My 5-week study plan, with updates.

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ftbchamp231
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My 5-week study plan, with updates.

Postby ftbchamp231 » Wed Oct 30, 2013 2:04 pm

Subject titles are not my forte so sorry if it is a little course.

I received a 168 in the October LSAT (-2LG -6LR -6RC), and I plan on retaking it this december. I took the month of October off because I was confident I would get over a 170. (The proctor called time 3 minutes early on my RC and gave us 2 to finish, I had to rush/guess on the last 3 and got them all wrong)

I took 20+ Preptests to get ready for the october LSAT and it helped, but I realized I didn't know how to do certain LR questions well. I think I want to focus more on drilling this month to get me ready for the December LSAT. I bought the 1-38 LR grouped by type and the Manhattan LR book,3rd ed. I was wondering if there is a guide or suggested way to break up the questions since there are so many. I was thinking about saving the hardest ones for right before the test so that is what I will be used to going into the test center.

I also bought the RC book from Manhattan to try and get some help, I don't know if there is an effective way to drill for that that I would have time for.

LG I am pretty solid on, it was my first section in october so nerves in addition to a tiny desk didn't do me any favors. I will probably reuse old preptests to stay sharp throughout november.

So if anyone has any tips, I would greatly appreciate it. I found this site too late, it seems like a wonderful community and I would like to become active in it. I will keep everyone posted throughout my studies whether anyone cares or not :lol:

_________________________Updates:_______________________
11/1/13
My Manhattan LR and RC books came in yesterday and I got started on them this morning. RC is surprisingly short, I am using voyager's RC method (http://www.top-law-schools.com/forums/v ... f=6&t=7240)to annotate the passages going through it. It is a pretty helpful book.

I am working my way through the 3rd chapter now, assumptions. I like this book a lot, especially how it shows the thought process as you go through each stimulus. I am putting a lot of faith in this book. It seems to be very highly recommended on this site. I will probably do the a few questions in the relevant Cambridge bundle after each chapter. The easier difficulties for now.

5 hours
11/3/13
I have finished through chapter 7 of the LR book. Tomorrow I will probably finish the RC book and do chapter 8 of the LR book and do some practice questions and sections. I feel much more confident picking answers. Trying to find wrong answers is a lot more comfortable to me, it makes me less anxious when I don't see a right answer right away and more confident moving forward once I do.

I also feel like I finally understand the difference between sufficient and necessary assumptions, it finally clicked. (I think of sufficient as carrying an argument all the way though, where necessary is a part of a check-list that needs to be complete before things can get started).

Reading the question stem first is still a little awkward but I am getting used to it and it is growing on me. I am also pausing after every sentence for a brief moment to categorize what I just read; background, premise, conclusion, etc. and also try to anticipate what will come next. This was a problem I had in the past, reading the words but not comprehending.
7 hours

11/4/13

I am through conditional logic and the assumption family part of Manhattan LR. Good stuff, I have gotten a couple of the tough conditional questions wrong. But I figured out why (only if's threw me for a loop). Busy night of other work, but a productive morning.
4 hours

11/5/13

Tuesday's are busier for me so I only got through chapter 10 today. I got tripped up on a couple of the problems at the end of the chapter. It was a point of disagreement and a determine the function question, these definitely gave me trouble in the past and still are apparently. A fairly productive day overall. Tomorrow I will finish the LR and RC book.
2.5 hours

11/6/13
(writing this 11/7/13)
There was a surprise 13th chapter so I didn't finish the RC book up, but that is first on the to-do list today. I will probably do a quick review of everything and do a few problems from each type tonight and finish it off with a few RC sections if I am feeling particularly motivated. Tomorrow I have nothing to do but study and I am very much looking forward to that.
4 hours

11/7/13
Finished the RC book this morning, just did the full section at the end. I went -3, all three were on the last passage about leading questions in the courtroom (I do the worst with law passages, go figure). I started to run out of time and couldn't really check my answers against the passage, something I can definitely fix. Considering I was -4 to -6 in my PTs before October (and went -6 on my October LSAT) I am going to chalk that up as a win.

