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Studying for the LSAT / Powerscore Logic games Bible Not-Law question
« on: June 06, 2009, 06:04:07 PM »
There is a "strategy" in Powerscore's Logic games bible that I'm not sure is really sound; it concerns the diagramming of uncertain relationships.

For instance, it says that if you are told only that 2 items, say P and Q, must occur before another, let's say R, in a 6 day week, then you would diagram something like the following:

....-.........-   -   -   -      -
~R   ~R               (~P,~Q)

(periods inserted to simulate the diagram as it would appear in your own notes...just imagine they aren't there)

I have doubts as to whether it is wise to so quickly eliminate R from possibly occurring second in the sequence. First of all, the Logic games Bible states that since we are not told what the relationship between P and Q are, we only know that it may be that P occurs before Q, Q occurs before P, or they occur concurrently. But if we can't rule out that last possibility of P and Q occurring at the same time, then how can we presumptively cross out R underneath the second slot? That presumes that P and Q cannot occur at the same time, and so that R cannot occur second in the sequence.

Furthermore, the logic in their notation for these first two slots and the last slot seems inconsistent. In the last slot, the possibility of P and Q's occurring simultaneously is taken account of--the 5th slot doesn't eliminate P and Q from possibly happening together, and so notes correctly that R might occur last. Otherwise the author would have indicated that because P and Q might occur separately, if R occurs right after either P or Q, then there is a chance that because one of the disjuncts (i.e., P, Q) might "bump" R out of the last slot, then ~P and ~Q should likewise be indicated below the 5th slot.

If anyone can shed some light on this, I'd be really grateful.

TSW

p.s. following the tradition of philosophical logic, I have represented all 'nots' in my "diagram" with the tilde (~) symbol.
p.p.s. if you want to follow along in your copy of the Bible, I have the Webcom edition, and it's on pgs 17-18. Or you can view scans of these problems here: http://picasaweb.google.com/changesmyweltanschauung/Powerscore#5344435170144698690

2
Law School Applications / Phi Beta Kappa
« on: March 10, 2009, 10:50:01 PM »
How many of you here are Phi Beta Kappans? I was invited to join the Rutgers chapter today and was pretty excited, since I am getting inducted as a junior and the invite rate for juniors is a lot more competitive (3.8 GPA, + meet eligibility reqs.) here than for the seniors (3.5GPA, + meet eligibility reqs.).

Could this kind of honor be unnecessary though? I mean, the UGPA pretty much tells the same story, right? So how favorably does being a member of this society factor into law school admissions? As far as I can tell, identifying yourself as a Phi Beta Kappan lets the committees know that you took a certain distribution of courses.

Any comments?

T

3
Studying for the LSAT / Help needed for LR question (Prep45#15)
« on: January 28, 2009, 12:37:32 PM »
So the question is something like:

The cost of a semester's tuition at a university is calculated by a student's number of courses for that semester. The cost per course at that university has not risen in a few successive years, yet a large number of students who enrolled with no problems now find themselves unable to pay for their tuition.

Each of the following, if true, helps to resolve the apparent discrepancy EXCEPT:

(a) Faculty salaries at the university have risen slightly over the past four years.
(b) The number of courses per semester for which full-time students are required to enroll is higher this year than any time in the past.
(c) Residential costs in the area around the school have risen.
(d) Students whose academic performance merit scholarships have them renewed by the university yearly.
(e) Many of the university's student jobs have been turned into fulltime nonstudent positions.


According to the answer key, it is A, but I fail to see why this is so.  In fact, all the answer choices seem correct to me. If faculty salaries have risen, this suggests that the university might be dealing with less funds with which to subsidize tuition costs for its students, maybe depleting the scholarship funds or grants the school has available. Thus, students whose tuitions were partially funded for by these scholarships may need alternative resources that they cannot find to defray such costs.

So, why doesn't A resolve the discrepancy? The only reason I can think of is that making A the right answer requires a larger amount of creative gerrymandering on the test-taker's part, while the other answers provide more direct possible explanations. They are all conjectural in nature though, so I don't see what the deal is with the correctness of A. I don't think if someone offered that as a reason why such a situation obtained in real life that anyone would say he was wrong. Do you?

Thanks for your insight.
T

4
Quote
Now that we have individually reviewed each of the major relationship indicators that appear in Formal
Logic relationships, let us list them in relation to each other using a 0 to 100 unit scale:
All = 100
Most = 51 to 100 (“a majority”)
Some are not = 0 to 99(also “Not All”)
Most are not = 0 to 49
Some = 1 to 100 (“at least one”)
None = 0

"All" and "most" make sense to me, but "some," read in conjunction with "some are not," and likewise for "most" and "most are not," don't make sense.  If "some" means at least 1, possibly all, are, then shouldn't "some are not" mean also that at least one, possibly all, aren't? The scale, however, decreases the numerical representation for "some are not" by 1, and I simply don't understand the numbers for "most" and "most are not."

Here's what Powerscore says right before this too:

Quote
When “most” appears as “most are not,” the interpretation changes due to the not. “Most
are not” can be defined as at majority are not, possibly all are not. Thus, if I say, “Most of
my friends are not present,” it could be true that none of my friends are present.

Thanks for any insight.

Torrey

5
Hi all,

I've been using this book (the only one available at my local B&N) for self-study for about a week. Since then, I've read either that the games in it are tougher (or easier), the reading comprehension sections much more difficult, and just in general, that the tests in it are too old to be effective for studying. For those of you who have worked on it before and taken an actual, perhaps recent LSAT, what do you think of such assessments? Are they mostly accurate, or did you find the tests not too different in any important respect?

Thanks,
T

p.s. Please don't reply if you plan on admonishing me for not having used the nonexistent search function. I did go through some previous pages and did not find an answer, hence this post in the first place. I googled this, but would appreciate some more qualified opinions, since many of you seem to have taken just about every single PrepTest there is.

6
Studying for the LSAT / February LSAT - Undisclosed?
« on: January 16, 2009, 12:07:54 AM »
Hi all,

I read in a different thread that the February LSAT is "undisclosed," apparently meaning it comes with none of the usual accoutrements that accompany LSATs administered on other dates. Is this true? And how might I be disadvantaged by such a test? Will law schools look on a February LSAT score less favorably? 

Thanks,
T

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