doing less questions as a strategy

Lear22
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doing less questions as a strategy

Postby Lear22 » Sun Sep 02, 2012 8:27 pm

I am hitting a block with my prep.

When I am drilling untimed I preform very well in all sections and I have a good understanding of why things are wrong or right. However, I have begun taking PTs and it's basically going out the door. My score changes from PT to PT and can range by 7-10 points.

I read here that a strategy could be to actively decide to do less questions (or 3 games or three RCs). What are your thoughts about this? I feel that I am not implementing foundations when under time. I was thinking of doing a PT where the intention was to do 20 LRs and not 25-26 and not move to the next question until I am 100% sure that what I selected is right. I read about this in different threads throughout here and more people are saying that even if at the end you've done 20 Qs and 18 of them were right, you're still better off than doing 25 and getting 12 right (for example).

I feel kind of discouraged since I put in so many hours a day for my prep (it's basically my full time job until Oct) and not getting better is starting to hit.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

- Also sorry for any spelling errors here. English is my second language.

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jcm043
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Re: doing less questions as a strategy

Postby jcm043 » Sun Sep 02, 2012 9:21 pm

This is absolutely a strategy. I plan to use it next month. on LG's, I strive to complete three games. I also work to complete three RC's. I advise picking up the Powerscore bible's. The last chapter in each book deals with time management.

Good luck.

Lear22
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Re: doing less questions as a strategy

Postby Lear22 » Sun Sep 02, 2012 9:26 pm

Thanks for your reply!

I do have the LG and LR bible and although reading about it I didn't think about implementing it up until this road block. The question is can you still score in the mid 160s using this mentality? Also, for people who did that, did you eventually 'graduate' to completing a section because overall you were preforming at a better level?

Mik Ekim
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Re: doing less questions as a strategy

Postby Mik Ekim » Mon Sep 03, 2012 7:47 am

Just so you have an opinion from the other side as well,

I think that if you are looking to score well into the 160s, you should not be looking to skip a passage or game or block of lr questions, and in fact doing so would make it more difficult for you to achieve your goals.

If you are strong enough at rc or at games, say, that you can feel confident that you will one miss 1 or 2 q's in 3sets, you should absolutely be strong enough to get to the fourth (+contrapositive).

I would suggest working on your timing by firming up your question strategies and drilling like-problems, and, worst comes to worst, skipping hard questions, rather than entire chunks.

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cahwc12
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Re: doing less questions as a strategy

Postby cahwc12 » Mon Sep 03, 2012 11:39 am

It really depends what kind of score you're looking for. On game day you have to be prepared to move on if you cannot answer something.

I can give you a tremendous example of why this is so from June. A friend of mine was consistently prepping 99.9% scores (178-180), and on June he got 169. He missed 2 questions combined on the first 3 sections, and then encountered an LR question he wasn't sure about early on in the 2nd LR. He refused to move on because he had never encountered a question he couldn't solve (and he had taken like every PT), and just for whatever reason had some kind of mental block.

He ended up running out of time and had to guess on the last 10 or 11 questions and missed every single one. He would probably have had a 179.

I think if you're satisfied with scoring in the 150s then you should really give a hard look to what your aims are in law school. If you know that some regional school is the right school for you and will propel you into a local job that you want, then it should be fine.

If you think you can improve to the point where you're able to do every question consistently in time, I don't think it's wise to ever hedge an entire game or passage simply because you want to increase the accuracy on the other 3.

If you're still at this wall weeks before October's test, consider going back to the LG and RC basics and drill, baby, drill. Take the test when you're absolutely ready, whether it's in December or February or even next June.

Even a February LSAT score in the mid 160s is going to open up a world more opportunity than a high 150s will in October.


I scored 168 in June which was well below my prep average, and I was disappointed because I had everything planned out based off a June ace. But I know that being able to improve even a few more points from that score in October is going to completely change the admissions game for me, much more so than anything else I could be doing with my time. And if it means my apps don't get in until mid- or even late-november instead of early october, so be it.

Lear22
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Re: doing less questions as a strategy

Postby Lear22 » Mon Sep 03, 2012 12:01 pm

I hear what you're saying and I agree with most of it.
With doing all the Qs right now (without guessing, I usually finish right on time or maybe a few secs before time) I am scoring in the 150s and score ranges. I am hitting a wall because when I drill I get over 90% of the Qs right in all three sections, so there is something I am doing wrong when I work on a timed PT. I want to try this methodology in 2-3 PTs to see if it changes the # of Qs I get right. What I am truly hoping for is by doing this I will change the way I attack Qs (mainly LR Qs) that will later spill over to over all test taking ability that will allow me to do more Qs (I hope my thinking is coming across). I know all the basics of all 3 sections and understand how to attack each Q type, but when I am facing it on a timed PT it's all it all goes out the window and I just work according to 'how I think this should work' or 'this makes sense'.

