How fast can you finish a RC passage & question set

wanderlust
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How fast can you finish a RC passage & question set

Postby wanderlust » Fri Mar 09, 2012 8:05 am

RC gurus out there

What is the shortest time it takes you to finish a RC passage and the questions accompanying it?

Are the RC sections in PT1-20 significantly easier than the more recent tests?

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Davidbentley
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Re: How fast can you finish a RC passage & question set

Postby Davidbentley » Fri Mar 09, 2012 9:31 am

1.) 4-6 minutes if the writing flows and I'm mildly interested in the topic.
2.) I believe so. Though significantly might be stretching it. There's been some gnarly passages recently though.

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QuincyWagstaff
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Re: How fast can you finish a RC passage & question set

Postby QuincyWagstaff » Fri Mar 09, 2012 12:47 pm

1) As with LG, some RC passages will be easier than others; I may get through one in <6 minutes, but chances are another later in the section will take >9. For that reason, it makes no sense to compare time per passage, only per section. I would spend about 32-33 minutes to complete a section accurately.

2) They may be denser, but I feel like LSAC writes tighter questions on more current PTs.

bp shinners
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Re: How fast can you finish a RC passage & question set

Postby bp shinners » Fri Mar 09, 2012 7:24 pm

Probably about 4 minutes a passage; however, I've been doing this so long that I can generally answer 4-5/7 questions correctly without reading the passage (there's a definite pattern to right/wrong answers; if only I could articulate it instead of just feeling it, I'd be rich).

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Geetar Man
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Re: How fast can you finish a RC passage & question set

Postby Geetar Man » Fri Mar 09, 2012 8:01 pm

bp shinners wrote:Probably about 4 minutes a passage; however, I've been doing this so long that I can generally answer 4-5/7 questions correctly without reading the passage (there's a definite pattern to right/wrong answers; if only I could articulate it instead of just feeling it, I'd be rich).



I knew you were good BP, but holy shit that's awesom. I don't mean to derail, but what is you administered test average?

bp shinners
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Re: How fast can you finish a RC passage & question set

Postby bp shinners » Mon Mar 12, 2012 2:31 pm

Geetar Man wrote:
bp shinners wrote:Probably about 4 minutes a passage; however, I've been doing this so long that I can generally answer 4-5/7 questions correctly without reading the passage (there's a definite pattern to right/wrong answers; if only I could articulate it instead of just feeling it, I'd be rich).



I knew you were good BP, but holy shit that's awesom. I don't mean to derail, but what is you administered test average?


Just official ones? If that's the case, 180, since I only took the exam the one time. The last few PTs I took before I sat for the exam were all 178+.

If all tests, I have no idea. I haven't taken one for awhile because I've gone over almost every question at least once while teaching (so old PTs would be a joke), and I generally have a tutoring student who wants to review a test the day or two after it's released (so I haven't taken the last few that came out).

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Geetar Man
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Re: How fast can you finish a RC passage & question set

Postby Geetar Man » Mon Mar 12, 2012 2:54 pm

bp shinners wrote:
Geetar Man wrote:
bp shinners wrote:Probably about 4 minutes a passage; however, I've been doing this so long that I can generally answer 4-5/7 questions correctly without reading the passage (there's a definite pattern to right/wrong answers; if only I could articulate it instead of just feeling it, I'd be rich).



I knew you were good BP, but holy shit that's awesom. I don't mean to derail, but what is you administered test average?


Just official ones? If that's the case, 180, since I only took the exam the one time. The last few PTs I took before I sat for the exam were all 178+.

If all tests, I have no idea. I haven't taken one for awhile because I've gone over almost every question at least once while teaching (so old PTs would be a joke), and I generally have a tutoring student who wants to review a test the day or two after it's released (so I haven't taken the last few that came out).



That's pretty bad ass. If you don't mind me asking, did you take a diagnostic; what was your score? I'd love to hear that hard work for the LSAT pays off, more than people say and that huge jumps are possible. Also, I sound like english is my second language in my previous post. Posting from my phone = FTL.

