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GeorgeG725
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Vinny Gambini
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LSAT Retake Advice

by GeorgeG725 Thu Jun 14, 2018 2:00 am

Hi Guys,

I'm looking for advice on what approach to take with my retake following an unsatisfactory score on last December's exam.

I had used the LSAT Trainer to self study for my last exam. Reading the book helped me improve drastically (went from low 160s to low 170s in a month), but my PT scores remained volatile (mid 160s to mid 170s) even 4 months into studying. For the most part, 170-174 was the score range for my PT's, and yet I only received a 165 on my exam. I'm not sure what to make of this result and wonder if I should continue self studying, enroll in a class or get a tutor to assess my problems.

More details on my problem:
    I was extremely nervous for the first half of the exam, calmed down somewhat towards the latter half but was nevertheless very anxious; I was probably never this nervous in my life.
    Before the exam, my PT's were mostly completed section by section(and often by even smaller segments), so I did not practice writing the exam at it's designed pace.
    I got about 2 more mistakes than usual for both LR and RC. For LG, I bombed one game completely. Normally I'd get -0 for LG, but there were times in my PT's where a game or even a rule stumps me, leading to a domino effect of misanswers...
    I've only recently got back into studying the LSAT and have signed up to write the exam in September.

One theory I have regarding my disappointing result is that I have a weak foundation and/or poor execution. That's supported by my quick but inconsistent improvements. If that is the case, I wonder if the Manhattan Guides are better than the Trainer as I've heard Manhattan does a better job at drilling and nailing down the basics. I've also considered taking a class for this but is concerned I might end up wasting too much time going over stuff I already know. Maybe all this is too vague to assess and get down to my underlying problems, if so I'll be happy to pay for an assessment session of sorts(I'm a bit hesitant to buy the 10 hour tutoring package if this is something that can be sorted out quick with the right eyes).

Thanks in advance guys for your help!
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ohthatpatrick
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Re: LSAT Retake Advice

by ohthatpatrick Fri Jun 15, 2018 3:32 pm

Howdy. I'll offer you some quick thoughts:

- probably don't take a class. A lot of it WOULD be review, unless you lucked into taking a very small class with other veterans.

- tutoring can be purchased hourly (there might be a two hour minimum), so if you wanted to invest in some sort of diagnostic starting point to point you in the direction of a self-study summer, you could try that. I will say that it's hard to effectively diagnose a student in only one session, so you would probably get some good suggestions out of it, but it's hard to meet someone once and "nail it".

- for the sake of the test anxiety you were feeling, one of the most important things you do this summer might be do start a daily habit of 10-15 minutes of mindfulness breathing.

There's a lot of science suggesting it lowers stress/anxiety and improves retention / learning.

One of our teachers is actually a mindfulness center meditation leader, so he's shared a sample guided session with us, if you wanna give it a try:
https://soundcloud.com/user-91744640/15 ... s-practice

It sounds like if you spend the summer doing three things, you'll be fine:
1. Do a lot more timed sections, especially 2 or 3 back to back (it doesn't always have to be a full prep test)

2. Do some daily mindfulness breathing

3. Do and redo Games until you're so good at Games that you have a cushion of time for when things go awry, and you can really bank on being at most -1 or -2 on LG.
 
GeorgeG725
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Vinny Gambini
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Re: LSAT Retake Advice

by GeorgeG725 Sat Jun 16, 2018 4:08 pm

Hi Patrick,

Thanks a lot for the tips. I'll be restarting meditation practice and doing the drills like you said.

I recently bought the Manhattan Prep LSAT Strategy Guides and wonder if you have a study schedule anywhere for me to follow(12 weeks till the exam, working full time). So far I am loving the books, and am planning to read through them one at a time. I am bit concerned however with this approach, as it doesn't seem to be particularly methodical nor strategic.

Thanks,

George