Easy experimental..why?

lsatwizkid
Posts: 34
Joined: Fri Nov 11, 2011 4:43 am

Easy experimental..why?

Postby lsatwizkid » Mon Dec 05, 2011 10:00 am

I got 2 LGs. The first one was definitely easy. And reading through the posts here, seems like the first one is experimental. So my question is, if its SO easy, what would LSAC gain from using such experimentals? Isn't the purpose to put out difficult sections and see how good students take it, so on subsequent tests they can use similar games/RCs/LRs to make the test more difficult?

User avatar
RCinDNA
Posts: 233
Joined: Mon Nov 28, 2011 1:55 pm

Re: Easy experimental..why?

Postby RCinDNA » Mon Dec 05, 2011 10:26 am

That's what I thought; the general consensus seems to be that the second logic games section was the actual one, but it was my understanding that the LSAT makers liked putting new question types and formats in the experimental section. The first LG section had no new or difficult questions, whereas the second did. And IIRC there was actually a hard game in the first section whereas the second did not.

User avatar
LexLeon
Posts: 400
Joined: Fri Oct 07, 2011 11:03 pm

Re: Easy experimental..why?

Postby LexLeon » Mon Dec 05, 2011 1:55 pm

RCinDNA wrote:That's what I thought; the general consensus seems to be that the second logic games section was the actual one, but it was my understanding that the LSAT makers liked putting new question types and formats in the experimental section. The first LG section had no new or difficult questions, whereas the second did. And IIRC there was actually a hard game in the first section whereas the second did not.


Remember, LSAC need not insert the entire section that was once variable into a test as a regular, scored section--they can change and mix and match games, passages, and questions as they'd like in order to achieve the desired level of difficulty for when those problems will be scored. In fact, if everyone did as well as you on that games section, then it is my understanding that they'd split the games up into different sections when they appear in a scored section(s) in order to balance the difficulty (if they don't further alter the game scenario and questions or drop them altogether, that is).

I believe that this process is one of the main functions of the variable section. And, despite the fact that "it's an extra section that will drain my energy and cause me to do worse on the sections that do count!", I believe that a variable section ceteris paribus benefits us the test takers in general, and therefore I enjoy and embrace it.

lsatwizkid
Posts: 34
Joined: Fri Nov 11, 2011 4:43 am

Re: Easy experimental..why?

Postby lsatwizkid » Tue Dec 06, 2011 1:45 am

You may be right. The first section was super easy- LSAC might use 1 or two games or similar games in later tests. BUT, if there was nothing NEW in the easy games section, isn't it predictable that students can usually easily do them?

I mean, isn't the purpose of experimental to weigh how students handle new, unique difficult games/questions so they can employ those techniques and questions in later game? If it's almost apparent that most students will likely find the games super easy, why does LSAC need to test it in experimental? (I finished the first LG section in 25 minutes. And LG isn't my strength. I found 3rd game of 2nd (real) LG tough).

penguinbrah
Posts: 74
Joined: Wed Sep 28, 2011 2:20 am

Re: Easy experimental..why?

Postby penguinbrah » Tue Dec 06, 2011 3:50 am

lsatwizkid wrote:You may be right. The first section was super easy- LSAC might use 1 or two games or similar games in later tests. BUT, if there was nothing NEW in the easy games section, isn't it predictable that students can usually easily do them?

I mean, isn't the purpose of experimental to weigh how students handle new, unique difficult games/questions so they can employ those techniques and questions in later game? If it's almost apparent that most students will likely find the games super easy, why does LSAC need to test it in experimental? (I finished the first LG section in 25 minutes. And LG isn't my strength. I found 3rd game of 2nd (real) LG tough).


lol i finished that first LG section in like 25 min too... i was so souped i thought i was bout to get a perfect score cuz i was in the zone or something lol... then the third section came around and i yelled fuuuuuu in my mind.

User avatar
lsacqueen
Posts: 255
Joined: Wed Oct 19, 2011 4:03 am

Re: Easy experimental..why?

Postby lsacqueen » Tue Dec 06, 2011 4:21 am

penguinbrah wrote:
lsatwizkid wrote:You may be right. The first section was super easy- LSAC might use 1 or two games or similar games in later tests. BUT, if there was nothing NEW in the easy games section, isn't it predictable that students can usually easily do them?

I mean, isn't the purpose of experimental to weigh how students handle new, unique difficult games/questions so they can employ those techniques and questions in later game? If it's almost apparent that most students will likely find the games super easy, why does LSAC need to test it in experimental? (I finished the first LG section in 25 minutes. And LG isn't my strength. I found 3rd game of 2nd (real) LG tough).


lol i finished that first LG section in like 25 min too... i was so souped i thought i was bout to get a perfect score cuz i was in the zone or something lol... then the third section came around and i yelled fuuuuuu in my mind.



hahahah :)

inflightradio
Posts: 41
Joined: Mon Oct 03, 2011 5:00 am

Re: Easy experimental..why?

