Great Advice on How to get 160+ on the LSAT...

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MixedGirl2009
Posts: 76
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Re:

Postby MixedGirl2009 » Sun May 24, 2009 10:01 am

themillsman22 wrote:
1) What score did you get? 166

2) What books did you use? (Kaplan, Powerscore LRB, Powerscore LGB, etc)

LR Bible: Mildly recommend.
Kaplan LSAT 180: Eh, it's ok. The Logic Games are so ridiculous that it makes the actual ones seem easy, but the other sections are weak.
Barron's Passkey: Nothing special.
McGraw Hill: Nothing special either. Gets you acquainted with the test like any basic review book.
All 3 of the 10 actual LSATs books: Obviously, as many have said before, this is the key. (Especially if you review and learn from mistakes ACTIVELY)

That said, if I could do it all over, I'd still probably buy all the books. The non powerscore books are usually around 20 bucks (Passkey is only 8 bucks), and they all have more practice problems and tests.

3) What prep courses did you take (if any)? Full length, weekend?

NONE.

4) How long did you study for, and under what conditions? (during school, during the summer, etc)

I started about 2.5 months before, and spent about a month reading basic books and getting acquainted with the test. Then during finals and after school I probably took one preptest a day for a solid month. About 2 weeks before the test I broke my leg and didn't take as many preptests religiously, which probably affected my rhythm come test day.

5) How many preptests did you do?
~40 total, ~30 official preptests.

6) What would you change if you were to do it again?
I would have taken a few more tests with other people or done something to better mimic the pressure of the actual exam. It didn't factor in too much on the exam day, but anything can happen. I think I would have focused less on taking preptests everyday, and done more studying. I think that's the only way I could have improved my peak because I plateaued at the low 170s.

7) Any other misc comments/suggestions.

Before the test I was ranging from 169-172 or so on my prep tests. Test day, 166. Such is life.

My best advice is to actually read this thread, because I would have modified my study habits much earlier had I been a member of TLS then. I don't think a prep course is necessary if you have the dedication and self-discipline to study consistently by yourself, and if you can learn well from reading. The Powerscore books are definitely a good investment.
Good luck to everyone, and I hope my advice helped someone else like other people's advice helped me.


I'll post in about 3.5 months after I get my retake score and update how things went that time around.


THOSE WHO PLAN TO RETAKE AND STUDIED HARD THE FIRST TIME-PLEASE READ
Well it's been 3.5 months, and I've retaken.

1) Score: 172

2) Books: 3 Books of 10 preptests plus 8 individual ones

3) No class

4) Like the first time, I started studying about 2.5 months before. However, I did a lot of things differently. I spread out my studying. Rather than take complete tests, or take them every single day, I took a section or two (or perhaps the full thing if I had time). I aimed for 3 tests a week. This was a great pace as I did not get burned out. The week before the test I took one test everyday, and twice I took 2 tests in one day. My entire study method was strictly testing and seeing what I did wrong.

The problem at the start of my studying was that I had already taken all the practice tests for June (at least the 30 in the books). It really doesn't matter. I mean, some questions might be familiar, but it's really all about learning the test, and the more you take, the better you'll do. When I took each section, one thing I did was strive for fast times (i.e. 25-30 minutes). The benefit of practicing faster is that on the real test, you can go back to the 2 or 3 that are tricky and use your extra time to solve those.

5) The second time around I took 38 preptests.

6) Luckily, I actually had the chance to do it all again. The only thing I might change this time would be to find a way to relax before the test. I was actually more anxious the second time. I kept thinking " I underperformed once, what if I do it again. " You have to do everything possible to try to push those pesky negative thoughts away, because they'll drag you down (and destroy your intestines during the exam)

7) I was truly shocked by my score. After the test I truly thought I needed to cancel (that first lsat messed me up so bad...). Thankfully I decided not to cancel and just let it fly. I was praying I did not do worse than the first time. I put a lot of work into studying, and I advise anyone who thought/knew they could do better to give it a try. Even if you don't do any better, at least you don't have any regrets.
I practiced a lot better the second time around as well, (high 170s on the ones I already took-- I really didn't put much stock in those scores) but 170-180 on the few preptests I didn't. Even if your confidence is shot after the first one, seriously, don't give up. If you do better you can always write an addendum if you have a good reason, too. Best of luck to all, and I hope my post encourages someone to toss their hat in the LSAT ring one more time.



Thank you :) I'm almost certain I will re-take this September at this point and I intend to follow some of your methods. I had planned to read all the powerscore books, do prep tests 3 days a week and review each the day after, and give myself 30 minutes to finish sections in case I go blank for a few minutes on the actual day. I've already ordered the books, and I hope to have them done by mid-June and start running practice tests.

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Z'Barron
Posts: 41
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Re: LSAT Studying Advice

Postby Z'Barron » Sun May 24, 2009 2:33 pm

Ken wrote:1) 173

2) Princeton Review books and the real LSATs.

Simply the best source for taking and learning about the LSAT is to get as many real sample LSATs as you can. While other companies may seek to recreate the LSAT, they do not have the benefit of the experimental section which is utilized to weed out bad questions on the real LSATs. Order as many real LSATs booklets as you can. Try to learn from your mistakes by reviewing your errors.

The Powerscore books came out after I took the LSAT, but I have heard that they are excellent.

3) I taught the LSAT and GRE for Princeton Review. They needed a new LSAT instructor and they hired me based solely on my initial diagnostic. Thus, I was able to teach myself for free while teaching others.

While in my unbiased opinion, my classes were excellent, their effectiveness heavily varied by the quality of the instructor. Ask to sit in on 1 or 2 classes of all the test prep companies you are considering (they generally will let you in and there is certainly nothing to lose by asking). Evaluate whether the instructor is a great instructor or not and ask other students after the class if they are learning from the class and materials.

