The BriefA Blog about the LSAT, Law School and Beyond
You already know that taking real LSATs is vital to improving your score. But properly reviewing the tests you take will really take your score to the next level.
First, let's look at how most people review. They take a timed test or section. When they finish, they flip to the answer key and rush to correct their work. "Yes, I'm right - I'm awesome!", or "Argh, I'm wrong - I suck!".
You probably review this way - I did when I started out. Heck, there were times when I flipped to the answers mid test. I just couldn't wait to check.
Unfortunately, this is an AWFUL way to review. Think about it - you don't really care if you were right. This isn't test day, so your points don't count. Some answers might just have been lucky guesses.
You really care whether your reasoning was right. And it's hard to check your reasoning if you check the answers first. Once you see that the answer is D, you'll invent reasons why D is obviously correct. I see students make up wrong reasons for right answers all the time.
The trick is to review questions before you check your answers. We call this Blind Review, and it's the best way to study. For details on how to do it, check out this video we made explaining how do Blind Review.
Underestimating your enemy is the biggest mistake you can make in a fight and nearly everyone underestimates how difficult the LSAT is.
Let’s avoid that blunder right now. The LSAT is hard. Really f*ng hard. Law school is even harder. If you already knew this, then you’re in better shape than the vast majority of prospective law students. High five! If you didn’t get a high five but want a high five, just reread this paragraph until you get one.
I will often remind you that this test is hard. This is simply to remind you that you need to study to do well. If the idea of taking a hard test that you need study for is very scary for you, you may want to rethink going to law school.
One last time: The LSAT is hard. Understood? Good, you just avoided the biggest mistake that LSAT newbies make.
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The waiting is finally over.
We just received word that the June 2013 LSAT exam scores are being released today!
The release happens in batches.
Share, celebrate, commiserate, on this June LSAT Score discussion thread.
When are LSAT scores actually released?
Almost always before the scheduled release date. Below, I'm listing the scheduled release dates v. actual release dates (for the past couple of years) to give you a sense of when you can expect to get your LSAT score back from the June 2013 LSAT. But, before that, here are some interesting
Average release date: -3.7 days (before scheduled date)
Average release date for June only: -3.2 days (before scheduled date)
Since the LSAC scheduled the score release for July 5, you can expect your June score either on July 2 or July 3.
Scheduled Score Release Dates v. Actual Score Release Dates
|Test date||Scheduled||Actual||Difference||Days after test|
|Jun 10, 2013||Jul 5, 2013||Jul 1, 2013||-4||21|
|Feb 9, 2013||Mar 6, 2013||Mar 6, 2013||0||25|
|Dec 1, 2012||Jan 4, 2013||Jan 2, 2013||-2||32|
|Oct 6, 2012||Oct 31, 2012||Nov 1, 2012||1||26|
|Jun 11, 2012||Jul 6, 2012||Jul 2, 2012||-4||21|
|Feb 11, 2012||Mar 7, 2012||Mar 6, 2012||-1||24|
|Dec 3, 2011||Jan 6, 2012||Jan 4, 2012||-2||32|
|Oct 1, 2011||Oct 26, 2011||Oct 24, 2011||-2||23|
|Jun 6, 2011||Jun 29, 2011||Jun 27, 2011||-2||21|
|Feb 12, 2011||Mar 7, 2011||Mar 4, 2011||-3||20|
|Dec 11, 2010||Jan 10, 2011||Jan 6, 2011||-4||26|
|Oct 9, 2010||Nov 1, 2010||Oct 30, 2010||-2||21|
|Jun 7, 2010||Jun 28, 2010||Jun 25, 2010||-3||18|
Nearly all LSAT experts agree that reading outside articles is helpful as prep for LSAT. In this lesson, I want to show you how to improve your LSAT score by doing that. Let's read this very interesting article from the Economist together. It's less than 400 words and it's about attractive women.
First, we're told that the conventional wisdom/hypothesis holds that attractive women should get ahead in the workplace. Why? Because people project positive attributes like sensitivity and poise onto them. Indeed, this conventional hypothesis is backed up with empirical evidence in the form of studies that show that attractive women are promoted more often.
