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Broke into the 170s FINALLY!

firstgenlaw-1firstgenlaw-1 Alum Member
edited December 2021 in General 245 karma

Diagnostic: 145
Today's PT: 172

Been studying since January, so excited I can believe it! :D I work full time so I get up to study at 5am to study for five hours before work and finally it's paying off!

Comments

  • lawyer2021lawyer2021 Alum Member
    536 karma

    wow congratulation, how did you do it?

  • Ashley2018Ashley2018 Alum Member
    2072 karma

    .-.

  • qs2159qs2159 Alum Member
    332 karma

    Woo-hoo!!!

  • firstgenlaw-1firstgenlaw-1 Alum Member
    edited December 2021 245 karma

    @lawyer2021 I have been studying since January of this year. I started with 7Sage and the LSAT Trainer. Different techniques work for different people and I found for me that the LSAT Trainer Style of combining studying for all sections at once wasn't the best. I decided first to focus on games until they were consistently -0, while continuously studying LR and RC but with less intensity.

    Then, I focused on LR while doing some LG and RC on the side. Once I got my LR to -1 to -3 consistently, I moved to RC which is my hardest section.

    What helped me the most with RC, is looking at each paragraph as an LR stimulus, finding a conclusion with support and premises. I underline the conclusion of each paragraph. Once I'm done reading, before moving to the questions I summarize in my head the passage paragraph by paragraph, and note the structure (e.g. traditional method, reluctance of validity, new method, new method superior).

    All of the above took me the last 11 months, and in between I lost 3 family members to covid in Mexico and quarantined bc my partner is high risk, plus worked full time and tried not to fall into an abyss of darkness since I couldn't travel to see my family when times were rough (I live in Germany). So it hasn't been easy. But like I said, I get up at 5am everyday and study for hours before work. I also meditate and eat well to help with nerves.

    Lastly, I drill everyday. I try to do 2 LG, 2 RC passages, and 5 LR questions everyday as a rule. I don't do this all at once: I do 1 RC passage in the morning and 1 in the evening, for example. But this helps me stay sharp. I also am doing all of the logic games, I started with PT1 and do two a day every day.

    In sum I have taken more than 20 PTs, I do one a week.

    Finally, in the very end, I got a private tutor. I have been stuck in the mid-high 160s since July and this finally helped me with using different resources and having a study schedule. This is too much for a lot of people so it really depends on each person :) I have anxiety and panic disorder so doing more than is needed is a way to calm me down and relax in the exam, knowing I've prepared well 🙂

    Wishing you luck on your journey!

  • Ashley2018Ashley2018 Alum Member
    2072 karma

    @"firstgenlaw-1" said:
    @lawyer2021 I have been studying since January of this year. I started with 7Sage and the LSAT Trainer. Different techniques work for different people and I found for me that the LSAT Trainer Style of combining studying for all sections at once wasn't the best. I decided first to focus on games until they were consistently -0, while continuously studying LR and RC but with less intensity.

    Then, I focused on LR while doing some LG and RC on the side. Once I got my LR to -1 to -3 consistently, I moved to LR which is my hardest section.

    What helped me the most with LR, is looking at each paragraph as an LR stimulus, finding a conslusion with support and premises. I underline the conclusion of each paragraph. Once I'm done reading, before moving to the questions I summarize in my head the passage paragraph by paragraph, and note the structure (e.g. traditional method, reluctance of validity, new method, new method superior).

    All of thw above took me the last 11 months, and in between I lost 3 family members to covid in Mexico and quarantined bc my partner is high risk, plus worked full time and tried not to fall into an abyss of darkness since I couldn't travel to see my family when times were rough (I live in Germany). So it hasn't been easy. But like I said, I get up at 5am everyday and study for hours before work. I also meditate and eat well to help with nerves.