I recommend considering several test prep companies if possible. I have heard that Testmasters is one of the best test prep companies out there. (http://www.testmasters180.com). Note that I get no benefit from recommending them.

4) I studied the LSAT for an entire summer. I simply told my parents that how I fared on the LSAT was more important or as important as my four years of college. Thus, it was essential that I have the time to properly prepare myself. I was somewhat rewarded, going from a 167 to a 173. While not everyone will have such indulgent parents, try to make the time to seriously focus upon preparing for the LSAT. Few things in your life will have more of an impact and this is time well spent.

5) I took over 40 prep tests. When I took the LSAT there were a lot fewer prep tests out there. Now I would likely take as many as I possibly could and not take any of the quasi ones Princeton Review and others have created.

6) Take more real prep tests. Study my mistakes more instead of just continually taking the quasi LSAT tests Princeton Review created. Now that more prep tests are available, I would focus solely on the real tests.

I would buy and learn from the Powerscore books. They seem designed for those who want to score in the upper echelon.

7) Any other misc comments/suggestions.

The LSAT is FUN!!! I am not kidding, but I really enjoyed the months I spent studying for the LSAT. I felt that by learning to master the test I was becoming more intelligent. It is the best standardized test out there and to become great at the logic games and argument sections will make you a better lawyer and smarter person. View it all as a game. Similar to a very complicated crossword puzzle. The excitement I had for studying allowed me to study for hours and resulted in my score.

Take a logical reasoning course while in college. It will likely be titled "Introduction to Critical Thinking" or with a similar title. This will greatly assist you in diagraming, which is essential to succeeding on the games section.

Speed is the name of the game. I had many students complain that if they had all day they could get every answer right, but because of the time constraints they had problems. Practice under rigid time limits to get your pacing down. If you are stuck on one problem and it is just one problem (not part of a many question game), just make your best guess and move on.

Guessing wisely. It is not so much about finding the right answer as eliminating the wrong ones. Try to quickly eliminate 3 of the choices and then hone in on which of the 2 is correct.

Find a personal system that works for you. While you can learn how to diagram from your LSAT course, also utilize symbols that work well for yourself. No one else has to understand your diagrams, just you.

Save time whenever possible. I used to first complete the entire section and only then fill in the bubbles in the answer sheet. I felt that by not having to go from the test booklet to the scantron for each question saved me a lot of time. You could do this on a smaller process and just fill in after completing each large section or page. Note there is a risk here that time could run out without your having filled in all the bubbles, so have your time management down before utilizing this tip.

Cancelling your score is not the end of the world. First, avoid cancelling if you can. There will be a natural tendency to think that you did worst that you actually did. And to put yourself through the torture of 3 more months of LSAT prep plus possibly delaying your applications is not a fun thing to do. That being said, if something occurred during the test that you not would not be repeated and if you really feel like you bombed, cancelling may be the best route. While multiple LSAT scores are averaged by most law schools, a cancelled score is viewed as a slight negative but will not bring your average score down. Cancelling is only an option to implement after much decision and perhaps consulting with others.

Do not panic during the test. I probably lost a few points because I panicked when I got an experimental games section that was harder than anything I had ever seen before. I kept on thinking back to that games section during the test and it was not until the last section, which was another games section, that I realized the first one was the experimental section. Just relax and be confident during the test. Mistakes happen. I missed 8 questions and still did amazingly well. You can miss 20 and still have an excellent score. The LSAT is a forgiving test, trust in your abilities while taking it.

Get a good nights rest the night before. I was sharing a hotel room with a fraternity brother (there is no way I could get a good night's sleep on a Friday night at the Fraternity house) and his idiotic girlfriend calls at 1 am from Germany wishing him good luck. I barely slept after that. Paying for my own hotel room would have been a good investment. Most students will not need to rent a hotel room if they live in a quiet area.

Relax the day before the test. When you wake up the morning of the test tackle a few problems to get in the mindset.

View where you will be taking the test ahead of time so there is no rushing around trying to find the lecture hall. Get there in plenty of time. Do not let others stress levels be contagious. You are primed and ready for battle after doing all of the above.

Note that sometime in the next 2 years I am going to videotape myself teaching the LSAT and give it away for free. I hate that Kaplan/Princeton Review charge such exorbinant fees for their prep classes. Definitely take a prep class as for most it is money well spent, but I do wish it were cheaper.


Overall, study hard but enjoy your time studying. This will be the most effective time you spend for how you fare on the LSAT is as important as your 4-5 years in college.


+100 I so agree with this!

I have actually begun having fun taking the exams. Even when I mis a question, I think of it as a game; i pick the question apart and try to figure out what subtlety I missed in the language. I used to hate the test, now I love practicing every day. When your score climbs, you attitude changes and that makes your score climb even more.

I have found that involving myself in the arguments of the RC passages - engaging in a silent dialogue where I respond to the author's and subjects' arguments - makes them easier to tackle. I was in the mid-140's, and now I am in the mid-late 160's consistently. I am hoping to break 170 at least twice before taking the real thing in june.

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MixedGirl2009
Posts: 76
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Re: LSAT Studying Advice

Postby MixedGirl2009 » Sun May 24, 2009 4:13 pm

Z'Barron wrote:
Ken wrote:1) 173

2) Princeton Review books and the real LSATs.

Simply the best source for taking and learning about the LSAT is to get as many real sample LSATs as you can. While other companies may seek to recreate the LSAT, they do not have the benefit of the experimental section which is utilized to weed out bad questions on the real LSATs. Order as many real LSATs booklets as you can. Try to learn from your mistakes by reviewing your errors.

