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RC drills

emli1000emli1000 Alum Member Inactive ⭐
I have the 4 packets on Humanities, Social Sciences, Natural Sciences and Law available on Cambridge and I was wanting some input on whether or not I'm actually doing this right.

Every day I make a packet of 4 (including 1 of Humanities, Social Sciences, Natural Sciences and Law) and I give myself about 25 mins to answer each passage. Of course, it's a lot of time but later when I get halfway through I will only give myself 10 mins per passage and then cut my time to around 7-8 mins on each.

I really struggle with RC mainly because the passages lose my interest and it's hard getting the hang of why I'm actually reading a passage for lol. Terrible, I know. But I am working on it and BR helps a lot. I usually miss 4 or less on every packet after BR. After I review my answers and why they're wrong I understand why my reasoning behind each question was wrong.

But I was wondering if doing 4 per day 1 of Humanities, Social Sciences, Natural Sciences and Law was the right way of doing it since I will have 4 passages on the LSAT day and I'm guessing I'll have 1 of each. Or should I focus on maybe doing 4 Humanities on Monday, 4 Social Sciences on Tuesday, 4 Natural Sciences on Wednesday and 4 Laws on Thursday? So that i can see if I will find a pattern in each of the four types?

Any suggestions will be greatly appreciated!


  • ddakjikingddakjiking Legacy Inactive ⭐
    2116 karma
    I've been sort of doing it by your approach (1 per subject) but definitely not at 25 minutes. Without looking at the passages I quickly tally up the number of questions per those 4 passages to properly allocate time. If there's like 26-28 questions, then I'll set the time to 35 minutes. If you split the packets the way I did, then the first couple packets will be "easier" since they are made up of Difficulty 1 passages. But as you go down the list, it will be harder to finish four Level 3 Passages within 35 minutes.
  • emli1000emli1000 Alum Member Inactive ⭐
    3462 karma
    @ddakjiking I mostly spend 25 mins on the natural science passages :( most of the others I am able to complete in about 10-15 mins.
  • ddakjikingddakjiking Legacy Inactive ⭐
    2116 karma
    @emli1000 wow. Total RC fail on my part. I thought you were doing 4 passages under 25 minutes. LOL. Sorry about that. Brainfart as a result of doing 10+ RC Passages today.
  • emli1000emli1000 Alum Member Inactive ⭐
    3462 karma
    Wow! 10? How is that even possible? HAHA. I thought drilling 4 a day was torture! Look at you!
  • alexroark5alexroark5 Alum Member Inactive ⭐
    edited April 2015 812 karma

    I think it can be beneficial in the beginning to focus on RC passages of similar subject matter (all humanities one day, all science another) the reasoning is similar to why you would practice SA questions in LR for example. Humanities passages tend to have similarities in structure (although obviously they are not identical and they do change frequently) but looking at a substantial aggregate of humanities passages I think can offer some insight into their structural tendencies. The same can be said for science passages as well.

    However, in general, there are more similarities than differences in terms of the skill set you need to develop in order to increase performance in RC, regardless of the subject matter.
  • JengibreJengibre Legacy Member
    383 karma
    I can't speak to which approach is better, but I've started drilling by subject matter. As of now I only have the science packet, since it has been my weakest area. Once I get through those (and I'm not doing near 10 a day!) I may get the law (second weakest) packet and work through accordingly. As @alexroark5 said, it can be beneficial (at least in my experience) to focus on patterns common to certain RC passage types.
  • kraft.phillipkraft.phillip Member Inactive Sage
    444 karma
    25 minutes... will likely inculcate some inefficient habits in your process. leisurely reading through the passage at such a slow pace will allow you to take more of what I'd call an absorption method rather than actively reading the passage to get an overall understanding of content, central argument(s), and most importantly generate a mental map of where things are in the passage so that you can rapidly refer back to it as you attempt to eliminate answer choices. These are very active habits that you likely will not gain if you allow yourself 25 minutes per passage.
  • emli1000emli1000 Alum Member Inactive ⭐
    3462 karma
    Thanks. I think I'm going drill based on subject matter like we do in LR.
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