Postby inflightradio » Tue Dec 06, 2011 8:54 pm

lsatwizkid wrote:I got 2 LGs. The first one was definitely easy. And reading through the posts here, seems like the first one is experimental. So my question is, if its SO easy, what would LSAC gain from using such experimentals? Isn't the purpose to put out difficult sections and see how good students take it, so on subsequent tests they can use similar games/RCs/LRs to make the test more difficult?


Yeah, I'd been under the impression that experimentals were supposed to be the most difficult sections of a test. However, I had an LR exp in Oct and it was by far the easiest section. Obviously, I was crushed when it ended up being the experimental (I also was in the pool with those who had the very first 4th exp). This test, I also have a feeling my easier LR was the exp. I think LSAC has just made a shift in the difficulty of the exp it gives out, maybe because it was too easy to guess?

User avatar
suspicious android
Posts: 938
Joined: Tue Feb 09, 2010 4:54 pm

Re: Easy experimental..why?

Postby suspicious android » Tue Dec 06, 2011 11:06 pm

lsatwizkid wrote:I mean, isn't the purpose of experimental to weigh how students handle new, unique difficult games/questions so they can employ those techniques and questions in later game? If it's almost apparent that most students will likely find the games super easy, why does LSAC need to test it in experimental? (I finished the first LG section in 25 minutes. And LG isn't my strength. I found 3rd game of 2nd (real) LG tough).


The experimental isn't just for unique or unusual material, it's for new material in general. My understanding is that all the questions, games and passages you see on "real" sections are ones that have been previously tested on experimental sections. And the analysis isn't simply "easy, medium, hard", they also are looking for reliability. So for a question that only 25% of people get right, obviously it's a difficult question. But does a person who gets a 160 have a significantly better shot at getting this question right than someone getting a 140? If not, the quesiton has no predictive value and needs to be fixed or eliminated. So there's all this boring analysis they do, and they have to do it for every question, not just new ideas or techniques. So this idea that the experimental section is always weird is just bunk, fed by confirmation bias and the fact that all claims about the quality of questions on experimental sections are drawn from selective and fallible memory.

User avatar
3v3ryth1ng
Posts: 295
Joined: Tue Jun 14, 2011 10:48 pm

Re: Easy experimental..why?

Postby 3v3ryth1ng » Wed Dec 07, 2011 2:58 am

suspicious android wrote:
lsatwizkid wrote:I mean, isn't the purpose of experimental to weigh how students handle new, unique difficult games/questions so they can employ those techniques and questions in later game? If it's almost apparent that most students will likely find the games super easy, why does LSAC need to test it in experimental? (I finished the first LG section in 25 minutes. And LG isn't my strength. I found 3rd game of 2nd (real) LG tough).


The experimental isn't just for unique or unusual material, it's for new material in general. My understanding is that all the questions, games and passages you see on "real" sections are ones that have been previously tested on experimental sections. And the analysis isn't simply "easy, medium, hard", they also are looking for reliability. So for a question that only 25% of people get right, obviously it's a difficult question. But does a person who gets a 160 have a significantly better shot at getting this question right than someone getting a 140? If not, the quesiton has no predictive value and needs to be fixed or eliminated. So there's all this boring analysis they do, and they have to do it for every question, not just new ideas or techniques. So this idea that the experimental section is always weird is just bunk, fed by confirmation bias and the fact that all claims about the quality of questions on experimental sections are drawn from selective and fallible memory.


+1

Your experimental can be "easy," "hard," or "weird." They will make it a real LSAT when the LSAC is convinced it will yield an acceptable distribution of scores, and a reasonable "curve." Those easy games may make it onto a real LSAT with few or no changes, with the result being a harder curve (which ultimately punishes people who aren't good with games anyway), or possibly an inversely difficult LR or RC (so they don't end up with a -7 curve, or something like that). I actually have a profound respect for the precision and science used to develop this test, flawed as it may be for use in judging law school aptitude.

lsatwizkid
Posts: 34
Joined: Fri Nov 11, 2011 4:43 am

Re: Easy experimental..why?

Postby lsatwizkid » Thu Dec 08, 2011 5:38 am

You're right. I also have tremendous respect for the way this test is built, and was actually starting to like the way test makers phrased questions. But alas! The test date came too soon, and now I can't be sure if I did well on the test at all.

Thanks to everyone for clarifying on the experimental section. Have always wanted to know the rationale behind it. I enjoyed it on test day nonetheless. A small problem is that easy experimentals make us hopeful :) Oh well!!




Return to “LSAT Prep and Discussion Forum”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: galeatus and 3 guests