Pithypike's Complete LSAT Study Guide

kirsch
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Re: Pithypike's Complete LSAT Study Guide

Postby kirsch » Tue Feb 10, 2009 5:10 pm

i've been out of college for years and my study skills are rusty. i'm willing to shell out some money and study hard. the prep courses seem to get mixed reviews. would i be better off studying on my own?

TIMLAW4151
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Re: Pithypike's Complete LSAT Study Guide

Postby TIMLAW4151 » Tue Feb 10, 2009 10:06 pm

kirsch wrote:i've been out of college for years and my study skills are rusty. i'm willing to shell out some money and study hard. the prep courses seem to get mixed reviews. would i be better off studying on my own?


If you've been out of the study mode for a while, a class might make you more disciplined. I would recommend it, if you want to pay.

Testmasters is the most expensive, I believe. But it was the original and the best. Powerscore and Blueprint are offshoots with pretty much the same concepts. Kaplan and Princeton review are hated on these boards, but if cost is an issue, they can definitely help.

kirsch
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Re: Pithypike's Complete LSAT Study Guide

Postby kirsch » Wed Feb 11, 2009 12:59 pm

thanks for your response. i suspect a class would be a good idea, given that my study skills have atrophied. i've gotten the impression that testmasters is pretty intense. that's fine. but it makes me wonder if some sort of "pre-prep prep" might be a good idea. i have PR's 2009 "Cracking the LSAT." Do you think that would be useful or would PR's approach be too different from testmasters'? again, thanks for your response. John Kirsch

TIMLAW4151
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Re: Pithypike's Complete LSAT Study Guide

Postby TIMLAW4151 » Sat Feb 14, 2009 9:26 pm

Eh. Don't buy princeton review if you're going to take testmasters. They're just not compatible. Testmasters and the Powerscore Bibles are much more similar.

pithypike
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Re: Pithypike's Complete LSAT Study Guide

Postby pithypike » Tue Feb 17, 2009 7:40 pm

This might be a bit unrelated, but if you've been in the working world for a while you probably have far more discipline than most UG types. If you don't want to take a course, don't. You can study just as effectively on your own if you're willing (and capable) of putting the hours in.

As far as mixing different test prep methods, I really don't think it's a big deal. Just find the one that works best for you. For example, I used the Kaplan method for strict sequencing games and PS methods for other games, with some personal variations on both. The key is to be effective, so find whatever works for you and stick with it.

TigerHill007
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Re: Pithypike's Complete LSAT Study Guide

Postby TigerHill007 » Mon Feb 23, 2009 10:54 am

CRJC wrote:
BlackJack wrote:I think most people prep in the same way, regardless of whether you do the following consciously or unconsciously and whether you take a course or not.

Phase 1: Accuracy
You basically need to learn the theory of the LSAT and then do drills of a certain concept (whether it is LG/LR/RC) until you are accurate, untimed. Prep courses have the theory and questions already laid out for you. Self-preppers will need to buy the bibles, study them and photocopy and sort questions themselves. Some self-prep don't do drills and go straight to doing sections, albeit untimed. I think you'll reinforce the concepts better if you do drills while learning the theory.

Phase 2: Speed
Hopefully, you didn't use up all of the LSATs on drills and you have some whole sections you can do, timed. But only one section at a time. You are just now working on timing because hopefully, your accuracy and understanding of LSAT theory is sound.

Phase 3: Endurance
At this point, you should be able to finish any section in less than 35 minutes (with bubbling) and so you need to build endurance to be able to do 5 sections in a row.

That's the way I see it anyway.



i really wish i would have realized this before starting to study, as it is a really important point. there is an order to those factors, and i've just been bombarding myself with everything at once..


Blackjack this a fantastic tip thanks for posting this!

Voyager
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Re: Pithypike's Complete LSAT Study Guide

Postby Voyager » Sat Feb 28, 2009 4:06 pm

OP:

Well done. Looks similar to the study guide I wrote up several years ago. It really helps people to have a structured approach to preparation. Using something similar to the above I've seen students dramatically improve their scores to include several 30 point increases (admittedly, their diagnostics were around 130... but still, 130-160 is pretty good).

06072010
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Re: Pithypike's Complete LSAT Study Guide

Postby 06072010 » Sat Feb 28, 2009 4:09 pm

Voyager wrote:OP:

Well done. Looks similar to the study guide I wrote up several years ago. It really helps people to have a structured approach to preparation. Using something similar to the above I've seen students dramatically improve their scores to include several 30 point increases (admittedly, their diagnostics were around 130... but still, 130-160 is pretty good).


Hey, dude. What's up?

Voyager
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Re: Pithypike's Complete LSAT Study Guide

Postby Voyager » Sat Feb 28, 2009 6:03 pm

PKSebben wrote:
Hey, dude. What's up?


