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I Could Cry...Above 165 scorers pls help

Determined_Determined_ Monthly Member
edited August 2021 in Logical Reasoning 710 karma

For the last one year, I constantly get anywhere from -6 to -13 on a single LR section. I typically score in the low-mid 150s, with my logic games score being the section that gives me that score boost (I initially scored a 143 diagnostic). I do have crazy nerves which I am trying to mitigate by practicing mindfulness (any tips welcome), but at first I thought my issue was also with translation. So I started doing translation drills as discussed in the Loophole and I definitely feel as though my memory with the stimulus is improving. So then, I moved on to seeing the assumption/gap in between the P-->C and calling that out in various questions before I went to the answer choices so I could be better at anticipating the answer. For the life of me, I keep getting sucked into the wrong ACs and sometimes find myself being too strict on my expectations of a wording or being too careless in what I accept as a correct answer.

I feel like it is hard for me to develop a Loophole and I know I need to keep on practicing, but man, this is getting frustrating. Attitude is everything and I know I shouldn't give up. If anyone has any tips on how they approach seeing "the gap" in between the P and C and not getting sucked into the ACs (while being able to finish a section on time....sigh...), please let me know. My goal is to get -3 in LR and I want to believe it is possible for me!

I also am considering tutoring, but sis is broke and I really wanna make sure that's the right decision before I drop that much $$$. Someone pls be my friend and help me in the lonely life

Thx !!! :)

Comments

  • taracoughlin1225taracoughlin1225 Alum Member
    40 karma

    Something that might be helpful would be to practice using Khan Academy's forum. They have LSAT questions, but the practice sections have unlimited timing and give you feedback after each question, explaining why each answer is right/wrong. I first approached the questions with an emphasis on accuracy, and once I was getting that down tried to reduce my timing.

    Hope this helps!

  • baguettebishbaguettebish Alum Member
    edited August 2021 33 karma

    Hey!! I also struggled a ton with LR and used Loophole. Keep doing the Translation Drills, they reeeeeally helped me. Retaining and understanding the stimulus quickly enough was the hardest part for me. I know the book really emphasizes finding the Loophole in every question, but I find thinking of a fully fleshed out loophole in my head too time consuming. Instead, I think generally about the gap in the argument/why it doesn't work exactly, and I don't worry about the exact way to fill it yet. I just notice it. Sometimes I can't even put into words exactly what the gap is, I just have a feeling that something is missing between a premise and the conclusion, or feel like there's a flaw with conditional reasoning or sampling strategy, but I can't quite put my finger on it. Then I go into the answer choices, and use the Bad Answer Choice strategies she talks about in the last chapter of the book to eliminate ACs quickly. My biggest timesink before was giving wrong ACs the time of day and thinking that they could possibly be right if I stretched my mind to accomodate them. But there's no time for that. Instead, if I'm spending more than 10 seconds considering an answer choice, I just move onto the next one and usually a later one fits so perfectly into that gap in the argument that I can clearly eliminate the crazy one that was giving me trouble. I've noticed that wrong ACs are mostly just "Crazy Nonsense" there to take up your time.

    This is my general approach to LR and it has really helped me. Also, just taking PTs over and over has helped me get familiar with the patterns, so most of the time now for SA or Inference questions I can already anticipate the right answer choices because they very often formulaically connect a premise to a dangling variable in the conclusion. I started at -11 and I'm at -4 and below consistently for the last several PTs I've taken. My biggest piece of advice still is to keep working on translation because that's what helped me the most to have enough time to approach each question without panicking. Then I worked on my approach to each individual question type. Good luck!!!

  • WishingOnAStarWishingOnAStar Alum Member
    edited September 2021 83 karma

    Hi there! I started out with a 149/150 and have consistently PT'd in mid to high 160s. I've found that focusing on why wrong answers are wrong is often very helpful, in addition to holding the P-C in mind / pre-phrasing. I've frequently had questions in which I had no idea why the right answer was right but KNEW the other four answer choices were wrong.