Aslo also, how long did you study for before writing your first LSAT? Was there any specific method or guide you followed? Do you think that you studied more for quality, than quantity? Thanks BP.

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pizzabrosauce
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Re: How fast can you finish a RC passage & question set

Postby pizzabrosauce » Mon Mar 12, 2012 3:36 pm

bp shinners wrote:Probably about 4 minutes a passage; however, I've been doing this so long that I can generally answer 4-5/7 questions correctly without reading the passage (there's a definite pattern to right/wrong answers; if only I could articulate it instead of just feeling it, I'd be rich).


Wow that's amazing. I'd definitely pay for that feeling ^_^

roranoa
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Re: How fast can you finish a RC passage & question set

Postby roranoa » Mon Mar 12, 2012 3:53 pm

bp shinners wrote:Probably about 4 minutes a passage; however, I've been doing this so long that I can generally answer 4-5/7 questions correctly without reading the passage (there's a definite pattern to right/wrong answers; if only I could articulate it instead of just feeling it, I'd be rich).


How did you come by this "feeling"? I've done almost 50 PTs now but I still don't get it. Can you at least elaborate on the type of practice that would lead me to finding those definite patterns you're talking about? I believe you that there is some pattern because I've heard from other LSAT guru's (especially Dave Hall on this forum) that there are patterns that we should look for in the wording.

But, answering RC questions WITHOUT reading the passage is a totally different level. Are you exaggerating? Can you do this for Main Point Questions and any other question that doesn't refer you to a specific part of the passage?

Help would be most appreciated!

bp shinners
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Re: How fast can you finish a RC passage & question set

Postby bp shinners » Mon Mar 12, 2012 4:01 pm

Geetar Man wrote:That's pretty bad ass. If you don't mind me asking, did you take a diagnostic; what was your score? I'd love to hear that hard work for the LSAT pays off, more than people say and that huge jumps are possible. Also, I sound like english is my second language in my previous post. Posting from my phone = FTL.

Aslo also, how long did you study for before writing your first LSAT? Was there any specific method or guide you followed? Do you think that you studied more for quality, than quantity? Thanks BP.


My initial diagnostic (completely cold) was somewhere in the 162-165 range - not being coy, I honestly don't remember. I took it on September 6th and took the LSAT about 4 weeks later in October (dumb).

For the first week, I went over some practice books, but they were all pretty bad (not gonna name names here). They also had fake questions, which are impossible to answer when you actually understand logic because they're terribly written. After that, I was taking and reviewing 1-2 practice tests a days. Honestly, I spent way too much time prepping like that and should have focused on methods for individual questions.

After the initial diagnostic, I'd say it took me 2-3 tests to break into the 170s, and then the rest was getting from that point to as high as possible. I was in the 172-175 range for most of the study time, and then had a breakthrough 2 days before the actual exam and started going -4 or less on a bunch in a row.

So, in short, I studied for 4 weeks, 1-2 PTs/day with review, using no particular method. My neck hurt so badly from being hunched over that my girlfriend made me get tested for meningitis, and my friends all thought I had disappeared.

bp shinners
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Re: How fast can you finish a RC passage & question set

Postby bp shinners » Mon Mar 12, 2012 4:06 pm

roranoa wrote:
bp shinners wrote:Probably about 4 minutes a passage; however, I've been doing this so long that I can generally answer 4-5/7 questions correctly without reading the passage (there's a definite pattern to right/wrong answers; if only I could articulate it instead of just feeling it, I'd be rich).


How did you come by this "feeling"? I've done almost 50 PTs now but I still don't get it. Can you at least elaborate on the type of practice that would lead me to finding those definite patterns you're talking about? I believe you that there is some pattern because I've heard from other LSAT guru's (especially Dave Hall on this forum) that there are patterns that we should look for in the wording.

But, answering RC questions WITHOUT reading the passage is a totally different level. Are you exaggerating? Can you do this for Main Point Questions and any other question that doesn't refer you to a specific part of the passage?

Help would be most appreciated!


