UPDATE: "Continue with Sept. retake or..." Need advice for 12 month study

Prepare for the LSAT or discuss it with others in this forum.

Retake in Sept and apply or prolong studying past this cycle?

Retake in September
0
No votes
Pass this cycle
2
100%
 
Total votes: 2

griffinz

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UPDATE: "Continue with Sept. retake or..." Need advice for 12 month study

Postby griffinz » Wed Aug 17, 2016 10:29 pm

EDITED FOR UPDATE:

I have decided that it would be in my best interest to postpone my third retake. I have also decided that I don't want to rush myself into the December test while trying to maintain the schedule below. I think it's best that I accept the need to skip this cycle and continuously and properly prep for the next year - presumable retake NEXT September.

Now I'm faced with a different decision. Considering the information below, I'm not sure what the most effective and reasonable course of study is for the next year. I have checked out PowerScore's 12-month plan (see below, I'm most familiar with their materials), and I've considered using something from 7sage, because I've heard such great things about it lately. I'd appreciate any input or advice from those who have studied for 1 year +, achieved 167+, and can make recommendations for my specific circumstances.

To add to the context below... I have since met with a private tutor. Through discussing my situation and current knowledge of the materials, it has become a bit more clear to me that I have a decent baseline understanding of the major concepts, but I have not taken adequate time to cement them into my thought process/patterns for taking the test. I.e., I don't recognize question types quickly enough nor immediately know which exact steps to take in order to deconstruct them, but I usually understand the general task-at-hand for each question after reading it.

Thanks for your help, TLS!

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Hi all -

This is going to be a rather long post, but here's the main point: I'm on my third retake, planning for September, but I do not feel adequately prepared. Should I continue slaving over the LSAT for the next 5 weeks and take it, or should I plan to apply next cycle or beyond?

For a little background... I'm a first generation college graduate (class of 2016). I studied political science with a minor in business administration at a state school - 3.76 GPA. During my senior year, I took the LSAT for the first time in October 2015. However, I canceled that score, because my college apartment was flooded that morning by Hurricane Joaquin. So, I retook in December 2015, and I scored a 161. Honestly, I scored better than anticipated based on my feelings after the test.

I applied to several schools... from T40 up, got nearly full rides at Wake, W&L, and George Mason. I got waitlisted at BC, BU, and GWU (my top pick that cycle). I decided that I was interested in public interest and/or government work, and I felt like my options weren't that great, plus they're just not great period. Based on my interest in public service, I decided to take a year and do a service year with AmeriCorps VISTA in DC. I planned to prep during that time and retake in September. I've gotten a good solid month of study down - revisiting the online Powerscore course and working through the material. I've just started taking PTs again, and I've scored a 159 and 160 so far.

I know I shouldn't necessarily expect to see big gains at this point, but I don't feel as though I'm going to be able pull of my target score of 167+ (GULC up or bust at this point) in the time that remains. That may be different if I weren't working ~50 hours/week, but I don't feel like I have adequate time considering. I've managed to get in 2-3 (little more on test days recently) hours a day, 4-6 on the weekend days. Currently, I'm planning to take 14 more PTs (Mon, Wed, Sat) and subsequently review them - then drill sections/question types accordingly. Of course, it's going to be terribly difficult to maintain that schedule while attempting to get actual effective study time in without running out of energy/focus.

I realize that it may sound like I'm jumping the gun here, because there's still time left. Realistically, I'll likely continue on until the week prior and make a judgement (C, no C). I figured I'd get this out there now though so that I can take advantage of the sage advice TLS has to offer. I'm really struggling with whether or not my best interest lies in doing my best this cycle at 22 years old, or taking a couple years to progressively master the LSAT to score 170+ and apply, thereby joining the ranks of the 25+ year olds who are apparently are quite common in the T14 these days. (Avg. age is 26 now, right?)

