Want to retake..but exhausted LSAT materials

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bohemiandaisy
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Re: Want to retake..but exhausted LSAT materials

Postby bohemiandaisy » Mon Dec 09, 2013 8:15 pm

So I guess I have to take 2 years off before LS. I already took a year off this year. Is that going to look bad? I work in a Biglaw LA firm right now. I plan to work there for a while.

dosto
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Re: Want to retake..but exhausted LSAT materials

Postby dosto » Mon Dec 09, 2013 9:42 pm

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Last edited by dosto on Wed Sep 02, 2015 1:23 am, edited 1 time in total.

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bohemiandaisy
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Re: Want to retake..but exhausted LSAT materials

Postby bohemiandaisy » Mon Dec 09, 2013 9:46 pm

I already have a job as a file clerk at a Biglaw LA law firm. I start tomorrow, actually. Who knows, maybe I will get an additional letter of rec from here.

Thanks

BPlaura
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Re: Want to retake..but exhausted LSAT materials

Postby BPlaura » Tue Dec 10, 2013 1:22 pm

Taking extra time off between undergrad and law school can actually be seen by schools as a positive attribute because you've got more "real world" experience. While delaying can be a pain if you were set on applying this cycle, it's certainly not going to hurt your application.

Other than that, to echo the advice of others, it sounds like you've identified your problem - you need to do a better job of replicating real test-day conditions, especially the pressure aspect. Libraries are great for taking PTs because they have a similar level of ambient noise. Perhaps you even have a good friend who can time you for some of your PTs.

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bohemiandaisy
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Re: Want to retake..but exhausted LSAT materials

Postby bohemiandaisy » Tue Dec 10, 2013 2:16 pm

Hi BPLaura,

Thanks for the response! :)

I know I sound like a broken record, but seeing almost every question won't hurt me right? I plan on reusing and retaking every test and intensely reviewing them. Test familiarity may be a problem, but many here are reassuring me that it really isn't.

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Jeffort
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Re: Want to retake..but exhausted LSAT materials

Postby Jeffort » Tue Dec 10, 2013 8:50 pm

You should spend a lot of time going through difficult questions in slow motion to thoroughly break down and understand the reasoning structure, assumptions made, flaws in the reasoning, type of logic involved in the question, etc. as well as detailed analysis of how each AC relates to the stimulus, exactly why each is correct incorrect from a logical standpoint, why certain incorrect answers are attractive on first read, logically why the correct answer choice satisfies the question stem (detailed logical explanation), why it isn't super attractive on first read (when that is the case), aspects of the question that made it difficult/tricky (things like, answer choice phrased in difficult to process way, hard to ID conclusion in arg, etc.), etc., etc. instead of mainly just playing pin the tail on the donkey taking practice tests.

You don't really learn much just working through tons of questions trying to get as many right as you can over and over. The real learning and improvement comes from slow motion dissection and review of difficult/tricky questions to get better at processing the actual logic involved and all the factors designed to lead you away from the correct answer. Basically, focus more on improving your ability to analyze questions, not just your ability to answer a bunch in a row really fast.

Until you can fully explain hard LR questions to someone else, including the exact logical reasons why each AC is right or wrong, the flawed reasoning and assumptions in the argument, etc., you are not truly at 170+ ability level yet. True 170+ level people actually think through questions with the same thoughts you see expressed in good explanations for questions in terms of why answers are correct/incorrect, etc. when solving questions and making decisions about answer choices.

Some timed practice along the way is good, but it's not what is going to make you improve. Better understanding, better analysis skills and better answer choice decision making processes is what is going to help improve your re-take score.

muzzy
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Re: Want to retake..but exhausted LSAT materials

Postby muzzy » Tue Dec 10, 2013 8:56 pm

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Last edited by muzzy on Mon Jan 06, 2014 1:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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bohemiandaisy
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Re: Want to retake..but exhausted LSAT materials

Postby bohemiandaisy » Tue Dec 10, 2013 9:32 pm

Jeff,

I like to think I did all of that. I had a private tutor and everything. I actually had a neighbor studying for the LSAT and I explained those things to him. I also listened to explanations online via my Blueprint account. I will do so again. I just think I'm a terrible test taker. Well...that's not even true. I scored 96 percentile for the SAT and scored perfect on my SAT subject tests. I think I just freak out when it comes to the LSAT. I don't know how to get around the pressure.

