-Declining- Reading Comprehension Score

User avatar
girlmonster
Posts: 280
Joined: Tue May 18, 2010 10:46 pm

-Declining- Reading Comprehension Score

Postby girlmonster » Wed Sep 19, 2012 8:51 pm

I realize this may be a lost cause, especially since I'm taking the LSAT in a little over two weeks; but I wanted to see if anyone else has had a similar issue, and hopefully succeeded in remedying it. I have always excelled at reading comprehension, and even scored -1 on my initial diagnostic. However, I've found the more I practice test, the worse I do on this section. LR and LG have both improved significantly, but it seems to be at the expense of RC. I have wondered if my newly found approach in picking apart arguments has started to impair my "big picture" reading skills, but even with drilling, my RC performance is not where it was at the beginning of my studying phase. For example, today I re-took my first diagnostic (PT56) and scored -6 on the RC, whereas (as I mentioned earlier) I scored -1 the first time.

Should I invest in a RC book at this point? It's not as if I lack the fundamental skills; it just seems I've been throwing myself off as of late. Or does anyone have any insight on how to practice this section, aside from pulling whole sections or individual passages and completing them timed? (For example, I have worked on both LR and LG by group).

Also, I do realize the RC section has become more difficult in recent years. I did start my studying with the more recent tests, though, so I do not think this is the cause for my declining score.

Thank you very much!

User avatar
Br3v
Posts: 4174
Joined: Mon Jun 13, 2011 7:18 pm

Re: -Declining- Reading Comprehension Score

Postby Br3v » Wed Sep 19, 2012 9:17 pm

girlmonster wrote:I realize this may be a lost cause, especially since I'm taking the LSAT in a little over two weeks; but I wanted to see if anyone else has had a similar issue, and hopefully succeeded in remedying it. I have always excelled at reading comprehension, and even scored -1 on my initial diagnostic. However, I've found the more I practice test, the worse I do on this section. LR and LG have both improved significantly, but it seems to be at the expense of RC. I have wondered if my newly found approach in picking apart arguments has started to impair my "big picture" reading skills, but even with drilling, my RC performance is not where it was at the beginning of my studying phase. For example, today I re-took my first diagnostic (PT56) and scored -6 on the RC, whereas (as I mentioned earlier) I scored -1 the first time.

Should I invest in a RC book at this point? It's not as if I lack the fundamental skills; it just seems I've been throwing myself off as of late. Or does anyone have any insight on how to practice this section, aside from pulling whole sections or individual passages and completing them timed? (For example, I have worked on both LR and LG by group).

Also, I do realize the RC section has become more difficult in recent years. I did start my studying with the more recent tests, though, so I do not think this is the cause for my declining score.

Thank you very much!



RC gets harder in the newer (60's/late 50's) tests. A slight decline is expected, but jsut get your game up to prepare where you should be. Go over wrong answers in detail and ask why it was wrong and why the right answer is right.

User avatar
girlmonster
Posts: 280
Joined: Tue May 18, 2010 10:46 pm

Re: -Declining- Reading Comprehension Score

Postby girlmonster » Thu Sep 20, 2012 2:49 am

Thanks to both of you for your help! I realize the RC sections have become more difficult, but the big shock was doing significantly worse on a re-take of a newer test. I have gone through the questions again and made myself understand why I got them wrong, as I've been doing throughout my period of time studying. Hopefully it'll click again, or reality will slap me in the face on the big day and force me to stop overthinking it (as we all wish). I do appreciate the help.

User avatar
arcanecircle
Posts: 128
Joined: Sun Sep 16, 2012 12:33 am

Re: -Declining- Reading Comprehension Score

Postby arcanecircle » Fri Sep 21, 2012 3:19 am

The questioning methods for newer RC have definitely changed. They are more like extended LR questions (Detail oriented and good at presenting attractive wrong answer choices with slight shifts in language changing the force of the statements).

As for actual content in the passages...I think there's a relationship (at least for me) between content and memory. I think my worst RC passage was the Navaho bead weaving one because it was SO BORING that no matter how hard I tried to focus on the content I couldn't remember any details when it came to the questions. Dinosaurs and art counterfeiters were gold. Anything dinosaurs really...

User avatar
CalAlumni
Posts: 214
Joined: Fri May 11, 2012 11:58 am

Re: -Declining- Reading Comprehension Score

Postby CalAlumni » Fri Sep 21, 2012 3:26 am

I agree with the above sentiments--too late to learn a new system 15 days out; but keep practicing and reviewing for sure. Best bet is to try to mitigate the damage from other sections.

User avatar
objection_your_honor
Posts: 625
Joined: Sat Feb 11, 2012 2:19 pm

Re: -Declining- Reading Comprehension Score

Postby objection_your_honor » Fri Sep 21, 2012 1:41 pm

I picked up MLSAT's RC book just a few days ago and blasted through it (the method is explained in just over 100 pages, with the final third of the test being the "final drill" with detailed answers).

