175+ people, where were you 6 weeks out?

09042014
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Re: 175+ people, where were you 6 weeks out?

Postby 09042014 » Thu Aug 22, 2013 11:29 pm

jk148706 wrote:
Can you define "learnable". Because if going from a sub160 diag to 170+ does not count as "learnable," there is no point in continuing the discussion.


I've repeatedly said it is learnable but it's not designed to be. Use your RC skills.

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vuthy
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Re: 175+ people, where were you 6 weeks out?

Postby vuthy » Thu Aug 22, 2013 11:30 pm

I think it's an aptitude test insofar as everyone has a ceiling, and not all of the ceilings are 180. But I also think one can learn how to hit reach that ceiling, wherever it is.

Also, whatever the original intent of the LSAT may have been (i.e., not learnable), it has certainly morphed into something very different with the widespread proliferation of study materials and PTs. By necessity, it now tests not only innate ability, but also how well one can learn a set of clearly defined skills. No doubt LSAC knows this; otherwise, why not just unleash an entirely different -- but equally difficult -- test every four months?

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jk148706
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Re: 175+ people, where were you 6 weeks out?

Postby jk148706 » Thu Aug 22, 2013 11:31 pm

Desert Fox wrote:
jk148706 wrote:
Can you define "learnable". Because if going from a sub160 diag to 170+ does not count as "learnable," there is no point in continuing the discussion.


I've repeatedly said it is learnable but it's not designed to be. Use your RC skills.


Lullzz ZING!

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jk148706
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Re: 175+ people, where were you 6 weeks out?

Postby jk148706 » Thu Aug 22, 2013 11:32 pm

But I am still interested in the original topic here...

09042014
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Re: 175+ people, where were you 6 weeks out?

Postby 09042014 » Thu Aug 22, 2013 11:35 pm

vuthy wrote:I think it's an aptitude test insofar as everyone has a ceiling, and not all of the ceilings are 180. But I also think one can learn how to hit reach that ceiling, wherever it is.

Also, whatever the original intent of the LSAT may have been (i.e., not learnable), it has certainly morphed into something very different with the widespread proliferation of study materials and PTs. By necessity, it now tests not only innate ability, but also how well one can learn a set of clearly defined skills. No doubt LSAC knows this; otherwise, why not just unleash an entirely different -- but equally difficult -- test every four months?


There have been some attempts to mess with strategies. They began using some outside the box LG games that couldn't be so easily gamed.

But it's hard to change up the test and maintain scoring consistency.

Also very few people take the time to really master the LSAT. You guys are the top 1% of studies. It doesn't throw the test off that much. You can look at the percentiles over time. More people are getting 170+ but it's not changing drastically.

It's great for people who take the time. It could literally save you 150k.

But the LSAT isn't designed to tell who spent 6 weeks gunning vs those who spent 3. It's supposed to test your abilities. That doesn't mean you shouldn't exploit the weakness.

senorhosh
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Re: 175+ people, where were you 6 weeks out?

Postby senorhosh » Thu Aug 22, 2013 11:35 pm

Scored a 174 so don't know if i "qualify" for this but...

I scored a 171 first time around. I was PTing 167-170 around this time (I also took it in Oct). Around Sept I was around 170-175. When I took it and I didn't feel ready. Most people would have said "I've peaked" but I knew I just had to overcome the plateau.

I studied an additional 2 months for the June test. For some reason, the long break between the test helped me get from ~172 average to 178 average. I was PTing great, some perfect scores, probably averaging 177.
Night before test I got 3 hours of sleep and underperformed.

Hope that helps

09042014
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Re: 175+ people, where were you 6 weeks out?

Postby 09042014 » Thu Aug 22, 2013 11:38 pm

jk148706 wrote:But I am still interested in the original topic here...


Here is why this topic is stupid. 6 weeks out tells you nothing. Studying has non linear returns. Depending on how much one studies before the six week mark, the difference could be huge or totally insignificant. Further, six weeks of studying can be vastly different depending on your plan. Someone doing 2 PTs a week, won't see a large score change, but someone who is doing a PT every day could see radical change in a couple weeks.

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Re: 175+ people, where were you 6 weeks out?

