Do you guys review your PTs?

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MrSam

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Do you guys review your PTs?

Postby MrSam » Sat Nov 05, 2016 12:44 pm

I did a quick search to see how many people actually review practice tests, and for those who do/did, what method was used. It seems like a good amount of people engage in some form of review - makes sense.
Anyhow, I'm curious to know how many of you don't actually review your practice tests. In other words, is it beneficial to just take a test, grade it, do a short (1 day) review, and move on to the next PT?

The Dec LSAT is a little less than a month away, and I still have about 15 PTs to take. I'm wondering if I should just take all 15 PTs - in which case, I won't be able to review them thoroughly. Or, if I should finish all of the PTs from 70-78 (and 79 if it's released on time).
I used to do 2 tests/week + Blind Review. For those who don't know, blind reviewing is simply taking a test, going back and redoing all of the questions that you missed/weren't "100% sure" about, then grading it with your initial answers and your blind review answers.

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21157015576609

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Re: Do you guys review your PTs?

Postby 21157015576609 » Sat Nov 05, 2016 2:19 pm

MrSam wrote:I did a quick search to see how many people actually review practice tests, and for those who do/did, what method was used. It seems like a good amount of people engage in some form of review - makes sense.
Anyhow, I'm curious to know how many of you don't actually review your practice tests. In other words, is it beneficial to just take a test, grade it, do a short (1 day) review, and move on to the next PT?

The Dec LSAT is a little less than a month away, and I still have about 15 PTs to take. I'm wondering if I should just take all 15 PTs - in which case, I won't be able to review them thoroughly. Or, if I should finish all of the PTs from 70-78 (and 79 if it's released on time).
I used to do 2 tests/week + Blind Review. For those who don't know, blind reviewing is simply taking a test, going back and redoing all of the questions that you missed/weren't "100% sure" about, then grading it with your initial answers and your blind review answers.

Taking more tests won't help you if you keep getting the same kinds of questions wrong. Review keeps you from making the same mistakes over and over again. If you're getting so many wrong that you can't meaningfully review your tests in one day, you need more time.

I'd take 9-11 more tests with review between now and December 3, with only light work for the 2-3 days leading up to the test. But that's just me.

MrSam

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Re: Do you guys review your PTs?

Postby MrSam » Sat Nov 05, 2016 2:58 pm

21157015576609 wrote:
MrSam wrote:I did a quick search to see how many people actually review practice tests, and for those who do/did, what method was used. It seems like a good amount of people engage in some form of review - makes sense.
Anyhow, I'm curious to know how many of you don't actually review your practice tests. In other words, is it beneficial to just take a test, grade it, do a short (1 day) review, and move on to the next PT?

The Dec LSAT is a little less than a month away, and I still have about 15 PTs to take. I'm wondering if I should just take all 15 PTs - in which case, I won't be able to review them thoroughly. Or, if I should finish all of the PTs from 70-78 (and 79 if it's released on time).
I used to do 2 tests/week + Blind Review. For those who don't know, blind reviewing is simply taking a test, going back and redoing all of the questions that you missed/weren't "100% sure" about, then grading it with your initial answers and your blind review answers.

Taking more tests won't help you if you keep getting the same kinds of questions wrong. Review keeps you from making the same mistakes over and over again. If you're getting so many wrong that you can't meaningfully review your tests in one day, you need more time.

I'd take 9-11 more tests with review between now and December 3, with only light work for the 2-3 days leading up to the test. But that's just me.


Thanks for the advice. It typically takes me 2-3 days to review a single test. Not because I'm getting a ton of questions wrong, but because I also review the questions that I'm not 100% sure about (e.g. if there's a question where I eliminated 3 answer choices and chose one that I know is correct, I'll still review the question).
I'm thinking of taking and blind reviewing all of the "70" PTs + taking and not reviewing 2 or 3 of the "60" PTs. I've been studying for a year, but haven't seen any crazy improvements. Diagnostic was an embarrassingly low 138, and now I'm stuck averaging 158. Funny thing is, my blind review scores are almost always above 170, with an average of 173.
I'm currently aiming for a T25 with a GPA of 3.9...the LSAT seems to be the only thing keeping me out of the competitive applicant pool.

