PT vs Real Test

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

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PT vs Real Test

Postby christmascookie » Thu Jan 26, 2017 3:12 pm

For those of you who have taken the LSAT, how did your last practice test scores differ from your actual LSAT score? What were these scores?

And what do you attribute to this change, if you did observe a change?

somedeadman

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Re: PT vs Real Test

Postby somedeadman » Thu Jan 26, 2017 5:11 pm

It's commonly said you should expect to be -3/+3 of the average of the last 5 tests taken before the real one. With that said, don't gamble on wasting a take if you have to pray to do better than you normally do. In addition, there are many examples on this board of people whose experiences do not align with this rule.

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The_Pluviophile

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Re: PT vs Real Test

Postby The_Pluviophile » Thu Jan 26, 2017 5:43 pm

As someone who did outperform their last few PTs (by 4 points or so), I firmly support the position that if you're counting on outperforming, you shouldn't be taking it yet (unless, I suppose, its your first attempt and you just want a practice go at the real thing?).

As for your second question, regarding what I consider to be the reason for this increase in score, I'll share, but only with the stipulation that it is a unique circumstance that probably can't be replicated.

Due to an act of god, my first LSAT was cancelled half way through (this is a long story, not relevant here). Obviously I can't say for sure how well it would have gone for me, but I don't think it was a peak performance. So then I ended up in a position where I had to retake it around two weeks later. At this point I'd had enough of the LSAT, used almost all of my PTs already, and I had to start working again (I had taken time off to study). I showed up to the test sick with a cold and having not done anything LSAT related in two weeks. Somehow, I believe my general "I don't give a shit anymore" attitude kept me from freaking out to much, and helped me really focus.

Converting this to advice for others? I'd say don't be afraid to take several days, if not a full week off prior to your test day, particularly if you think stress is going to be a major factor against you. Also, burnout is real. If you think its happening to you (you start scoring well below your average, for example), just walk away for awhile.

TAD

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Re: PT vs Real Test

Postby TAD » Thu Jan 26, 2017 5:55 pm

The_Pluviophile wrote:I believe my general "I don't give a shit anymore" attitude kept me from freaking out to much, and helped me really focus.

The_Pluviophile wrote:Also, burnout is real.


This +1000000. I outperformed my last two PT by 7 points. Although, in general, I hit within my PT range during the LSAT, I was practice testing significantly below my average near test day. I ended up giving myself 4 days of absolute rest before test day and said screw it when I got to the test center, and stopped giving a shit.

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dianersg

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Re: PT vs Real Test

Postby dianersg » Thu Jan 26, 2017 6:04 pm

I was PTing around 172-5 in the weeks leading up to the test and scored a 170 on the real thing. I didn't practice with a real analog watch and I got really psyched out by timing for some reason on the real thing, so I would make sure you get as close to test day settings as possible.

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Instrumental

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Re: PT vs Real Test

Postby Instrumental » Thu Jan 26, 2017 6:10 pm

christmascookie wrote:For those of you who have taken the LSAT, how did your last practice test scores differ from your actual LSAT score? What were these scores?

And what do you attribute to this change, if you did observe a change?

For the December test, my last three PT scores were
173 (-7)
170 (-10)
170 (-11)

and my actual LSAT score was
169 (-12)

Slightly lower than what I was averaging, but being within three points of the average of your final PTs is pretty standard.

September was the real doozy.
My last three PTs prior to the test were
168
167
170

and my actual was 162. Bad nerves and I just felt the test was more difficult (possibly because of bad nerves).



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