The Powerscore books came out after I took the LSAT, but I have heard that they are excellent.

3) I taught the LSAT and GRE for Princeton Review. They needed a new LSAT instructor and they hired me based solely on my initial diagnostic. Thus, I was able to teach myself for free while teaching others.

While in my unbiased opinion, my classes were excellent, their effectiveness heavily varied by the quality of the instructor. Ask to sit in on 1 or 2 classes of all the test prep companies you are considering (they generally will let you in and there is certainly nothing to lose by asking). Evaluate whether the instructor is a great instructor or not and ask other students after the class if they are learning from the class and materials.

I recommend considering several test prep companies if possible. I have heard that Testmasters is one of the best test prep companies out there. (http://www.testmasters180.com). Note that I get no benefit from recommending them.

4) I studied the LSAT for an entire summer. I simply told my parents that how I fared on the LSAT was more important or as important as my four years of college. Thus, it was essential that I have the time to properly prepare myself. I was somewhat rewarded, going from a 167 to a 173. While not everyone will have such indulgent parents, try to make the time to seriously focus upon preparing for the LSAT. Few things in your life will have more of an impact and this is time well spent.

5) I took over 40 prep tests. When I took the LSAT there were a lot fewer prep tests out there. Now I would likely take as many as I possibly could and not take any of the quasi ones Princeton Review and others have created.

6) Take more real prep tests. Study my mistakes more instead of just continually taking the quasi LSAT tests Princeton Review created. Now that more prep tests are available, I would focus solely on the real tests.

I would buy and learn from the Powerscore books. They seem designed for those who want to score in the upper echelon.

7) Any other misc comments/suggestions.

The LSAT is FUN!!! I am not kidding, but I really enjoyed the months I spent studying for the LSAT. I felt that by learning to master the test I was becoming more intelligent. It is the best standardized test out there and to become great at the logic games and argument sections will make you a better lawyer and smarter person. View it all as a game. Similar to a very complicated crossword puzzle. The excitement I had for studying allowed me to study for hours and resulted in my score.

Take a logical reasoning course while in college. It will likely be titled "Introduction to Critical Thinking" or with a similar title. This will greatly assist you in diagraming, which is essential to succeeding on the games section.

Speed is the name of the game. I had many students complain that if they had all day they could get every answer right, but because of the time constraints they had problems. Practice under rigid time limits to get your pacing down. If you are stuck on one problem and it is just one problem (not part of a many question game), just make your best guess and move on.

Guessing wisely. It is not so much about finding the right answer as eliminating the wrong ones. Try to quickly eliminate 3 of the choices and then hone in on which of the 2 is correct.

Find a personal system that works for you. While you can learn how to diagram from your LSAT course, also utilize symbols that work well for yourself. No one else has to understand your diagrams, just you.

Save time whenever possible. I used to first complete the entire section and only then fill in the bubbles in the answer sheet. I felt that by not having to go from the test booklet to the scantron for each question saved me a lot of time. You could do this on a smaller process and just fill in after completing each large section or page. Note there is a risk here that time could run out without your having filled in all the bubbles, so have your time management down before utilizing this tip.

Cancelling your score is not the end of the world. First, avoid cancelling if you can. There will be a natural tendency to think that you did worst that you actually did. And to put yourself through the torture of 3 more months of LSAT prep plus possibly delaying your applications is not a fun thing to do. That being said, if something occurred during the test that you not would not be repeated and if you really feel like you bombed, cancelling may be the best route. While multiple LSAT scores are averaged by most law schools, a cancelled score is viewed as a slight negative but will not bring your average score down. Cancelling is only an option to implement after much decision and perhaps consulting with others.

Do not panic during the test. I probably lost a few points because I panicked when I got an experimental games section that was harder than anything I had ever seen before. I kept on thinking back to that games section during the test and it was not until the last section, which was another games section, that I realized the first one was the experimental section. Just relax and be confident during the test. Mistakes happen. I missed 8 questions and still did amazingly well. You can miss 20 and still have an excellent score. The LSAT is a forgiving test, trust in your abilities while taking it.

Get a good nights rest the night before. I was sharing a hotel room with a fraternity brother (there is no way I could get a good night's sleep on a Friday night at the Fraternity house) and his idiotic girlfriend calls at 1 am from Germany wishing him good luck. I barely slept after that. Paying for my own hotel room would have been a good investment. Most students will not need to rent a hotel room if they live in a quiet area.

Relax the day before the test. When you wake up the morning of the test tackle a few problems to get in the mindset.

View where you will be taking the test ahead of time so there is no rushing around trying to find the lecture hall. Get there in plenty of time. Do not let others stress levels be contagious. You are primed and ready for battle after doing all of the above.

Note that sometime in the next 2 years I am going to videotape myself teaching the LSAT and give it away for free. I hate that Kaplan/Princeton Review charge such exorbinant fees for their prep classes. Definitely take a prep class as for most it is money well spent, but I do wish it were cheaper.


Overall, study hard but enjoy your time studying. This will be the most effective time you spend for how you fare on the LSAT is as important as your 4-5 years in college.


+100 I so agree with this!

I have actually begun having fun taking the exams. Even when I mis a question, I think of it as a game; i pick the question apart and try to figure out what subtlety I missed in the language. I used to hate the test, now I love practicing every day. When your score climbs, you attitude changes and that makes your score climb even more.

I have found that involving myself in the arguments of the RC passages - engaging in a silent dialogue where I respond to the author's and subjects' arguments - makes them easier to tackle. I was in the mid-140's, and now I am in the mid-late 160's consistently. I am hoping to break 170 at least twice before taking the real thing in june.