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Thomas Hagan, ESQ.

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Re: Do you guys review your PTs?

Postby Thomas Hagan, ESQ. » Sat Nov 05, 2016 3:35 pm

You're not actually studying if you don't review PTs.

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kindofcanuck

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Re: Do you guys review your PTs?

Postby kindofcanuck » Sat Nov 05, 2016 4:42 pm

Thomas Hagan, ESQ. wrote:You're not actually studying if you don't review PTs.


Precisely.

Just taking the test, marking it, then going on to the next one is potentially building stamina, but will do little to nothing to help your thought processes, and therefore improvement.

If you're getting any questions wrong, you need to be reviewing.

MrSam

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Re: Do you guys review your PTs?

Postby MrSam » Sat Nov 05, 2016 4:44 pm

Thomas Hagan, ESQ. wrote:You're not actually studying if you don't review PTs.


That's what I've always believed. So far, I've blind reviewed all but 3 PTs. I guess the reason why I asked is because there's a month left until the Dec test, and I'm wondering if I'm better off taking 15 PTs with minimal review, or 7-8 with full-review.

MrSam

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Re: Do you guys review your PTs?

Postby MrSam » Sat Nov 05, 2016 4:45 pm

kindofcanuck wrote:
Thomas Hagan, ESQ. wrote:You're not actually studying if you don't review PTs.


Precisely.

Just taking the test, marking it, then going on to the next one is potentially building stamina, but will do little to nothing to help your thought processes, and therefore improvement.

If you're getting any questions wrong, you need to be reviewing.



Got it. I'll stick with reviewing the tests. Truth is, stamina is exactly what I need. If I had an additional 10-15 minutes per section (one can only dream) I could easily score in the 99th percentile. My issue has always been timing.

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Thomas Hagan, ESQ.

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Re: Do you guys review your PTs?

Postby Thomas Hagan, ESQ. » Sat Nov 05, 2016 4:46 pm

MrSam wrote:
Thomas Hagan, ESQ. wrote:You're not actually studying if you don't review PTs.


That's what I've always believed. So far, I've blind reviewed all but 3 PTs. I guess the reason why I asked is because there's a month left until the Dec test, and I'm wondering if I'm better off taking 15 PTs with minimal review, or 7-8 with full-review.


7-8 with full-review for sure. I would rather sit down and dissect each question and each answer choice (even the wrong ones) for 3 PTs rather than just simply "take" 30 PTs and move on.

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Barack O'Drama

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Re: Do you guys review your PTs?

Postby Barack O'Drama » Sat Nov 05, 2016 6:40 pm

21157015576609 wrote:
MrSam wrote:I did a quick search to see how many people actually review practice tests, and for those who do/did, what method was used. It seems like a good amount of people engage in some form of review - makes sense.
Anyhow, I'm curious to know how many of you don't actually review your practice tests. In other words, is it beneficial to just take a test, grade it, do a short (1 day) review, and move on to the next PT?

The Dec LSAT is a little less than a month away, and I still have about 15 PTs to take. I'm wondering if I should just take all 15 PTs - in which case, I won't be able to review them thoroughly. Or, if I should finish all of the PTs from 70-78 (and 79 if it's released on time).
I used to do 2 tests/week + Blind Review. For those who don't know, blind reviewing is simply taking a test, going back and redoing all of the questions that you missed/weren't "100% sure" about, then grading it with your initial answers and your blind review answers.

Taking more tests won't help you if you keep getting the same kinds of questions wrong. Review keeps you from making the same mistakes over and over again. If you're getting so many wrong that you can't meaningfully review your tests in one day, you need more time.

I'd take 9-11 more tests with review between now and December 3, with only light work for the 2-3 days leading up to the test. But that's just me.