  • gaver456gaver456 Monthly Member
    108 karma

    I started with a 143 too! LR is my worst section too - though nothing is really that constant or strong. I think it helps to do a lot of untimed question practice. Plus, I always write out the reason why I'm NOT choosing an answer and cross check it with JY and LSAT Hacks :) The reasons why can be as simple as irrelevant, wrong group, bad word (only, every, etc.), or this is really silly! Good luck girl <3 I just got a 163 (after two years of on and off studying) so there is hope and you will get there! Just be open to a longer timeline I suppose :)

    Feel free to reach out if you want to have a moan!!

  • nomomnomnomomnom Monthly Member
    362 karma

    I'm not a 165 scorer but score in the low 160s and LR is my consistent section. If you're being seduced by attractive but very wrong answer choices, it could be that your stimulus read was not sufficient. Do you prephrase what the correct AC could be before heading into the AC's? Are there consistent question types you get wrong? If so, it might be helpful to review core curriculum and do drills to rectify the problem.

  • overthistestoverthistest Alum Member
    166 karma

    How long would you say it took you to make this improvement ?

    @baguettebish said:
    Hey!! I also struggled a ton with LR and used Loophole. Keep doing the Translation Drills, they reeeeeally helped me. Retaining and understanding the stimulus quickly enough was the hardest part for me. I know the book really emphasizes finding the Loophole in every question, but I find thinking of a fully fleshed out loophole in my head too time consuming. Instead, I think generally about the gap in the argument/why it doesn't work exactly, and I don't worry about the exact way to fill it yet. I just notice it. Sometimes I can't even put into words exactly what the gap is, I just have a feeling that something is missing between a premise and the conclusion, or feel like there's a flaw with conditional reasoning or sampling strategy, but I can't quite put my finger on it. Then I go into the answer choices, and use the Bad Answer Choice strategies she talks about in the last chapter of the book to eliminate ACs quickly. My biggest timesink before was giving wrong ACs the time of day and thinking that they could possibly be right if I stretched my mind to accomodate them. But there's no time for that. Instead, if I'm spending more than 10 seconds considering an answer choice, I just move onto the next one and usually a later one fits so perfectly into that gap in the argument that I can clearly eliminate the crazy one that was giving me trouble. I've noticed that wrong ACs are mostly just "Crazy Nonsense" there to take up your time.

    This is my general approach to LR and it has really helped me. Also, just taking PTs over and over has helped me get familiar with the patterns, so most of the time now for SA or Inference questions I can already anticipate the right answer choices because they very often formulaically connect a premise to a dangling variable in the conclusion. I started at -11 and I'm at -4 and below consistently for the last several PTs I've taken. My biggest piece of advice still is to keep working on translation because that's what helped me the most to have enough time to approach each question without panicking. Then I worked on my approach to each individual question type. Good luck!!!

  • Determined_Determined_ Monthly Member
    710 karma

    @gaver456 @nomomnom @WishingOnAStar @baguettebish @taracoughlin1225

    Thank you all for your thoughtful responses. I really, really appreciate it, especially as this journey can be so lonely!

  • czheng15czheng15 Alum Member
    16 karma

    @baguettebish said:
    Hey!! I also struggled a ton with LR and used Loophole. Keep doing the Translation Drills, they reeeeeally helped me. Retaining and understanding the stimulus quickly enough was the hardest part for me. I know the book really emphasizes finding the Loophole in every question, but I find thinking of a fully fleshed out loophole in my head too time consuming. Instead, I think generally about the gap in the argument/why it doesn't work exactly, and I don't worry about the exact way to fill it yet. I just notice it. Sometimes I can't even put into words exactly what the gap is, I just have a feeling that something is missing between a premise and the conclusion, or feel like there's a flaw with conditional reasoning or sampling strategy, but I can't quite put my finger on it. Then I go into the answer choices, and use the Bad Answer Choice strategies she talks about in the last chapter of the book to eliminate ACs quickly. My biggest timesink before was giving wrong ACs the time of day and thinking that they could possibly be right if I stretched my mind to accomodate them. But there's no time for that. Instead, if I'm spending more than 10 seconds considering an answer choice, I just move onto the next one and usually a later one fits so perfectly into that gap in the argument that I can clearly eliminate the crazy one that was giving me trouble. I've noticed that wrong ACs are mostly just "Crazy Nonsense" there to take up your time.

