How do I know if I am not solving a game fast enough?

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How do I know if I am not solving a game fast enough?

Postby WaltGrace83 » Thu Sep 19, 2013 9:01 pm

I obviously know that for many (most?) games, spending any more than 8 or so minutes is considered inefficient. However, my question is this: I am drilling on the Cambridge packets starting from the beginning. I am doing basic/simple/linear ordering games. While my accuracy is usually 100%, I am finding that I am solving the games in the middle of the packet around ~8 minutes and sometimes even 9 minutes. This concerns me because I have already been doing logic games for a few months now but have not done any intense drilling. I felt good when I was solving most games at the beginning of the packet within 4-5 minutes but now I am feeling like there is something wrong considering all of the game are still considered "level 1" and most of them are the first game in the section of the real LSAT. What do you guys think?

EDIT: I am also noticing that a lot of these early games are very frame-heavy!

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Re: How do I know if I am not solving a game fast enough?

Postby Sourrudedude » Thu Sep 19, 2013 9:16 pm

Lots of people go thought this. Keep practicing and you should be able to do virtually any game in under 8 minutes. Good luck!

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Re: How do I know if I am not solving a game fast enough?

Postby Jeffort » Fri Sep 20, 2013 1:15 am

Those difficulty ratings are very subjective for the games so don't put too much weight on that factor.

There is no good source of objective data available to reliably estimate per game difficulty (only LSAC has this info and they don't publish it) so those numbers are really just somebodies opinion based on their view of games and what they believe is harder or easier for most students and/or themself.

Even if someone has a large set of practice test results data with many test takers for each LG section, it is very hard to calculate overall difficulty from that unless you are a psychometrician with access to some hard core specialized statistical analysis programs designed for the LSAT such as what LSAC uses. I think its safe to say that Cambridge didn't come up with their difficulty ratings by hiring a psychometrician to do that type of work, so take the ratings with a big grain of salt.

Also, difficulty rating doesn't necessarily directly correlate with how long it does or should take to complete a particular game. Some games that are overall considered easy may also take longer than usual for reasons that don't increase it's difficulty level.

There could be 6 or 7 questions that are all based on fairly easy rule structures and deductions but that just take more steps in the work to solve with the steps being easy to find and make but just time consuming. Compare that to a game with two main deductions that are very hard to determine, leaving the questions to harsh time consuming and difficult brute force methods only unless you get the deductions, but if you get the two deductions the questions are really simple and easy. Would you rate that as hard or easy? Easy if you get the two deductions, hard if you don't, so how to compare to a game that just requires more work but less finding of hard to spot/complex deductions?

There are plenty of games that I consider easy to solve but that also take more time to solve than difficult games that are based mainly on a few core key deductions that make the questions easy to solve in seconds. The harder the main time saving deductions are to find, the harder I consider a game regardless of what the typical amount of time necessary to solve it is for most people. I have no idea if the Cambridge difficulty ratings use that criteria that way or not.

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