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Switching LR answers to the wrong answer choice

saraseymour96saraseymour96 Alum Member
in General 8 karma

As suggested, when going through an LR section, I flag questions that I'm not 100% on. I often finish the section with a few minutes to review. As (I think) is expected, I tend to get more answers wrong in the last ten than the first fifteen, but with those few extra minutes, I'll go back to the questions I've flagged in the first half and either stick to my original answer choice, or switch it. In looking at my last eight practice tests, I've found that when I switch the answer, I'm way more likely to switch an originally correct answer choice to an incorrect answer choice than I am to switch an incorrect answer choice to a correct one. I don't usually end up with enough time to review answer choices in the last ten questions. Any thoughts on whether I'm better off trying to slow my pace down or trying to review later questions rather than earlier questions?


  • wheelysmizzwheelysmizz Alum Member
    edited August 2020 37 karma

    For you, I think it can be made simpler. Do not change your answer unless you are 100% certain the original choice is wrong - even if you feel like another choice is equivalently correct. You'll reduce your overall number of changes, which is good assuming the change error ratio remains constant. Basically, you'll be saving yourself points by not changing your answer more than you sacrifice them.

    Knowing how often you go wrong->wrong would help, as would knowing how long you generally spend on successful changes vs unsuccessful changes. It would also be helpful to know if you're more or less certain when making good changes compared versus bad changes.

    Also, in general, I would recommend trying not to revisit the first 10 questions at all. They're usually the easiest and ideally you are confident enough in them to leave them in the past.

    In my personal strategy, I have a soft-sort for which questions I revisit first. I try to balance the amount of text with my overall confidence in my original choice. Ideally the ordering is as follows: least text/most confidence -> most text/least confidence.

    I figure I can iron out more corrections in less time if I focus on the easier stuff first, since the risk of draining all my time on a single question is higher if I start with the hard stuff. I also tend to only have four or five questions flagged, tough.

  • saraseymour96saraseymour96 Alum Member
    8 karma

    This all makes sense, thanks! Looking at just the first 15 questions in a timed setting, I went from right -> wrong 4 times, wrong -> wrong 1 time, right -> right 25 times, wrong -> right never. On the last ten or eleven questions, it's harder to tell because I usually don't get to review them and if I do I probably don't have a lot of time, but where I did review, the numbers work out to right -> wrong 1 time, wrong -> wrong 2 times, right -> right 5 times, wrong ->right never.

    In terms of timing, it's hard to tell because I really end up with like 3 minutes left, so I really don't have a ton of time to review anything. LR is definitely my weakest section, so I think maybe it's causing me to be less confident, so I flag a lot of questions (like half of them), and then I'm changing my answers in a panic, which clearly isn't panning out.

    I think I was trying to do what you laid out, where I was reviewing least text/most confidence -> most text/least confidence, but I think it sounds like I should only do those with the last ten or eleven questions.

  • gvvert957gvvert957 Monthly Member
    24 karma

    Ok, I can actually give some useful advice here (I think), because I had a similar problem until recently. When I looked back at questions I'd flagged like this, I would typically be biased against the answer that I'd already chosen. I'd feel unsure about it simply because I'd flagged it, and this would make me feel uncomfortable about sticking with my original choice. The action of switching your answer often feels more right, even if it isn't.

    My advice: If you come across a question you intend to revisit, don't actually fill in an answer. Just cross off the ones that are obviously wrong, highlight the ones you're deciding between, and then return to it later. This way, when you revisit the question with fresh eyes, you'll be able to look at it in an unbiased way without worrying about whether you'll be "changing your answer" or not. And since you sound like you're finishing with a lot of time to spare, there's no worry about running out of time without answering all the questions.

    Hope this helps!

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