Next 6 mos. w/ BluePrint, PowerScore, and PrepTest

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lazydaisy
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Next 6 mos. w/ BluePrint, PowerScore, and PrepTest

Postby lazydaisy » Sat Sep 14, 2013 5:06 pm

Hey y'all. I'm taking the February 2014 LSAT and have yet to start studying since I'm currently moving cities and whatnot. So I was wondering about a few things. Like, how is the BluePrint online LSAT course? Since I'll be still in school and don't have much time to study as I'm taking 20 units this fall quarter, I was wondering if anyone who has taken the course can comment on how flexible it is and the possibility of accomplishing it within 12 weeks. Like, since I only have an additional 12 weeks post-graduation to cram in the rest of my materials (five PowerScore texts and 25 PrepTests), I only have from the 22nd to December 14th to finish it. And I'm not even doing it on a regular/daily basis. So is it even plausible or am I in over my head?

Also, re: the PrepTests, as I only have 25 (PT 29-38, 52-61, 64-68), would it be a good idea to: a) take them all separately or b) take 19 of them and use the remaining tests as experimental sections? (I'm currently going with the latter...)

SUM1 HALP ME.

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Jeffort
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Re: Next 6 mos. w/ BluePrint, PowerScore, and PrepTest

Postby Jeffort » Sat Sep 14, 2013 8:59 pm

Since your time available for LSAT prep is currently limited by your UG class schedule, why are you shooting for the Feb test instead of aiming for June 2014? If you are applying next cycle a June or even an Oct score would be fine for applying early in the cycle, no need to rush things for the Feb test. Just a thought if your schedule and plan allows for it.

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lazydaisy
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Re: Next 6 mos. w/ BluePrint, PowerScore, and PrepTest

Postby lazydaisy » Sat Sep 14, 2013 9:55 pm

Jeffort wrote:Since your time available for LSAT prep is currently limited by your UG class schedule, why are you shooting for the Feb test instead of aiming for June 2014? If you are applying next cycle a June or even an Oct score would be fine for applying early in the cycle, no need to rush things for the Feb test. Just a thought if your schedule and plan allows for it.


In all honesty, I'm hoping to apply by early/mid-March for some April deadlines. And while I am aware that my chances of getting in anywhere that late are miniscule, I'm going to be silly and take that chance. If all else fails, I can apply for the following cycle. Besides, I figure six months will be enough time regardless of my classes, depending on how time-consuming the BluePrint course is. Like, if that only takes up 10-15 hours/week for 12 weeks, then I'm totally good. (e.g. If that's the case, I can study 10-12 hours/day for the following 12 weeks, resulting in a total of 930-1,152 hours of studying.)

drevo
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Re: Next 6 mos. w/ BluePrint, PowerScore, and PrepTest

Postby drevo » Sat Sep 14, 2013 11:24 pm

I'm sure you will get responses advising you against taking it with a 20 unit schedule and applying that late so I will let others do that.

I'm currently studying for the October test and enrolled in a live Blue Print class with the online video package option (which is what you would get with the online course). I would definitely recommend the online course if you want flexibility. I wish I would've just chosen the much cheaper online only course. I had a diagnostic of 163 and while the classes early on were good for learning basics of the LSAT and I really like Blue Print's approach to LG, I wish I would've saved some money and gone with the online only course. This is simply a factor that live classes with other students go at a much slower pace than I want. I've gotten to where the last 4 weeks or so I have just done the lessons on my own with the online videos at home because it cuts out time and I can split it up if I have to study for other classes. I really only go to the live classes anymore when it is a proctored exam.

Just to be clear, even though I do really like Blue Print's course and their online tools, I have supplemented my studies with tons of self study materials. I have used the Manhattan LR, LG Bible (though I prefer BP's approach), Old PTs, and Cambridge packets to drill things. The course is definitely a good foundation but it is meant for the general public and in order to really get your best score you most likely will need to also have your own self study plan in addition to it.

Hope that helps.

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lazydaisy
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Re: Next 6 mos. w/ BluePrint, PowerScore, and PrepTest

Postby lazydaisy » Sun Sep 15, 2013 3:43 am

drevo wrote:I'm sure you will get responses advising you against taking it with a 20 unit schedule and applying that late so I will let others do that.