That's amazing! you guys are an inspiration to me :) I also started at 146 then climbed to 155 although I was scoring up to 162 on my practice tests. By the way, do you do some sort of reading everyday? I think I'm going to borrow some books from the library and make myself read 10-15 minutes at least everyday since I always get tired during Reading Comprehension.

2011hopeful
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Re: Great Advice on How to get 160+ on the LSAT...

Postby 2011hopeful » Mon May 25, 2009 8:45 am

Z'Barron wrote:I think of it as a game; i pick the question apart and try to figure out what subtlety I missed in the language. I used to hate the test, now I love practicing every day. When your score climbs, you attitude changes and that makes your score climb even more.


+1

It absolutely is a game, and it's all about subtleties in the language.

Z'Barron, I like your attitude. You're going to rock this!

antim1
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Re:

Postby antim1 » Sun Jun 07, 2009 7:33 pm

Nicely written, on point

dtrossen wrote:I had a good discussion with someone a while back on this site under the heading "LSAT, GPA, Diversity Questions" on Jan 11th so check that out. Here is the core of my advice repeated from this discussion:

I scored a 175, which may be less than your >175 goal but the December LSAT was a bad draw for my skill set and my practices were 1 to 2 points higher. I think >175 is a bit aggressive for your starting scores but a target of 170 may be reasonable. I give the following advice to serious test takers who are scoring high already and want to go the extra mile.

(1) Master time management. Obtaining a sophisticated timer than controls time and question number is essential. By working with a timer during all practice tests I got a tremendous feel for time control that earned me at least 1 or 2 LSAT points.

(2) Develop a sophisticated strategy. A Princeton Review course is not for the very top test takers as the advice is too simple and the methods not conducive to scores deep into the 99th percentile. Your strategy should be custom to your strengths and weaknesses and should evolve as you analyze your practice test mistakes. If you are not a very top test taker follow the Princeton Review method and shoot for a 97th percentile score.

(3) Purchase the PowerScore books (there are two PowerScore bibles). Study these as these are a great place for your personal strategy to begin.

(4) Purchase as many real LSAT tests as possible. Take a practice test every day, preferably at the same time as your real test. Simulate testing conditions.

(5) Cut every single problem you miss on your daily test out of the LSAT book and save it. Review these missed problems often. Analyze the missed problems for trends. Refer back to the PowerScore books on problem types you have issue with. You must find where your mistakes are and correct them.

(6) Get in the mind of the test writers. Look for traps and don't follow the flock. Look for trap types you fall for in your cut out missed problem collection.

(7) Develop a system of notes and symbols to use on the test. You should have your own language for each of the section types that aids in your problem solving.

(8) Keep taking more and more tests with extreme focus on finding and correcting your errors. The mistakes in your thinking are there and with hard work you will find and correct them.

Following these steps will develop a speed and precision needed for a deep 99th percentile score. I spent one month with particular focus on the arguments and games sections. By test day I missed only one problem on these three sections. I missed 3 on reading comprehension which is a section I didn't focus on much and found it difficult to cut problems from. I missed a total of four on a terribly curved December LSAT and scored 175. In practice I had been between 176 and 177. If you are not a genius the road to a high score will come through long hours of serious test taking with the focus being on finding an eliminating thinking errors and avoiding traps. I hope this advice helps.

antim1
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Re:

Postby antim1 » Sun Jun 07, 2009 7:59 pm

Okay the main point here is the confusion between "routinely" and "never". C is wrong because the first statement is not about some particular rules, but rather about violations of ANY rules. The conclusion is misinterpreting "routinely" for "sometimes"; thus, if rules sometimes go unpunished then chaos results. Therefore, a society should never allow its rules to go unpunished. To remove the chaos, you would remove the routine unpunishment of violations. THis does not mean that you "never" allow violations to be unpunished. You just have the remove the "routine" via contrapositive theory.


NOte: I havent taken teh LSAT yet, so I don't know if the above answser is correct. HOwever, since no one else has replied, I figure it wouldn't hurt to give you my opinion. Worst, someone who has scored a 160+ will be prompted to correct me and help you. Thanks.

NoaNoa wrote:Hello everyone, could some of you 160+ people be so kind as to explain this question to me.

If violations of any of a society's explicit rules routinely go unpunished, then that society's people will be left without moral guidance. Because people who lack moral guidance will act in many different ways, chaos results. Thus, a society ought never to allow any of its explicit rules to be broken with impunity.

The reasoning in the argument is most vulnerable to criticism on the grounds that the argument:

A- takes for granted that a society will avoid chaos as long as none of its explicit rules are routinely violated with impunity

B- fails to consider that the violated rules might have been made to prevent problems that would not arise even if the rules were removed

C- infers, from the claim that the violation of some particular rules will lead to chaos, that the violation of any rule will lead to chaos

D- confuses the routine nonpunishment of violations of a rule with sometimes not punishing violations of the rule

E- takes for granted that all of society's explicit rules result in equally serious consequences when broken

I see how going from the first assertion "If violations of any of a society's explicit rules routinely go unpunished" to "Thus, a society ought never to allow any of its explicit rules to be broken with impunity" seems a leap, but I initially chose C. The correct answer is D... Any comments/help is appreciated.
Thanks

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Scythron
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Re: Re:

Postby Scythron » Tue Jun 09, 2009 11:37 am

antim1 wrote:Okay the main point here is the confusion between "routinely" and "never". C is wrong because the first statement is not about some particular rules, but rather about violations of ANY rules. The conclusion is misinterpreting "routinely" for "sometimes"; thus, if rules sometimes go unpunished then chaos results. Therefore, a society should never allow its rules to go unpunished. To remove the chaos, you would remove the routine unpunishment of violations. THis does not mean that you "never" allow violations to be unpunished. You just have the remove the "routine" via contrapositive theory.


