A question on long-complicated sentences

Kungfuxu
Posts: 3
Joined: Wed Jul 18, 2012 8:49 am

A question on long-complicated sentences

Postby Kungfuxu » Wed Jul 18, 2012 9:10 am

Hey guys,
After several PTs I find(scored from 149-162 untimed) there is a major problem on comprehension of long-complicated sentences.To wit,I will not get the meaning and structure of these sentences if I read them as fast as I can(on time),or,on the contrary,I could't complete them according to standard test time if I read them closely.
So I want to know how to improve the ability of reading and comprehension for long-complicated sentences beside lots of practices reading on some materials like The Economists Time.scientific American etc.
Thx for your advices.

TylerJonesMPLS
Posts: 74
Joined: Wed Jun 20, 2012 11:20 pm

Re: A question on long-complicated sentences

Postby TylerJonesMPLS » Wed Jul 18, 2012 9:44 am

The writers of the LSAT either make up their own RC passages, or they borrow and modify passages from other sources. Every RC passage from another source must be acknowledged. The acknowledgements in the PTs are generally on the page after the last page of the test. (The page before the Scratch Paper page.) If you want to practice on other sources, it makes sense to practice on the books and articles from the same sources that the LSAT uses.

But, these are never the same as the RC passages on the PTs themselves; the LSAT always modifies them to make them harder to read. Generally, good writers include lots of clue words and symbols to help readers stay on track: periods, commas, colons, semicolons, logical connectors etc. The LSAT removes lots of these. In fact, the LSAT removes whole sentences sometimes. So even the source articles/books that the LSAT takes and modifies are not very good practice material. The very best practice materials are real RC passages on real PTs.

And there are lots of real RC passages to practice on. The RCs from early PTs are not that different from recent PTs. At any rate, these old RCs are closer to the recent RCs than any other materials that you will find. You may as well use the old RCs first.

You already have a big advantage: you can get the meaning and structure of the long sentences if you read them slowly. For you, it is just a matter of speeding up. And the solution to this problem is always practice, practice, practice.

For people with special problems, for instance, not knowing the meaning of some of the big words, there are other solutions. But as long as you do not have any special problem, you should just keep practicing and analyzing real RC passages. You are bound to speed up in time.

TylerJonesMPLS
Posts: 74
Joined: Wed Jun 20, 2012 11:20 pm

Re: A question on long-complicated sentences

Postby TylerJonesMPLS » Wed Jul 18, 2012 10:01 am

Another tip: the LSAT does use a lot of commas. When you practice and analyze passages, try reading each phrase between commas as if it were a whole sentence. Of course, you can’t do this when you sit the LSAT because it will take too much time. But it will help you recognize patterns in the RC passages, and gradually speed up.

Even if you don’t have time to do every RC section as practice, make sure you read them all. The RCs have a very distinct style. The more you do them and read them, the more you will assimilate the RC style, even if you are not aware of it. Once you have read a lot of them you will unconsciously begin to anticipate what is coming next. And the style of the old RCs has not changed so much that reading them won’t help you. The style of the old RCs is much more similar to the style of the new RCs than anything else.

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polobull
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Re: A question on long-complicated sentences

Postby polobull » Wed Jul 18, 2012 10:02 am

There really is no substitute for practice, and actual PT's are the best form of practice you can get. There is some mumbling out there that the reading comprehension section in particular has become more difficult over the years, but regardless whether they are easier or not the older PT's are a great place to start.

Also, consider Powerscore's RC Bible. It is a rehash of much of the knowledge that you'd have already gathered over decades of literacy, but having laid out in front of you and presented in a LSAT state of mind can be helpful.