Thanks Muzzy. I need to be more organized with the LSAT. I never did the spreadsheet thing and it seems to be popular here.

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Jeffort
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Re: Want to retake..but exhausted LSAT materials

Postby Jeffort » Tue Dec 10, 2013 10:10 pm

bohemiandaisy wrote:Jeff,

I like to think I did all of that. I had a private tutor and everything. I actually had a neighbor studying for the LSAT and I explained those things to him. I also listened to explanations online via my Blueprint account. I will do so again. I just think I'm a terrible test taker. Well...that's not even true. I scored 96 percentile for the SAT and scored perfect on my SAT subject tests. I think I just freak out when it comes to the LSAT. I don't know how to get around the pressure.

Thanks Muzzy. I need to be more organized with the LSAT. I never did the spreadsheet thing and it seems to be popular here.



ok, but you need to keep doing it more and more to continue to improve! You're not a 170+ skill level test taker yet, you should keep doing the ever important slow motion study/dissection/review of questions to further improve your skills if you want to hit 170+ on test day. Seriously, it's not just about timing on PTs, you need to improve your answer choice decision making processes and deep understanding level since they aren't yet 100% accurate.

You really need to examine your exact step by step thought process when solving questions to take a very close look at the exact reasons you are using to make each decision as you go when analyzing questions. I mean pay attention to and write down exactly what you thought about and the exact reason that was in your head when you eliminated each answer to really examine your thought process in depth to find weaknesses. Until you articulate out the exact reasons that go through your head when making answer choice decisions, you'll never be able to examine them and find flaws in them. There are always flaws in reasons people use to eliminate/select answers that need fixing, you must find them if you want to improve. This type of deep evaluation of your own thought processes is required to break the 170 barrier. Going from high 160s to consistently 170+ is a hard jump to make for many people that requires a lot of thought process changes to accomplish.

I know it means a lot more LSAT prep time/work that you'd rather not do much more of at this point, but it is essential if you really want to get a 170+ score when you re-take, otherwise re-taking will probably just get you another similar 160s range score to whatever your December score turns out to be. If you really want 170+, it's within reach, but requires a good amount more work on your part to achieve.

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Finnpower
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Re: Want to retake..but exhausted LSAT materials

Postby Finnpower » Tue Dec 10, 2013 10:38 pm

Hi-

I am sorry about your bad test day. That doesn't sound like any fun. As someone who has struggled with school anxiety I feel your pain. I also deal professionally most days with low income individuals who have anxiety.

I think everyone has addressed the LSAt portion here well, but I would just suggest a bit of kindness to yourself. See someone, whether a life coach, a counselor, or a friend and talk to them about your test day anxiety. I think the issue here is not "simulating" more real life conditions as you mentioned, but how you feel about the test instead.

Best of wishes.

BPlaura
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Re: Want to retake..but exhausted LSAT materials

Postby BPlaura » Wed Dec 11, 2013 10:57 am

bohemiandaisy wrote:I know I sound like a broken record, but seeing almost every question won't hurt me right?


Retaking old tests might impact the scores you receive on those tests the second time around, but yeah, there's definitely still a lot of value in doing questions you've done before. In fact, in some ways it's more helpful because you can see whether you've fixed mistakes that you made the first time. So you should be fine, and ready to crush it the next time you take the test!

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bohemiandaisy
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Re: Want to retake..but exhausted LSAT materials

Postby bohemiandaisy » Wed Dec 11, 2013 2:58 pm

So it's more likely I get an amazing score on these PTs and see a huge drop on the real thing come June. Great. :|

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bohemiandaisy
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Re: Want to retake..but exhausted LSAT materials

Postby bohemiandaisy » Wed Dec 11, 2013 3:07 pm

I just found an unused June 2011 that I kept "just in case." Yippee. One test. lol




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