Trying to organize yourself? Not sure how to make real gains? Rely on the advice of the many folks who have been there before.
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Vinny Gambini
Vinny Gambini
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Am I Doing This Right?

by NihalK196 Tue Nov 20, 2018 2:19 pm

Hi everyone. My name is Nihal.

I began studying for the LSAT in May 2018, but become serious in August. I began by taking a practice test over the summer. I didn't time myself and it took me several weeks to actually complete the test. Though the score I got was close to a 145, I know it was much lower in actuality with all the above factors combined. I plan to take the LSAT in either June or July of 2019. To be honest, I want to do whatever it takes to score 170+. Hence, I need advice on how to proceed.

Currently, I've completed about 70 pages from the LR book, 115 pages from LG, and 120 pages from RC. Everyday I'm spending between 2-3 hours studying for the LSAT. This week, I plan on taking another practice test (probably the same one I took from before, but do it again) to see how I'm faring. But I'm not sure if I'm doing this right. I definitely feel that I'm getting better, but it feels that I am not doing enough and am not progressing fast enough to reach my goals.

Looking forward to hearing from you all.
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Atticus Finch
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Re: Am I Doing This Right?

by ohthatpatrick Tue Nov 20, 2018 2:56 pm

Hey, Nihal.

It sounds like you're on the right track, more or less. Keep in mind that if you're starting from around a 140 (I'm discounting a few points since you gave yourself infinite time on the first), and trying to get to a 170, it could easily take a year or more of work.

People who study for 3-5 months often see their scores go up about 10 points by the end.

The only type of LSAT improvement that comes in fairly quick form is Games. If started off having no clue / no plan, and as a result we got very few correct answers, then learning about how to set up a game and represent individual scenarios can give us the tools to start collecting more points there.

But getting better at LR and RC involves improving our reading / our thinking / our attention to detail / our pattern recognition and other long term skills.

If you're not a native speaker, improving at LSAT can take a long time. This test is basically a test of "which people are the best at quickly, efficiently, and accurately processing the meaning of nuanced English?" Getting a 170 means you're better at reading and interpreting dense English prose than over 96% of the people who take an LSAT. That's a high bar to clear.

As you're reading through the strategy guides, make sure you have a pack of flashcards handy. Every time you read something that you think is especially worth remembering, try to make a flashcard with which you can quiz yourself on that idea.

Otherwise, don't worry too much about mastering every chapter you read, the first time.

LSAT improvement is often in weird plateau shifts, not in linear growth.

You'll probably need to read some, do some, redo some, re-read some, do more, redo more, etc. Your idea to redo that first test is a good one. In general, I would say mix in 35 minute sections into your practice regimen.

If you're practicing 2-3 hours at a time, save 35 mins of it to attempt a timed section.
At your next 2-3 hr study session, save about 60 mins to review that section.

Use this forum as much as possible to get explanations on the material you attempt, and create a redo calendar so that you can revisit stuff you've attempted 3-5 days later and then a week or two after that.

Good luck.
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Vinny Gambini
Vinny Gambini
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Re: Am I Doing This Right?

by MarkS703 Wed Nov 21, 2018 1:12 pm

Hi Patrick, what do you suggest people do when they encounter one of those learning plateaus? Just throw time and effort into it until you break it? Or does rest work better?