Postby Pancakes12 » Thu Aug 22, 2013 11:41 pm

Desert Fox wrote:
vuthy wrote:
Desert Fox wrote:
It's not supposed to be learned. It's a skills and aptitude test.



You don't learn skills?


You learn stupid skills like how to DOMINATE double grouping games or whatever the fuck they are called. But you really aren't increasing your analytical reasoning by memorizing all the game types and practicing strategies.

Though I did probably learn to read better doing RC practice.



http://newscenter.berkeley.edu/2012/08/ ... structure/
You were saying....

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Re: 175+ people, where were you 6 weeks out?

Postby 09042014 » Thu Aug 22, 2013 11:44 pm

jlb251 wrote:
Desert Fox wrote:
vuthy wrote:
Desert Fox wrote:
It's not supposed to be learned. It's a skills and aptitude test.



You don't learn skills?


You learn stupid skills like how to DOMINATE double grouping games or whatever the fuck they are called. But you really aren't increasing your analytical reasoning by memorizing all the game types and practicing strategies.

Though I did probably learn to read better doing RC practice.



http://newscenter.berkeley.edu/2012/08/ ... structure/
You were saying....


RC brah, that article doesn't claim you get better.

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Tiago Splitter
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Re: 175+ people, where were you 6 weeks out?

Postby Tiago Splitter » Thu Aug 22, 2013 11:44 pm

First real exam was October 2010 administration: 166

First Testmasters Diag in April 2011: 164

Second Testmasters Diag in May 2011: 164

All PTs after that were 170+

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Re: 175+ people, where were you 6 weeks out?

Postby Pancakes12 » Thu Aug 22, 2013 11:47 pm

[quote="Desert Fox
RC brah, that article doesn't claim you get better.[/quote]

It nearly verbatim says that studying increases your reasoning skills...

(and I mess up quotes)

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Re: 175+ people, where were you 6 weeks out?

Postby ze2151 » Thu Aug 22, 2013 11:47 pm

never saw an lsat question before, dec 2008: 164.

6 weeks out: 175-180

final score: 176.

in general, i agree with desert fox. the light bulb goes on pretty quickly if you're inclined to get it.

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Re: 175+ people, where were you 6 weeks out?

Postby Pancakes12 » Thu Aug 22, 2013 11:49 pm

ze2151 wrote:never saw an lsat question before, dec 2008: 164.

6 weeks out: 175-180

final score: 176.

in general, i agree with desert fox. the light bulb goes on pretty quickly if you're inclined to get it.


LR brah, you say IF you're inclined to get it. You say nothing about if you're not inclined to get it.

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Re: 175+ people, where were you 6 weeks out?

Postby notalobbyist » Thu Aug 22, 2013 11:53 pm

oxie wrote:My studying was pretty lackadaisical 6 weeks out, but I looked through my books and it seems like my early scored tests (not taken in one sitting, can't remember how strict I was on timing) were 173-175. I only buckled down for serious studying 2-3 weeks before the test. Once I figured out what sort of mistakes I was prone to making, I started scoring 177 or above pretty consistently. I did get one 173 the weekend before the test, but that was actually somewhat helpful in highlighting what types of questions I was prone to sloppiness on.

I think there's certainly some truth to what Desert Fox is saying (that the logic of the LSAT comes more naturally to certain people). But I also think 6 weeks is a pretty decent amount of time to identify and work on your weak spots if you're within striking distance of the score you want. Good luck!


Thanks, Oxie.

I appreciate your thoughtful, relevant reply. I think I need to take a day to analyze my last few PTs, I suspect that I'm rushing through the review.

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Re: 175+ people, where were you 6 weeks out?

Postby notalobbyist » Thu Aug 22, 2013 11:59 pm

Desert Fox wrote:
jk148706 wrote:But I am still interested in the original topic here...


Here is why this topic is stupid. 6 weeks out tells you nothing. Studying has non linear returns. Depending on how much one studies before the six week mark, the difference could be huge or totally insignificant. Further, six weeks of studying can be vastly different depending on your plan. Someone doing 2 PTs a week, won't see a large score change, but someone who is doing a PT every day could see radical change in a couple weeks.


By asking a forum, rather than an individual, I was hoping to get a variety of responses with differing approaches and backgrounds to see if everyone else is doing something I wasn't.

