LSAT Q&A: Ask the Experts

Manhattan LSAT Noah
Posts: 746
Joined: Tue Oct 12, 2010 8:43 am

Re: LSAT Q&A: Ask the Experts

Postby Manhattan LSAT Noah » Wed Apr 25, 2012 12:15 pm

Squishy question indeed. But, maybe one of us should sell a 180-promising talisman. (Buy 3 for 3 180s at a special price...)

I'm really not a morning person--my wife has forbidden me from trying to not have coffee in the morning unless I'm secluded for two weeks--so I make sure to get a good night's rest and I bring some warm-up questions to get my brain going (a tough game I have mastered, an RC passage). Also, I skip the nightly beer the week before as I've noticed I'm sharper w/o.

Some more ideas:

http://www.manhattanlsat.com/blog/index ... lsat-tips/

http://www.manhattanlsat.com/blog/index ... r-thought/

bp shinners
Posts: 3091
Joined: Wed Mar 16, 2011 7:05 pm

Re: LSAT Q&A: Ask the Experts

Postby bp shinners » Wed Apr 25, 2012 1:17 pm

I'd eat some gator meat the night before. I had it for the first time before my LSAT (thanks, Uncle Dave), and I'm a bit superstitious. I'd also get a good night's sleep, as I'm not really a morning person.

For breakfast, I'd have an Odwalla protein shake (I keep a few in my fridge for days that are going to be mentally taxing; they generally give me a good boost of energy to get through morning).

To warm up, I'd have my 3 most-recent practice tests. I'd go over the questions that I got wrong (and since reviewed) to convince myself I won't fall for the same mistakes again.

I'd probably listen to some Meat Loaf or, if I'm in a cheesy mood, Don't Stop Believing.

MLBrandow
Posts: 129
Joined: Wed Mar 15, 2006 5:12 pm

Re: LSAT Q&A: Ask the Experts

Postby MLBrandow » Wed Apr 25, 2012 1:18 pm

PT19-S4-Q21

This is a formal logic parallel flaw question, and after spending possibly 3 minutes or more to solve it, I feel like, although somewhat rare, there must be a faster way to deal with this kind of question.

Here was my process:

1) Read question stem; identify parallel flaw question.

2) Identify formal logic; immediately diagram the simulus:

Not all TF are FP
All FM are TF
--> Not all FM are FP

3) Proceed to the answer choices.

(A) Immediately diagrammed it: All MOT are CC. Not all OB are CC. --> Not all OB are MOT.

I couldn't wrap my brain around this in comparison to the first, so I re-diagrammed my original diagram as:

A B
C A (knowing these two lines are interchangeable)
_______
--> C B

The structure here was
A B
C B
--> C A

so I determined that it didn't match and went on. (this was around 2:00 probably)

(B) some/most/all terms doen't match.

(C) I immediately crossed it off, then thought about some are not = Not all, and then diagrammed it: Not all BFA are WP. All GB are BFA. --> Not all GB are WP.

I re-diagrammed it as

A B
C A
--> C A

This matches the structure of the original, so I picked it.

(D) and (E) I quickly looked at and ruled out based on term mismatches.

My guess on time is ~2:30-3:00.




This sure looks to me like a very long and drawn out process, and a few things bothered me:

1) Apparently I've never realized that 'Not all' and 'Some are Not' are equivalent statements, even though it seems so obvious.

2) Until reading the explanation on manhattan's forum I didn't realize (A) actually contained valid reasoning. What order of elimination should I be aiming to eliminate answer choices with? tone, then valid/invalid, then the reasoning?

3) Do I really need to re-diagram a stimulus and answer choice to make it clear that they match? Certainly not, but the way I did it seems to require me to. Therefore, there must be a better way to diagram this.... suggestions?

4) In my "simplification" diagram, I actually left out the Not All and All parts. In C, the relationship happened to be the same. Was this luck on my part, or would this always be true? In my process, I matched the terms first, then focused purely on the structure. I feel like this separation is probably not a good idea, although it worked in this case.

5) I realize that I'm weak enough on these questions in general that my entire approach to LR actually centers around "I need to buy extra time for when I inevitably get this early 20's question on the second to last page of the section." Rather than learn a better method this entire time, I've catered to giving myself the time to solve it inefficiently. I'd like to change that.

Thanks for any feedback.

Mik Ekim
Posts: 102
Joined: Mon Apr 23, 2012 12:06 pm

Re: LSAT Q&A: Ask the Experts

Postby Mik Ekim » Wed Apr 25, 2012 1:27 pm

Dave Hall wrote:
timmydoeslsat wrote:37-2-12:

This stimulus requires the test taker to make the leap from ~bad to good.

When you make this question stem a proper inference...it makes this a little more troubling to me. Most strongly supported question stem...and I would have no beef.

And it is clear that the test writers are wanting you to make this long conditional chain.

However, it still stands that just because something is not bad does not mean that the thing is good.

