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Study Plan Guidance Request – Six Weeks Out

benjipantsbenjipants Member
edited October 2016 in General 65 karma
Hey ’Sagers.

Here's my situation: I’m 12 PTs in, and I’m scoring generally between high 160s and low 170s (BR usually 178-179). I was hoping to take the exam in December, and my target score is 175+. I am not there, most of all because of LG.

I’m all over the place with LG, and generally way, way under where I want to be, which is starting to unnerve me because I was planning to sit for the exam in six weeks. I’m missing -0 to -8 (last PTs: -4, -2, -0, -8, -7, -7), generally riding these sections out as a pencil-gripping emotional mess, usually not getting to every question and missing others. I’m headed back to review in/out games, lessons I guess I rushed through initially, which is probably why these games in particular are a challenge. I foolproof every game and then go back and do the entire LG section at once to get a feel for proper timing. (Also I should say that I did the foolproof method for every game so far, including those in the core curriculum.) I 'get' the games eventually, it’s the first time around (the, um, one that matters) that I seem to fall apart.

I feel any remaining gains in RC and LR will happen largely through PTing, but also that I should hold off on burning through LG sections until I am more confident on games. So my plan as of right now is to continue to take PTs, skipping the LG sections for now, subbing in a section or two from an older test so I can still get a feel for the full length of the exam. That way I can still work on RC and LR and overall strategy. Then, when I feel more confident on LG, I'll catch up on those sections, adding them as a fifth section to my PTs.

I’m also thinking about going through the LSAT Trainer for just games and wondering if it’s too late to start that. Or maybe getting a tutor in NYC. I’m six weeks out from my desired test date. If I postpone until Feb that means waiting another year to apply, or applying very late, both of which I REALLY do not want to do.

I also realize that at this point that if completing 2 PTs/week on average means I will do only about 24 total PTs before 12/3. I want to get the best possible score (like, obvi), so I’m wondering if I should just plan on moving things to February, maybe applying extremely late or just the next cycle. (Again, I do not want to do this.)

So the questions:

1) How does that 6-week strategy sound? ~2 PTs a week, plus LG ‘bootcamp,’ maybe with The Trainer, waiting to do LG sections until I’m more confident [2 weeks, hopefully, which would give me a month to practice on the actual PTs.])

2) Does anyone recommend adding the LSAT Trainer for LG? Could I get through the games chapters in 2 weeks? Or am I just going to add an unnecessary cook into the kitchen?

3) Would the difference between taking roughly 25 PTs vs 40 PTs warrant postponing applying until February or the next cycle?

4) Has anyone worked with a tutor for LG in NYC and had a positive experience? Again, I’m game-proficient, just not within the time constraints of the exam. Ideally I'd want someone to look at what I've done in past exams, maybe watch me do a section, give me feedback.

Thanks!

Comments

  • Cant Get RightCant Get Right Yearly + Live Member Sage 🍌 7Sage Tutor
    27821 karma
    So you say you've foolproofed "every game so far." What does that mean?
  • benjipantsbenjipants Member
    65 karma
    Hey @"Cant Get Right"! I mean that every game I've done so far (core curriculum and PTs), I've printed out copies and done the game as many times as I needed to feel like I 'owned' the game and completed it under the recommended time.
  • Cant Get RightCant Get Right Yearly + Live Member Sage 🍌 7Sage Tutor
    27821 karma
    How many games is that @benjipants ? You definitely want to run yourself through an LG intensive. Start by foolproofing every game from PT 1-35. Once you've foolproofed a game, revisit it in about a week in order to reinforce. Then, as you encounter new games as you PT, run them through the same process, which it sounds like you're already doing. Until you've foolproofed 1-35, I think it's too soon to worry much.

    As far as how best to schedule your remaining time, you really do have to do the LG intensive. It sounds like you're positioned really well to hit your target score. If LG is where you're losing your points, that is really encouraging. You've just got to build up your experience and confidence with games. I think that would definitely be worth a couple weeks away from PTing.