Naturally, we think that this same advantage attractive women have in securing promotions would be present in securing job interviews, no?
As it turns out, new research reveals otherwise. The new empirical evidence suggests that attractive women who applied to jobs with a photo had to apply to an average of 11 jobs for every one interview offer. Contrast this with the exact same applicant who applied without a photo who only needed to apply to an average of 7 jobs to get an interview offer.
What's going on?
A new hypothesis is submitted: The dumb blonde hypothesis. People must think that prettier women are dumber. But, this hypothesis is immediately shut down. Prior to the study, these photos were rated on perceived intelligence and attractiveness and no correlation was found.
A better hypothesis is submitted: The jealousy hypothesis. 93% of Human Resources departments are women and they are the gatekeepers to interviews. They are discriminating against attractive female applicants.
Isn't this fascinating? Okay, but more to the point, from this passage, we can build many Logical Reasoning questions. Some of you seasoned LSAT students probably already sense an LR question looming on the horizon. That's a good sign!
RRE questions commonly introduce two seemingly conflicting ideas. The two ideas could be hypotheses, phenomena, or data. To build a RRE question out of this article, the passage would read:
It is generally accepted that attractive women get promoted more often but a new study finds that attractive women who submit photos with their applications to new jobs have less than half the interview rate than the same candidate who does not submit a photo.
Which one of the following, if true, would best resolve the apparent discrepancy above?
Within the article, we can find two resolutions (i.e., correct answer choices). First, we can say that people tend to think that prettier women are dumber. Second, we can say that employees who are gatekeepers to interviews are mostly women and women tend to be jealous of other beautiful women.
To make a Weakening question, we simply have to move some pieces around. The stimulus would read:
A new study finds that attractive women who submit photos with their applications to new jobs have less than half the interview rate than the same candidate who does not submit a photo. This shows that people generally think that prettier women are dumber.
Which one of the following, if true, would best weaken the argument above?
Within the article, we can find two answers. First, we can say that these photos were previously rated on perceived intelligence and attractiveness and no correlation was found. Second, we can offer an alternative hypothesis that says employees who are gatekeepers to interviews are mostly women and women tend to be jealous of other beautiful women.
See if you can build your own Strengthening, Descriptive Weakening, Weakening, or Resolve-Reconcile-Explain questions.
Or check out other Economist articles. Their science articles are written like LSAT questions.
Blind Review Summary
While you’re studying for this very difficult test, it’s important to keep your morale high. One of the most demoralizing things is to not see improvement despite effort. While sometimes this is unavoidable - for example, you’ve hit your ceiling - most of the time, students don’t improve because they are not studying the right way. Using the Blind Review guarantees that at least you’ll be practicing the right way. At least you’ll get to rise higher and higher and actually make contact with your ceiling and possibly even have a shot of piercing your ceiling.
You have little sparks of intuition residing somewhere deep in your sub-conscious. Through Blind Review, you will identify those sparks and cultivate them into flames. With that flame, you will burn through LSAT questions.
This is how you practice the LSAT. If you’re doing it any other way, you’re doing it wrong. If this is how you’re doing it, then there’s nowhere to go but up.
I highly recommend using the 7Sage LSAT Grader to score and track your LSAT PrepTests. It lets you enter your actual AND blind review answers. Then it does all the work of tracking and analyzing your blind review for you!
Analysis for skipped questions
These questions were skipped over. You didn’t have time to attempt them. But, during Blind Review, you did all of them.
If you got it right, then great. This question is potentially within reach. Why did you initially skip this question? Would it have taken too long for you to answer? Perhaps you should have skipped another question that was more difficult and spent your time to attempt this question instead. Next time, you will be better at deciding which questions to attempt and which ones to skip.
If you got it wrong, then you made the right decision to skip this question. It wasn’t just a matter of being pressured by time. Even during Blind Review, with all the time in the world, you still got it wrong. Questions like these are candidates for skipping during a timed run.
1. Watch the video explanation for this question
2. Talk to other students about it
3. Talk to your instructor about it.
4. Cut this question out and keep it. Review it every so often.