My point? I would like for the question stem to be different. Just my opinion. Is this view agreed upon by the experts?


I certainly take your point (and I'm in total agreement in the broad sense), but I think the question of whether "not bad" equals "good" does depend on which definition of "good" you're working from. In this particular case, it seems fair to me that food (and soil) is either "good" or else "bad", in the sense that "good" food could simply be food (soil) that has not been badly cultivated. I looked it up (because, being awesome, dictionaries are how I roll), and found two definitions of "good" that were variations on "not bad".

So, I do see the potential for ambiguity and how it could be troubling, but what probably seals it in my mind is that in order to challenge this, we'd have to argue that there definitely is such a thing as a mediocre vegetable, and that seems like a tough sell - it seems to me that a stalk of broccoli is either good or else it is not.

And if that's the case, then we're all good.

(Get it?)


Umm.. Are you suggesting that the LSAT writers have, at least in part, determined the right and wrong answer based on a subjective, situation-specific understanding of the word good? Are you also suggesting than an objective understanding of vegetables is one that doesn't assign variations in quality?

User avatar
shifty_eyed
Posts: 1934
Joined: Fri Oct 02, 2009 8:09 pm

Re: LSAT Q&A: Ask the Experts

Postby shifty_eyed » Wed Apr 25, 2012 1:28 pm

On LG games, should I be trying to eliminate all the other answer choices, or when I find one that fits, choose it and move on?

My LG timing is very iffy. Sometimes I can’t finish or barely finish in 35 minutes; other times I finish in less than 25 minutes. I don’t seem to do any better or worse based on how long it took me alone. I’m going from -0 (rarely) to -3, with a -2 average. I’m shooting for 177+, so I really want to get to a consistent perfect score on LG.

User avatar
Dave Hall
Posts: 576
Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2011 4:18 pm

Re: LSAT Q&A: Ask the Experts

Postby Dave Hall » Wed Apr 25, 2012 3:01 pm

Mik Ekim wrote:
Umm.. Are you suggesting that the LSAT writers have, at least in part, determined the right and wrong answer based on a subjective, situation-specific understanding of the word good?

Nope.

I'm saying that this test (like life) demands from us the ability to read critically and with comprehension, and so throughout, we should apply the most sensible definition of any word in usage. Since the context so clearly intends us to equate "good" with "not bad", and since that is an acceptable dictionary definition of the word "good" for the subject matter under discussion, we will do well to accede to the likelihood that this is the best way of understanding the passage.

True, it isn't the only way of understanding it, but since it works, why cause ourselves grief by seeking an alternative, less-useful reading?

Occam's razor, is what I'm saying.

Mik Ekim wrote:Are you also suggesting than an objective understanding of vegetables is one that doesn't assign variations in quality?

I've probably covered this above, but yes, I am saying that there is an acceptable definition of "good-ness" that indicates that a vegetable is either "good" or else it is "bad."

Again, it is not the only such understanding (clearly, if we were talking about flavor, say, instead of wholesomeness, variations of quality would be appropriate), but it is an objective understanding.

That such an understanding makes sense of both the passage and the correct answer choice is what speaks clearly to me that it is the best understanding here.

User avatar
Dave Hall
Posts: 576
Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2011 4:18 pm

Re: LSAT Q&A: Ask the Experts

Postby Dave Hall » Wed Apr 25, 2012 3:12 pm

outlookingin wrote:OK I've got kind of a squishy question, but I think it would be cool to see all of the different responses. Say it's the day before you're taking a test that you need to score a 180 on (I know you guys have taken all of the PTs but surely you still have these days): what's your warm-up routine? How will you get yourself in the zone? Get detailed if possible--as in if you have a playlist that you listen to or whatever post those songs hahaha

I think you're asking what I do (as opposed to what I think you should do). I say this because my answers to those two questions are a little different.

I don't believe in rituals. I think they have the unintended consequence of making a totem of the test. It's big enough and scary enough without building the event up any further. So I make some practical concessions (I only have one cup of coffee that morning instead of my usual 16* - coffee's a diuretic, man, and I've got enough to think about without also having to pee), but the day before is as normal for me as possible. I want to feel like the whole experience is no big deal, so well beforehand, I train like crazy to be ready, but then once the time is drawing near, I tell myself that I can handle it best if I just take it in stride. For me, that means no special adjustments to my day-to-day.

But the most important thing is to feel comfortable - on the day of, you want to be able to walk in and just do what it is that you already know how to do. So if you find that there is a specific routine that puts you at ease, I say adopt it (Um, unless your "getting-at-ease" routine involves mainlining some H. I don't think you should do that right before your test).