NOte: I havent taken teh LSAT yet, so I don't know if the above answser is correct. HOwever, since no one else has replied, I figure it wouldn't hurt to give you my opinion. Worst, someone who has scored a 160+ will be prompted to correct me and help you. Thanks.

NoaNoa wrote:Hello everyone, could some of you 160+ people be so kind as to explain this question to me.

If violations of any of a society's explicit rules routinely go unpunished, then that society's people will be left without moral guidance. Because people who lack moral guidance will act in many different ways, chaos results. Thus, a society ought never to allow any of its explicit rules to be broken with impunity.

The reasoning in the argument is most vulnerable to criticism on the grounds that the argument:

A- takes for granted that a society will avoid chaos as long as none of its explicit rules are routinely violated with impunity

B- fails to consider that the violated rules might have been made to prevent problems that would not arise even if the rules were removed

C- infers, from the claim that the violation of some particular rules will lead to chaos, that the violation of any rule will lead to chaos

D- confuses the routine nonpunishment of violations of a rule with sometimes not punishing violations of the rule

E- takes for granted that all of society's explicit rules result in equally serious consequences when broken

I see how going from the first assertion "If violations of any of a society's explicit rules routinely go unpunished" to "Thus, a society ought never to allow any of its explicit rules to be broken with impunity" seems a leap, but I initially chose C. The correct answer is D... Any comments/help is appreciated.
Thanks


A) seems right to me but I don't know I'm often wrong with this test. I thought it was getting at that chaos is necessary for for a lack of moral guidance but a lack of moral guidance is only sufficient. Chaos can result on it's own or by another condition.

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Justice4All
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Re: Great Advice on How to get 160+ on the LSAT...

Postby Justice4All » Wed Jun 10, 2009 4:36 pm

--ImageRemoved--

Jyoung538
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Re: Great Advice on How to get 160+ on the LSAT...

Postby Jyoung538 » Thu Jun 11, 2009 9:04 am

Is Barney Mauve???? If he is then I don't even know what to say!

atanksley
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Re: Great Advice on How to get 160+ on the LSAT...

Postby atanksley » Thu Jun 11, 2009 11:00 am

Besides prep classes, actual tests, powerscore books, and the constant studying for the LSAT. What do you guys read on a daily basis? Whether it's The Economist, Wall Street Journal, etc? What is everyone reading to keep the mind functioning, and in tune with the outside world? Just wondering!

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abbas123
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Re: Great Advice on How to get 160+ on the LSAT...

Postby abbas123 » Thu Jun 11, 2009 12:16 pm

ive been reading the lsat blog at http://lsatblog.blogspot.com after someone on here refered me to it. its answered a lot of my questions.

atanksley
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Re: Great Advice on How to get 160+ on the LSAT...

Postby atanksley » Thu Jun 11, 2009 1:17 pm

I also read that as well....

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hv1
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Re: Great Advice on How to get 160+ on the LSAT...

Postby hv1 » Thu Jun 11, 2009 2:16 pm

Jyoung538 wrote:Is Barney Mauve???? If he is then I don't even know what to say!


Haha that's too funny -- because he looks mauve.

YoungLLChamp
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Re: Great Advice on How to get 160+ on the LSAT...

Postby YoungLLChamp » Fri Jun 12, 2009 7:02 am

There are some good topics on the lsat blog

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minority9
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Re: LSAT Studying Advice

Postby minority9 » Sat Jun 20, 2009 3:04 am

Z'Barron wrote:
Ken wrote:1) 173

2) Princeton Review books and the real LSATs.

Simply the best source for taking and learning about the LSAT is to get as many real sample LSATs as you can. While other companies may seek to recreate the LSAT, they do not have the benefit of the experimental section which is utilized to weed out bad questions on the real LSATs. Order as many real LSATs booklets as you can. Try to learn from your mistakes by reviewing your errors.

The Powerscore books came out after I took the LSAT, but I have heard that they are excellent.

3) I taught the LSAT and GRE for Princeton Review. They needed a new LSAT instructor and they hired me based solely on my initial diagnostic. Thus, I was able to teach myself for free while teaching others.

While in my unbiased opinion, my classes were excellent, their effectiveness heavily varied by the quality of the instructor. Ask to sit in on 1 or 2 classes of all the test prep companies you are considering (they generally will let you in and there is certainly nothing to lose by asking). Evaluate whether the instructor is a great instructor or not and ask other students after the class if they are learning from the class and materials.

I recommend considering several test prep companies if possible. I have heard that Testmasters is one of the best test prep companies out there. (http://www.testmasters180.com). Note that I get no benefit from recommending them.

4) I studied the LSAT for an entire summer. I simply told my parents that how I fared on the LSAT was more important or as important as my four years of college. Thus, it was essential that I have the time to properly prepare myself. I was somewhat rewarded, going from a 167 to a 173. While not everyone will have such indulgent parents, try to make the time to seriously focus upon preparing for the LSAT. Few things in your life will have more of an impact and this is time well spent.

5) I took over 40 prep tests. When I took the LSAT there were a lot fewer prep tests out there. Now I would likely take as many as I possibly could and not take any of the quasi ones Princeton Review and others have created.

6) Take more real prep tests. Study my mistakes more instead of just continually taking the quasi LSAT tests Princeton Review created. Now that more prep tests are available, I would focus solely on the real tests.

I would buy and learn from the Powerscore books. They seem designed for those who want to score in the upper echelon.

7) Any other misc comments/suggestions.

The LSAT is FUN!!! I am not kidding, but I really enjoyed the months I spent studying for the LSAT. I felt that by learning to master the test I was becoming more intelligent. It is the best standardized test out there and to become great at the logic games and argument sections will make you a better lawyer and smarter person. View it all as a game. Similar to a very complicated crossword puzzle. The excitement I had for studying allowed me to study for hours and resulted in my score.