I did two law passages from the law section of the RC bundle, both difficulty 1. I went -0 in 6:30 in the first and -1 in 10:30 for the second, I spent way too long on a couple of questions. I am going more for accuracy now anyway, but it is good to know how long it is taking me to read and then do questions.
2.0 hours

11/8/13
This morning I went -1 on the first law passage I did in 7 minutes, the next two I went -0 in 9:40 and 7:00, respectively. I did a humanities passage and went -0 in 8 minutes. So I was very happy with that. Those were mostly difficulty 1 passages, I don't usually notice much of a difference in difficulty on RC. On my PTs I usually spent 8.5 minutes on each passage, losing most of my points on the art and law passages.

Logic games I was more rusty than I thought, I screwed the pooch on the first one and it took my seven minutes and got none right. (switched a rule). Then I went -1 on a couple of ordering games. I am hitting my stride again, going -0 in 7-8 minutes.

11/10/13

I went home this weekend and didn't get any studying in on Saturday, which was a nice break. Sunday I did a few LGs and started doing a few questions from each of the categories of the LR bundle. Complex grouping questions are giving me some trouble, even if I get them all right it takes me 10-12 minutes to finish them.
1.5hours

11/11/13
I have now done at least the first four of each type of LR in the bundle, and I have done several more of the Logic Games. My times are starting to improve for the In/Out groupings, I had one that took me 10 minutes before I realized I messed up a rule and it took me another four to finish it. Other than that I was at or below eight minutes for difficulty 3 problems. I will do some discrete groups tomorrow and work on reading comp. Wednesday I will re-do an old PT so I can focus my LR efforts. I am excited and nervous for it, I really want to go 170+, and the way I've been doing on RC I have a solid shot.

3 hours

11/12/13

This morning I worked on reading RC passages faster. I asked around the forum and found that new RC is quite a bit different in the types of questions. So I am trying to read as fast as I can and use the questions as a proxy for how well I comprehended what I read. I am getting close to 2.5 minutes now on the easier passages at least.
LG is going well

End of the day update: For the few difficulty 1 passages I did, I was reading them in 2 minutes on average. I still had perfect accuracy so I know I was comprehending well. I finished in 5.5-6 minutes, so I would have extra time for more complex passages. I hope this is a new trend for my RC.

LG: I was doing pretty well, going -0 for most with the occasional -1. The times were pretty scattered, but I am mixing in some more difficult problems. I am just doing problems in order within the chapter, but the chapters at random. So I'll do one from chapter 2 then chapter 4 then 1, etc. I found one problem, PT23 game 3, linguists and anthropologists, that took me 15+ minutes. It just absolutely floored me. I figured it out now but that was definitely discouraging at the time.

Tomorrow I will be retaking PT 61, and drilling the types of LR questions I get wrong. I also have a test Thursday, and a project, so the drilling will be limited. Good thing my transcript is already in 8)

11/13/13

I took my october LSAT (PT70), and did the worst I have done in LR in a long time, -5 -8. RC I went -5, with one unbelievably silly mistake. So today I will be drilling the question types I got wrong, both assumptions, both methods, parallel reasoning. I will also do a few of the harder RC passages from the bundle.

3.5 hours.

11/14/13

I had a busy day today, lots of classes and projects and figuring out how my school's funding system works on the fly. I drilled sufficient and necessary assumptions tonight. I did pretty well, I'll find out tomorrow if it worked when I take PT62. I think I need to practice reading efficiently and spending less time triple checking answers.

11/15/13

Well today was a good day. I got a 177 on PT62. I took it while I was studying for the october test and some of it was familiar, but I definitely felt confident in why I was choosing certain answer choices. I went -1 on RC, -1 and -2 for LR, and -2 for games. I thought the games were pretty tough on this one, especially the stained glass one (2nd game). RC wasn't too bad, I slowed down and took notes for the structure of the passage (new theory introduced, example of theory, counter to old, new theory has a flaw, etc.) and it made answering questions much, much easier. LR I am going to work on method of reasoning problems and flaw questions. Sufficient could probably still use a little bit of work, so I'll throw in a few of those tomorrow. I am feeling good.
3.5 hours

11/16/13
Did some logic games drilling, I did the last two in the grouping section. First one was a nightmare and took 15 minutes to get 5/6, second took 8:30 and I went 7/7. I drilled the methods questions for an hour or so and I went over PT 62. 4.18 (sentient beings) is probably the most confusing question I've encountered, 4.20 is a bad question imo. Introducing innocent into the correct answer seems like too big of a jump. I see why the right answers are right now, but it took a while.
3 hours.