I hope you find a nice back office job that makes $200k+

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Re: 175+ people, where were you 6 weeks out?

Postby notalobbyist » Fri Aug 23, 2013 12:01 am

jlb251 wrote:
Desert Fox wrote:I hadn't even taken a single PT yet, or even cracked open the powerscore bibles.

Most people who score this high don't grind away point by point for weeks and weeks and build up. They just naturally do well.

Even though the test can be learned and gamed, it's not designed to be that way.


I hope your joking.

But to respond to OP, I believe with a lot of focus you can get there. If you have 20+ recent PTs still available, take each one, then review it VERY carefully.

Six weeks before the test, I was probably averaging 168. Four weeks till, I had inched up to low 170s. Within a couple more weeks (when I started to get really consistent with each section) I started hitting as high as 178. Make it a full time job and you can do it.


Thanks for the reply, this is encouraging and motivating.

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Re: 175+ people, where were you 6 weeks out?

Postby ze2151 » Fri Aug 23, 2013 12:03 am

jlb251 wrote:
ze2151 wrote:never saw an lsat question before, dec 2008: 164.

6 weeks out: 175-180

final score: 176.

in general, i agree with desert fox. the light bulb goes on pretty quickly if you're inclined to get it.


LR brah, you say IF you're inclined to get it. You say nothing about if you're not inclined to get it.


I wasn't essentializing my experience, just generalizing. You can tell that because I prefaced what I was about to say with the words "in general." Again, in general, the people who do well have a natural aptitude for it; surely there are some who do well who studied like crazy and figured it out. They are the exception in my experience, not the rule.

Just like the Cooley grad who gets a job at Kirkland is the exception. Brah.

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Re: 175+ people, where were you 6 weeks out?

Postby oxie » Fri Aug 23, 2013 12:25 am

This whole issue of "natural" versus more "acquired" aptitude among high scorers is interesting, but obviously kind of hard to quantify. I think I fall into the former camp, so I've had a hard time giving advice to friends about how to do well on the LSAT.

But thinking about this question more, I think there are two big things that would give me pause if I was hoping to score 175+ within a few weeks:
1. Any sort of significant timing issues
2. Not being able to understand why certain answers are correct and why my chosen answer was incorrect

If you're OK on those points and already scoring pretty high, I think it makes sense to keep doing a lot of tests to get familiar with the feel/quirks of the test, gain consistency and really analyze what types of questions tend to trip you up. Other people on this site have developed much more sophisticated study plans, though, if that's what you're looking for!

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Re: 175+ people, where were you 6 weeks out?

Postby charlie.black » Fri Aug 23, 2013 12:57 am

My two cents:

6 weeks out: 171-174

3 weeks out: Something clicked (I think I just became more careful and tried to take it up a notch) scored 177x2 & 179

Final Score: 175

I think the general consensus is that you need 4-6 months good study to maximize any natural talent you have. Beyond six months, you'll maybe up a point or two, but you've learned basically what there is to learn. It is very much a learned test, in that learning game types & question types, getting accustomed to the timing and general test setup (when to skip questions, common LSAC traps, etc.), and depositing much blunt practice (general familiarity so it becomes almost second nature-->test day you're almost on autopilot) will improve anyone's performance.

The ability to "click" or jump up a few points is determined by how well you can analyze your own performance and understand where and why you are failing. Is it a specific game type? Am I not careful enough in understanding the RC passage before jumping into the questions? Are there LR question types that consistently trip me up? etc. Good luck!

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Re: 175+ people, where were you 6 weeks out?

Postby NoodleyOne » Fri Aug 23, 2013 11:05 am

Self analysis is huge. If you don't take the time to identify your flaws, you're not going to get better. That's why I can't fucking stand when people say "I missed three, but they were all stupid mistakes". Fuck that. Why did you make the stupid mistake? Learn from all of your mistakes, stupid or not.

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Re: 175+ people, where were you 6 weeks out?

Postby mmm2602 » Mon Aug 26, 2013 2:15 pm

oxie wrote:This whole issue of "natural" versus more "acquired" aptitude among high scorers is interesting, but obviously kind of hard to quantify. I think I fall into the former camp, so I've had a hard time giving advice to friends about how to do well on the LSAT.