*Not actually 16

User avatar
lsatprepguy
Posts: 163
Joined: Sun Apr 03, 2011 10:04 am

Re: LSAT Q&A: Ask the Experts

Postby lsatprepguy » Wed Apr 25, 2012 4:05 pm

Dave Hall wrote:(Um, unless your "getting-at-ease" routine involves mainlining some H. I don't think you should do that right before your test).


lol :lol:

User avatar
Dave Hall
Posts: 576
Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2011 4:18 pm

Re: LSAT Q&A: Ask the Experts

Postby Dave Hall » Wed Apr 25, 2012 4:16 pm

MLBrandow wrote:This sure looks to me like a very long and drawn out process, and a few things bothered me:

1) Apparently I've never realized that 'Not all' and 'Some are Not' are equivalent statements, even though it seems so obvious.

2) Until reading the explanation on manhattan's forum I didn't realize (A) actually contained valid reasoning. What order of elimination should I be aiming to eliminate answer choices with? tone, then valid/invalid, then the reasoning?

3) Do I really need to re-diagram a stimulus and answer choice to make it clear that they match? Certainly not, but the way I did it seems to require me to. Therefore, there must be a better way to diagram this.... suggestions?

4) In my "simplification" diagram, I actually left out the Not All and All parts. In C, the relationship happened to be the same. Was this luck on my part, or would this always be true? In my process, I matched the terms first, then focused purely on the structure. I feel like this separation is probably not a good idea, although it worked in this case.

5) I realize that I'm weak enough on these questions in general that my entire approach to LR actually centers around "I need to buy extra time for when I inevitably get this early 20's question on the second to last page of the section." Rather than learn a better method this entire time, I've catered to giving myself the time to solve it inefficiently. I'd like to change that.

Thanks for any feedback.


I think of conditional symbolization as a tool, exactly like a hammer - there isn't an inherently right or wrong time to use it. Instead, I use it when it makes my work easier, and I do not when it does not (in the same way that you can tell for yourself whether you need to run down to your toolbox to fetch your hammer or whether it would be faster to use your hand for the job you're doing).

I personally dislike the mixture of conditional and non-conditional statements in this passage, so I start by describing the passage to myself thusly:

First sentence: Some are not.

Second sentence: All are.

Conclusion: Some are not.

See how I stripped out everything? It may render my description too nebulous to determine my final answer, but it's so fast, and it's enough for a starting pass, and I know that sometimes that's all I need. So it's how I begin. And what it seems you're asking for is a system, so I'm trying to begin here by describing an approach, not just the solution to this problem.

On the basis of that description, I get rid of (B) and (E) (because the conclusion that a thing doesn't have to be a certain way isn't the same as the conclusion that some things are not that way) and I can also rule out (D) (because it's making a claim about all buildings, not some).

And so far, I've spent about 30-or-so seconds on this problem, right?

But I've still got (A) and (C) left. So, now I realize that shit's about to get real, so I visualize the passage using conditional symbols. Here's what I've got:

Some T → ~F
L → T

Thus: Some L → ~F

This process takes me about 15 seconds more.

Then, I really, absolutely do take an additional 15 seconds to re-align the sentence structure to give me a more linear visual progression:

L → T
Some T → ~F
Thus Some L → ~F

Now I'm about a minute in, right? But it's worth it to me to spend that time, because these few seconds let me see the flaw more clearly. Now watch that time buy me something good when comparing answer choices:

(A) M → C
Some B → ~C
Thus Some B → ~M

Suddenly, it's a visual game to me. Yes, there's a rough similarity in the structure, but it's also very clear that this is not the same as the original - see how the right side of the arrow above has one thing up top, then another thing repeated on the bottom two rows? Answer choice (A) doesn't look like that. Shit's wrong. (Notice how I don't care what (A) is saying - I only care whether it matches my original argument).

At this point, I could just choose (C), secure in the knowledge that it's got to be correct, but I'll go ahead and visualize it, too:

(C) G → F
Some F → ~P
Thus Some G → ~P

Huzzah! Bring us your finest libations!

So, to recap:

1. Rough sketch of the passage.
2. Elimination via that sketch.
3. Finer rendering (if necessary).
4. Final elimination(s).

User avatar
Dave Hall
Posts: 576
Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2011 4:18 pm

Re: LSAT Q&A: Ask the Experts

Postby Dave Hall » Wed Apr 25, 2012 4:23 pm

shifty_eyed wrote:On LG games, should I be trying to eliminate all the other answer choices, or when I find one that fits, choose it and move on?

My LG timing is very iffy. Sometimes I can’t finish or barely finish in 35 minutes; other times I finish in less than 25 minutes. I don’t seem to do any better or worse based on how long it took me alone. I’m going from -0 (rarely) to -3, with a -2 average. I’m shooting for 177+, so I really want to get to a consistent perfect score on LG.

A well-programmed (and by that, I mean efficient) robot wouldn't check any answers past the right one. I mean, there's only one right answer, so if you've followed all the rules, once you find it, you're done, right?

So there is a strong theoretical basis for saying that once you've found one you can move on.

Buuuut.