I'm currently studying for the October test and enrolled in a live Blue Print class with the online video package option (which is what you would get with the online course). I would definitely recommend the online course if you want flexibility. I wish I would've just chosen the much cheaper online only course. I had a diagnostic of 163 and while the classes early on were good for learning basics of the LSAT and I really like Blue Print's approach to LG, I wish I would've saved some money and gone with the online only course. This is simply a factor that live classes with other students go at a much slower pace than I want. I've gotten to where the last 4 weeks or so I have just done the lessons on my own with the online videos at home because it cuts out time and I can split it up if I have to study for other classes. I really only go to the live classes anymore when it is a proctored exam.

Just to be clear, even though I do really like Blue Print's course and their online tools, I have supplemented my studies with tons of self study materials. I have used the Manhattan LR, LG Bible (though I prefer BP's approach), Old PTs, and Cambridge packets to drill things. The course is definitely a good foundation but it is meant for the general public and in order to really get your best score you most likely will need to also have your own self study plan in addition to it.

Hope that helps.


Ooh, thanks. That was extremely helpful!

But, jah, I'm just using BluePrint as a precursor/foundation for studying and have other supplementary material. Like, after I finish the course, I'll be working with:
    - PS LR Bible
    - PS RC Bible
    - PS LG Bible
    - PS LR Bible Workbook
    - PS LG Bible Workbook
    - 25 PrepTests (29-38, 52-61, 64-68)
However, I'm not sure if that's enough. I was thinking about buying an additional 25 PrepTests (if not ALL of them) but don't know whether that's a ridiculous idea or not. Like, is it possible to over do it?

As for the 20 units, I think I'll be okay. Like, I'm good with time management and am use to it as I have been taking 20 units nearly every quarter. My main concern, though, is getting waitlisted/rejected everywhere since I'm applying so late. I mean, hopefully admission officers will see that I'm graduating almost a year early and will take that into consideration? If not, I suppose, I'll only have 6-7 months to beef up my application for the next cycle...

drevo
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Re: Next 6 mos. w/ BluePrint, PowerScore, and PrepTest

Postby drevo » Sun Sep 15, 2013 12:30 pm

lazydaisy wrote:Ooh, thanks. That was extremely helpful!

But, jah, I'm just using BluePrint as a precursor/foundation for studying and have other supplementary material. Like, after I finish the course, I'll be working with:
    - PS LR Bible
    - PS RC Bible
    - PS LG Bible
    - PS LR Bible Workbook
    - PS LG Bible Workbook
    - 25 PrepTests (29-38, 52-61, 64-68)
However, I'm not sure if that's enough. I was thinking about buying an additional 25 PrepTests (if not ALL of them) but don't know whether that's a ridiculous idea or not. Like, is it possible to over do it?

As for the 20 units, I think I'll be okay. Like, I'm good with time management and am use to it as I have been taking 20 units nearly every quarter. My main concern, though, is getting waitlisted/rejected everywhere since I'm applying so late. I mean, hopefully admission officers will see that I'm graduating almost a year early and will take that into consideration? If not, I suppose, I'll only have 6-7 months to beef up my application for the next cycle...


As far as prep tests I bought 52-69. Through BluePrint I have a few of the 40s and then I have just drilled old 1-40 PT sections and individual questions through the old Kaplan mastery book and cambridge packets. More PTs won't hurt you but I would use the the majority if not all of the pre-40 PTs for drilling sections and not as full PTs. Using BP as a precursor has been working out well for me so far. I have never used PS LR or RC but I do highly recommend using Manhattan LR to supplement. For me at least it really helped. Also just to give some more info I have been consistently PTing at 173-174 the last couple of weeks with my blind review scores being -0 to -3 (I make a lot of dumb mistakes like forgetting when a question says EXCEPT).

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lazydaisy
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Re: Next 6 mos. w/ BluePrint, PowerScore, and PrepTest

Postby lazydaisy » Sun Sep 15, 2013 3:55 pm

drevo wrote:As far as prep tests I bought 52-69. Through BluePrint I have a few of the 40s and then I have just drilled old 1-40 PT sections and individual questions through the old Kaplan mastery book and cambridge packets. More PTs won't hurt you but I would use the the majority if not all of the pre-40 PTs for drilling sections and not as full PTs. Using BP as a precursor has been working out well for me so far. I have never used PS LR or RC but I do highly recommend using Manhattan LR to supplement. For me at least it really helped. Also just to give some more info I have been consistently PTing at 173-174 the last couple of weeks with my blind review scores being -0 to -3 (I make a lot of dumb mistakes like forgetting when a question says EXCEPT).