    I wouldn't start deconstructing your PTs though. At that point, you're just drilling.
  • benjipantsbenjipants Member
    65 karma
    @"Cant Get Right" Thanks so much for the advice and encouragement. I will do this. Most of those 1-35 games I think were covered in the core curriculum, but I will revisit all of them. I'm a little nervous about just leaving tests 'on the table'--I'm only going to have gone through about 20 PTs before the actual test if I follow this plan, but I will give it a shot. Thanks again!
  • benjipantsbenjipants Member
    65 karma
    @"Nicole Hopkins" @DumbHollywoodActor : Just wondering if either of you had any other input here! Thanks!
  • desire2learndesire2learn Member
    1171 karma
    I think that you just need to keep hammering games and identifying specific weaknesses. When I started out I struggled mightily with In-Out games and it would cost me points on other games because of timing. So work on your overall timing strategies like skipping (as an added benefit this may help you isolate your specific weaknesses more easily). Then I would just do a LOT of games. The game types are relatively repetitive and if you are watching JY's videos after foolproofing you will pick up all sorts of needed skills along the way (these will make you more efficient and thus faster). It just takes time and a lot of repetition. Revisiting the games a little later like @"Cant Get Right" recommends is a great way to check and see if your process is improving along the way (plus it reinforces concepts in a practical way).
    Keep up the good work!
  • AlexAlex Alum Member
    23929 karma
    @desire2learn said:
    It just takes time and a lot of repetition. Revisiting the games a little later like @"Cant Get Right" recommends is a great way to check and see if your process is improving along the way (plus it reinforces concepts in a practical way).
    Keep up the good work!
    this is what I did/do and it has been working great as far as my improvements with logic games. Just keep hammering away and you should be able to meet your goal by December. Like @"Cant Get Right" says I also recommend doing an "intensive" in which you spend 2-3 weeks just focusing on games since that is where you are losing the most points right now.
  • benjipantsbenjipants Member
    65 karma
    Thanks @"Alex Divine" and @desire2learn ! I appreciate your input! Yes, I will take this on. If I spend two weeks in an LG intensive, that leaves me only 4 weeks to PT which does make me nervous, but targeted study is probably the best option. I may just take 1 PT/week so I don't slide back on my RC/LR progress.
  • AlexAlex Alum Member
    23929 karma
    @benjipants said:
    Yes, I will take this on. If I spend two weeks in an LG intensive, that leaves me only 4 weeks to PT which does make me nervous, but targeted study is probably the best option. I may just take 1 PT/week so I don't slide back on my RC/LR progress.
    I can understand your concern. However, my experience has been that PTs are mostly just used to test your improvements and targeted study/BR are where students make the majority of their improvements. You are already scoring quite well, so I think an LG intensive will do wonders for ya! Just make sure you do all of the 70s and get used to them before the test date arrives.

  • benjipantsbenjipants Member
    65 karma
    @"Alex Divine" Thank you! This is helpful!
  • DumbHollywoodActorDumbHollywoodActor Alum Inactive ⭐
    7468 karma
    There’s a lot of great stuff here. I would agree that you really don’t want to risk burnout by trying to do too many tests while you’re fool proofing.

    The only thing I would add is to hold yourself to an almost impossible standard with LG. For example, during fool proofing, don’t stop re-doing the game until you can complete the game perfectly to 2/3rds of the suggested time; so, with a game that JY suggests you do in 10 minutes, you can’t stop fool proofing until you can do it in around 6:40. Be merciless with yourself. If you’re not making that time, figure out which moments are causing the time lag and figure out a way to remedy it (maybe build a drill that focuses solely that skill). Then, when you come back to it a week later, hold yourself to that time. If you can’t, then re-foolproof. No excuses.


    I will add one caveat to this. Even though you’re trying to improve your timing on LG, don’t forget to take that all-important pause between writing down the rules and answering the questions to see how the rules work together (maybe doing a few hypotheticals in your head or even lightly drawing that hypo in the game board). Don’t get into the bad habit of skipping this vital step because you’re trying to go faster.

    Best of luck.
  • benjipantsbenjipants Member
    65 karma
    @DumbHollywoodActor , this is just what I needed to hear (and see--thanks MJ). I'm starting today.
  • benjipantsbenjipants Member
    65 karma
    @DumbHollywoodActor @"Cant Get Right"

    OK guys, I followed your advice! I foolproofed all the LG for PTs up to 39 (at least the ones I could get---there are a handful of early PTs I had trouble getting which only just arrived).

    I'm still scoring high 160s to low 170s, and I'm often missing more on LG than on the rest of the three sections put together. I know I am getting better overall at LG--now it typically takes me 1-3 do-overs to feel like I 'own' a game. The last two PTs I was fine with the more familiar games, but when I'm thrown a new type of game, or a really hard one, I fall apart (PT 74 I went -8 on LG).

    I'd love some guidance with a study plan. I have 14 days. I still feel I have room for improvement in the other sections.

    I have clean PTs 75-79 and C2 left to take of the most recent ones, also PTs 60 - 65, and then most of 40-55. I'm thinking I should just take 3 days to do whatever LG I can from 40-55 and the early tests I just got, and then the LG from 60-65 throughout the next 10 days along with the last 5 PTs.

    Please let me know what you think! Thanks!!
  • dennisgerrarddennisgerrard Member
    1644 karma
    I wonder how you use trainer for LG.
  • Cant Get RightCant Get Right Yearly + Live Member Sage 🍌 7Sage Tutor
    27821 karma
    The last thing you want to do is to end a long period of sustained, healthy studying with a very brief one of cramming. You have tons left that would benefit you, but if you try to cram it all in in the last couple of weeks you're going to do more harm than good. Keep doing what you've been doing for the next week. For the week before the test you need to unwind and keep it light.
  • benjipantsbenjipants Member
    65 karma
    Hey @"Cant Get Right" , thanks for the guidance. I took your advice, took it a bit slower this week. Thanks!
  • Cant Get RightCant Get Right Yearly + Live Member Sage 🍌 7Sage Tutor
    27821 karma
    No problem @benjipants ! Hope you go in sharp tomorrow! Also, I'm obviously a little behind on the uptake here, but just now realizing that that's Benji in your profile pic, lol. That's excellent.
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