It helped me, but as others have said time is probably better spent drilling.

User avatar
Br3v
Posts: 4174
Joined: Mon Jun 13, 2011 7:18 pm

Re: -Declining- Reading Comprehension Score

Postby Br3v » Fri Sep 21, 2012 6:31 pm

How to you get better at running races? By running.

Go do some real RC passages preferably in full PT's with your exp sections being RC as well.

oblig.lawl.ref
Posts: 232
Joined: Wed Sep 19, 2012 10:28 pm

Re: -Declining- Reading Comprehension Score

Postby oblig.lawl.ref » Fri Sep 21, 2012 6:42 pm

If you're taking the test in a few weeks I can't agree that you should keep drilling or that a point decrease is likely. This happened to me. It happens to a lot of people. You may be burning out.

It's very common. The best thing (worked amazingly for me) may be to just chill out and not do any more practice tests.

I started losing points on RC because I was trying to dissect it like you seem to be when I originally kicked ass b/c I wasn't using a system. If you're good at RC naturally, I would just try to rely on that.

I did this and went from steadily losing points on RC to what I assume (it was a Feb admin so I didn't get details) must have been almost perfect on RC.

User avatar
girlmonster
Posts: 280
Joined: Tue May 18, 2010 10:46 pm

Re: -Declining- Reading Comprehension Score

Postby girlmonster » Fri Sep 28, 2012 11:12 pm

Br3v wrote:How to you get better at running races? By running.

Go do some real RC passages preferably in full PT's with your exp sections being RC as well.


This is what I've been doing, since I first noticed the decline. My scores have been improving (mostly) as of late, so hopefully it has been helping! Thanks for the advice!


oblig.lawl.ref wrote:If you're taking the test in a few weeks I can't agree that you should keep drilling or that a point decrease is likely. This happened to me. It happens to a lot of people. You may be burning out.

It's very common. The best thing (worked amazingly for me) may be to just chill out and not do any more practice tests.

I started losing points on RC because I was trying to dissect it like you seem to be when I originally kicked ass b/c I wasn't using a system. If you're good at RC naturally, I would just try to rely on that.

I did this and went from steadily losing points on RC to what I assume (it was a Feb admin so I didn't get details) must have been almost perfect on RC.


This is very helpful advice, not only for my situation, but I think for a lot of the people perusing TLS in general. I know I'm approaching the burn-out phase, especially since I've only just now started getting some of the first 10 LR questions wrong as well. (Granted, my worst is generally still around -3 in those sections, but when the ones I'm missing are among the "easier" questions, I dare say it makes the situation even more frustrating.) I suppose that's a side effect of trying to compensate for the (relatively) short amount of time I've had to prepare. Thank you for being a rare, brave soul to tell someone on TLS, "Do LESS practice tests." From most posts on this site, it seems humanly impossible to ever do enough.

objection_your_honor wrote:I picked up MLSAT's RC book just a few days ago and blasted through it (the method is explained in just over 100 pages, with the final third of the test being the "final drill" with detailed answers).

It helped me, but as others have said time is probably better spent drilling.


Thanks for the recommendation. If I end up re-taking in December, I will definitely pick this up!

User avatar
SumStalwart
Posts: 201
Joined: Wed Aug 01, 2012 2:37 am

Re: -Declining- Reading Comprehension Score

Postby SumStalwart » Sat Sep 29, 2012 10:49 pm

It's interesting.. I had the same problem for a little while. I couldn't figure it out-- I was following what a bunch of people were posting about annotating and marking up entire passages. However, for the most part, I stopped marking up the passages, with the exception of a select few underlines, and my RC sections have jumped back up.

Try not doing as much "work" on the sections, and see if your scores improve again. I found that I lost a lot of time marking up the passages that I could have spent assessing the questions. Perhaps, that could benefit you as well.

User avatar
girlmonster
Posts: 280
Joined: Tue May 18, 2010 10:46 pm

Re: -Declining- Reading Comprehension Score

Postby girlmonster » Sun Sep 30, 2012 2:44 pm

SumStalwart wrote:It's interesting.. I had the same problem for a little while. I couldn't figure it out-- I was following what a bunch of people were posting about annotating and marking up entire passages. However, for the most part, I stopped marking up the passages, with the exception of a select few underlines, and my RC sections have jumped back up.

Try not doing as much "work" on the sections, and see if your scores improve again. I found that I lost a lot of time marking up the passages that I could have spent assessing the questions. Perhaps, that could benefit you as well.


Yes, all the talk about people's sophisticated annotation systems did psych me out. My scores have overall gone up a little more as I've tried to revert to my "natural" way of doing things. In my situation, I think a lot of the emphasis I've read (not just on TLS) about skimming the passages has been more detrimental. I haven't been reading the passages as thoroughly as I normally would. Thank you for the advice! It makes me feel more comfortable in my less stylized method. :)




Return to “LSAT Prep and Discussion Forum”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Baidu [Spider], Christinabruin, Majestic-12 [Bot] and 2 guests