I'm not a robot. I make mistakes (but you already knew that about me), and I've found that the extra few seconds it takes me to try out the other choices doesn't interfere with my ability to finish the four games (mostly because I don't mess around deciding whether or not to try something; I do it and then I'm done with it), and every once in a while, doing so illuminates an error I was about to make.

So I'll suggest it this way: If you're certain that you've followed all the rules, move on after you've found an answer. If there's a possibility you've made any error or omission, just take the extra seconds to check your work.

MLBrandow
Posts: 129
Joined: Wed Mar 15, 2006 5:12 pm

Re: LSAT Q&A: Ask the Experts

Postby MLBrandow » Wed Apr 25, 2012 4:53 pm

Dave,

Thanks for the quick response, and that first advice seems particularly great. I typically only compare the conclusions first, but by completely stripping out everything except.. (for lack of better term) the logical force indicators, one can easily rule out those three answer choices. I was able to do that anyway using my method, but the difference is I took about a minute longer.

I do have one followup question (for you or anyone else)...

Do you have a preference for either 'some are not' or 'not all' and if so, what is the motivating factor?

Thanks again! I feel like reading that added at least a minute to my time bank on LR sections.

User avatar
Dave Hall
Posts: 576
Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2011 4:18 pm

Re: LSAT Q&A: Ask the Experts

Postby Dave Hall » Wed Apr 25, 2012 5:07 pm

MLBrandow wrote:
Do you have a preference for either 'some are not' or 'not all' and if so, what is the motivating factor?

I like "some are not" because I can visualize it more plainly in my mind.

For example, since "Kardashians are not attractive people" is correctly symbolized:

K → ~A

I can easily fudge "Some Kardashians are not attractive people" using the same form:

Some K → ~A

But I think that's maybe an idiosyncratic preference.

Manhattan LSAT Noah
Posts: 746
Joined: Tue Oct 12, 2010 8:43 am

Re: LSAT Q&A: Ask the Experts

Postby Manhattan LSAT Noah » Wed Apr 25, 2012 6:46 pm

shifty_eyed wrote:On LG games, should I be trying to eliminate all the other answer choices, or when I find one that fits, choose it and move on?

My LG timing is very iffy. Sometimes I can’t finish or barely finish in 35 minutes; other times I finish in less than 25 minutes. I don’t seem to do any better or worse based on how long it took me alone. I’m going from -0 (rarely) to -3, with a -2 average. I’m shooting for 177+, so I really want to get to a consistent perfect score on LG.

Depends on the question. For some, it's easier to eliminate the four wrong answers, on others, it's easier to find the right one, deferring on the others. (Often the second question of a game has a "doh!" answer.) Try focusing on what must be, as that's often easier to spot--either what must be true or false. Let that dictate whether you're focusing on eliminating or finding an answer. Once you've got that strategy down and in your toolkit, loosen the reins.

User avatar
Jeffort
Posts: 1897
Joined: Wed Jun 18, 2008 4:43 pm

Re: LSAT Q&A: Ask the Experts

Postby Jeffort » Wed Apr 25, 2012 7:42 pm

outlookingin wrote:...what's your warm-up routine? How will you get yourself in the zone? Get detailed if possible--as in if you have a playlist that you listen to or whatever post those songs hahaha


RE: Songs to listen to and put on repeat include:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y0Fc9lvRMy0

Leading up to test day and for test day morning/the drive to the test center:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_b6opMEu-zM

For all times, especially when being scared about the competition/scale/curve and all that stressful uncertain nonsense you have no control over:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Upicwae6G14

And this one for comfort:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qrPexqOR_T8


.

ilovethelaw
Posts: 17
Joined: Sat May 23, 2009 4:38 pm

Re: LSAT Q&A: Ask the Experts

Postby ilovethelaw » Wed Apr 25, 2012 9:08 pm

Manhattan LSAT Noah wrote:
shifty_eyed wrote:On LG games, should I be trying to eliminate all the other answer choices, or when I find one that fits, choose it and move on?

My LG timing is very iffy. Sometimes I can’t finish or barely finish in 35 minutes; other times I finish in less than 25 minutes. I don’t seem to do any better or worse based on how long it took me alone. I’m going from -0 (rarely) to -3, with a -2 average. I’m shooting for 177+, so I really want to get to a consistent perfect score on LG.

Depends on the question. For some, it's easier to eliminate the four wrong answers, on others, it's easier to find the right one, deferring on the others. (Often the second question of a game has a "doh!" answer.) Try focusing on what must be, as that's often easier to spot--either what must be true or false. Let that dictate whether you're focusing on eliminating or finding an answer. Once you've got that strategy down and in your toolkit, loosen the reins.


second question has a 'doh!' answer? can you expand on this? I wasn't aware of this trend

User avatar
outlookingin
Posts: 162
Joined: Fri Nov 11, 2011 4:08 pm

Re: LSAT Q&A: Ask the Experts

Postby outlookingin » Thu Apr 26, 2012 7:23 am

Jeffort wrote:
outlookingin wrote:...what's your warm-up routine? How will you get yourself in the zone? Get detailed if possible--as in if you have a playlist that you listen to or whatever post those songs hahaha


RE: Songs to listen to and put on repeat include:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y0Fc9lvRMy0

Leading up to test day and for test day morning/the drive to the test center:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_b6opMEu-zM

For all times, especially when being scared about the competition/scale/curve and all that stressful uncertain nonsense you have no control over:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Upicwae6G14

And this one for comfort:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qrPexqOR_T8


.