Also a different Q about drilling: I have plety of drilling Qs of all types, but at this point doing those means that I will see them again when I do PTs. I have a very good memory and I found that my mind goes back to Qs if I think I have done them befoee. should I still drill or stick to timed and untimed PTs?

thanks again for your input!

EDIT: just saw and we have the same GPA so it's going to be interesting to see how this all plays out at the end :)

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cahwc12
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Re: doing less questions as a strategy

Postby cahwc12 » Mon Sep 03, 2012 2:23 pm

In your scoring range of only getting about 75% of the questions right or less, I think you should not worry at all about seeing repeat questions.

I have taken a lot of PTs twice and still find value in repeating them as long as sufficient time has passed.

Also, there's no way you're going to exhaust all the prep material in your position, and if you do, you're doing something wrong. You need to dig in and analyze why you are making these mistakes. If you're getting it right untimed but not timed, something is going wrong, and it's likely that you really don't understand what you're doing on a concrete level.

Once you get to that top level, everything starts to become rote. You see a question, you know what it's asking, you find the answer, you recognize obvious trap choices, etc etc. If PTs seem more like wandering through a thick jungle as opposed to playing whack-a-mole, then focus more on drilling specific question types.

It's not enough to do untimed sections. You should focus on specific question and game types until you can immediately recognize and attack them appropriately.


How many questions and PTs would you say you've covered in the time you've been studying? How long have you been studying? How do you go about your review process?

If you truly believe you're doing everything you can and still not making strides, there is most likely something wrong with your prep process, and I highly recommend considering a private tutor to help you figure out what's holding you back and who can help set you on the right track to continued improvement.

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LionelHutzJD
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Re: doing less questions as a strategy

Postby LionelHutzJD » Mon Sep 03, 2012 2:44 pm

cahwc12 wrote:In your scoring range of only getting about 75% of the questions right or less, I think you should not worry at all about seeing repeat questions.

I have taken a lot of PTs twice and still find value in repeating them as long as sufficient time has passed.

Also, there's no way you're going to exhaust all the prep material in your position, and if you do, you're doing something wrong. You need to dig in and analyze why you are making these mistakes. If you're getting it right untimed but not timed, something is going wrong, and it's likely that you really don't understand what you're doing on a concrete level.

Once you get to that top level, everything starts to become rote. You see a question, you know what it's asking, you find the answer, you recognize obvious trap choices, etc etc. If PTs seem more like wandering through a thick jungle as opposed to playing whack-a-mole, then focus more on drilling specific question types.

It's not enough to do untimed sections. You should focus on specific question and game types until you can immediately recognize and attack them appropriately.


How many questions and PTs would you say you've covered in the time you've been studying? How long have you been studying? How do you go about your review process?

If you truly believe you're doing everything you can and still not making strides, there is most likely something wrong with your prep process, and I highly recommend considering a private tutor to help you figure out what's holding you back and who can help set you on the right track to continued improvement.




love the analogy

Lear22
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Re: doing less questions as a strategy

Postby Lear22 » Mon Sep 03, 2012 5:25 pm

So I just wanted to update:

I have implamented this methodology in a PT I just took. My score went up 11 points from the one I took yesterday (147/158). What I have done here is giving myself the ability to think and not just bubble for the sake of bubbling. I finishhed 21 out of 25 Qs in one LR, 20/25 in the second. I made 4 mistakes out of 20 and 5 mistakes out of 21. In the LG I was able to finish just in time (while earlier I was working faster and finishing earlier) and finished with a -4. The BIGGEST improvement by far was with RC. I moved up to 21/27 when yesterday I was with 12/27 (odd I know) I found that the diffeeence here by allowing myself the "time" to really understand what I am reading. I skipped one passage (A/B one) and got back to it when I had less than 4 minutes to go. I went to the Qs that discussed soley one of them and guessed on others.
One final note: I fogot to guess the LRs I didn't have time to get to, so optinally I could have gone at least one more right out of sheer luck.

I don't know if I can make far reaching conclusions based on one PT (edit: I can't) but it's at least a sign that I do understand the foundations. I just need to tune things.




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