Take a logical reasoning course while in college. It will likely be titled "Introduction to Critical Thinking" or with a similar title. This will greatly assist you in diagraming, which is essential to succeeding on the games section.

Speed is the name of the game. I had many students complain that if they had all day they could get every answer right, but because of the time constraints they had problems. Practice under rigid time limits to get your pacing down. If you are stuck on one problem and it is just one problem (not part of a many question game), just make your best guess and move on.

Guessing wisely. It is not so much about finding the right answer as eliminating the wrong ones. Try to quickly eliminate 3 of the choices and then hone in on which of the 2 is correct.

Find a personal system that works for you. While you can learn how to diagram from your LSAT course, also utilize symbols that work well for yourself. No one else has to understand your diagrams, just you.

Save time whenever possible. I used to first complete the entire section and only then fill in the bubbles in the answer sheet. I felt that by not having to go from the test booklet to the scantron for each question saved me a lot of time. You could do this on a smaller process and just fill in after completing each large section or page. Note there is a risk here that time could run out without your having filled in all the bubbles, so have your time management down before utilizing this tip.

Cancelling your score is not the end of the world. First, avoid cancelling if you can. There will be a natural tendency to think that you did worst that you actually did. And to put yourself through the torture of 3 more months of LSAT prep plus possibly delaying your applications is not a fun thing to do. That being said, if something occurred during the test that you not would not be repeated and if you really feel like you bombed, cancelling may be the best route. While multiple LSAT scores are averaged by most law schools, a cancelled score is viewed as a slight negative but will not bring your average score down. Cancelling is only an option to implement after much decision and perhaps consulting with others.

Do not panic during the test. I probably lost a few points because I panicked when I got an experimental games section that was harder than anything I had ever seen before. I kept on thinking back to that games section during the test and it was not until the last section, which was another games section, that I realized the first one was the experimental section. Just relax and be confident during the test. Mistakes happen. I missed 8 questions and still did amazingly well. You can miss 20 and still have an excellent score. The LSAT is a forgiving test, trust in your abilities while taking it.

Get a good nights rest the night before. I was sharing a hotel room with a fraternity brother (there is no way I could get a good night's sleep on a Friday night at the Fraternity house) and his idiotic girlfriend calls at 1 am from Germany wishing him good luck. I barely slept after that. Paying for my own hotel room would have been a good investment. Most students will not need to rent a hotel room if they live in a quiet area.

Relax the day before the test. When you wake up the morning of the test tackle a few problems to get in the mindset.

View where you will be taking the test ahead of time so there is no rushing around trying to find the lecture hall. Get there in plenty of time. Do not let others stress levels be contagious. You are primed and ready for battle after doing all of the above.

Note that sometime in the next 2 years I am going to videotape myself teaching the LSAT and give it away for free. I hate that Kaplan/Princeton Review charge such exorbinant fees for their prep classes. Definitely take a prep class as for most it is money well spent, but I do wish it were cheaper.


Overall, study hard but enjoy your time studying. This will be the most effective time you spend for how you fare on the LSAT is as important as your 4-5 years in college.


+100 I so agree with this!

I have actually begun having fun taking the exams. Even when I mis a question, I think of it as a game; i pick the question apart and try to figure out what subtlety I missed in the language. I used to hate the test, now I love practicing every day. When your score climbs, you attitude changes and that makes your score climb even more.

I have found that involving myself in the arguments of the RC passages - engaging in a silent dialogue where I respond to the author's and subjects' arguments - makes them easier to tackle. I was in the mid-140's, and now I am in the mid-late 160's consistently. I am hoping to break 170 at least twice before taking the real thing in june.



I engage in silent dialogue with RC and some LR. It helps.

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philip.platt
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Re:

Postby philip.platt » Sat Jun 20, 2009 6:48 pm

Dadric wrote:[b]


MOST IMPORTANTLY, try to have fun with it...and I'm not kidding. One of the biggest advantages for me was that I managed to let myself enjoy a lot of the test. I think the LSAT is much more fun than most other standardized tests...there's no math (yay!) and things like Logic Games really can be enjoyable if you let them be. Honestly, just always remember that it's not about scoring higher than the person next to you...it's about competing with yourself and always driving yourself to score the best that you can.


well said :)

sangr
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Re:

Postby sangr » Tue Jun 23, 2009 12:05 am

NoaNoa wrote:Hello everyone, could some of you 160+ people be so kind as to explain this question to me.

If violations of any of a society's explicit rules routinely go unpunished, then that society's people will be left without moral guidance. Because people who lack moral guidance will act in many different ways, chaos results. Thus, a society ought never to allow any of its explicit rules to be broken with impunity.

The reasoning in the argument is most vulnerable to criticism on the grounds that the argument:

A- takes for granted that a society will avoid chaos as long as none of its explicit rules are routinely violated with impunity

B- fails to consider that the violated rules might have been made to prevent problems that would not arise even if the rules were removed

C- infers, from the claim that the violation of some particular rules will lead to chaos, that the violation of any rule will lead to chaos

D- confuses the routine nonpunishment of violations of a rule with sometimes not punishing violations of the rule

E- takes for granted that all of society's explicit rules result in equally serious consequences when broken

I see how going from the first assertion "If violations of any of a society's explicit rules routinely go unpunished" to "Thus, a society ought never to allow any of its explicit rules to be broken with impunity" seems a leap, but I initially chose C. The correct answer is D... Any comments/help is appreciated.
Thanks


first of all, this whole thread is a gold mine! thanks everyone

I just had a question about this question that someone else had. I understand the reasoning behind the answer.
However was any conditional reasoning involved in this? I am thinking "NO" from the answer but I currently started
reading powerscore reasoning bible and sometimes i just get CONFUSED as to whether to just read the stimulus for
what it is or search for conditional reasoning, etc. I ask this because sometimes ill sit there trying to do something
with the conditional statement like above "if....then", but judging from the answer it looks like it was just a matter of
the words "routinely" and such.