11/21/13
I haven't been good about keeping up with this lately, I had a busy week. I did PT 63 on monday and got a 169, I got really tired for section 3 and 4 and went -5 and -6. Yesterday I got a 172 with a -2 in LR 1 and LR2, in LR1 I didn't read the Q stem closely and strengthened a weaken and weakened a strengthen. LR2 was tough, but looking back now I see why the right answers are right. I completed the difficulty 4 necessary assumption packet, it made me feel like an idiot for two hours but I didn't miss any necessary assumption questions this last PT. It made the LR sections feel like a breeze. RC I went -6, so that is going to be my focus for these next couple of days. I am so inconsistent and I can't figure out why. It was the last section but I can't let that be a reason why.
Last edited by ftbchamp231 on Thu Nov 21, 2013 11:38 am, edited 18 times in total.

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foundingfather
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Re: Best methods to drill

Postby foundingfather » Wed Oct 30, 2013 2:07 pm

I'm also interested in effective drilling methods - something I didn't focus on enough for my October test.

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tofuspeedstar
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Re: Best methods to drill

Postby tofuspeedstar » Wed Oct 30, 2013 5:45 pm

The Cambridge packets certainly helped a lot for me in studying for the October retake. And it showed as I had a 10+ pt jump from my first take.


They break down the LR questions from tests 41-60 by type, and break the games down by type from tests 41-60. They also have editions that cover tests 1-40.

Make an account at lsatqa.com and input your PT answers, it will break them down for you and tell you where you're losing points.

You can then go back and drill those question types within the cambridge packets as well.

Learn to also short yourself time, that is one thing I regretted not doing in prep for October because the very first section the proctor never gave the 5 minute warning. That threw me off for the rest of the test. So instead of 35min per section say 30min per section.


edit: also Cambridge has a packet that contains the most difficult LR questions from tests 1-38. look into that as well if the tougher, wordier LR questions are causing you to stumble.

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ftbchamp231
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Re: Best methods to drill

Postby ftbchamp231 » Wed Oct 30, 2013 7:13 pm

Is it possible on lsatQA to input individual questions as I go? I made the mistake of thinking I was done after the last test and threw out most of my tests :oops:

That is some great advice though. I will probably spend the weekend getting through the manhattan book and the first week trying to identify my weaknesses as I drill using the difficulty one and two problems. Then I will ramp it up. I know Method of reasoning and Sufficient Assumptions gave me a lot of trouble.

I bought the grouped RC so I can practice note taking, I am going to try to follow Voyager's strategy. I like a few things that he does that I never thought of.

Logic Games I am going to intersperse just to stay sharp, saving the hardest ones for the week before the test. I am hoping to hit the Difficulty 4 questions and sections the last week of november/ first week of december.

I will time my RC and LG sections and try to get them down to 6.5 minutes, so I have time like you said tofu. LR might be a little bit tougher but hopefully the increased accuracy will also help with efficiency. I plan on taking a PT every saturday.

I think this will be my plan. Probably close to 40 hours a week of prep with everything, hopefully it pays off.

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tofuspeedstar
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Re: Best methods to drill

Postby tofuspeedstar » Wed Oct 30, 2013 11:13 pm

ftbchamp231 wrote:Is it possible on lsatQA to input individual questions as I go? I made the mistake of thinking I was done after the last test and threw out most of my tests :oops:

That is some great advice though. I will probably spend the weekend getting through the manhattan book and the first week trying to identify my weaknesses as I drill using the difficulty one and two problems. Then I will ramp it up. I know Method of reasoning and Sufficient Assumptions gave me a lot of trouble.

I bought the grouped RC so I can practice note taking, I am going to try to follow Voyager's strategy. I like a few things that he does that I never thought of.

Logic Games I am going to intersperse just to stay sharp, saving the hardest ones for the week before the test. I am hoping to hit the Difficulty 4 questions and sections the last week of november/ first week of december.

I will time my RC and LG sections and try to get them down to 6.5 minutes, so I have time like you said tofu. LR might be a little bit tougher but hopefully the increased accuracy will also help with efficiency. I plan on taking a PT every saturday.