Dude this is bizarre but thank you for expanding my mind... whoa, Danny Elfman did this?

Seriously I want to hear other warm-up routines, this is fascinating. Thanks to those who have posted already.

p.s. - Jeffort, are you for real man? I mean what about Talking Heads...

Manhattan LSAT Noah
Posts: 746
Joined: Tue Oct 12, 2010 8:43 am

Re: LSAT Q&A: Ask the Experts

Postby Manhattan LSAT Noah » Thu Apr 26, 2012 10:58 am

ilovethelaw wrote:
Manhattan LSAT Noah wrote:
shifty_eyed wrote:On LG games, should I be trying to eliminate all the other answer choices, or when I find one that fits, choose it and move on?

My LG timing is very iffy. Sometimes I can’t finish or barely finish in 35 minutes; other times I finish in less than 25 minutes. I don’t seem to do any better or worse based on how long it took me alone. I’m going from -0 (rarely) to -3, with a -2 average. I’m shooting for 177+, so I really want to get to a consistent perfect score on LG.

Depends on the question. For some, it's easier to eliminate the four wrong answers, on others, it's easier to find the right one, deferring on the others. (Often the second question of a game has a "doh!" answer.) Try focusing on what must be, as that's often easier to spot--either what must be true or false. Let that dictate whether you're focusing on eliminating or finding an answer. Once you've got that strategy down and in your toolkit, loosen the reins.


second question has a 'doh!' answer? can you expand on this? I wasn't aware of this trend

We all know the situation with the first question of a LG (we call it an "Orientation question"). The second one is usually relying on your understanding of basic inferences of the game. Thus, for most folks in the 165+ range, if the question is an unconditional one (no "if"), then the answer should be obvious assuming they've done a standard amount of work on the set-up. If it's a conditional question, the inference chain should be easy to follow and it shouldn't take too long to get to the answer. Either way, the right answer should provoke a "doh, that's obvious!" to stronger test-takers. If the question is really tough, it is often an indication of a) you misread the question b) you've done something wrong in your set-up or comprehension of the rules.

See what I mean?

User avatar
Jeffort
Posts: 1897
Joined: Wed Jun 18, 2008 4:43 pm

Re: LSAT Q&A: Ask the Experts

Postby Jeffort » Thu Apr 26, 2012 11:32 pm

outlookingin wrote:
Jeffort wrote:
outlookingin wrote:...what's your warm-up routine? How will you get yourself in the zone? Get detailed if possible--as in if you have a playlist that you listen to or whatever post those songs hahaha


RE: Songs to listen to and put on repeat include:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y0Fc9lvRMy0

Leading up to test day and for test day morning/the drive to the test center:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_b6opMEu-zM

For all times, especially when being scared about the competition/scale/curve and all that stressful uncertain nonsense you have no control over:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Upicwae6G14

And this one for comfort:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qrPexqOR_T8


.


Dude this is bizarre but thank you for expanding my mind... whoa, Danny Elfman did this?

Seriously I want to hear other warm-up routines, this is fascinating. Thanks to those who have posted already.

p.s. - Jeffort, are you for real man? I mean what about Talking Heads...



Really? You didn't know that Danny Elfmans path to fame and success started with his band Oingo Boingo and that's part of how he launched his composing career?

Oingo Boingo is my favorite band of all time (now an officially retired band :( ).
I grew up on it starting when they did a free show at my High School during lunch hour in the quad on campus in their early years. Lots of great songs. You can find many of them on youtube or iTunes, it's great stuff.

The Boingo song "Just Another Day" has been what I've blasted on repeat before every important test I have ever taken for at least 15 years. I had it on repeat in the car during the drive to the test center to take the LSAT and also to many other important tests before and after.

Good call about Talking Heads:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-io-kZKl_BI

Regarding day of the test warm-up, nothing should be much different than the habits you have conditioned yourself into doing as daily routine over the previous weeks that have been working to produce good practice test scores.

Test day is just another LSAT, the same stuff as all the others. It's just a different day when you have proctors watching you.

Starting at least a week or two before the administration you should get yourself into a good regular sleep/wake cycle to get circadian rhythms adjusted so that you are at your peak mental potential during testing time.