The feeling took over a year of teaching the exam. After you spend that much time doing it, there are some things that stick out in correct and incorrect RC passages. There are 'safe words' that the writers use in correct answers, and problem words that keep showing up in bad ones. There's not a set list, though - which is why I can't articulate it. If I read an answer choice, I could tell you which words are which; I couldn't give you a list now, though. Generally, it has to do with how much 'power' is behind the verbs/adjectives - the stronger they are, the less likely they are to be correct.

Main point questions are actually some of the easiest to do it in - 2-3 can be thrown out because the main point suggested is way too strong or opinionated for an article that would end up on the LSAT. Author's attitude questions are usually the same.

Sorry I couldn't be more help here - like I said, if I could articulate it, I would write a book and sell it.

roranoa
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Re: How fast can you finish a RC passage & question set

Postby roranoa » Tue Mar 13, 2012 4:13 am

bp shinners wrote:
roranoa wrote:
bp shinners wrote:Probably about 4 minutes a passage; however, I've been doing this so long that I can generally answer 4-5/7 questions correctly without reading the passage (there's a definite pattern to right/wrong answers; if only I could articulate it instead of just feeling it, I'd be rich).


How did you come by this "feeling"? I've done almost 50 PTs now but I still don't get it. Can you at least elaborate on the type of practice that would lead me to finding those definite patterns you're talking about? I believe you that there is some pattern because I've heard from other LSAT guru's (especially Dave Hall on this forum) that there are patterns that we should look for in the wording.

But, answering RC questions WITHOUT reading the passage is a totally different level. Are you exaggerating? Can you do this for Main Point Questions and any other question that doesn't refer you to a specific part of the passage?

Help would be most appreciated!


The feeling took over a year of teaching the exam. After you spend that much time doing it, there are some things that stick out in correct and incorrect RC passages. There are 'safe words' that the writers use in correct answers, and problem words that keep showing up in bad ones. There's not a set list, though - which is why I can't articulate it. If I read an answer choice, I could tell you which words are which; I couldn't give you a list now, though. Generally, it has to do with how much 'power' is behind the verbs/adjectives - the stronger they are, the less likely they are to be correct.

Main point questions are actually some of the easiest to do it in - 2-3 can be thrown out because the main point suggested is way too strong or opinionated for an article that would end up on the LSAT. Author's attitude questions are usually the same.

Sorry I couldn't be more help here - like I said, if I could articulate it, I would write a book and sell it.


Thanks for the reply.

Do you think you can tell us a way in which we can train ourselves to do that as well? I mean, what kind of practice would one have to do for approximately how long to gain that level of intuition?

bp shinners
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Re: How fast can you finish a RC passage & question set

Postby bp shinners » Tue Mar 13, 2012 12:45 pm

roranoa wrote:Thanks for the reply.

Do you think you can tell us a way in which we can train ourselves to do that as well? I mean, what kind of practice would one have to do for approximately how long to gain that level of intuition?


I could only tell you what worked for me, and that was spending a little over the year prepping for and teaching a class, tutoring many students, and writing articles on the LSAT. At the point you've done that, however, you've already scored pretty well (to get a job teaching), so...

You in no way need to have that intuition to score well on the exam. When I sat for it, I was nowhere close to as fluent as I am now in the exam, and I scored just as well as I would now. Sure, I'd be a little more confident now, and I could probably finish the exam in 2/3 of the time. However, that's overkill - you don't need to be able to do that to score exceptionally well on the LSAT.

I think it's more important for those of you who are in the studying process to realize that, even if you can't intuit them immediately, these patterns do exist. With that mindset, the test becomes about pattern recognition in arguments, which is really how everyone should be approaching it. Each question is a little piece of logic itself, but the test as a whole is just variations on a theme. Trusting in that will help you view each incorrect answer that you pick as part of a larger error in comprehension, rather than an isolated incident that won't happen again. When you start to realize that you're getting the same question wrong over and over again (even if it's framed as a flaw, MBT, and sufficient assumption), it becomes a lot easier to figure out what you're doing wrong and fix it, instead of trying to fix each individual question that comes up.




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