« on: November 16, 2010, 02:46:07 PM »
I took the LSAT in October and had previously taken a prep course through Princeton Review. On my first practice test I scored a 149 (they use full previous exams including experimental sections), on the fourth and last practice test I scored a 156 and on the real thing I scored a 152....hardly the type of results Princeton Review would want to advertise. However, I am not posting to bash Princeton Review, my poor results were mostly my own fault and I thought I would post for those considering taking a prep course so they don't make the same mistakes that I did.
1. Remember that prep courses are not substitutes for diligent studying. They teach you the techniques of how do identify and approach questions. They've done all the work of classifying questions into different categories and teaching you how to recognize each type and what to look for when answering. But as many have stated, being good at this simply requires practice, especially if you don't have a particular aptitude for standardized tests. In my experience, I was only able to finish about half of the practice "homework" that was assigned throughout the course.
2. Don't take a condensed or "accelerated" course unless you have lots of extra time on your hands. I took a five week accelerated course while also taking 15 credits at school. I would have a full day of school, part time work on some afternoons, and then go to the prep course from 6:30 - 10:00 at night. By the time class started, on some nights, my brain was already fried from the day. This was not beneficial at all. Moreover, I didn't really do any significant self-study prior to taking the course. Over the summer my attitude was "once the prep course starts, I'll really start studying" and as a result simply didn't take full advantage of basically 2 months of free time.
3. There is no magic to the prep courses despite what their ads and "guarantees" might imply. Give yourself plenty of time to study and, as many people have posted before, PRACTICE. I'm going to re-take the test in February and I have been doing a paced, self-study of about an hour a day, 5-6 days per week. I intend to keep that up until February.