Thanks for all the sound advice. The low 70's would be perfect for me. So I'm definitely gonna buy Manhattan's LR and the rest of the PT's. But, oh, if you don't me asking, what did you get on your first diagnostic? And how long have you been studying?

drevo
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Re: Next 6 mos. w/ BluePrint, PowerScore, and PrepTest

Postby drevo » Sun Sep 15, 2013 7:17 pm

lazydaisy wrote:
drevo wrote:As far as prep tests I bought 52-69. Through BluePrint I have a few of the 40s and then I have just drilled old 1-40 PT sections and individual questions through the old Kaplan mastery book and cambridge packets. More PTs won't hurt you but I would use the the majority if not all of the pre-40 PTs for drilling sections and not as full PTs. Using BP as a precursor has been working out well for me so far. I have never used PS LR or RC but I do highly recommend using Manhattan LR to supplement. For me at least it really helped. Also just to give some more info I have been consistently PTing at 173-174 the last couple of weeks with my blind review scores being -0 to -3 (I make a lot of dumb mistakes like forgetting when a question says EXCEPT).


Thanks for all the sound advice. The low 70's would be perfect for me. So I'm definitely gonna buy Manhattan's LR and the rest of the PT's. But, oh, if you don't me asking, what did you get on your first diagnostic? And how long have you been studying?


I got a 163 on my first diagnostic. And I started studying maybe a week or two into July so by October 5th my total studying will be just under 3 months.

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Jeffort
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Re: Next 6 mos. w/ BluePrint, PowerScore, and PrepTest

Postby Jeffort » Sun Sep 15, 2013 8:07 pm

OP, what is your goal score and what is your current score range if you have taken any practice tests?

Just because a study plan allows for enough time to go through a particular amount of materials and a class doesn't make it sufficient to achieve your goal. Getting through an entire prep class/set of prep books, drilling a lot for each question type and taking many practice tests is necessary for achieving a high score but not sufficient. There are other factors at play. Everyone starts with different skill levels, strengths and weaknesses and everyone learns and improves at different rates.

To better evaluate prep time lines you need to compare your current score range/performance level to your goal and look at how much improvement you need to make to achieve your goal. Without having an idea of how much you need to improve it is impossible to even guesstimate roughly how long you should plan on prepping at a minimum to have a chance at your goal.

Since you mentioned wanting a 170s score, its important to figure out how far away you are from it since study timelines for hitting 170+ vary greatly depending on starting range. Timelines also need to be flexible to adjustments since people progress at different rates. You'll get a better idea of the realistic amount of time you'll actually need to put in to break 170 as you move forward preparing and track your rate of improvement.

You are in a great position with the luxury of time on your side since you are open to the idea (that will in time become reality if you are shooting for T14 with a 170+ score!) of getting in next cycle instead of this one. If you are not hitting your target score range on practice tests leading up to the Feb test you can just withdraw your registration and revamp your plans for the June test and applying next cycle. If you aren't near your goal score right before the Feb test it would be silly to take it and apply so late in the cycle with a subpar score. There is nothing lost by postponing other than the reg fee.

Just get started preparing so you can figure out how quickly you pick things up with everything LSAT. Once you do that you'll get a better idea of timelines that are realistic based on your personal performance, rate of improvement and available time along with UG studying. You should not (I repeat NOT!! Don't do it!!) sacrifice even small fractions of points in your UGPA for LSAT prep time to try to be ready for an earlier LSAT administration. You can re-take the LSAT, you don't get any do overs with your GPA.

Bottom line is get started and be flexible to making adjustments to your study plan as you move forward. Nobody ever ends up sticking to their original study plan, usually because people underestimate how much time it actually takes to go through materials thoroughly in order to see improvement. Also, most people that are deadset on 170+ end up greatly extending their study timeline from the original plan and those that do achieve it usually score the 170+ on a later administration than originally targeted.

bp shinners
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Re: Next 6 mos. w/ BluePrint, PowerScore, and PrepTest

Postby bp shinners » Mon Sep 16, 2013 1:31 pm

lazydaisy wrote:Since I'll be still in school and don't have much time to study as I'm taking 20 units this fall quarter, I was wondering if anyone who has taken the course can comment on how flexible it is and the possibility of accomplishing it within 12 weeks.