    Lastly, I drill everyday. I try to do 2 LG, 2 RC passages, and 5 LR questions everyday as a rule. I don't do this all at once: I do 1 RC passage in the morning and 1 in the evening, for example. But this helps me stay sharp. I also am doing all of the logic games, I started with PT1 and do two a day every day.

    In sum I have taken more than 20 PTs, I do one a week.

    Finally, in the very end, I got a private tutor. I have been stuck in the mid-high 160s since July and this finally helped me with using different resources and having a study schedule. This is too much for a lot of people so it really depends on each person :) I have anxiety and panic disorder so doing more than is needed is a way to calm me down and relax in the exam, knowing I've prepared well 🙂

    Wishing you luck on your journey!

    Who was the tutor? How much does he/she charge?

  • lawyer2021lawyer2021 Alum Member
    536 karma

    hey by the way I'm sorry to hear about your loved one who pass away. My condolence to you.

  • swanganieswanganie Yearly Member
    edited December 2021 294 karma

    @firstgenlaw-1 your hard work is paying off! Keep it up! I love seeing posts like yours because they encourage me to trust the process.

    I'm so sorry about the loved ones you lost <3 This is not an easy time and what you're doing is incredible. Please remember to rest and reset where needed

  • firstgenlaw-1firstgenlaw-1 Alum Member
    edited December 2021 245 karma

    Thanks so much for your comments! I appreciate your kind words. Actually, what happened pushed me forward because it sort of ties into the law I want to study. Also,

    It sounds really intense but I rest when needed:) I got my covid booster two weeks ago and I was exhausted. My boss had given me the whole week off for Thanksgiving so I just laid on the couch and watched Netflix and didn't study bc I was so groggy from the booster (am since fine!). Also, the PT before I got 172 was a 166 last week. So don't freak out when you get a bad PT, the improvement process is volatile and won't be strictly linear.

    As for the tutor, different tutors work for different people so I don't want to disclose the name and then people think they will just improve with this person. I had worked with them in April and got a 163 on the June LSAT. In July I switched to a different and more expensive ($1,300) tutor because I saw so many great reviews and people scoring 170+ with them. However, I scored another 163 in October. I went back to my tutor from April and that was just a better fit for me. I have also read reviews about my current tutor where people dislike the methods and it didn't help them.

    I would highly encourage you to check out several tutors, read reviews, and think about what works best for your learning methods and general personality. For example, the pricey tutor I got has helped many hit 170+, but she was quite intense and I had a lot of anxiety during our sessions which was keeping me from relaxing and focusing on the materials. I only spent the money because there was such a hype about this tutor but in retrospect, I should have just known better that it wasn't the right fit for me. They would get frustrated with me when I didn't understand and also tell me about other students of theirs that got this question right, which just brought me down. Don't make the mistake I did and spend more than a thousand on hype, look at what they actually do:

    -Do you have difficulty staying motivating or knowing what to study? Look for a tutor that pinpoints your weaknesses and creates a day by day study schedule for you.
    -Are you a little de-motivated and like to skip several study days in a row? Find a tutor that holds you accountable
    -Are you perfect in RC and LR but hate games? Find a tutor that has great techniques for LG specifically rather than getting people in 170s. (You can be -0 in games and still score in 160s)

    I really hope this helps! I only JUST got my first 170+ PT after almost a year of studying so take everything I say with a grain of salt, I'm by no means in the clear. I'm still grinding to make sure that I can score in the high 160s+ on the January LSAT. Good luck to all of you! Below is a list of other resources I used:

    -7Sage
    -LSAT Trainer
    -LR Powerscore Bible
    -Manhattan Prep book LR
    -Cambridge LSAT prep books LR
    -Fox LSAT prep books LR
    -Loophole is sitting behind me on a shelf but I haven't read it yet, will try to squeeze it in before Jan but dunno if I will actually swing it :smiley:

    Also, I keep a wrong answer excel sheet. I have been doing that since April. I record each wrong LR or RC question I get. I have different columns for conclusion, premises, question type, why my AC is wrong, why correct one is right, and a column with what I should/can do next time to not make the same mistake. It's a tedious process, but this helps A LOT. I also review my "tips" column before I do a PT, to remember mistakes I made and have that fresh in my head.

