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Lawstudentdreamz

Super discouraged :(? Advice for studying methods?

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Hi everyone,

I just completed my first LSAT test

In 4x the length given, I only got about 25% of the questions right. The only section I am not concerned with is the LG. The section I am most concerned with is the reading comp. 

I am SO discouraged. I just started studying. But, I am super committed and willing to do whatever it takes to get into law school. I am in a great university but worked consistently hard to achieve my GPA. I am likely the hardest working person I know, but school/studying never came easily to me. I am extremely diligent in my study habits (think going to the library every single day of the week, without a single weekend off, to keep my GPA up). 

I was thinking about registering for 7 sage, and bought the powerscore prep book.

I wanted advice for general study methods, and how you think I should proceed. 

Please let me know what you think. 

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32 minutes ago, Lawstudentdreamz said:

I am likely the hardest working person I know

O..Okay

32 minutes ago, Lawstudentdreamz said:

(think going to the library every single day of the week, without a single weekend off, to keep my GPA up).

What on earth are you studying?

To your question, I also struggled the most with RC and found great improvement by just practicing over and over. Take notes about the passage and read the questions before the passage to get a sense of what is being sought. Timing is obviously the most important with RC so practice reading quickly.

I'm hesitant to suggest doing a course without knowing your baseline score (properly timed).

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RC was my worst section too..

I found it helpful to complete the section in the order of my best topic -> worst topic. For example, I would start with the science reading and leave the english/arts reading for last.

I also found it helpful to use different marking strategies. I would underline the main points, and divide the reading into sections, which helped when I had to refer back to the reading to answer specific questions. 

p.s. giving up every single day to go to the library is not worth it, no matter what you are studying. That is just wild.  

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1 hour ago, Lawstudentdreamz said:

I just completed my first LSAT test. In 4x the length given, I only got about 25% of the questions right. 

How did you time yourself? Without including breaks, a 4-section test takes roughly 2.5 hours; did you actually spend 9-10 hours on one test? 

Edited by Tagger

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1 hour ago, thedraper said:

What on earth are you studying?

Bachelors in commerce. I really mean it when I say I worked for my grades. I just put in my share of the work. Idk I guess I just feel really bad about myself after taking the first LSAT? I am not someone 'naturally smart'. I already have v low self-confidence, and feel worse after this test, and really down. I want to pursue law though. I always have. 

 

1 hour ago, Tagger said:

How did you time yourself? Without including breaks, a 4-section test takes roughly 2.5 hours; did you actually spend 9-10 hours on one test? 

I included my breaks. I feel like I literally would have been better off guessing the same letter consistently :(

2 hours ago, WindsorHopeful said:

I would underline the main points, and divide the reading into sections, which helped when I had to refer back to the reading to answer specific questions. 

p.s. giving up every single day to go to the library is not worth it, no matter what you are studying. That is just wild.  

So your score did improve with lots of practice? If I actually go through 50+ practice tests, I should be prepared, correct? And yeah, I think you're right, but if I get into law school I know that my sacrifices would be well worth it :)

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I’m really confused about what you mean by 4x the length given? What was your scaled score (between 120 and 180)? 25% correct means nothing, as it’s a scaled test so that is a different weighted score depending which PT you took.

you should consider taking a proper diagnostic (use the 7sage app it has a proctor) and come back with a proper score (your scaled score after finishing the test, timed, guessing whatever questions you don’t get to). It is normal to start anywhere from 135-145 and not complete most of the test (like you may only finish 2/4 games, 2/4 RC passages and half the LR sections and end up guessing the rest).

you say you’re not worried about LG but if you took 4x the allotted time you may need to be very worried about LG (as most people can get the questions correct but struggle mostly with the time constraints). 

Its not abnormal in any sense to struggle at first with LR and RC. The questions are nothing like what you’ve seen in UG. 

A Prep course is a nice place to start if you’re struggling with the core concepts.

7sages free LG tutorials are great (on the website or in the app) 

try to complete 1-2 RC passages per day, untimed, aiming for 100% accuracy. Over time you will improve accuracy and get faster. 

For LR- start by aiming to complete the first 15 questions in 15 minutes with 100% accuracy. Once you can do this, move on to drilling the more difficult question types (assumption, flaw, parallel, principle) untimed going for 100% accuracy. 

Edited by Johnappleseed
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What's your GPA? It would help those providing advice to know if you are a 4.0 or a 3.7. 

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2 minutes ago, SlickRick said:

What's your GPA? It would help those providing advice to know if you are a 4.0 or a 3.7. 

If you do not have exactly 4.0 or exactly 3.7 you cannot go to law school. Sorry... 😝

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36 minutes ago, Lawstudentdreamz said:

Bachelors in commerce. I really mean it when I say I worked for my grades. I just put in my share of the work. Idk I guess I just feel really bad about myself after taking the first LSAT? I am not someone 'naturally smart'. I already have v low self-confidence, and feel worse after this test, and really down. I want to pursue law though. I always have. 

If you are not someone 'naturally smart', why on earth would you expect to do well on the LSAT before you've even studied?

Like everything else you say you've done in your academic career, dust yourself off and get to fucking work. No need to dwell on this when you know you're a hard working and capable of turning things around.

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Like others have mentioned, you have to establish a baseline by writing a test under properly timed conditions - writing a test over nine hours is no bueno when the real thing is roughly three hours long. If you wrote a full test and answered 25 questions correctly, you need to find out where your actual starting point is. 

Edited by Tagger

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49 minutes ago, Lawstudentdreamz said:

Bachelors in commerce. I really mean it when I say I worked for my grades

And you spend every day in the library? Jesus.