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cc.celina
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Re: A question on long-complicated sentences

Postby cc.celina » Wed Jul 18, 2012 11:34 am

The advice you have already been given is great. My little piece to chime in: Don't necessarily throw a whole lot of focus on reading long sentences as fast as you can. You don't need to read everything as fast as possible to get it all right on the LSAT. For LR, improve your speed in the easier, more straightforward questions: necessary assumptions, for example, should be really easy if you just use the negation test every time, and the faster you get on these, the more time you will have to spend on more complicated questions. For RC, drilling is probably the most efficient way to get better. If you're worried about running out of material, even RC sections that you've done already but haven't seen in a while are really valuable, as well as re-reviewing any wrong answers you got on previous sections.

Your overall focus should be on getting these convoluted questions RIGHT. Don't put too much emphasis on speed, because some questions are just going to take longer than others, and you should let them take longer.

bp shinners
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Re: A question on long-complicated sentences

Postby bp shinners » Wed Jul 18, 2012 11:50 am

cc.celina wrote:Your overall focus should be on getting these convoluted questions RIGHT. Don't put too much emphasis on speed, because some questions are just going to take longer than others, and you should let them take longer.


Well said. So many people focus on answering each question in ~1:23 that they lose sight of the fact that a parallel question is going to take 3 minutes, and some harder questions should take more time as well. Aim to AVERAGE that 1:23, not hit it for each question.

Kungfuxu
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Joined: Wed Jul 18, 2012 8:49 am

Re: A question on long-complicated sentences

Postby Kungfuxu » Thu Jul 19, 2012 9:49 am

TylerJonesMPLS wrote:The writers of the LSAT either make up their own RC passages, or they borrow and modify passages from other sources. Every RC passage from another source must be acknowledged. The acknowledgements in the PTs are generally on the page after the last page of the test. (The page before the Scratch Paper page.) If you want to practice on other sources, it makes sense to practice on the books and articles from the same sources that the LSAT uses.

But, these are never the same as the RC passages on the PTs themselves; the LSAT always modifies them to make them harder to read. Generally, good writers include lots of clue words and symbols to help readers stay on track: periods, commas, colons, semicolons, logical connectors etc. The LSAT removes lots of these. In fact, the LSAT removes whole sentences sometimes. So even the source articles/books that the LSAT takes and modifies are not very good practice material. The very best practice materials are real RC passages on real PTs.

And there are lots of real RC passages to practice on. The RCs from early PTs are not that different from recent PTs. At any rate, these old RCs are closer to the recent RCs than any other materials that you will find. You may as well use the old RCs first.

You already have a big advantage: you can get the meaning and structure of the long sentences if you read them slowly. For you, it is just a matter of speeding up. And the solution to this problem is always practice, practice, practice.

For people with special problems, for instance, not knowing the meaning of some of the big words, there are other solutions. But as long as you do not have any special problem, you should just keep practicing and analyzing real RC passages. You are bound to speed up in time.

Thx body.
As to"for people with special problems ...there are other solutions."what does it mean?
Suppose I couldn't realize the meaning of some big words or difficult structures of sentences,what shall I do?study for gramma?or practice more?

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polobull
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Re: A question on long-complicated sentences

Postby polobull » Thu Jul 19, 2012 4:06 pm

Kungfuxu wrote:Thx body.
As to"for people with special problems ...there are other solutions."what does it mean?
Suppose I couldn't realize the meaning of some big words or difficult structures of sentences,what shall I do?study for gramma?or practice more?


If you can't understand difficult sentence structures than yes, actually, you should study grammar. I know that sounds kind of random, but grammar is phenomenally useful. Grammar turns language into math and in math there is always a right answer...unless there isn't one.

And if you're having trouble with some of the words go through every PT you can get your hands on an make a list of the words you don't know. You'll notice that many of them are recycled. Otherwise download a GRE vocab app to your phone.

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PaulKriske
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Re: A question on long-complicated sentences

Postby PaulKriske » Thu Jul 19, 2012 4:07 pm

are you sure law is for you?

Kungfuxu
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Joined: Wed Jul 18, 2012 8:49 am

Re: A question on long-complicated sentences

Postby Kungfuxu » Fri Jul 20, 2012 1:43 am

PaulKriske wrote:are you sure law is for you?

Yes indeed.




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