Getting through this 2L deal. You?

rajesh88
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Re: Pithypike's Complete LSAT Study Guide

Postby rajesh88 » Sun Mar 01, 2009 8:59 pm

kirsch wrote:thanks for your response. i suspect a class would be a good idea, given that my study skills have atrophied. i've gotten the impression that testmasters is pretty intense. that's fine. but it makes me wonder if some sort of "pre-prep prep" might be a good idea. i have PR's 2009 "Cracking the LSAT." Do you think that would be useful or would PR's approach be too different from testmasters'? again, thanks for your response. John Kirsch


Don't waste money on any prep.. just buy all the damn LSAT's from the lsac.org website, time yourself.. and fly.. on test-day, make sure to eat a damn energy bar, poop 5 minutes before the test (kind of like you take your dog out to poop before you go to sleep).. and focus..

06072010
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Re: Pithypike's Complete LSAT Study Guide

Postby 06072010 » Sun Mar 01, 2009 9:41 pm

Voyager wrote:
PKSebben wrote:
Hey, dude. What's up?


Getting through this 2L deal. You?


Spending lots of time praying that my 2L offer doesn't get rescinded.

pithypike
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Re: Pithypike's Complete LSAT Study Guide

Postby pithypike » Mon Mar 02, 2009 1:05 pm

Voyager wrote:OP:

Well done. Looks similar to the study guide I wrote up several years ago. It really helps people to have a structured approach to preparation. Using something similar to the above I've seen students dramatically improve their scores to include several 30 point increases (admittedly, their diagnostics were around 130... but still, 130-160 is pretty good).


It is quite similar, with a few added variations I found helpful during my study.

Your guide was extremely helpful during my prep - thank for the help.

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NuanceSpecialist
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Re: Pithypike's Complete LSAT Study Guide

Postby NuanceSpecialist » Tue Mar 03, 2009 9:32 pm

books:
I am using the powerscore virtual course
LRB, LGB and RCB along with ultimate setups
all 50 exams but wont get to all of them probably. probably 35
Using the bibles in concert with the lessons from powerscore.
Superprep book
powerscore deconstructed books.
Yeah I like powerscore only : )

Actions:
Drill Drill Drill
Drill specifically on careful analysis of each word and never ever ever to generalize.
break down each taken exam with strong analysis

Wondering if I should use the Nova test prep book. hmm - any opinions?
Strategy will be key here so I am open to all ideas.

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Jay Phatsby
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Re: Pithypike's Complete LSAT Study Guide

Postby Jay Phatsby » Sun Mar 08, 2009 9:51 pm

pithypike wrote:Note: Feel free to PM me with questions, but do look through the thread first. I have gotten a dozen or so PMs with questions that were already answered below. Don't hesitate to message me if you have an unanswered question though - I'm happy to help.

Note from Ken: Pithypike, thank you for the excellent summary. Other members should feel free to add their study tips or advice as posts to this thread or PM Pithypike to add something to his posts.

You will need:
Kaplan Mastery (Kaplan's Big Orange Book is no longer available)
Powerscore Logic Games Bible
Powerscore Logical Reasoning Bible
All 3 of the '10 More LSAT" series
PTs 45-54 (10)
Official LSAT SuperPrep
3 months (more or less - adjust to your rate of progress but do not try to cram)

LG:
You will need to divide LG into specific types (Grouping, Linear, and various subtypes) and work on them one after another in order to master the game type.
1) Make 3 photocopies of every LG
2) Separate them using the classification method of choice - Blueprint, Kaplan, etc. will all work but I prefer Powerscore
3) Do each LGB section in order and work on the respective game types as you progress. For this I usually do 2-3 new games and 3 repeats every day, but it doesn't matter as long as you get it done. Try to keep some separation (24 hours+) between the first and second time you attempt a game.

Repetition is crucial - after you have done a lot of games a lot of times anything they throw at you will seem elementary and routine.

LR:
Pretty simple really. Do the appropriate LRB section and then work through the corresponding chapter in Kaplan Mastery/Big Orange Book. I generally reviewed the LRB section thoroughly the first time, and then just read the summary of points and strategies at the start of the question set to refresh myself after that. Do up to 10 problems at each sitting and monitor which question types give you the most trouble. Review those questions heavily. If you're really motivated, cut out particularly troublesome questions for later review. I found that writing out explanations for question types I struggled with helped immensely.

RC:
This is the most difficult section to improve on. You have to develop a feel for what the passage as a whole is conveying while making sure not to miss small details that you could be tested on. I suggest developing a set of symbols that help you refer to specific points in the passage. For example, I place a 'C' next to the line in which a critical viewpoint is mentioned and underline the part of the passage indicating this viewpoint is critical. It doesn't matter what you use, as long as it helps you refer back to the passage. Many people suggest writing short summaries at the end of each paragraph, which can also be effective.

