Law School Discussion

LSAT Preparation => Studying for the LSAT => Topic started by: vsavatar on March 09, 2003, 02:46:31 AM

Title: Practice LSAT...
Post by: vsavatar on March 09, 2003, 02:46:31 AM
I was wondering about a couple things.  I took a full practice LSAT last night and only scored a 159 on it (which I guess isn't horrible), but my question is, how accurate is that a reflection of what my actual LSAT score is likely to be, and my second question is about what percentile would a 159 fall into.  The part that really tripped me up was the logic games part.  It kicked my arse majorly.
Title: Re: Practice LSAT...
Post by: Quarry_Girl on March 10, 2003, 10:55:50 AM
A 156 is in the 70th percentile...so a 159 isn't bad at all.  If you are strict on timing yourself in your practice tests I would think it would be a fairly accurate representation of how you might score that day (if you have consistently scored in that range after a few practice tests).....but that is assuming no last-minute jitters on test day. When are you taking the LSAT?
Title: Re: Practice LSAT...
Post by: vsavatar on March 10, 2003, 11:07:39 AM
It's still aways off for me.  I'm a junior, but I'm going part time so it'll be another 2 or 3 years before I graduate.  I'll probably take it a year before I graduate.  That way if I do have to retake for some reason I can do so right around graduation time.  I'd really like to get into one of the top 10, but I'm realistic enough to realize that a 159 is just not going to cut it since I'm white, male, anglo-saxon, and protestant.  Now, if I could drive it up another 10 points by some miracle I might at least stand a chance, but more realistically I'm looking at a couple schools including Emory, Davis, and Hastings with MSU as a fallback.  I'd love to go to U of M, considering its within commuting distance for me, but like I said, that LSAT score just isn't going to cut it since I'm not a minority.
Title: Re: Practice LSAT...
Post by: Andrew on March 13, 2003, 01:28:16 AM
I don't think the first practice LSAT you blindly take is a very good representation of your LSAT abilities at all.  Take a couple more to get an idea where you stand.  Also, be careful of unofficial practice tests.  I found them good for practice but I always got much lower scores than on the real ones (presumably this is because I was working from a book that wanted me to get a better score on the real test so I'd think, "oh, that book helped so much...").

That said, a book or class will help a little.  There are a lot of strategies you can try.  For example, on the games section (this wasn't in my book) I found that there was never enough to time to complete the section perfectly.  It was better to narrow down the answers to two and pick the more likely one.  Better to answer all the questions with 80% certainty than to answer 70% of the questions with 100% certainty.
Title: Re: Practice LSAT...
Post by: Carly on March 16, 2003, 06:05:27 AM
Uh, being a Protestant won't have any bearing on your admission chances!! :-)

But seriously...your score will go up with practice. Use the strategies in PR's Cracking the LSAT, get their Analytical Workout book for help with the games section (a must!), and also practice with real LSATs - you can get all of those on Amazon.
Title: Re: Practice LSAT...
Post by: vsavatar on March 16, 2003, 07:43:38 AM
I know being a protestant doesn't make any difference.  I only said that to indicate that I am everything that constitutes a member of the majority.  I personally think they need to remove the race question from all applications.  It doesn't need to be there at all.  I am dead set against affirmative action because in my humble opinion it is racist.  I've always believed that people should get jobs, school admissions, and other benefits because they work hard, and are dedicated and disciplined.  I believe that race should have not factor in the least when it comes to college admissions.  I honestly think that it's more fair that if two candidates have the exact same qualifications that either they should both get in, both not get it, or there should literally be a coin toss to see who gets in.  Coin tosses are not racist.  I'm going to get various study guides and also real LSATs to practice with before I take the actual test.  If I can just get that logic games portion down I think I could really do well.  The other sections I did really well on.
Title: Re: Practice LSAT...
Post by: lp4law on March 17, 2003, 05:14:56 AM
I agree with you on the race issue.  I left those areas blank on my apps.  I think you have to be mentally challenged to actually offer up that kind of information if you're white (caucasion).  You almost get the feeling that it's a hidden test to see if you think things through before acting.  On the other hand, by not filling out this section, I risk broadcasting that I'm white AND a non-conformist.  Boy, I guess I can't win either way. ;)

As far as the LSAT goes, I began studying about 3 weeks before the test.  I used the Princeton "Cracking the LSAT" book.  I also took about 4 actual practice LSATs from a book of ten.  Took the LSAT in Feb 2003, and got a 156 (70%tile).  This score was fairly consistant with my practive scores.  The games section was my weak point throughout.  I completely trashed this section on the actual test. So, all things considered, I'm fairly satisfied with my score.

I could have done much much better on the whole thing if I had prepared for the games section more aggressively, and started studying earlier.  Taking the practive exams were an important part of my preparation, but looking back, I should have focused more on improving my performance in the sections that I was especially weak in.