It makes a difference and helps, especially if you are shooting for a 99th percentile score.
For the last two weeks before I took the test I put myself on a strict regimented daily schedule as if I was training to compete in the Olympics. Ate breakfast lunch and dinner at the same times every day, ate pretty much the same foods, went to bed at the same time I had to the night before, woke up and got myself out of bed to start the day at the same I had to on test day, etc.

It worked. I was in sync with the test when it mattered, was pretty much cool as a cucumber (but yeah, a little bit nervous but not that much), and achieved a score roughly eight scaled points higher than my practice test average from the several weeks before test day.

Simple version:
Do not suddenly change your routines in the last day or few days before the test. This applies to sleep/wake cycles, food you eat, medications, coffee, redbull, etc.

If you wait until the days before and/or morning of the test to drastically change your routines with all that stuff, it is likely to cause you to score lower than your potential.

Morning of the test, just get up in time to be able to casually do your routine in a relaxed way, double check that your ziplock bag is stocked properly (pack this no later than the day before with your admission ticket, passport style photo, proper ID, pencils, an eraser, a snack and beverage for break, etc.), know where the test center is and have good directions in case you've never been to the facility before.

If you need to get your brain turned on in LSAT mode on test day before you check in, maybe work a few questions. At most one or two LGs, one RC passage and several LR questions.

I'm not a big fan of that strategy but it helps some people 'get the mental juices flowing'. If you do that, DO NOT check the answer key for the questions you work!!! Just do several to get your mind in gear without the risk of creating more anxiety and pressure than test day already creates. If you score them and missed several it could put you into a bad mental attitude/state of confidence that could carry over to how you perform on the test, it's just to get the mental gears activated/running and nothing more if you do it.

I did not do that on test day (I was confident and knew that I was as best prepared as I could ever be for the test), and just blasted music while getting ready to leave home and while on the way to the test center after having a good meal and double checking I had everything I needed before getting in the car.
Last edited by Jeffort on Thu Apr 26, 2012 11:53 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
princeR
Posts: 308
Joined: Mon Dec 05, 2011 4:10 pm

Re: LSAT Q&A: Ask the Experts

Postby princeR » Thu Apr 26, 2012 11:50 pm

Great thread, love it!

So, my concern, I am having some trouble working out 56.2.14. This is a strengthen question.

So is the problem with #14 the use of "in general" in the study? The means that while the entrepreneurs might be the most overconfident, there are exceptions in which the business managers are also the most overconfident. However, the conclusion states that the most overconfident are those people that engage in entrepreneurial behavior. Our premise can't actually get us to this conclusion. As of now, it seems like BOTH business managers and entrepreneurs can be overconfident, and therefore engage in entrepreneurial behavior. This makes absolutely no sense.

Is answer choice D actually a necessary assumption of the argument? If we are to say that "the business managers who were the most overconfident were found to have [NOT] attempted to start a business in the past", we would be saying that even the most overconfident business managers (the ones that were the exception to rule and were more overconfident than the entrepreneurs) NEVER were at any point in their past entrepreneurs, and they currently are not now. This would mean that they have never engaged in entrepreneurial behavior, and therefore, the conclusion would fail because "people who are especially overconfident", which as shown includes the business managers that are the exception to the "in general", would not also be said to have engaged in entrepreneurial behavior.

So, does this question really come down to the use of the term in general? Doesn't it necessarily create an exception to the entrepreneurs always being the most overconfident? If so, than it leads open the possibility that even the business managers (who might not have ever been entrepreneurs) could be the most overconfident. If this is true, than the business men who were never entrepreneurs could have been the most overconfident which would destroy any semblance of our causal relationship holding. Thus, D actually functions as necessary assumption to the argument.

Also, Jeffort, I love your post, especially about the scoring 8 points higher than average, thats awesome, you must be great under pressure once that adrenaline starts flowing. I can't wait to actually take the test in real conditions! :)

User avatar
outlookingin
Posts: 162
Joined: Fri Nov 11, 2011 4:08 pm

Re: LSAT Q&A: Ask the Experts

Postby outlookingin » Fri Apr 27, 2012 9:53 am

princeR wrote:Great thread, love it!


Also, Jeffort, I love your post, especially about the scoring 8 points higher than average, thats awesome, you must be great under pressure once that adrenaline starts flowing. I can't wait to actually take the test in real conditions! :)


This is amazing.

Manhattan LSAT Noah
Posts: 746
Joined: Tue Oct 12, 2010 8:43 am

Re: LSAT Q&A: Ask the Experts

Postby Manhattan LSAT Noah » Fri Apr 27, 2012 11:41 am

princeR wrote:So is the problem with #14 the use of "in general" in the study?


It does leave open the possibility you speak of later, but it's not the biggest issue in my opinion.

A bigger issue is that if the argument had stayed focused on the average tendency of the surveyed group, it would be a tighter argument. We only have data from these 200 people, what about all the overconfident people that might have started business, failed, and stopped identifying as entrepreneurs. Another issue--the one that (D) hinges on--is what is the past behavior of those business managers. Perhaps they ALL tried to start a business.

princeR wrote:The means that while the entrepreneurs might be the most overconfident, there are exceptions in which the business managers are also the most overconfident.

