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RC advice needed

Hello,

I would really appreciate some advice here,
So My RC on old PTs (20s to 30s) were on average -3, I knew that old RCs are much easier but at least I thought my reading ability wasn't too bad. But the more recent like 60s PT, I'm now averaging -8 and this really freaks me out.

The pattern that I am seeing is that I would miss only 1 or 2 on entire 3 passages and get completely destroyed on one particular passage that feels most dense. (usually the second one) It seems comparative passage doesn't pose much problem.

Should I just print out most difficult passages and focus drill them?
Its just so frustrating how my performance on a single passage kills the RC score

Comments

  • TimLSAT180TimLSAT180 Alum Member
    619 karma

    I think other 7sagers might have a better advice than the one I can offer since I've only been prepping for just a little over a month, but I think if there is a pattern in the type of passage that is giving you the hardest time (maybe it's the subject matter, maybe it's certain question types, etc.) then I would suggest drilling those specific passages really slowly and deeply. Also, some people have trouble with really dense legal passages. What I would personally do is not only drill those passages really deeply, but also read prose related to legal matters during my spare time because familiarity can only help. I also just wanted to add that the more recent RCs are considered to be more difficult compared to the early PTs, but really they are based on the same underlying reasoning structure. There must be just some tweaking that the test writers did to make it "look" more difficult. This is just my sixth sense, but really I think your score will improve in time. Keep at it!

  • draj0623draj0623 Alum Member
    916 karma

    Is there a subject matter category that consistently throws you off? For a while, science passages challenged me the most. I would suggest to familiarize yourself with more casual reading on the general subject matter categories. I really benefited from reading Scientific American articles and articles from the Economist during my prep. If subject matter isn't the root of your problem, definitely focus on JY's breakdown of the passages and start to emulate that as you practice on your own. Even really hard to understand passages have some basic structure to hold on to that can help you get through many questions. Hopefully this helps! Best of luck!

  • tjphilbricktjphilbrick Alum Member
    174 karma

    Give it some time. This happened to me when I started doing 70's RC and my scores went way down. The 70's are definitely different than the 60's, and the 60's are a lot different than the 30's. Give yourself several PT's to adjust to the new style of writing and new way of questioning. This is also important for later on - make sure you have been doing 70's and 80's RC passages for a while before your actual test so you are used to the tactics used.

    Utilize JY's memory method on every passage. Take it slow and start by challenging yourself to remember not only the main point of each paragraph but also as many of the details as you can. This way you'll be stretching your capacity to retain information and will be increasing its capability for when you're under pressure in the test. You'll then be able to back off once you get closer to the test and look at the 10,000-foot-view with a better perspective and mindset.

  • slee146slee146 Member
    42 karma

    Thank you all for the comments!

    I think subject matter is not an issue, but the hardest questions tend to be making inferences and most supported types. When I examine the ACs, the ones that are completely irrelevant or opposite are easy to spot, but the ACs that are could be true but not supported by the passage tend to get me. Even when I gets these types right, it takes much more time than other questions.
    Process of elimination by going back to passage for every AC (for inference Q) would be bad move right? or is it how its actually done for everyone?

  • tjphilbricktjphilbrick Alum Member
    174 karma

    I struggled with the same two types of questions. A change for the better came when I changed my mindset from looking for the right answer to looking for the wrong answer. In other words, I increased me level of scrutiny when examining such questions and approached each answer choice with the primary goal of being able to fully explain and write out why it was wrong. Hold a high standard for what you will let an answer choice say about the passage before you choose it. Ask yourself, "Does the passage REALLY say/imply that?" Once you can identify what is wrong with each part of a tempting AC, write it out. That is the key. If you can verbalize and then write out explanations for why every answer choice is right/wrong, you'll improve a lot.

  • Cant Get RightCant Get Right Yearly + Live Member Sage 🍌 7Sage Tutor
    edited February 2017 27853 karma

    @slee146 said:
    Thank you all for the comments!

    I think subject matter is not an issue, but the hardest questions tend to be making inferences and most supported types. When I examine the ACs, the ones that are completely irrelevant or opposite are easy to spot, but the ACs that are could be true but not supported by the passage tend to get me. Even when I gets these types right, it takes much more time than other questions.

    Yeah, I noticed this too. I dealt with it successfully by using retakes. On a retake I did 2-3 months previous, I have a recollection of the subject matter without enough memory to remember a whole lot deeper. So this let me see through the subject, which is ultimately superficial, and direct my focus deeper into the underlying mechanics of the passage. This transferred into questions and ACs as well. After doing this exercise for awhile, I got much better at seeing what was going on, and I began being able to apply these lessons on fresh takes.

    Process of elimination by going back to passage for every AC (for inference Q) would be bad move right? or is it how its actually done for everyone?

    Yes, this would be a very bad move!

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