Is there anyone who can shed light on this? :(

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Zojirushi
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Re: Great Advice on How to get 160+ on the LSAT...

Postby Zojirushi » Tue Jun 23, 2009 12:16 am

Here is an idea, this thread used to be a gold mine. That is why it was stickied. Now it just a bunch of morons quoting and posting pictures of barney. If you have a question, as opposed to posting advice on how to get a 160+ (the purpose of this thread), then you should make a new thread for it. Thanks.

DanielCA
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Re: Great Advice on How to get 160+ on the LSAT...

Postby DanielCA » Fri Jun 26, 2009 2:50 am

1) 168

2) Logic Games Bible; lots of PTs

3) I took Blueprint. The classes are good as a primer, but I think taking a boat-load of PrepTests is what really helps more than anything. The Bibles are helfpul too.

4) I studied for a loooooooong time. It began last year in March. I took it slow, but I was scoring pretty decently in the 60s. Took a few PTs and that's it. Almost got a 160. Rinse and repeat, same thing. Then I really buckled down and did about 30-40 PTs and that's where my biggest improvement came in. I started scoring in the 70s, consistently.

5) See above.

6) Take more PTs in preparation for the first time, but I've matured as a person in this time too. I don't know, I personally wouldn't change a thing about my latest score.

7) Any other misc comments/suggestions.

Not really, just do many full timed PrepTests and really review your mistakes, find out why you're getting something wrong. Don't be afraid to retake PrepTests, it's all useful. Do several a week for about 3 months and you should be fine. Good luck!

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ruleser
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Re: Great Advice on How to get 160+ on the LSAT...

Postby ruleser » Fri Jun 26, 2009 3:21 am

Ok, just retook and bumped from a 162, 161, to a 168. PowerScore full-length course was the difference. Mainly it improved my LR. RC which wasn't a problem on my first test with no prep became a bit of an issue, and LG stayed somewhat an issue but improved a few points...

And I would say realizing that is the most important thing - it's not about owning any section, it's about getting one more point here, then one more there - because now you understand this type of question, because now you see how they use that trick. The combo of learning the question types and PRACTICING practicing practicing, you get the idea.

For LR, focus on the conclusion. And then focus on the conclusion. Seriously, wrong answers are often correct things that are about some other part of the stimulus - the correct answer relates to the conclusion.

On top of that, don't overcomplicate - don't add stuff to your thinking, focus on what is given, be it in LR or RC. Don't think it too much, FIND IT. Everything you need is in the stimulus or the RC passage, etc. When I go wrong is when I contemplate, add things I know from elsewhere, etc.

And practice LG, use the LG bible some but most important is to do LG as sections - yes, knowing each game type and doing them in 8:40 is good, but LG is about dealing with the stress they design into the section - making one crazy/weird section to throw you off, one that takes 10:30 so you need to be faster on another, etc. Lone questions are good to start, but do full sections.

RC, don't read so deeply - you will have to come back anyway to find what you want. Just relax and read happily and with confidence. Some of the questions still can be tricky and require some weird judgements.

And lastly, do a lot of prep before the 1st time you take it - don't just see what happens and then study after if you need to - you do need to, even if you're really smart. Prep fully and your best for that first time and take it at least the June before - so you have NO pressure because there's lots of time for a retake - also in June it is conveniently at 12:30PM, much nicer than 8:30 AM. Give your best the first time relaxed knowing you can retake, and it should eliminate the main enemy of LSAT scores - nerves.

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ziggy13
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Re: Great Advice on How to get 160+ on the LSAT...

Postby ziggy13 » Fri Jun 26, 2009 7:17 am

1) What score did you get? 169

2) What books did you use? Next 10 Actual PrepTests

3) What prep courses did you take (if any)? Full length, weekend? None

4) How long did you study for, and under what conditions? For a month while working 30 hours/week, no school

5) How many preptests did you do? 12

6) What would you change if you were to do it again? Practice more, for longer. I don't feel like I did as well as I could have if I'd put real effort into it. I choked on LG and guessed 2/3 questions on an easy game and ran out of time for another game. Also, working on stamina might have helped... -6 on the 5th section killed me, and a couple of the wrong ones were stupid mistakes. Also, reading through a study book could have maybe helped me out.. All I did was timed PTs and nothing else. Basically, I wish I had actually studied instead of being so lazy.

7) Any other misc comments/suggestions.
Just make sure to review the questions you got wrong and make sure you understand WHY they were wrong. Everyone else and their mom gives this bit of advice, but that's because I think it's the best advice. Also, if you start choking on a LG, leave it and go to the next one and return to it at the end. Don't bother wasting time on it if there's other questions to answer in the section. Maybe when you go back to it (making sure to carefully read it again), you'll realize something and it'll click. If not, at least you didn't screw up the entire section by spending half your time on a game you're not getting.

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emciosn
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Re: Great Advice on How to get 160+ on the LSAT...

Postby emciosn » Fri Jun 26, 2009 9:22 am

1) What score did you get?
170 (June 2009)

2) What books did you use? (Kaplan, Powerscore LRB, Powerscore LGB, etc)
Logic Games Bible, Logic Reasoning Bible, The Next 10 Actual Official Preptests, 10 More Actual Official Preptests, Preptests 51-55

3) What prep courses did you take (if any)? Full length, weekend? None, all self prep

4) How long did you study for, and under what conditions? (during school, during the summer, etc)
I started in January about 5-6 hours a week then when may hit it went up to around 12 hours a week.