I think this will be my plan. Probably close to 40 hours a week of prep with everything, hopefully it pays off.



You sure can, just ignore the scoring at the end. Just look at the graphs to see where you're losing points.

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ftbchamp231
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Re: Best methods to drill

Postby ftbchamp231 » Thu Oct 31, 2013 1:27 pm

tofuspeedstar wrote:
ftbchamp231 wrote:Is it possible on lsatQA to input individual questions as I go? I made the mistake of thinking I was done after the last test and threw out most of my tests :oops:

That is some great advice though. I will probably spend the weekend getting through the manhattan book and the first week trying to identify my weaknesses as I drill using the difficulty one and two problems. Then I will ramp it up. I know Method of reasoning and Sufficient Assumptions gave me a lot of trouble.

I bought the grouped RC so I can practice note taking, I am going to try to follow Voyager's strategy. I like a few things that he does that I never thought of.

Logic Games I am going to intersperse just to stay sharp, saving the hardest ones for the week before the test. I am hoping to hit the Difficulty 4 questions and sections the last week of november/ first week of december.

I will time my RC and LG sections and try to get them down to 6.5 minutes, so I have time like you said tofu. LR might be a little bit tougher but hopefully the increased accuracy will also help with efficiency. I plan on taking a PT every saturday.

I think this will be my plan. Probably close to 40 hours a week of prep with everything, hopefully it pays off.



You sure can, just ignore the scoring at the end. Just look at the graphs to see where you're losing points.


Thank you!!

Mahone Shore
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Re: My 5-week study plan, with updates.

Postby Mahone Shore » Mon Nov 04, 2013 8:39 am

Keep up! Your plan seems very specific and practical. My last score is way much lower than your and will take the Dec like you. I find many good advices from your plan. Thank you!

Just a little thing about voyager's strategy. How much time do left in RC before you use this strategy? I've trained this for three weeks just slow my speed and nothing improve, I decided to do very little notes(barely not except some underlines). Hope to hear from you some experience and advices in RC.

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ftbchamp231
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Re: My 5-week study plan, with updates.

Postby ftbchamp231 » Mon Nov 04, 2013 9:49 am

Mahone Shore wrote:Keep up! Your plan seems very specific and practical. My last score is way much lower than your and will take the Dec like you. I find many good advices from your plan. Thank you!

Just a little thing about voyager's strategy. How much time do left in RC before you use this strategy? I've trained this for three weeks just slow my speed and nothing improve, I decided to do very little notes(barely not except some underlines). Hope to hear from you some experience and advices in RC.


Hey Mahone,

I studied for two months before the October LSAT, I took around 25 PTs during that time. So I have a good base going into it. I find that doing RC using this strategy slows down my reading slightly, but improves my speed when answering questions. So try timing how long it takes you to read the passage and take notes and then how long it takes to answer questions. There are different strategies for how long to spend on each but it really depends on the person. The less time you need to search through the passage for confirming answers the better.

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JazzOne
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Re: Best methods to drill

Postby JazzOne » Mon Nov 04, 2013 11:28 am

foundingfather wrote:I'm also interested in effective drilling methods - something I didn't focus on enough for my October test.

You must use the right kind of mud. And try to be proactive about environmental concerns.

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foundingfather
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Re: Best methods to drill

Postby foundingfather » Mon Nov 04, 2013 11:42 am

JazzOne wrote:
foundingfather wrote:I'm also interested in effective drilling methods - something I didn't focus on enough for my October test.

You must use the right kind of mud. And try to be proactive about environmental concerns.


Thanks, maybe someday I'll strike oil. Someday...

Mahone Shore
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Re: My 5-week study plan, with updates.

Postby Mahone Shore » Tue Nov 05, 2013 8:02 am

Hey,

Thanks for reply! I think strategies really depend on persons, maybe I just cannot read as quickly as youn with notation.

one more question, how you get through the Informational Passage?(those no perspectives included and simply introduce a theory/work/, many detail questions) It was my nightmare, still cannot find a way to break.

your opinion is very helpful!

ftbchamp231 wrote:
Mahone Shore wrote:Keep up! Your plan seems very specific and practical. My last score is way much lower than your and will take the Dec like you. I find many good advices from your plan. Thank you!