But thinking about this question more, I think there are two big things that would give me pause if I was hoping to score 175+ within a few weeks:
1. Any sort of significant timing issues
2. Not being able to understand why certain answers are correct and why my chosen answer was incorrect

If you're OK on those points and already scoring pretty high, I think it makes sense to keep doing a lot of tests to get familiar with the feel/quirks of the test, gain consistency and really analyze what types of questions tend to trip you up. Other people on this site have developed much more sophisticated study plans, though, if that's what you're looking for!


This gets at the heart of the issue, I think. I studied for four weeks total. First few practice tests were untimed, and I hit 180 on all of them. Timed tests were a different matter, but I knew that I was working on executing the thinking I was capable of doing faster - which is a distinct process from learning how to do the thinking in the first place.

Progress on timing issues improves more slowly and steadily, in my experience, depending on how much work you've done on that already. Progress on issues of understanding has, again in my experience (in areas outside of the LSAT), come in fits and starts. So if that's where you're putting in time, you might see a non-linear jump. But you might not.

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Re: 175+ people, where were you 6 weeks out?

Postby Kimikho » Mon Aug 26, 2013 5:02 pm

.
Last edited by Kimikho on Thu Dec 19, 2013 5:04 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: 175+ people, where were you 6 weeks out?

Postby Cuneiform » Mon Sep 16, 2013 1:12 am

jlb251 wrote:
Desert Fox wrote:RC brah, that article doesn't claim you get better.


It nearly verbatim says that studying increases your reasoning skills...

(and I mess up quotes)


http://newscenter.berkeley.edu/2012/08/22/intense-prep-for-law-school-admissions-test-alters-brain-structure/


Allyson Mackey wrote:“What we were interested in is whether and how the brain changes as a result of LSAT preparation, which we think is, fundamentally, reasoning training. We wanted to show that the ability to reason is malleable in adults.


John D. E. Gabrieli wrote:“I think this is an exciting discovery,” he said. “It shows, with rigorous analysis, that brain pathways important for thinking and reasoning remain plastic in adulthood, and that intensive, real-life educational experience that trains reasoning also alters the brain pathways that support reasoning ability.”


Edited to add more info.

Sylvia Bunge wrote:One fascinating question, Gabrieli noted, is whether the brain changes observed in this study persist for months or longer after the training.


http://www.nature.com/news/gaming-improves-multitasking-skills-1.13674

Brain plasticity is a fascinating topic in neuroscience. Adam Gazzaley's work is promising in that it demonstrates that neurological changes induced by training do seem to last for months after training ends.

Nature wrote:Led by neuroscientist Adam Gazzaley of the University of California, San Francisco, the study found that a game called NeuroRacer can help older people to improve their capacity to multitask — and the effect seems to carry over to tasks in everyday life and is still there after six months. The study also shows how patterns of brain activity change as those cognitive skills improve.


Torkel Klingberg wrote:But Gazzaley’s study confirms that cognitive function can be improved — if you design training methods properly[.]


Not sure how "properly" designed the LSAT industry is, or whether the structures involved with reasoning overlap with those required for working memory and attention, but the implications remain the same:

You can RE-STRUCTURE YOUR OWN BRAIN. That is SO COOL! :D :D :D

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Jeffort
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Re: 175+ people, where were you 6 weeks out?

Postby Jeffort » Mon Sep 16, 2013 1:43 am

This thread might have been helpful if DF hadn't hijacked it and also if the topic was more broad like "170+ people, where were you 6 weeks out?" since there are a lot more 170+ than 175+.

Maybe it can get back on track again.

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Clearly
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Re: 175+ people, where were you 6 weeks out?

Postby Clearly » Mon Sep 16, 2013 3:52 am

Six weeks out I was pretty consistently around 173 or so, but this was a retake with many months of study. Also, what is this talk of what the lsat should or shouldn't be? Who gives a shit...The reality is its the arguably the most important test we will ever take, and it IS learnable...it make sense for people to gun for it. I started at 150 even, first official mid 160's, last official 175+...it easily took an 6 months to jump from 150 to where I ended up. I concede its a rare jump, but I'm damn glad I had TLS supporting the hard work...




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