Any input, advice, or constructive criticism is much needed and appreciated. Thanks!
Last edited by griffinz on Sun Aug 21, 2016 7:46 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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USayinBoalt

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Re: Continue with Sept. retake or change plans

Postby USayinBoalt » Wed Aug 17, 2016 10:44 pm

I would say you shouldn't retake until you are PTing a few points ABOVE the score you are comfortable with. The age thing really doesn't matter at all, but the score on the other hand does. Study at your own pace and get that score you want/need to get into your dream school

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Blueprint Mithun

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Re: Continue with Sept. retake or change plans

Postby Blueprint Mithun » Thu Aug 18, 2016 9:47 am

griffinz wrote:Hi all -

This is going to be a rather long post, but here's the main point: I'm on my third retake, planning for September, but I do not feel adequately prepared. Should I continue slaving over the LSAT for the next 5 weeks and take it, or should I plan to apply next cycle or beyond?

For a little background... I'm a first generation college graduate (class of 2016). I studied political science with a minor in business administration at a state school - 3.76 GPA. During my senior year, I took the LSAT for the first time in October 2015. However, I canceled that score, because my college apartment was flooded that morning by Hurricane Joaquin. So, I retook in December 2015, and I scored a 161. Honestly, I scored better than anticipated based on my feelings after the test.

I applied to several schools... from T40 up, got nearly full rides at Wake, W&L, and George Mason. I got waitlisted at BC, BU, and GWU (my top pick that cycle). I decided that I was interested in public interest and/or government work, and I felt like my options weren't that great, plus they're just not great period. Based on my interest in public service, I decided to take a year and do a service year with AmeriCorps VISTA in DC. I planned to prep during that time and retake in September. I've gotten a good solid month of study down - revisiting the online Powerscore course and working through the material. I've just started taking PTs again, and I've scored a 159 and 160 so far.

I know I shouldn't necessarily expect to see big gains at this point, but I don't feel as though I'm going to be able pull of my target score of 167+ (GULC up or bust at this point) in the time that remains. That may be different if I weren't working ~50 hours/week, but I don't feel like I have adequate time considering. I've managed to get in 2-3 (little more on test days recently) hours a day, 4-6 on the weekend days. Currently, I'm planning to take 14 more PTs (Mon, Wed, Sat) and subsequently review them - then drill sections/question types accordingly. Of course, it's going to be terribly difficult to maintain that schedule while attempting to get actual effective study time in without running out of energy/focus.

I realize that it may sound like I'm jumping the gun here, because there's still time left. Realistically, I'll likely continue on until the week prior and make a judgement (C, no C). I figured I'd get this out there now though so that I can take advantage of the sage advice TLS has to offer. I'm really struggling with whether or not my best interest lies in doing my best this cycle at 22 years old, or taking a couple years to progressively master the LSAT to score 170+ and apply, thereby joining the ranks of the 25+ year olds who are apparently are quite common in the T14 these days. (Avg. age is 26 now, right?)

Any input, advice, or constructive criticism is much needed and appreciated. Thanks!



I think you're better off passing this cycle. Going up 8-10 points in the span of a little more than a month is difficult, and will basically require you to make studying for the test your first priority. Given that you're working 50 hours a week, that's just not possible as I see it.

At 22 years old, you're young to be entering law school. Sure, there are people who go to law school right of college, but does that matter? People have different trajectories, and if this is a decision that you're truly committed to, you're doing yourself a disservice by not taking the time to improve your LSAT potential (and consequently your future career options).

In terms of how to prep, I wouldn't jump to taking that many preptests yet. I think there's probably a lot more to be gained from re-learning how to approach question types (try some new materials) and drilling.

griffinz

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Re: UPDATE: "Continue with Sept. retake or..." Need advice for 12 month study

Postby griffinz » Sun Aug 21, 2016 7:58 pm

Also thanks to the two who replied previously. I think I knew that was the answer and just needed confirmation. I appreciate it!

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RamTitan

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Re: Continue with Sept. retake or change plans

Postby RamTitan » Sun Aug 21, 2016 10:09 pm

USayinBoalt wrote:I would say you shouldn't retake until you are PTing a few points ABOVE the score you are comfortable with. The age thing really doesn't matter at all, but the score on the other hand does. Study at your own pace and get that score you want/need to get into your dream school

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