While you're correct, I think you're going down an inefficient track here. Though it may be true, for example, that the most confident person surveyed is a manager, we do in fact know that the average is that the managers are less confident than the entrepreneurs.

princeR wrote: However, the conclusion states that the most overconfident are those people that engage in entrepreneurial behavior. Our premise can't actually get us to this conclusion. As of now, it seems like BOTH business managers and entrepreneurs can be overconfident, and therefore engage in entrepreneurial behavior. This makes absolutely no sense.
You have to accept that the entrepreneurs are, on average, more confident. And, by definition it seems, these entrepreneurs start businesses while the managers do not. The conclusion is about a tendency ("more likely"), so data about averages is just fine. While I agree that there are gaps in this argument (as there will be in all strengthen/weaken questions), I wouldn't say that the premise cannot get us to the conclusion in the sense that it's impossible to fix this argument.

princeR wrote:Is answer choice D actually a necessary assumption of the argument? If we are to say that "the business managers who were the most overconfident were found to have [NOT] attempted to start a business in the past", we would be saying that even the most overconfident business managers (the ones that were the exception to rule and were more overconfident than the entrepreneurs) NEVER were at any point in their past entrepreneurs, and they currently are not now. This would mean that they have never engaged in entrepreneurial behavior, and therefore, the conclusion would fail because "people who are especially overconfident", which as shown includes the business managers that are the exception to the "in general", would not also be said to have engaged in entrepreneurial behavior.

Smart thinking! However, we don't know what level of extreme overconfidence the managers reached. It's possible they reached between 80% and 89% total confidence (bear with me), which is overconfident, but all the entrepreneurs reached 99%. Then it wouldn't matter if none of the most confident managers started a business, because it still stands that the most confident of all, those entrepreneurs, did. Since we can create a situation in which the negated answer doesn't destroy the argument, the answer is not necessary.

princeR wrote:So, does this question really come down to the use of the term in general? Doesn't it necessarily create an exception to the entrepreneurs always being the most overconfident? If so, than it leads open the possibility that even the business managers (who might not have ever been entrepreneurs) could be the most overconfident. If this is true, than the business men who were never entrepreneurs could have been the most overconfident which would destroy any semblance of our causal relationship holding. Thus, D actually functions as necessary assumption to the argument.

To address the part in bold, (D) does address that issue, however, even if the most confident person was a manager who never started a business, the conclusion could stand since it's about a tendency. You have to accept the premise that the managers are, on average, less confident than the entrepreneurs, and you have to not extend the conclusion from it's limited language about a tendency to some absolute.

We don't know whether the business managers tried starting a business at some time, we don't know what's going on with all the people who tried and failed and don't fall into either category. (D) deals with the first issue, providing more proof.

I hope that helps. It helped me learn the spelling of "entrepreneur."

Here's another discussion of this question: http://www.manhattanlsat.com/forums/pt5 ... -t540.html

User avatar
Clearly
Posts: 4166
Joined: Sat Feb 11, 2012 4:09 pm

Re: LSAT Q&A: Ask the Experts

Postby Clearly » Sat Apr 28, 2012 4:50 am

Jeffort wrote:
outlookingin wrote:
Jeffort wrote:
outlookingin wrote:...what's your warm-up routine? How will you get yourself in the zone? Get detailed if possible--as in if you have a playlist that you listen to or whatever post those songs hahaha


RE: Songs to listen to and put on repeat include:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y0Fc9lvRMy0

Leading up to test day and for test day morning/the drive to the test center:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_b6opMEu-zM

For all times, especially when being scared about the competition/scale/curve and all that stressful uncertain nonsense you have no control over:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Upicwae6G14

And this one for comfort:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qrPexqOR_T8


.


Dude this is bizarre but thank you for expanding my mind... whoa, Danny Elfman did this?

Seriously I want to hear other warm-up routines, this is fascinating. Thanks to those who have posted already.

p.s. - Jeffort, are you for real man? I mean what about Talking Heads...



Really? You didn't know that Danny Elfmans path to fame and success started with his band Oingo Boingo and that's part of how he launched his composing career?

Oingo Boingo is my favorite band of all time (now an officially retired band :( ).
I grew up on it starting when they did a free show at my High School during lunch hour in the quad on campus in their early years. Lots of great songs. You can find many of them on youtube or iTunes, it's great stuff.

The Boingo song "Just Another Day" has been what I've blasted on repeat before every important test I have ever taken for at least 15 years. I had it on repeat in the car during the drive to the test center to take the LSAT and also to many other important tests before and after.

Good call about Talking Heads:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-io-kZKl_BI

Regarding day of the test warm-up, nothing should be much different than the habits you have conditioned yourself into doing as daily routine over the previous weeks that have been working to produce good practice test scores.

