Pre LSAT prep class study

prestonrose
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Pre LSAT prep class study

Postby prestonrose » Sat Oct 26, 2013 6:25 pm

I plan to take the June LSAT and to take a prep course to help me prepare. I was wondering if it is a good idea to start studying before the prep class starts or would that be a bad idea? I have seen mixed opinions around the web. Some say that studying before the class only creates bad habits and provides a mixed set of ideologies. Any answers would be greatly appreciated.

bcjets212
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Joined: Wed Nov 05, 2008 12:35 am

Re: Pre LSAT prep class study

Postby bcjets212 » Sat Oct 26, 2013 7:28 pm

As an LSAT tutor who uses his own curriculum and has worked with many students who have "pre-studied" or are switching from other courses, there are some benefits (i.e. familiarity with the test format), but this has its downside as well. For example, my methods (especially for games section) are completely different than any of the others, so I have to start from scratch anyways. Even worse, certain symbols and terminology might look and sound similar to what they already learned, but apply to different things. Thus, my suggestion is to wait until your course starts to actually look at LSAT materials.

That does not mean there isn't anything to work on before hand. I commonly suggest doing Sudoku puzzles, as the mental processes needed for Sudoku are very similar to those needed for the Games section. Additionally, try reading editorials/opinions from major newspapers (I know powerscore suggests the NY Times and Wash Post) and as you do, try and mentally disagree with whatever the author is writing. That is, try and formulate reasons in your head why the author's argument is not a good/fair one (i.e. try and poke holes in his position or come up with counter-points). This will not only help prepare you for the position-oriented passages on the test, but will also help kick-start your critical analysis necessary to master the exam.

Feel free to PM me if you have any more questions.
Last edited by bcjets212 on Sun Oct 27, 2013 12:48 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Nova
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Re: Pre LSAT prep class study

Postby Nova » Sat Oct 26, 2013 7:46 pm

I would recommend you read the power score bibles & Manhattan guides and then pick and choose what methods you like best.

10052014
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Postby 10052014 » Sat Oct 26, 2013 8:00 pm

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Last edited by 10052014 on Sun Oct 05, 2014 12:45 am, edited 1 time in total.

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cahwc12
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Re: Pre LSAT prep class study

Postby cahwc12 » Sat Oct 26, 2013 8:16 pm

prestonrose wrote:I plan to take the June LSAT and to take a prep course to help me prepare. I was wondering if it is a good idea to start studying before the prep class starts or would that be a bad idea? I have seen mixed opinions around the web. Some say that studying before the class only creates bad habits and provides a mixed set of ideologies. Any answers would be greatly appreciated.


In terms of preparation for the prep class, I recommend researching the following:

1) Is it possible to get my money back?

2) How soon can I get my money back?

3) Where can I find an assortment of games and LR questions sorted by type?

4) Where can I find an assortment of preptests?

5) What are a few good self-study prep plans?

6) How should I manage my time over the next six months of self-study?

7) If I'm not disciplined enough to study on my own, at least initially, where can I find a good private tutor?

Good luck.


Any self-respecting tutor or teacher will tell you that prep classes are not an efficient way to prepare for the LSAT. Even if taught by the best tutor, it's simply inferior self-study combined with a comparable value in private tutoring. The reason prep companies offer classes is because people want them, and it's more profitable than tutoring on a per-tutor basis. Prep courses aren't bad news exactly, but when you only have so much time, why spend it inefficiently?

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Jeffort
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Re: Pre LSAT prep class study

Postby Jeffort » Sun Oct 27, 2013 2:24 am

prestonrose wrote:I plan to take the June LSAT and to take a prep course to help me prepare. I was wondering if it is a good idea to start studying before the prep class starts or would that be a bad idea? I have seen mixed opinions around the web. Some say that studying before the class only creates bad habits and provides a mixed set of ideologies. Any answers would be greatly appreciated.


It depends on which prep class and which prep books you would pre-study with. For example, if you are going to take a full length Powerscore class, reviewing the bibles certainly isn't going to hurt you since the class will cover that same stuff and more in a lot more detail than what is in the bibles, but reading a Kaplan book before a PS class would be a bad idea. If you are going to pre-study, it's best not to use materials from a significantly different source if possible to avoid confusion from different methods or terminology.

The more important thing is to know you signed up for a good prep course from a reputable company with an experienced instructor. Some classes are good, others not so much.

ptittle
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Joined: Sat Sep 29, 2012 2:59 pm

Re: Pre LSAT prep class study

Postby ptittle » Tue Oct 29, 2013 8:12 pm

As an LSAT tutor, I second bcjets212 caution -- I've had the same experience of having to sort of start over with someone, for me it happens mostly with LR.

That said, if you got an informal logic or critical thinking textbook, something that's used in university/college IF/CT courses, rather than some specific LSAT prep book, that shouldn't interfere with later prep, and it would give you a head start.

Feel free to pm me about this...

Colgate87
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Joined: Tue Oct 22, 2013 12:33 am

Re: Pre LSAT prep class study

Postby Colgate87 » Tue Oct 29, 2013 8:45 pm

I would be very cautious of taking a prep course...especially Test Masters. I took their prep course twice (they are very good at selling you on this theory of retaking the course if you don't feel comfortable the first time around). It's not to say that my score did not jump, however it did not jump that high. I feel like prep courses are meant to sharpen skills of those who are predisposed to doing well on standardized tests, or naturally think in the way the LSAT requires. Also, your access to the online information and all of the answers to your books and test material are on a time limit. Your money might be better spent on just hiring a good tutor and/or buying prep materials (at least you wont have to worry about copying all the answers down). The prep courses may assign work, and they tend to move at such a fast pace. For myself, it took time for me to really grasp an understanding of what this test is. I am still going through the process, but I can attest that I have gained better understanding with a tutor and self study materials. LR and LG Bibles were good, and I have recently invested in Manhattan LR which is definitely improving my understanding of Assumption questions. I was also able to acquire the Cambridge packets, which have been TREMENDOUSLY helpful. This is not to deter you from taking a prep course, you must do what is best for you. However, I figured I would share a little bit of my perspective to shed some light. I certainly wish I had been given decent advice before I started this journey; it would have saved a lot of money, time, and frustration. Good luck with your process!




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