Moving forward with self-studying

BA414
Posts: 50
Joined: Thu Jun 06, 2013 6:01 pm

Moving forward with self-studying

Postby BA414 » Fri Jun 07, 2013 1:39 am

Hello TLS,

I recently decided to postpone my LSAT from June to October given that I wasn't happy with my PT scores. I am shooting for 170 or bust. I took a TestMasters class, and it helped me raise my score by 11 points (on my highest diagnostic), but it seems like I was just at a plateau, especially in the LR section. While I won't leave every lesson I've learned from TM behind, I will begin self-studying for the October LSAT in about two weeks and I am seeking a fresh perspective on the exam. Quite frankly, I'm frustrated with the plateau and my inability to apply the methods I learned during testing conditions. I know I can average -1 to -2 on RC by October, and, with enough practice, I can probably come close to perfect on the LG. But for some reason, I'm just not getting the LR section.

I have heard great things about the Manhattan series, especially for the LR section, but just wanted to know a few things before ordering the books:

1) Does MLSAT provide an understandable approach to the LR section? If I devote my time and energy to reading this book, will I understand the principles behind the entire LR section?

2) Does MLSAT provide a good number of REAL practice problems in their books--or should I seek other resources with real problems?

3) How does their LG method compare to the PS method?

Just some other general questions:

1) What's the best resource for acquiring every practice test in the modern period? I know one should only study with real exams, so I want to know exactly what books you should use to take PTs.

2) Besides reviewing mistakes on PTs, are there any other strategies you use to hone your skills on a question type? I.e., let's say you missed three strengthen questions on a PT: would you just intensely analyze the question and try to avoid that mistake in the future, or would you drill 100 of these problems before taking another PT? I feel like the latter approach wasn't entirely beneficial during my first go around at studying. I could get 90/100 strengthen problems right during practice, but would still miss 5+ on the actual PT.


I'll be practicing for the next three months, and I know the first month or so will involve just (re)learning the principles that drive the test (specifically, the LR section). I just don't want to run into a situation where I'll run out of practice problems or games, so I want to make sure I have something to supplement pure practice tests.

Thanks a lot guys!! And if I sound like a noob, it's my first day posting...

Best of luck to the June test-takers.

magickware
Posts: 359
Joined: Sun Nov 04, 2012 1:27 pm

Re: Moving forward with self-studying

Postby magickware » Fri Jun 07, 2013 2:02 am

What are you averaging on each section right now? If your plateau is somewhere in the 167-168 range, then you should prepare for a long struggle. People who find themselves plateauing at those range while having LG down tend to either have some obscure problem that needs a lot of fine-combing to pick through or some sort of mental issue with the test itself, like anxiety or just pure inattentiveness.

Regarding PTs and "work-books"-
Get them all from here-
http://www.cambridgelsat.com/bookstore/ ... lications/

And follow NoodleyOne's guide-
viewtopic.php?f=6&t=195603

Yes, you haven't taken the test yet, but I don't think there is any better set of advice on how to approach the test than this.

And utilize the following links for review extensively-
http://7sage.com/logic-game-explanations/
http://www.manhattanlsat.com/forums/

And when people say review, they really mean review. Understand why every possible answer choice doesn't work, and understand what makes that question tick. In every LR question type, they effectively break down into something like this - Either they follow a number of presets that LSAC has (say % questions) that range from being incredibly simple to absurdly hard, or questions that intentionally screw around with what you expect and mess you up for not noticing it. There really is nothing else. Virtually all questions in a given family group works the same way; it wouldn't be in that family group otherwise.

As such, you'll naturally be able to notice common threads in each family groups, and knowing this is everything for LR. Once you thoroughly understand said common threads, question 1-15 or so will be an absolute breeze. They tend to follow the threads down to the letter, and all it takes is for you to have a solid understanding and approach to each family types. Questions 16-23ish tend to be the ones that are really challenging, but they still follow the pattern I described above. You just need to have an open mind and realize that every word in a LR question counts.

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sublime
Posts: 15411
Joined: Sun Mar 10, 2013 12:21 pm

Re: Moving forward with self-studying

Postby sublime » Fri Jun 07, 2013 2:30 am

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