The only surefire way to improve on RC is to do as many as possible and develop your own personal system as you progress. Reading dense material, like science journals, The Economist, etc. can help as well, but working through as many passages is possible is undoubtedly the most effective tool. I can't vouch for the RC Bible as I never used it, but if it is comparable in quality to the LG and LR Bibles I would imagine it is a useful tool.

Month 1:
LG: (# of game type through PT 44-Powerscore Classification)
Basic Linear - Balanced (23)
Basic Linear - Overloaded (5)
Basic Linear - Underfunded (5)
Advanced Linear - Balanced (25)
Advanced Linear - Overloaded (4)
Advanced Linear - Underfunded (7)
Write down the exact time and your score at the top of each LG. Push yourself to finish faster the next 2 times you complete that LG. DO NOT sacrifice speed for accuracy though.

LR:
Follow the guide set out above for these question types

Assumption
Strengthen/Weaken
Flaw

RC:
Complete all 10 RC sections from the first '10 LSAT' book (untimed)
Three-Day Cycle:
1) RC Section
2) Review
3) Review

Remember, you have to be focusing on developing your own method for identifying relevant sections of the passage. When reviewing wrong answers, focus on what referents or symbols would have helped you find the correct answer within the passage. When reviewing correct answers, look for what helped you pick that choice out and find out what strategies are effective. This is just as important as reviewing wrong answers.

At this end of this month take PrepTest 'A' from the SuperPrep series - timed. Review the test heavily and read the explanation for every single question, not just the ones you got wrong. Hearing it straight from the horse's mouth can often be very useful and helps you get in the test maker's head.

Month 2
LG:
Grouping - Defined - Fixed - Balanced (10)
Grouping - Defined - Fixed - Overloaded (11)
Grouping - Defined - Fixed - Underfuned (5)
Grouping - Defined - Moving - Balanced (14)
Grouping - Defined - Moving - Overloaded (2)
Grouping - Partially Defined (9)
Grouping - Undefined (6)
Rare Game Types:
Grouping/Linear Combination (8)
Pattern Games (6)
Pure Sequencing (6) Note-much more common in modern games - pay attention
Mapping (3)
Circular Linearity (2)

LR:
Inference
Principle
Parallel
Paradox
Method of Argument
Main Point
Role of a Statement
Point at Issue

You should take at least 10, maybe a few more, timed LR sections during this month to start getting comfortable with timing. Continue to develop endurance and pacing. By the end of this month you should have an established and effective pacing system, i.e. 15 mins/15 questions. Do not be complacent. If you are finishing the section within 35 minutes consistently, knock off a few minutes and see how you do under pressure. You will likely be feeling a bit of pressure and nerves on test day, and this (+ studying in noisy conditions) can help mitigate any test day drop.

Don't use any of the SuperPrep tests or any test beyond 44, as you will be taking these in their entirety.

RC:
10 timed sections from the most recent '10 LSAT' book you bought. Use the same three day routine for month 1. Continue to develop your style of marking passages. Same story for RC as LR-if you're finishing comfortably shave off a few minutes.

During this month you should take PrepTest 'B' and 'C' (both timed) and review them heavily. I suggest taking B in the middle of the month and C at the end.

Month 3:
During this month you will focus exclusively on full , 5-section PrepTests.

Make 3 photocopies of each LG type for these tests as well. The style of games changed significantly after the June 2005 exam, and it is beneficial to repeat these newer LGs to get a feel for the new ways of phrasing rules and various other differences versus older games. Note: while new LG are easier, it is best to practice with the older ones so that you can truly master the appropriate concepts and be prepared for whatever they throw at you on test day.

Take PTs 45-54, in whatever order you prefer. Since the real exam will be 5 sections, you should add a fifth section (whichever you are weakest on) from older exams both to provide you with extra material and to build up endurance for the real thing.
Repeat this cycle:

1) PT
2) Review
3) Review

Until you have done all ten PTs. On the review days, redo the LGs and monitor which types of questions are tripping you up. Review the Bibles as needed.

Here's what another poster had to say on PT improvement and working toward test day:

lollypotter wrote:Rather than thinking of the LSAT as 30 prep tests to be gotten through, think of it as weaknesses to be eliminated. Every test is a snapshot of your weaknesses and you MUST address them. Going over the tests is crucial. DO NOT DO MULTIPLE TESTS without review. This is a waste of time and tests. The review is the part most people don't do. They rely on familiarity. They improve (on PTs) but in the cold light of the official test they panic, and then they start guessing. That's how people score crazily below their prep test average.


