Should I Take A Prep Course Help?! Fulltime Work but Extremely Motivated

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whelmed
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Should I Take A Prep Course Help?! Fulltime Work but Extremely Motivated

Postby whelmed » Thu Jan 11, 2018 10:23 am

Hi Folks!

I'm starting to prepare for the June 2018 LSAT. I am currently working a full time job (that always gets out at 5pm thankfully), and am wondering if a prep course or self-study plan is best. My goal is a 180. I am extremely motivated and committed to this goal, but I am feeling anxious about my time. The value I see a prep course could offer might be having someone else keep track of my progress and organize the pacing. I am worried that, with self-study, keeping a pace is difficult. On the other hand, after sitting in on a class, I don't want to be wasting my time with other people's inability to do the work or keep up.

If I am committed to doing all the work of the prep course plus additional studying, do you think this would be the "easier" route rather than designing my own study schedule (as in, I would save time by following a per-established path that I could then modify to my preferences)?

I know a lot your answers will allude that it is personal preference, but is there anyone out here who did a prep course while working or self-studied while working and has insight?

Thank you so much for your help.

AJordan
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Re: Should I Take A Prep Course Help?! Fulltime Work but Extremely Motivated

Postby AJordan » Thu Jan 11, 2018 11:21 am

I got enough out of 7Sage to push myself to a 170-175 scorer without any individual help but I'm leery of most to replicate that. Neither option is sufficient nor necessary. It's up to personal learning style and preference.

To your specific route, it's hard to say without an honest, timed diagnostic. I think prep courses are great at pulling people from the 140s/150s into the 160s but beyond mid 160s I think a good number of prep courses actually teach material that is detrimental to the top 1% of scorers. Once you pass 165 I think more time value is added from more individual attention. I'm almost always a proponent of tutoring for individuals past the 165 plateau but I think it's usually not an effective use of money until that point unless you really value having the same person shepherding you along the entire way.

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whelmed
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Re: Should I Take A Prep Course Help?! Fulltime Work but Extremely Motivated

Postby whelmed » Thu Jan 11, 2018 11:27 am

AJordan wrote:I got enough out of 7Sage to push myself to a 170-175 scorer without any individual help but I'm leery of most to replicate that. Neither option is sufficient nor necessary. It's up to personal learning style and preference.

To your specific route, it's hard to say without an honest, timed diagnostic. I think prep courses are great at pulling people from the 140s/150s into the 160s but beyond mid 160s I think a good number of prep courses actually teach material that is detrimental to the top 1% of scorers. Once you pass 165 I think more time value is added from more individual attention. I'm almost always a proponent of tutoring for individuals past the 165 plateau but I think it's usually not an effective use of money until that point unless you really value having the same person shepherding you along the entire way.


Gotcha. Thank you for the two cents! I'm taking a diagnostic this weekend which will hopefully help with my decision. I didn't mention it but I had considered self studying and then getting a tutor once I knew what I needed help on, but it is comparatively less teaching hours for the price.

peege
Posts: 83
Joined: Wed Oct 11, 2017 3:21 pm

Re: Should I Take A Prep Course Help?! Fulltime Work but Extremely Motivated

Postby peege » Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:15 pm

If you're goal is a 180, a prep course probably won't be worth it for you, but like the previous poster said, it does depend on how strong your diagnostic is. Prep courses are great for people who a) aren't great test-takers, b) aren't strong with the fundamental skills required to do well on the LSAT, or c) aren't aiming for a 165+ score. 7sage comes highly recommended as far as online courses go, and it's half the price of a Kaplan course, which I would also argue is lower quality than 7sage.
On an anecdotal level, I have several friends who took Kaplan's course or one offered through their school and they only improved by a point or two from not-so-great diagnostics. You'll have to put in just as much work outside of the course as you would if you just self-studied in order to get the same improvement.

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zhyunjc
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Joined: Tue Nov 21, 2017 3:35 am

Re: Should I Take A Prep Course Help?! Fulltime Work but Extremely Motivated

Postby zhyunjc » Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:33 pm

whelmed wrote:Hi Folks!

I'm starting to prepare for the June 2018 LSAT. I am currently working a full time job (that always gets out at 5pm thankfully), and am wondering if a prep course or self-study plan is best. My goal is a 180. I am extremely motivated and committed to this goal, but I am feeling anxious about my time. The value I see a prep course could offer might be having someone else keep track of my progress and organize the pacing. I am worried that, with self-study, keeping a pace is difficult. On the other hand, after sitting in on a class, I don't want to be wasting my time with other people's inability to do the work or keep up.