5) How many preptests did you do?
21 (a number that will be burned in my mind forever...)

6) What would you change if you were to do it again?
Nothing really, I scored a point higher than my PT average and I feel as though I performed about to my potential. If anything I would have started taking full length preptests earlier so that I didn't have to cram so many into May (I did like 15 in May, wouldn't suggest it.)

7) Any other misc comments/suggestions.
First off, keeping your cool during the actual test is extremely important. This comes from doing a good amount of preptests so that you know what to expect. Treating the real thing like just another preptest can go a long ways towards keeping your nerves in check. Also if there is one hard game/passage etc. during a section do not let that throw you off. The dino game kind of threw everyone but you have to keep a confident mindset and go on and kill the rest of the test. Last, if you have a bad PT or a bad section, dont let that discourage you. Four days before the test I did a -13 on a RC section. I felt a little down but I did not let that shake my confidence going into test day and I got a -2 on what was reportedly a pretty difficult RC section. I think thats it for now, hope this helps.

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emciosn
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Re: Great Advice on How to get 160+ on the LSAT...

Postby emciosn » Fri Jun 26, 2009 9:25 am

ziggy13 wrote:
7) Any other misc comments/suggestions.
Just make sure to review the questions you got wrong and make sure you understand WHY they were wrong. Everyone else and their mom gives this bit of advice, but that's because I think it's the best advice. Also, if you start choking on a LG, leave it and go to the next one and return to it at the end. Don't bother wasting time on it if there's other questions to answer in the section. Maybe when you go back to it (making sure to carefully read it again), you'll realize something and it'll click. If not, at least you didn't screw up the entire section by spending half your time on a game you're not getting.


Really good advice. Especially since there tends to be like 2 really easy questions to each game so getting those can get your confidence up and help with inferences. You don't want to waste your time on a game that might be more clear if you just took your eyes off it for a while.

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wackjickham
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Re: Great Advice on How to get 160+ on the LSAT...

Postby wackjickham » Fri Jun 26, 2009 9:26 am

1) What score did you get? 174

2) What books did you use? Kaplan Mastery, Pacing, Endurance

3) What prep courses did you take (if any)? Full length, weekend?

Kaplan In-Class. I know it has a bad rep on here, but my score went up to 174 from a diagnostic of 156 so it can't be all that bad. I thought the class was useful, but for some of the more "hardcore" out there, I could see why people would consider it relatively elementary. Their games skills helped me a lot, but they pretty much had nothing to offer on RC and on LR it was very obvious the teacher had the answers when he was teaching.

4) How long did you study for, and under what conditions? (during school, during the summer, etc)

Again, unconventional with most on this forum. I started the Kaplan class in mid-April while I was still in school, and didn't start studying outside the class until school was over (~May 5). Studying for the June LSAT, I prepped for the next 5 weeks, 6 days a week, with the exact same schedule every single day. I stayed in my college town (where everyone else had gone home) with one other person taking the LSAT. Wake up, breakfast, run, early lunch, go to the library, study (11-4 usually), come home and take a break, have dinner, study for the rest of the night. I always used the study period at night to use Kaplan Pacing/Mastery to work on my weaknesses and every once and a while I worked on my strengths to make sure I didn't lose those skills. About 2 weeks before I started taking a prep test every day and then addressed strengths and weaknesses at night.

5) How many preptests did you do?
~15-20

6) What would you change if you were to do it again?
GO OVER YOUR ANSWERS AND UNDERSTAND WHY YOU GOT THEM WRONG. I can't stress this enough. I had a tendency to read Kaplan's explanation for why an answer was wrong and think "Oh, obviously, but I won't make a dumb mistake like that on test day". Which, of course, I did. Understand every question you get wrong, and understand it to a point where you won't make that mistake again.

7) Any other misc comments/suggestions.

My lowest point in studying was when I was averaging 170+ on about 6 or 7 preptests (self-proctored but timed) and had two REALLY bad ones in a row. I believe my scores went something like 177, 171, 174, 172, 176, 165, 161. The 161 I got on a test proctored by Kaplan, one that I put a lot of stock in because I figured it would be the most like taking the real LSAT, and it was exactly 1 week before the test. I flipped a shit. I almost gave up. But I had to remind myself to keep working and hope for the law of averages. Don't let a few bad tests bring you down if you've been scoring around your target. Anyone can have a really bad day. Just put everything you have into it and if you're lucky like me, you'll only have to do this once.

Good luck :)

Split5
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Re: Great Advice on How to get 160+ on the LSAT...

Postby Split5 » Fri Jun 26, 2009 9:33 am

indy wrote:Note from Ken - I found this thread to be full of excellent advice from those who did amazingly well (a few 180's in here and may 170+) and I hope it will benefit you in your LSAT studies. Please add your advice now or after you take the LSAT.

I'm writing to inquire of the methods/techniques ppl who scored 160+ used to get the score they did.

1) What score did you get?

2) What books did you use? (Kaplan, Powerscore LRB, Powerscore LGB, etc)

3) What prep courses did you take (if any)? Full length, weekend?

4) How long did you study for, and under what conditions? (during school, during the summer, etc)

5) How many preptests did you do?

6) What would you change if you were to do it again?

7) Any other misc comments/suggestions.

Thanks,
Indy


Testmasters class, 2-3 times a week for a couple months last Fall. I probably did ~25-30 complete tests before taking the exam. Took a leave from work for a few weeks before the exam to prepare, taking a test every morning. Wouldn't change anything. Once I got the basics it was just a matter of repeating the techniques over and over until they became second nature, like being able to know the answer to a flaw argument before reading the answer choices, etc. Got a 176, though my PT average was 178. Screw Willa Cather.




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