reach a 180

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Lt. Dan
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Re: Six months too little or too much time to prep?

Postby Lt. Dan » Fri Oct 14, 2011 6:09 pm

True, that's naive.

Edited to reflect that.

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bport hopeful
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Re: Six months too little or too much time to prep?

Postby bport hopeful » Fri Oct 14, 2011 6:10 pm

Six months is plenty of time to study.

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Lt. Dan
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Re: Six months too little or too much time to prep?

Postby Lt. Dan » Fri Oct 14, 2011 6:12 pm

Thanks. Would you say that there is an ideal amount of time to spend prepping, something along the lines of a happy median between burning out and not having enough time?

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bport hopeful
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Re: Six months too little or too much time to prep?

Postby bport hopeful » Fri Oct 14, 2011 6:14 pm

Lt. Dan wrote:Thanks. Would you say that there is an ideal amount of time to spend prepping, something along the lines of a happy median between burning out and not having enough time?


Honestly, I didnt prep the traditional balls out way of TLS because I didnt know TLS existed and didnt really understand the magnitude of the test. I studied for like a month and a half on my lunch breaks.

I would guess that if you have six months to dedicate, do it.

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Lt. Dan
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Re: Six months too little or too much time to prep?

Postby Lt. Dan » Fri Oct 14, 2011 6:15 pm

Gotcha. That's what I've been thinking. Thanks for the insight.

Seneca
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Re: Six months too little or too much time to prep?

Postby Seneca » Fri Oct 14, 2011 6:17 pm

You can certainly prep without seeing a drop in your GPA, and you seem like you have a strong idea about what you need to do to allocate your time, given your GPA thus far. Six months isn't necessarily "too much or too little time" - people on this site have prepped for closer to a year, others have studied very effectively over three months, it just depends on your schedule, personal progress, and any number of other factors. One nice thing about having six months to work with is that you can afford to take a few days to a week completely off from LSAT prep, which some on this site have found to be beneficial.

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gaud
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Re: Six months too little or too much time to prep?

Postby gaud » Fri Oct 14, 2011 6:24 pm

^ non fiction.

You could potentially just create a light schedule (maybe pithypike's guide on a slower pace), which may prevent burnouts.

For me the issue of a burnout relatively disappeared after learning to love the LSAT.

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Lt. Dan
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Re: Six months too little or too much time to prep?

Postby Lt. Dan » Fri Oct 14, 2011 6:26 pm

Aye, having the ability to take a few days off is definitely a plus. I couldn't imagine prepping for a year. That's insane.

I'm just going over the preliminaries now. TLS has been an amazing resource thus far, and I can only imagine it will grow even more useful as I get into the actual prep.

Gaud, I certainly hope I can learn to love the LSAT. I guess only time will tell.

Seneca
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Re: Six months too little or too much time to prep?

Postby Seneca » Fri Oct 14, 2011 7:05 pm

Lt. Dan wrote:Aye, having the ability to take a few days off is definitely a plus. I couldn't imagine prepping for a year. That's insane.

I'm just going over the preliminaries now. TLS has been an amazing resource thus far, and I can only imagine it will grow even more useful as I get into the actual prep.

Gaud, I certainly hope I can learn to love the LSAT. I guess only time will tell.


Hate > loving to hate it > love, if you don't love it to begin with. That was my experience with RC. I'm an English major and have great speed and reading retention, but I just despised that section and occasionally would go up to -8 on my first couple PTs. Finally I just drilled it to death, and by the end, I would intersperse LR drills with RC (I'd see how fast/accurate I could go on individual passages and whole sections) and LG for a "fun reward." I didn't realize how much I really loved it, though, until those weeks waiting for my score. The days felt so long without LSAT prep - by the end I was doing either two 3-4 hour sessions, or a big long PT and review session (but not both) almost every day. CONFESSION: I can't wait for October's test to release so I can have a new LG section.

I admit that prepping for a year may have killed the joy pretty handily.

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Re: Six months too little or too much time to prep?

Postby acrossthelake » Fri Oct 14, 2011 7:05 pm

It depends entirely on where you start.

If you start in the low 170s, then you don't necessarily need a lot of time and your focus should, at that point, be more on taking a lot of timed practice tests, and maybeee drilling weak spots if you have any in particular. If your logic games section isn't normally -0, then get it down to that. Practice till you can do the whole test quickly---try to get down to 30 minutes a section, if not 25. 6ish weeks should be fine here if you've got free time, maybe a little more if you've got a full time job, or less if you're not too risk-averse. I don't think the full 6 weeks is necessary here, but you don't really want the whatifs, you know?

If you start in the 160s, up to 6 months should be fine. More than that seems a bit stretched out for the first go around.

Lower than that, well, it has a lot do with what you're missing, and there's a lot of variation at that point.

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Killingly
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Re: Six months too little or too much time to prep?

Postby Killingly » Fri Oct 14, 2011 7:13 pm

Lt. Dan wrote:I'm currently rocking a near perfect GPA at a Public Ivy, and I intend to keep it that way.