Look, probably about 70% of people on this site work hard for their grades, but hardly any of them will spend 7 days a week in a library. That's insane at the undergrad level.

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15 minutes ago, setto said:

If you are not someone 'naturally smart', why on earth would you expect to do well on the LSAT before you've even studied?

Like everything else you say you've done in your academic career, dust yourself off and get to fucking work. No need to dwell on this when you know you're hard working and capable of turning things around.

Well said. 

@Lawstudentdreamz Keep practicing, see if you improve once you have your bearings. 

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On 5/29/2019 at 4:37 PM, SomePeopleLikeMe said:

Well said. 

@Lawstudentdreamz Keep practicing, see if you improve once you have your bearings. 

Thank you, I will keep practicing and keep going. 

 

On 5/29/2019 at 4:10 PM, Johnappleseed said:

If you do not have exactly 4.0 or exactly 3.7 you cannot go to law school. Sorry...

You better know that at 7 days a week I have a good GPA -- ironically, it is exactly 3.7 on the nose. So I can go to law school haha

 

On 5/29/2019 at 2:00 PM, Tagger said:

Without including breaks, a 4-section test takes roughly 2.5 hours; did you actually spend 9-10 hours on one test? 

I find that if I *really* go through the exam, and every single line in the MCQ, it takes a very long time. I am doing  But I tend to over-dissect things, and I'm anal about details, I like to know exactly why each response is wrong/right, so it takes me a long time to respond to them. 

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RC is the hardest section to improve, I would just focus on improving LR and LG to near-perfect... and then if you have time left over try doing more RC.

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14 minutes ago, Lawstudentdreamz said:

 I tend to over-dissect things, and I'm anal about details, I like to know exactly why each response is wrong/right, so it takes me a long time to respond to them. 

This has the potential to destroy you on the LSAT. You're going to have to try and get over this otherwise there is little to no chance that you'll get through the test on test day. I'm sure you know this though.

I agree with the advice given. The best thing I think you can do is run sections and questions under test conditions (~35 minutes / section). I used the Powerscore books and found them helpful, along with the Khan Academy free LSAT study guide. I'd suggest grabbing a couple of the practice test bank books and going through them as well. I'd also suggest writing one test under timed conditions just to get a realistic idea of your starting point.

Edited by brodozer
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37 minutes ago, Lawstudentdreamz said:

I tend to over-dissect things, and I'm anal about details, I like to know exactly why each response is wrong/right, so it takes me a long time to respond to them. 

Yeah you and every other potential law student my friend. The LSAT is designed to punish our anal retentive, type A, competition driven personalities. It sucks us into really hard questions that we become obsessed with getting the answer for. And what we all often forget is that the easy questions and the hard questions are both worth 1 point each... those that truly excel on the LSAT, the 165+ scorers, learn when to let it go and take a guess. 

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7 hours ago, Johnappleseed said:

Yeah you and every other potential law student my friend. The LSAT is designed to punish our anal retentive, type A, competition driven personalities. It sucks us into really hard questions that we become obsessed with getting the answer for. And what we all often forget is that the easy questions and the hard questions are both worth 1 point each... those that truly excel on the LSAT, the 165+ scorers, learn when to let it go and take a guess. 

Eh? I didn't guess on any lsat question...

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52 minutes ago, Mal said:

Eh? I didn't guess on any lsat question...

Well there are exceptions to every rule my friend. But in general, unless you’re in the 175-180 range there are going to be questions where you can narrow it down to two options but just can’t quite figure out which is more correct. So you take the 50/50 guess and move on.

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On 5/29/2019 at 11:24 AM, thedraper said:

O..Okay

What on earth are you studying?

To your question, I also struggled the most with RC and found great improvement by just practicing over and over. Take notes about the passage and read the questions before the passage to get a sense of what is being sought. Timing is obviously the most important with RC so practice reading quickly.

I'm hesitant to suggest doing a course without knowing your baseline score (properly timed).

Taking notes is not wise because of the time constraint. I can't get through all the questions in RC if I scribble in the margins. All you can do is try and take mental note of what the general arguments and facts are in each paragraph and take note of how the passage is structured. For LR you have enough time to read slowly and carefully and you should do this but don't re-read anything as it eats up to much time, you must guess if you still are drawing a blank after a careful read and move on. If you do this you should have anywhere from 5 to 9 minutes at the end to go over the ones you guessed on in LR. Make sure you mark them so you can easily find them.

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1 hour ago, Grinder99 said:

Taking notes is not wise because of the time constraint. I can't get through all the questions in RC if I scribble in the margins. All you can do is try and take mental note of what the general arguments and facts are in each paragraph and take note of how the passage is structured. For LR you have enough time to read slowly and carefully and you should do this but don't re-read anything as it eats up to much time, you must guess if you still are drawing a blank after a careful read and move on. If you do this you should have anywhere from 5 to 9 minutes at the end to go over the ones you guessed on in LR. Make sure you mark them so you can easily find them.

Please if you’re going to give advice try not to make it in the “this is the only way format.” People come here read that “taking notes is not wise” or “don’t re-read anything” and then they go study and follow that even if it may not work for them. Those strategies worked FOR YOU, to get whatever score you got. If you have a 175+ then correct me, you may have an epic strategy that we should all consult. But I scored a 171 and I re-read A LOT. I find it helps me absorb the information more effectively to read it at least twice and the extra time I spend reading is more than made up for because I’m quicker to evaluate the answer choices. There are a crap ton of ways to approach each section and even each question type and it doesn’t really help people when you tell them your way is the only way... 

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