Just giving some info here - the course is very flexible, with each lesson broken up into small chunks so you can start/stop when you have time. You can watch the videos as often as you'd like. And we have many, many students every year finish the course in 12 weeks or less, so it's definitely possible. If you have any other questions about the course, shoot me a PM!

bp shinners
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Re: Next 6 mos. w/ BluePrint, PowerScore, and PrepTest

Postby bp shinners » Mon Sep 16, 2013 1:35 pm

drevo wrote:I wish I would've just chosen the much cheaper online only course. I had a diagnostic of 163 and while the classes early on were good for learning basics of the LSAT and I really like Blue Print's approach to LG, I wish I would've saved some money and gone with the online only course. This is simply a factor that live classes with other students go at a much slower pace than I want. I've gotten to where the last 4 weeks or so I have just done the lessons on my own with the online videos at home because it cuts out time and I can split it up if I have to study for other classes. I really only go to the live classes anymore when it is a proctored exam.


Hey drevo,

Sorry to hear that the live course is moving a little slowly! Our 170+ students often feel that way, so we're always trying to find a way to get them extra value. If you have some time, would you mind offering any suggestions you might have for how we could incorporate more information/drills that would be useful to someone in your score range? Or any extra services that we might be able to add on to the course that you'd find valuable?

Also, whose class are you in? Don't worry - it won't get him/her in trouble. I just like to forward on feedback to the instructors so they can know how to improve - we're always trying to get better at what we do!

-Matt

drevo
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Re: Next 6 mos. w/ BluePrint, PowerScore, and PrepTest

Postby drevo » Mon Sep 16, 2013 5:22 pm

bp shinners wrote:Hey drevo,

Sorry to hear that the live course is moving a little slowly! Our 170+ students often feel that way, so we're always trying to find a way to get them extra value. If you have some time, would you mind offering any suggestions you might have for how we could incorporate more information/drills that would be useful to someone in your score range? Or any extra services that we might be able to add on to the course that you'd find valuable?

Also, whose class are you in? Don't worry - it won't get him/her in trouble. I just like to forward on feedback to the instructors so they can know how to improve - we're always trying to get better at what we do!

-Matt


I was actually thinking about this a while back and to be honest I do not think there is any total solution. Everyone pays the same amount of money to enroll in the class so if the majority needs to go a certain tempo then that is what seems fair to me. One thing I did just now discover last night was on the BP website where all our lessons and things are there is the the "Extra Problem Sections" button on the very bottom. And in this are questions organized by type and then for each section there is a packet of 170+ problems (what I am most stoked on). I may have just not remembered being told about those extra resources early in the course but I use the online portion of PB quite often and just found it now so possibly just letting people know about that amazingly helpful tool that is a bit hidden would be great.

Continuing with the usefulness of those Problem Sets it would be nice to possibly have had the option when we enrolled to purchase a printed bound version of those. I guess it would be your sort of version of the Cambridge packets but using BP terms (which I prefer). As of now I just print the pages I want at home which works fine but I would've been more than willing to have spent some extra bucks to get them in book form.

Additionally, I think possibly implementing timing techniques a little earlier in the course could be useful. I completely understand why you want to wait until almost all the new material is covered and I am sure that throwing timing at some people earlier might stress them out but once I saw a 170s score was doable and mid-upper 170s was possible I really wanted to hit PTs with different timing strategies and find what worked for me. Also, I REALLY like your online interface and they way to deal with PT scores and HW, etc. So if there was anyway to have the option of grading more PTs than just the few that you can now that would be awesome.

I am in the San Diego class and I do not for a second regret my decision to use BluePrint. Our instructor, Nick, is very clear with things and keeps the class in a light mood. He is also pretty good with breaking stuff down when people don't get it (even when in my mind it is something everyone should have long ago mastered ha). I know a lot of TLSers strongly oppose prep courses for anyone trying to hit 170+ but I think it has definitely been a huge help in getting me there.




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