Just a little thing about voyager's strategy. How much time do left in RC before you use this strategy? I've trained this for three weeks just slow my speed and nothing improve, I decided to do very little notes(barely not except some underlines). Hope to hear from you some experience and advices in RC.


Hey Mahone,

I studied for two months before the October LSAT, I took around 25 PTs during that time. So I have a good base going into it. I find that doing RC using this strategy slows down my reading slightly, but improves my speed when answering questions. So try timing how long it takes you to read the passage and take notes and then how long it takes to answer questions. There are different strategies for how long to spend on each but it really depends on the person. The less time you need to search through the passage for confirming answers the better.

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ftbchamp231
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Re: My 5-week study plan, with updates.

Postby ftbchamp231 » Tue Nov 05, 2013 11:28 am

For those informational passages just box the terms that have definitions and write down what the paragraph is describing. I can't think of any I have done recently to reference. If I come across one I will let you know.

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ftbchamp231
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Re: My 5-week study plan, with updates.

Postby ftbchamp231 » Fri Nov 08, 2013 3:08 pm

Hey Mahone,

For the informational passages I just write down the basic structure, when things are introduced and their relationship to other things. If it is a theory that evolved or if there are examples, etc. I just boxed all the key terms and underline a key word or two of the definition so I know where the definition is in relation to the word.

Mahone Shore
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Re: My 5-week study plan, with updates.

Postby Mahone Shore » Sat Nov 09, 2013 5:59 am

Thankful!!

Have you timed RC section? how much time do you spent on reading this sort of passages(including annotating)?
ftbchamp231 wrote:Hey Mahone,

For the informational passages I just write down the basic structure, when things are introduced and their relationship to other things. If it is a theory that evolved or if there are examples, etc. I just boxed all the key terms and underline a key word or two of the definition so I know where the definition is in relation to the word.

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ftbchamp231
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Re: My 5-week study plan, with updates.

Postby ftbchamp231 » Sat Nov 09, 2013 11:07 am

Mahone Shore wrote:Thankful!!

Have you timed RC section? how much time do you spent on reading this sort of passages(including annotating)?


I have been pretty consistent with how long it takes to read the law passages, 3-3.5 minutes, I haven't really done enough of the others to get a good idea of how long it takes typically. But I usually take 3-3.5 minutes to read and then I think it works out to about 45 seconds per question on average.

Mahone Shore
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Re: My 5-week study plan, with updates.

Postby Mahone Shore » Sat Nov 09, 2013 11:25 am

Thank you!

Catch up with your schedule! I try a timed PT(5 sections) today, had a wierd LG cost me -4 in the last one. It is quiet unusual and I find LG seems to have more variations in recent three years, hope you will alert that!

You have done those three rc passages -0 and all in 10mins, it was impressive! have you met some inference questions or All-except questions that you cannot find it directly in the passage? How you do that quickly? I was slowed down by an novel author imformational passage for 12mins..........

ftbchamp231 wrote:
Mahone Shore wrote:Thankful!!

Have you timed RC section? how much time do you spent on reading this sort of passages(including annotating)?


I have been pretty consistent with how long it takes to read the law passages, 3-3.5 minutes, I haven't really done enough of the others to get a good idea of how long it takes typically. But I usually take 3-3.5 minutes to read and then I think it works out to about 45 seconds per question on average.

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ftbchamp231
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Re: My 5-week study plan, with updates.

Postby ftbchamp231 » Mon Nov 11, 2013 11:16 am

Mahone Shore wrote:Thank you!

Catch up with your schedule! I try a timed PT(5 sections) today, had a wierd LG cost me -4 in the last one. It is quiet unusual and I find LG seems to have more variations in recent three years, hope you will alert that!

You have done those three rc passages -0 and all in 10mins, it was impressive! have you met some inference questions or All-except questions that you cannot find it directly in the passage? How you do that quickly? I was slowed down by an novel author imformational passage for 12mins..........



Sorry I was at home this weekend and didn't do much, which I am fine with haha. For all-except questions I try and look for the four wrong answers, just eliminate the except and work your way through them like it is a normal problem with four right answers. It will always be in the passage, I have found that even if it is talking about something in the middle of the passage it will be referencing something in the introduction or conclusion, so if you get stuck try looking there.

LGs can be a pain when there is a curve-ball, try the same problem again in a week and see if the process is more clear the second time around.




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