Studying for a retake.... share your experience!

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Studying for a retake.... share your experience!

Postby jad0re » Sun Apr 14, 2013 8:44 pm

Last edited by jad0re on Thu Apr 25, 2013 11:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Studying for a retake.... share your experience!

Postby SteelPenguin » Sun Apr 14, 2013 9:31 pm

I scored a 165 in December and have been consistently PTing between a 169 and 174, but sometimes I do recognize old questions. I'd love a 170+, and would be disappointed with anything below a 167. I'm studying for a few hours a day, 6 days a week now.

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Re: Studying for a retake.... share your experience!

Postby objection_your_honor » Mon Apr 15, 2013 12:31 pm

Untimed is obviously not going to be indicative of a real score, but it's a good sign.

Take it in October and do this: viewtopic.php?f=6&t=195603

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Re: Studying for a retake.... share your experience!

Postby che3055 » Wed Apr 17, 2013 9:21 am

Similar experience here, though maybe not extreme. I had gone nearly 5 months without any LSAT of any kind, and my first test back was my highest score ever. Since then, only once have I gotten a lower score than my most recent, actual LSAT (sub-170), and four times (out of 18) I've broken 175. A few reasons why -

1. I am redoing some old tests. Although the scores are not greatly different than tests that I am unfamiliar with, there are certainly tests, or at least questions, where even a vague familiarity is helpful. Maybe it clues me in to something to look at, maybe it just lets me anticipate the question better and save time, but I'd say this contributes to at least one or two questions per test in LR (RC and LG I don't remember enough to make a difference, other than "Oh yeah, there was an RC passage about this once.")

2. I've been doing older tests, and I've heard it said that these are easier. No idea if this is true, but if so, could explain things.

3. To explain your 178, think about your best sections ever. For me, I have a few times times gotten -1 or -2 in RC. I sometimes (maybe 1/3 of the time) go perfect in LR sections, and nearly always (90%) go perfect in LG. Of course, rarely do all these elements combine, and that's why LSAC scales the scoring (easy LG's are compensated for by hard RC's for example, or hard LR's are compensated for by easy RC's). But just think of that 178 as your perfect storm...everything matched up to your abilities just right to the questions. If you aren't getting that result consistently, this explanation makes more sense.

4. For me, a significant time period off just helped me get it more. I don't know what clicked, but I feel like I'm in the zone during sections way more than I used to be.

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Re: Studying for a retake.... share your experience!

Postby htc7688 » Wed Apr 17, 2013 1:22 pm

Suffice it to say i was rather disappointed in my first go-round. After doing some timed practice, I did not do as well as anticipated. Similar to other folks, I took a break and am planning on hitting it hard. I got a book by accepted, inc ("Secrets to conquering the LSAT") that looks good after a cursory flip through it, but we'll see. I dunno, everything is "cheat the lsat" "powerscore" etc so obviously a lot of it is marketing. I decided I'm going to try something different this time since there is no reason to expect a different result if I do the same thing as the first time....guess I'll report back when I know for sure. I really think that the time off will help and that when I come back to it, things will click into place a little more solidly.

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Re: Studying for a retake.... share your experience!

Postby jingosaur » Wed Apr 17, 2013 3:20 pm

I got a 169 on the December LSAT after PTing with a total range of 166-177 with more than 80% of my scores between 168 and 172, inclusive. I used PrepTests and the Princeton Review LSAT book to study.

I took January, February, and early March to study for the GMAT (I want a JD/MBA) and put down a 780 with perfect scores on the first 3 sections and 99th percentile on the 4th.

Knowing that I was gonna do an LSAT retake, I used Manhattan LSAT and the Powerscore Logical Arguments Bible to study for the GMAT since the test has both question types and GMAT reading comp is pretty easy in comparison to the LSAT. I'm back to LSAT mode for June and on fresh PrepTests, I've done 170->174->173->176. Using some of the strategies on this board, I've vastly improved my understanding of the questions and I think I'll consistently be in the mid to high 170s once the new techniques that I'm using become second nature and I can spend more time reading the actual questions rather than getting the motions down with my new strategies.

To the OP, RC is my weakest section too and when studying for the first Preptests, I had a couple -1s and a -2 on RC sections despite previously being -5 to -8 most of the time (-6 on actual test). It happens sometimes, but getting lucky on a section isn't something that you want to bank on during the real test. A lot of my big jump comes from moving to -3 and -4 on RC in my more recent tests after getting more comfortable with it on the GMAT. I retook one of my PrepTests that I got a 177 and -1 RC on (the -1 was 100% luck) and got a 176 and -3RC on the second try, but I felt that I had a far better understanding of the passages and on average, I would do much better on that section now.

From all of the LSAT stories that I've heard and read, I feel like people with the highest score standard deviations on PrepTests and the least understanding of why it's happening tend to be the ones who end up being very disappointed with their scores. Take some more tests, see how you do, and hopefully you can put down a good baseline score and put up consistent and understandable scoring trends that you can improve on.

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Re: Studying for a retake.... share your experience!

Postby tehkris » Fri Apr 19, 2013 10:53 am

Well for me, studying for a retake is really like studying for the first time. I bought all the "bibles" and am breaking down types of questions and inferences. This is a far cry form just taking test after test and evaluating each question. That might be more helpful later on but for right now I am focusing on the structure of the test. I have more confidence this time around but I need to parlay that into a strong test score.

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