Review is crucial. Without it, you're almost certainly resigning yourself to the minute diminishing returns you'll get from just doing PTs without thorough review
Last edited by Barack O'Drama on Fri Jan 26, 2018 7:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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galeatus

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Re: Do you guys review your PTs?

Postby galeatus » Sun Nov 06, 2016 2:05 am

MrSam wrote:Got it. I'll stick with reviewing the tests. Truth is, stamina is exactly what I need. If I had an additional 10-15 minutes per section (one can only dream) I could easily score in the 99th percentile. My issue has always been timing.


With all due respect, that's not strictly true.

By trying to finish a section within the time limits, you will have to push yourself to make quick decisions, which requires a lot more than just stamina. If you can score within the 99th percentile while being overtime that suggest that your intuition is pretty good and you're already pretty familiar with the questions. But intuition and familiarity will be of limited help when you try to push yourself to be within the time limit, and you need to have a systematic way of approaching each question to slim down the process of answering them, otherwise you will find yourself being horribly inconsistent without much of a clue wrt how to improve.

If you haven't picked up the LR/LG Bibles you probably should, and if you have already I would say you should review the PTs using the frameworks in the Bibles, and make sure that you use these frameworks when answering every question.


Oh and one more tip (coming from experience) is that definitely do not burn through all your PTs prepping for your first LSAT by doing them just for the sake of doing them - I made that mistake and put myself in a really crap position for my second take as I had no new material at all to gauge where my skill level was actually at.

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Nonconsecutive

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Re: Do you guys review your PTs?

Postby Nonconsecutive » Sun Nov 06, 2016 3:50 pm

Just as an odd counterpoint to the additional time aspect (though I agree with most of the advice ITT) giving myself extra time on a PT actually hurt me, because it changed the way I approached the various questions. For example, under the standard time constraints, I studied and attacked questions in a manner that was very specific to those time restrictions. Whereas if I took an untimed PT late in the game, it screwed me up because I'd "overthink" (for lack of a better term) the Q and in the end I found that the extra time hindered my overall progress. So, for me at least, I think that if you spend too much time worrying about time that you don't have, that you're going to do yourself a disservice.

Early in the game I think untimed PTs have value, but once you're really trying to hone your skill set I'm not so sure - since you don't have that time and won't have that time, don't give it to yourself. Spend the extra time on review, which is what you seem to be doing.

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Rupert Pupkin

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Re: Do you guys review your PTs?

Postby Rupert Pupkin » Mon Nov 07, 2016 3:17 pm

Nonconsecutive wrote:Just as an odd counterpoint to the additional time aspect (though I agree with most of the advice ITT) giving myself extra time on a PT actually hurt me, because it changed the way I approached the various questions. For example, under the standard time constraints, I studied and attacked questions in a manner that was very specific to those time restrictions. Whereas if I took an untimed PT late in the game, it screwed me up because I'd "overthink" (for lack of a better term) the Q and in the end I found that the extra time hindered my overall progress. So, for me at least, I think that if you spend too much time worrying about time that you don't have, that you're going to do yourself a disservice.

Early in the game I think untimed PTs have value, but once you're really trying to hone your skill set I'm not so sure - since you don't have that time and won't have that time, don't give it to yourself. Spend the extra time on review, which is what you seem to be doing.


I agree with this. I would say in your earliest weeks of prep and thus, your first few PTs, going overtime is fine and probably best. But at this point you need to be able to throw haymakers under the time constraints and learn how to think accordingly and develop a thought process specifically endured for such time constraints. And if you focus too much on just content and not that content under the time constraints you will not effectively build your thought process and skillset in a concise and swift manner. It really makes the world of difference if you take every PT like its the real thing, and if you can handle getting stumped in a PT and sticking to the time constraints, if that happens during a real test you will crush right through it. For me, If i got really caught off guard, I didnt want to "waste" a PT so i would pause for a minute then restart my timer a minute later or whatever it may have been. DONT DO THIS. Take it like its the real deal and develop effective critical thinking and problem solving skills.

Reviewing is definitely most important and drilling weakness questions. I need to spend more time doing this myself.



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