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Posting on Behalf of a 7Sage User: Advice on Study Strategies for LSAT-Flex

Juliet --Student Service--Juliet --Student Service-- Member Administrator Student Services
edited September 2020 in General 5199 karma

[I am posting on behalf of 7Sage user: @ewaldronUAPhD. Please feel free to leave your comments below. Thank you for your help!]

"I'm signed up to take the LSAT in January, and as a professor at a community college now, we're already seeing how things are changing as time goes on. To this end, I'm also seeing how more and more LSATs are being offered in "flex" format. Given this, are there any changes we need to be making regarding our study schedule relative to the types of questions? I only ask, because if they are cutting 2 sections of the test from 5 down to three - that's a lot less margin for error, and a far greater opportunity for the exam to be focused - in other words, previously with 5 sections, there was a strong impetus to focus on LR. Now with three sections - does that shift the burden as there are less LR (Strengthening/Weakening, etc.), from LR to a greater need to focus on Logic Games and Reading Comp.? I know this may be convoluted, and possibly seen as trying to go the cheap way out - but it is asked in sincerity as to make the best use of 7sage resources, and to focus on getting to LG, which I know is my biggest, ugliest, horrible, weak spot.

On some of these exercises I’m improving to 4/5, on the previous set however, SA, it’s a total loss. I’m wondering just how much of the LSAT is going to be comprised of SA. I have literally spent two weeks trying to understand this, going back and listening and re-listening to JY and it is not taking, so I’m beginning to feel that I’m spending WAY too much time on this vs other huge problem areas like logic games. Taking in January. What are your thoughts?"

Comments

  • Cant Get RightCant Get Right Alum Member Sage 🍌
    26494 karma

    This is a really good question, and for the most part the answer is that study strategies don't change significantly. But I do think that it's important to understand how the Flex format changes the calculus and what the starting calculus is in the first place.

    So the graded portion of the normal test is typically:
    RC: 27 questions
    LG: 23 questions
    LR: 51 questions

    So roughly speaking, LR is half the test with RC and LG weigh in at roughly 1/4 each.

    Now, each section is roughly 1/3 of the test. So, we do see an increase in weight for RC and LG at the expense of LR.

    The impact this has on your studying--Flex or standard--may depend on your target score. For students aiming for the 170's, the test version will have no impact on the level of mastery required across all three sections. The margin of error is just not large enough to absorb it. However, for target scores with more maneuverability, you can absolutely look at different ways that your points might distribute. If you can miss 20 questions for your target score, think about the different ways a test can play out to keep you within that margin. A good starting point would be with a balanced test:

    LG -6
    LR -7
    RC -7

    From here, you can redistribute based on your strengths. So maybe your most likely path is something more like:

    LG -4
    LR -9
    RC -7

    The important thing is to see that any increase on one section has to come at the expense of a tightening of the margin somewhere else. So if you need more room to breathe in LR, you have to find where it's going to come from.

    So for studying strategically, think about where you can create that space for yourself most effectively. That consideration will vary dramatically from person to person, but I hope this at least provides some framework for thinking about the margins of error!

  • LS-AT WalkerLS-AT Walker Alum Member
    66 karma

    I agree with Can't Get Right. Study strategies should not be different for the most part. You still need equal mastery in each topic. The only exception I would mention is one that personally applied to me. As I got closer to the LSAT (I took the August Flex) my LG was strong, from -0 to -1. My LR was also strong, -0 to -2. However, I was still getting -3 or -4 frequently on the RC sections. Because of this, and its increase from 1/4 to 1/3 of the exam for the flex I shifted my studies to a more RC heavy regiment. I even started taking Flex practice tests almost exclusively. This allowed me to take more practice tests in a week and thus get more RC sections under my belt in the available time.

    Ultimately, I would only change strategies if you are less than a month from the exam and find RC to be your worst section consistently.

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