If I am committed to doing all the work of the prep course plus additional studying, do you think this would be the "easier" route rather than designing my own study schedule (as in, I would save time by following a per-established path that I could then modify to my preferences)?

I know a lot your answers will allude that it is personal preference, but is there anyone out here who did a prep course while working or self-studied while working and has insight?

Thank you so much for your help.


Do you have an initial practice score, by any chance?

I studied for the LSAT while working full-time as well! Before I started working, though, I took a prep class that iirc lasted about only 3 weeks or so; but the instructor was very approachable online. The class was also held only on weekends, so it would fit into my work schedule, though again I wasn't working at the time. It laid a great foundation for me that helped me study on my own in the evenings when I did start full-time!

MonicaYoung_LOL
Posts: 176
Joined: Thu Nov 09, 2017 9:04 pm

Re: Should I Take A Prep Course Help?! Fulltime Work but Extremely Motivated

Postby MonicaYoung_LOL » Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:55 pm

whelmed wrote:Hi Folks!

I'm starting to prepare for the June 2018 LSAT. I am currently working a full time job (that always gets out at 5pm thankfully), and am wondering if a prep course or self-study plan is best. My goal is a 180. I am extremely motivated and committed to this goal, but I am feeling anxious about my time. The value I see a prep course could offer might be having someone else keep track of my progress and organize the pacing. I am worried that, with self-study, keeping a pace is difficult. On the other hand, after sitting in on a class, I don't want to be wasting my time with other people's inability to do the work or keep up.

If I am committed to doing all the work of the prep course plus additional studying, do you think this would be the "easier" route rather than designing my own study schedule (as in, I would save time by following a per-established path that I could then modify to my preferences)?

I know a lot your answers will allude that it is personal preference, but is there anyone out here who did a prep course while working or self-studied while working and has insight?

Thank you so much for your help.


I'd probably disagree with some of what was said here. At the time when I was studying for the LSAT, I was also working full-time (though I am K-JD, so it was just an internship), and I found that was very helpful about the prep course that I took was that I was able to stay on target. I knew that, no matter what, every week I was required to go to the course, study for the course, etc. It really made it so that I couldn't say, "Oh, I have so much work and I don't want to do this today" because I knew that it had to be done. I went from a 160-ish to a 174 with TestMasters, so that was a pretty drastic jump, and I think I wouldn't have been able to do it without the course because they really kept me on target. Again, like you said though, it's all personal preference. Just thought I might be able to give you a slightly different take since most people were pretty anti-prep course already lol!

BagelBiter
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Joined: Sun Dec 24, 2017 4:55 pm

Re: Should I Take A Prep Course Help?! Fulltime Work but Extremely Motivated

Postby BagelBiter » Thu Jan 11, 2018 7:35 pm

I tried self studying while working, but found that it was hard to stay organized. I am finding it much easier to keep on track and assess my weaknesses now that I'm using 7Sage. I think that courses have the benefit of keeping you accountable for addressing your weaknesses/staying on a strict schedule. They can definitely get a bit pedantic and repetitive once you start scoring 170+ though...

Don't put too much stock in people saying that prep courses are useless for attaining high level scores—I've seen many people that are heavily active in the 7Sage community achieve 175+ scores and get into top schools this cycle. I'm sure the same can be said for any of the other courses out there. It comes down to whether you think you'll benefit from the extra organization and guidance that a course would provide, or if you think you'll be organized enough to keep yourself on track with only self study materials.

If you choose the self-study track, check out the LSAT Trainer — I know a lot of people like it as much/better than the PowerScore series, and it comes with free study schedules. Maybe give self study a shot first, then see if you think upgrading to a full course would be worth it after you have a few PTs under your belt.

coskigirl
Posts: 93
Joined: Mon May 22, 2017 9:45 am

Re: Should I Take A Prep Course Help?! Fulltime Work but Extremely Motivated

Postby coskigirl » Fri Jan 12, 2018 1:05 pm

I did the Blueprint online course as a full-time employee to prep. It helped keep me on track and gave me resources which I appreciated. The studying is a big animal so having a schedule laid out for me was extremely helpful. My only warning is that I had planned on doing a lot of studying/watching their videos while I was traveling, especially internationally. Unfortunately, the videos were blocked from streaming on flights (same as Netflix would be) so that curtailed use of those hours so beware if you plan any of that.




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