    This is my general approach to LR and it has really helped me. Also, just taking PTs over and over has helped me get familiar with the patterns, so most of the time now for SA or Inference questions I can already anticipate the right answer choices because they very often formulaically connect a premise to a dangling variable in the conclusion. I started at -11 and I'm at -4 and below consistently for the last several PTs I've taken. My biggest piece of advice still is to keep working on translation because that's what helped me the most to have enough time to approach each question without panicking. Then I worked on my approach to each individual question type. Good luck!!!

    Can you explain a little on the "working on translation" part? Do you read the stimulus and write down what the stimulus is saying without looking?

  • mcardlampkemcardlampke Member
    6 karma

    Hey! So I don’t have test anxiety so take my advice with a grain of salt. I scored 164 on my diagnostic test and took the feb. test and got a 177, so I won’t be retaking the test.

    I highly highly highly recommend Nathan Fox’s Logical Reasoning textbook if you haven’t already worked your way through it. Do the questions and THEN read his explainations.

    After doing this, I would try to take the time to write out your own explainations of why you think you’re right answer or right and every wrong answer is wrong before looking at the answer choice.

    Finally, you’ve probably already been told this but never go into a section with the goal of finishing — make sure you feel good about your answer before moving onto the next question, because they’re only gonna get harder. When I stopped trying to rush was when I saw the most improvement. It’s really try that “slow is smooth and smooth is fast.” Hope this helps!

  • Kimo_GandallKimo_Gandall Member
    12 karma

    Other people have already suggested it, but Nathan has some great tools. Most recently, that means the LSAT Demon - I personally went from the 160s to 173 on it, while being in school and doing a number of other activities.

    Don't rush, calm down, and you'll make it.

  • clear227clear227 Monthly Member
    326 karma

    If your goal is to avoid getting sucked in by attractors, the answer is to prephrase.

    After identifying the question type and locating the conclusion, try to come up with a few answers in your mind before looking at the choices. The right answer will “pop out” at you. Saves you time as well!

  • clear227clear227 Monthly Member
    326 karma

    Another great way to improve timing (and help you finish the section) is by skipping. I am consistently scoring -0 to -1 in LR and finishing with extra time. If I see a question I don’t like, I just go “nah” and move on to the next one.

    I add up my question number with the timer and make sure it’s always above 35 (e.g. question 7 plus 29 minutes on timer equals 36). This keeps you in line with the “1 minute per question” rule.

    I do a first pass and usually complete 3/4 of the questions. Then I go back for a second pass to do the ones I skip. If I don’t like some of the questions a second time, I will skip them again. Basically I avoid doing a question until I feel like it (but will eliminate obviously wrong answer choices, which is half the work).

  • paigecmiller6paigecmiller6 Monthly Member
    25 karma

    I wish I had some tips to give! I am in the same spot as you, LR is my weakest section and LG gives me a score boost. Blind Review has helped me get a better handle on understanding the stimulus and anticipating the AC's though!

  • baguettebishbaguettebish Alum Member
    edited August 2021 33 karma

    @czheng15 Yes, translation is where you train yourself to be able to understand the stimulus quickly by reading each stimulus, covering it and saying what it said in your own words. You can write it down or say it out loud! Basically I would do this until I got faster and faster and until I could even do the super long stimuli.

  • baguettebishbaguettebish Alum Member
    33 karma

    @overthistest I made this improvement starting in mid July when I started taking PTs, and I'm scoring -4ish now. So about a month!

  • czheng15czheng15 Alum Member
    16 karma

    @baguettebish said:
    @czheng15 Yes, translation is where you train yourself to be able to understand the stimulus quickly by reading each stimulus, covering it and saying what it said in your own words. You can write it down or say it out loud! Basically I would do this until I got faster and faster and until I could even do the super long stimuli.

    Thank you so much! This is sooo helpful! Btw, would you look at the question stem while doing the translation drill or you will do a whole section lr translation drill w/o looking at the questions?

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