Test day is just another LSAT, the same stuff as all the others. It's just a different day when you have proctors watching you.

Starting at least a week or two before the administration you should get yourself into a good regular sleep/wake cycle to get circadian rhythms adjusted so that you are at your peak mental potential during testing time.

It makes a difference and helps, especially if you are shooting for a 99th percentile score.
For the last two weeks before I took the test I put myself on a strict regimented daily schedule as if I was training to compete in the Olympics. Ate breakfast lunch and dinner at the same times every day, ate pretty much the same foods, went to bed at the same time I had to the night before, woke up and got myself out of bed to start the day at the same I had to on test day, etc.

It worked. I was in sync with the test when it mattered, was pretty much cool as a cucumber (but yeah, a little bit nervous but not that much), and achieved a score roughly eight scaled points higher than my practice test average from the several weeks before test day.

Simple version:
Do not suddenly change your routines in the last day or few days before the test. This applies to sleep/wake cycles, food you eat, medications, coffee, redbull, etc.

If you wait until the days before and/or morning of the test to drastically change your routines with all that stuff, it is likely to cause you to score lower than your potential.

Morning of the test, just get up in time to be able to casually do your routine in a relaxed way, double check that your ziplock bag is stocked properly (pack this no later than the day before with your admission ticket, passport style photo, proper ID, pencils, an eraser, a snack and beverage for break, etc.), know where the test center is and have good directions in case you've never been to the facility before.

If you need to get your brain turned on in LSAT mode on test day before you check in, maybe work a few questions. At most one or two LGs, one RC passage and several LR questions.

I'm not a big fan of that strategy but it helps some people 'get the mental juices flowing'. If you do that, DO NOT check the answer key for the questions you work!!! Just do several to get your mind in gear without the risk of creating more anxiety and pressure than test day already creates. If you score them and missed several it could put you into a bad mental attitude/state of confidence that could carry over to how you perform on the test, it's just to get the mental gears activated/running and nothing more if you do it.

I did not do that on test day (I was confident and knew that I was as best prepared as I could ever be for the test), and just blasted music while getting ready to leave home and while on the way to the test center after having a good meal and double checking I had everything I needed before getting in the car.


I hate to sidetrack the thread, but when you find an oingo boingo fan on TLS, you have to stop and congratulate them on their awesomeness

User avatar
shifty_eyed
Posts: 1934
Joined: Fri Oct 02, 2009 8:09 pm

Re: LSAT Q&A: Ask the Experts

Postby shifty_eyed » Sat Apr 28, 2012 4:25 pm

I was discussing PT47 with another TLSer, and we both had difficult with question 5 on the RC section. I'd like to hear what the experts think about that question and the answer choices. It's from the passage about ministers involved in the Downstate campaign.

MLBrandow
Posts: 129
Joined: Wed Mar 15, 2006 5:12 pm

Re: LSAT Q&A: Ask the Experts

Postby MLBrandow » Sun Apr 29, 2012 12:43 pm

Dave,

I just wanted to say thanks for this advice on parallel flaw formal logic questions. I redid what I would have considered one of the more difficult LR problems in 61.2.23 (brick houses) as follows:

I saw formal logic and immediately generalized the stimulus as: All Most --> Most

Eliminated three AC's in about 15-20 seconds.

I wrote out the stimulus as:

B F
F 2
B 2

When I went to the AC's, knowing they could be out of order, I put the conclusion as 3, and the "all" statement as 1, leaving me with:

L P
L O
P O

vs.

L P
P O
L O

The choice was so clear and the entire process took me just under a minute, a far cry from the 3-4 minutes I spent missing this question when I took the PT. Perhaps I was a bit greedy by trying to juggle the 'All Most Most' in my head rather than writing it out, but it felt great doing it.

User avatar
outlookingin
Posts: 162
Joined: Fri Nov 11, 2011 4:08 pm

Re: LSAT Q&A: Ask the Experts

Postby outlookingin » Mon Apr 30, 2012 12:39 pm

shifty_eyed wrote:I was discussing PT47 with another TLSer, and we both had difficult with question 5 on the RC section. I'd like to hear what the experts think about that question and the answer choices. It's from the passage about ministers involved in the Downstate campaign.


Yeah this was a tricky one...

And so was the Brick Houses/Front Yards question MLBrandow is talking about right up there. But lemme add this to the mix: Lawyers, Athletes, and Bankers (I think it's from PT 59). For the experts: Formal Logic questions like these seem to be outside of the competency of most of us test-takers. Experts don't necessarily need to weigh in on this, but here's my Q: why is there not one huge bundle of all of the questions that utilize such explicit formal logic. Seems like that would be a great way to practice. (I love the game in the MLSAT arcade that works with this stuff, but still I'd like to see it in the real questions all in one place... I'd buy it!)




Return to “LSAT Prep and Discussion Forum”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Alexandros, Yahoo [Bot] and 8 guests