Good luck! ;D

lp
Title: Re: Practice LSAT...
Post by: lp4law on March 18, 2003, 05:17:10 AM
OK, everywhere I said "practive" in the previous post, I meant "practice."  Apparently I was a little off target with my keystroke yesterday.  So much for attention to detail. :P

lp  
Title: Re: Practice LSAT...
Post by: anonymity19 on May 06, 2003, 07:29:35 AM
Race is always a difficult issue to discuss and, in most cases, understand, if you belong to the majority.  As a minority (Black), I wish there were no need for affirmative action in American institutions, but the reality is that it is needed.  However, allow me to thoroughly explain myself before anyone gets offended or misinterprets my opinion.  

I do not think Affirmative Action should be used solely based on a person's race, but I do believe a person's socio-economic status should be considered when reviewing a potential admit's file.  For instance, I come from an extremely poor neighborhood (Compton, CA) to be exact and, due to necessity, I have been forced to work two and three jobs throughout the entirety of my undergrad career at UCLA.  Obviously, my grades and the amount of extracurriculars I could commit to were affected as a result (I graduated with a 3.5 and scored a 161 on the Dec. 2002 LSAT because I could never commit more than one-fourth of my time to school or the test).  On the other hand, I have many friends from all walks of life (from well below the poverty level - to ridiculously rich) and the one generality I have witnessed is that people with little or no money worries have higher GPAs and LSAT scores.  ***Disclaimer: There are always exceptions to any rule/generality.***  This is highly commendable and I wish I fell into this category, but had I been given the opportunity to dedicate myself solely to class, extracurriculars, and the LSAT, my "indicative numbers" would have been higher as well.  So, I suggest we take economic factors into consideration when choosing who to admit.  

The unfortunate American truth, however, is that poverty often correlates to race.  Now, do not assume I have not done my research, I do realize there are many White people who are poor, too...but in my experience and my travels through the U.S. and bureaucracy, I have noticed it is easier for a poor White person to break certain social barriers, than it is for a poor Minority person.  ***Please see previous disclaimer.***  Well, I need to finish this up because I am at work.  My final statement is that we should consider things outside of grades and LSAT scores when determining a person's ability to perform well in any arena, including law school. ;)  

Title: Re: Practice LSAT...
Post by: lp4law on May 07, 2003, 05:04:02 AM
I believe there is a better solution to this issue; and it is well supported by the main premise of your argument.  The main premise appears to be that there is generally a causal relationship between one's socio-economic background their ability to achieve high UPGA/LSAT scores.  I won't argue the truth of this premise in this discussion.  Certainly, offering consideration for this factor to all people in the admissions process seems reasonable and is unlikely to contribute to widespread resentment and discriminatory practices down the road.  After achieving an advanced education, it is far more difficult to determine one's social or economic background than it is the color of one's skin.

However, the application of race to this issue is self-defeating in that it continues the tradition of racial discrimination, only this time poorly disguised as a social Band-Aid. What it's in essence saying is, "Well, we know you have this problem too; but since it happens to more of us, you should be excluded from these new protections."  That's patently unfair and unjust.  Those who are excluded from equal protection have a right to be angry.  And when people are angered and have a simple means to identify a target for their anger (e.g. color of one's skin, language, customs), they have a tendency of doing so, right or wrong.

In short, if we are going to consider socio-economic background in the admissions process, let's do it directly instead of disallowing certain ethnic groups from consideration based upon their race.  This is a reasonable way to address the disadvantages caused by pre-conditions we have no control over, while avoiding contributing to race-related resentments and discrimination.  This strategy conforms to this country's desired tradition of equal protection for all people, regardless of race.

--Just my 1 1/2 cents. ;)
Title: Re: Practice LSAT...
Post by: vsavatar on May 07, 2003, 06:49:52 AM
I'll agree with this as well.  There are many ways to determine what somebody's socio-economic background are without asking the question, "What race are you?"  The fact that the question is even on college applications is insulting to me, and it should be insulting to the minority groups as well.  If people want to be considered partially on the basis of their SE background then I'm sure some genius can devise a questionaire that can adequately answer the question without asking what a person's race is.  What we're doing economically is actually providing an incentive for people of minority races to perform at a lesser standard because we're giving them an excuse to do so, because they can't help it, they're disadvantaged by circumstance.  There's a large portion of this in all races.  If they're going to consider SE disadvantaged people for admissions then they need to do it for all races.  They need to remove the race question entirely and go from there.  There should be no discrimination one way OR the other on the basis of race, ethnicity, gender, age, or religion in the admissions process.  I'm working my butt off to get the grades I need to get into a good law school and it disgusts me to think that my state university is even going so far as to defend what it believes is its right to practice racism (affirmative-action-based admissions) in the Supreme Court.