Lolly's right. Eliminate weaknesses, make everything second nature and let your instincts take over on test day. It's a rare tester who doesn't feel a bit of nerves during the real thing, so it is VITAL you hone these concepts until they are second nature.

HTH


Edits:

Link to T14's gametype classification (PS Method)
viewtopic.php?f=6&t=50657&p=1042536&hilit=pithypike#p1042536

Link to Kaplan Mastery on Amazon
--LinkRemoved-- ... 361&sr=8-1

Voyager's RC Guide
viewtopic.php?f=6&t=7240

LSATinator's Guide to Time Management
viewtopic.php?f=6&t=35546&hilit=lsatinator+time+management

PowerScore Games Classification June 2003 -- Present
http://powerscore.com/gamesbible/content_game_info.cfm

Link to Useful LSD LSAT Prep Thread
http://www.lawschooldiscussion.org/prel ... 881.0.html


nice

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R.X. Narcs
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Re: Pithypike's Complete LSAT Study Guide

Postby R.X. Narcs » Tue Mar 10, 2009 5:34 am

IDK whats up. I'm having trouble finding a copy of the Kaplan Mastery book.

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FreeGuy
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Re: Pithypike's Complete LSAT Study Guide

Postby FreeGuy » Wed Mar 11, 2009 1:33 pm

Looks like there are two copies of Mastery Practice left on Amazon: here and here (LinkRemoved).

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R.X. Narcs
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Re: Pithypike's Complete LSAT Study Guide

Postby R.X. Narcs » Wed Mar 11, 2009 8:49 pm

I'm not too comfrotable with seller # 1's rating. 50%? This concerns me. And seller #2 has the 2007 copy..IDK I may have to pass on both

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NuanceSpecialist
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Re: Pithypike's Complete LSAT Study Guide

Postby NuanceSpecialist » Wed Mar 11, 2009 10:27 pm

where can we get the preptests 36 to present? I cant find them.

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R.X. Narcs
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Re: Pithypike's Complete LSAT Study Guide

Postby R.X. Narcs » Wed Mar 11, 2009 11:58 pm

NuanceSpecialist wrote:where can we get the preptests 36 to present? I cant find them.



http://www.lsac.org

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slw
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Re: Pithypike's Complete LSAT Study Guide

Postby slw » Thu Mar 12, 2009 8:32 am

Help! (I posted this question several different places- and have received no answers. Maybe this means there is no good supplement?)

My situation/ question...
I am re-taking in June & I completed the games sections from all Prep Test prior to the Feb Exam. Although I'm retaking to improve on RC/ I still want to keep game skills sharp & have found that I remember most of the games from all of the PTs.

Can anyone suggest a good supplemental book for simulated logic games? (that are close in nature to real lsat LGs).

Thanks for any thoughts.

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crazycanuck
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Re: Pithypike's Complete LSAT Study Guide

Postby crazycanuck » Thu Mar 12, 2009 2:33 pm

I have found that in 2 weeks my LR scores have got A TON better due to writing out why I got each question wrong, and then writing why the answer was right. Thinking about it wasn't enough. Putting it down on paper really helped solidify the ideas.
I was -10 to -12 wrong on EACH LR section, after 2 weeks of doing this rigorously I am down to -4 to -6 on each LR, and it will drop more I'm sure!

Great tip pithypike!

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NuanceSpecialist
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Re: Pithypike's Complete LSAT Study Guide

Postby NuanceSpecialist » Thu Mar 12, 2009 3:29 pm

I would recommend active reading of dense material. Although not too dense, the economist paper is good.

pithypike
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Re: Pithypike's Complete LSAT Study Guide

Postby pithypike » Thu Mar 12, 2009 8:53 pm

slw wrote:Help! (I posted this question several different places- and have received no answers. Maybe this means there is no good supplement?)

My situation/ question...
I am re-taking in June & I completed the games sections from all Prep Test prior to the Feb Exam. Although I'm retaking to improve on RC/ I still want to keep game skills sharp & have found that I remember most of the games from all of the PTs.

Can anyone suggest a good supplemental book for simulated logic games? (that are close in nature to real lsat LGs).

Thanks for any thoughts.


Ace the LSAT Logic Games has some that are vaguely similar. You can also repeat games you have already done to stay sharp.

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slw
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Re: Pithypike's Complete LSAT Study Guide

Postby slw » Fri Mar 13, 2009 3:17 pm

pithypike wrote:Ace the LSAT Logic Games has some that are vaguely similar.


Thanks for the suggestion!

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Andrew31
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Re: Pithypike's Complete LSAT Study Guide

Postby Andrew31 » Wed Mar 18, 2009 12:20 am

This method takes HOURS to prepare! But I just finished sorting out all of the tests so I'll post my updates in the June '09 thread! Thanks for the advice, Pithypike.




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