Is that worth pointing out? I sincerely doubt this means anything.

And I prepped for 5 months. I'll let you know how that worked for me in about 2 weeks.

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Lt. Dan
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Re: Six months too little or too much time to prep?

Postby Lt. Dan » Sat Oct 15, 2011 1:30 pm

Thanks for the tips, all. It's to my understanding that logic games are the most learnable of the sections, but also the section that most people start out the worst in.

Killingly, it wasn't necessary, no, but I wanted to give some kind of idea as to my UG institution. It does seem kind of pretentious now that I'm looking at it.

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Killingly
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Re: Six months too little or too much time to prep?

Postby Killingly » Sat Oct 15, 2011 2:53 pm

Lt. Dan wrote:Thanks for the tips, all. It's to my understanding that logic games are the most learnable of the sections, but also the section that most people start out the worst in.

Killingly, it wasn't necessary, no, but I wanted to give some kind of idea as to my UG institution. It does seem kind of pretentious now that I'm looking at it.


Logic games are the easiest to learn; buy the Powerscore Bible, it'll help.

And no worries. I'm at a "public Ivy," too - I just wanted you to know that it'll mean nothing in terms of admissions.

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Lt. Dan
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Re: Six months too little or too much time to prep?

Postby Lt. Dan » Sat Oct 15, 2011 7:15 pm

Would you recommend the Powerscore Bibles for the other sections as well?

Seneca
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Re: Six months too little or too much time to prep?

Postby Seneca » Sat Oct 15, 2011 7:50 pm

Lt. Dan wrote:Would you recommend the Powerscore Bibles for the other sections as well?


Before I took a course, I worked through the LGB and thought it was excellent. I had a great instructor for my course, so I didn't spend as much time with the RCB and LRB, but I thought what I read in both was pretty quality. I do wish I had supplemented the course more with the LRB, as that's where I really choked on test day. If you can only buy one, go for LG, but I do strongly recommend the other two, especially if you're prepping independently.

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Killingly
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Re: Six months too little or too much time to prep?

Postby Killingly » Sat Oct 15, 2011 7:54 pm

Lt. Dan wrote:Would you recommend the Powerscore Bibles for the other sections as well?


I'd recommend the LGB and the LRB. I bought the RCB but never opened it because I was already really strong in RC.

CodyRuegger
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Re: Six months too little or too much time to prep?

Postby CodyRuegger » Sat Oct 15, 2011 9:27 pm

6 months is fine. Just make sure you don't exhaust your prep material too quickly. You want to have fresh practice tests for the last 2 months or so.

By 'Public Ivy' do you mean UCB? I really can't think of any other public school that ranks in Ivy territory. I heard a lot of 'west coast Ivy' from my high school peers about their acceptance letters from USC and UCLA... annoyed the sheight out of me.

josh43299
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Re: Six months too little or too much time to prep?

Postby josh43299 » Sat Oct 15, 2011 11:16 pm

CodyRuegger wrote:6 months is fine. Just make sure you don't exhaust your prep material too quickly. You want to have fresh practice tests for the last 2 months or so.

By 'Public Ivy' do you mean UCB? I really can't think of any other public school that ranks in Ivy territory. I heard a lot of 'west coast Ivy' from my high school peers about their acceptance letters from USC and UCLA... annoyed the sheight out of me.



http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Public_Ivy

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Tiago Splitter
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Re: Six months too little or too much time to prep?

Postby Tiago Splitter » Sun Oct 16, 2011 1:29 am

josh43299 wrote:
CodyRuegger wrote:6 months is fine. Just make sure you don't exhaust your prep material too quickly. You want to have fresh practice tests for the last 2 months or so.

By 'Public Ivy' do you mean UCB? I really can't think of any other public school that ranks in Ivy territory. I heard a lot of 'west coast Ivy' from my high school peers about their acceptance letters from USC and UCLA... annoyed the sheight out of me.



http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Public_Ivy


Wow I guess UCI is a public Ivy. I better update my resume.

CodyRuegger
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Re: Six months too little or too much time to prep?

Postby CodyRuegger » Sun Oct 16, 2011 2:28 am

josh43299 wrote:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Public_Ivy


Looks like I learned something today!

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Lt. Dan
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Re: Six months too little or too much time to prep?

Postby Lt. Dan » Sun Oct 16, 2011 1:33 pm

I'll be honest, I picked up the term on here.

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paul34
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Re: Six months too little or too much time to prep?

Postby paul34 » Sun Oct 16, 2011 1:54 pm

Powerscore is good (I used the LR and LG bibles). But really, you will need to practice on your own to really improve. The Powerscore methods are good, and they will get you started, but it really won't be enough. Honestly, no one's method will be enough. You need to start programming your brain to understand the LSAT. That takes practice. Different people's "methods" help to shorten the learning curve.

Just start studying; I think you'll understand soon enough whether you feel like you're getting anywhere. Six months is good - it gives you enough time to take some time off in case you start to burn out.




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