  • gabes900-1gabes900-1 Alum Member
    855 karma

    Congrats on the wonderful increase!!

  • Ashley2018Ashley2018 Alum Member
    edited December 2021 2072 karma

    Well, it'd still help to know. The tutors on the 7sage page...the ones who actually get back to me don't fit at all. And I'm currently in a sticky situation with my current tutor. I paid the individual months ago and he is no longer responding to my messages.

  • CSieck3507CSieck3507 Monthly Member
    1289 karma

    @Ashley2018 said:
    Well, it'd still help to know. The tutors on the 7sage page...the ones who actually get back to me don't fit at all. And I'm currently in a sticky situation with my current tutor. I paid the individual months ago and he is no longer responding to my messages.

    I would send @firstgenlaw-1 a PM, they may respond to that instead of posting a name on the forum

  • firstgenlaw-1firstgenlaw-1 Alum Member
    edited December 2021 245 karma

    I have since received a load of messages about which tutor I got that kept me accountable and I want to clarify a few things:

    What I wrote didn't pertain to me but was merely a tip for people to search for a tutor that fits with their learning methods. All tutors I've worked with charged $200 an hour minimum and gave a study schedule but none of them checked in on me to make sure I'm doing my work. Though, I'm sure if you offered them extra money they would totally do that. I generally am disciplined so I didn't need help with this.

    Also, I have gotten many requests for my study wrong answer excel sheet so I've posted the link for that here:
    https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1fYXBc40tlMKBIEYv34_B5nyXaK5D1ipwt0Kq19P7FsM/edit#gid=0

    ****Note that it's empty, I made a copy and removed all content as I don't want to be sued by LSAC for sharing published test materials.****

    That being said, I want to emphasize that a tutor isn't going to just give you an answer key and everything just clicks. The "clicking" happened through drilling and taking more than 30 PTs. I have been working with different tutors since May. What made the biggest difference for me was changing my lifestyle and building it around LSAT:

    -Wake up at 5am
    -Either hour-long walk with audiobook and coffee or at-home workout
    -Breakfast
    -Meditate
    -Study for 3 hours with a stretch break every 45 minutes
    -Telling my boss I am studying for the LSAT so I can work 10-7 to study in the AM
    -Meditating during lunch break and before bed
    -Stopping screen time at 8pm and sleeping by 9:30pm

    I also reduced caffeine to two cups/espresso a day MAX. I usually have one in the morning and then stick to tea. I also changed my eating habits, am a vegetarian but cut processed foods (affordable b/c I live in Germany but totally get why this isn't possible back home in the States for everyone).

    I also listen to audiobooks or read books that help my state of mind for the LSAT like Atomic Habits or Digital Minimalism.

    Finally, the biggest "tip" I can give that really changed my whole testing game was this: read the stimulus first. I scored 163 in Oct and doing this in the last weeks has me consistently scoring 168+. This helped me focus on what's actually happening in the stimulus instead of just looking for what the question asks. Also, I'm usually able to predict the answer and what the question will be as I'm reading which helps.

    If you are looking for more tips, I suggest checking out this thread: https://7sage.com/discussion/#/discussion/30244/146-180-thank-you-7sage-very-tired-mom-edition/p1

    @ME_V_LSAT is super human! She got a 180 on the official test, is a mom with a toddler, and studied and got a perfect score while working a full-time job! Her study routine and advice really inspired me to change everything I was doing and build it around the LSAT. I started this routine in September and it's a game changer. I also have a full-time job and husband I try to spend time with so I figured if she can do it then so can I :)

    I hope this information is useful, best of luck to you all!

  • WickedLostWickedLost Alum Member
    472 karma

    this is so inspiring, congratulations on all your hard work!

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