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Messages - Jeffort

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Studying for the LSAT / Re: How long does hand scoring take?
« on: September 29, 2009, 03:26:38 AM »
Will the real Jeffort please stand up

Here for roll call standing up! 

Do I need to show ID and sign a check in sheet or something as well?

Studying for the LSAT / Re: How long does hand scoring take?
« on: September 27, 2009, 05:51:08 AM »
Just got back from the test center.  I have to say that I thought the RC section was harder than usual.  I changed a few of my answers and left some eraser marks on the paper.  Are the chances very slim of the Scanner machine grading those wrong?  If I decide to get it hand scored, how long does that usually take?  Thank you for any advice.

As long as you did a good job erasing (even though it still leaves a visible smudge in the erased bubble on the answer sheet) and filled in the bubbles you wanted completely it should be scored properly.  The scanning machines are very accurate and tuned to tell the difference between minor random stray marks/erasures and intentionally filled in bubbles for your selected responses. 

You will receive a scan of your bubble/answer sheet when scores are released and can then verify whether your test was scored properly.  I'm pretty sure you can request a hand score after scores are released if you see a problem, but you should read the current LSAC rules and regulations about that at to verify.  They have changed a lot of rules, regulations and deadlines in the last year. 

Hand scoring typically takes about 1-2 weeks, depending on when you request it.  Unless the scanning machine went totally haywire or you are a terrible bubbler that can't seem to fill in the ovals decently, paying the fee for a hand score is typically wasted $$$ that wont lead to a 'happy ending'.

Hope everyone did well on the LSAT today. I, unfortunately did not; and I have a question the answer to which might make me feel a little better about my law school prospects.

Do law schools see what you scored on each section, or do they just get your overall score?? If anyone knows the answer to this I would really appreciate if you could post it.

I ask because I did excellent on the first four sections; I mean I killed the test. Then my 5th section was the Logic Games, which I am not too good at. I completely bombed this section because I let my nerves get the better of me. I was hoping that if a law school could see that I did great on the other sections I could write an addendum and explain that I just f*$%#d up on this one section, but my true potential is reflected by performance on the other sections. So if anyone knows, please post. Thanks!

Schools only receive your final scaled score for the entire test and a copy of your writing sample.  They do not receive a section by section breakdown of your performance or your total raw score (# of questions you answered correctly).

What they get is very basic.

Candidate name:  Wanting to be Future Lawyer Larry

Candidate LSAT data: 

6/09 139 (you really screwed the pooch on this one Larry, maybe you should look into becoming a plumber, they make more per hour than a lot of Law School grads and lawyers these days.)

9/09 171 (wOOt, you kicked arse Larry, get them application materials polished, strap yourself in for a wild ride and get ready to do 3 years at a highly ranked LS, your journey has just begun.)

Addendums that are basically saying "I hate logic games and choked on that section, please ignore it" that complain about the difficulty of the LSAT or a section type, or that make excuses for lackluster LSAT performance are generally not effective or persuasive to admission committees. 

You need to provide stuff in your application that plays up/emphasizes your soft factors (things other than LSAT and GPA) that make you a worthy candidate for LS in order to improve your admission chances if your LSAT score is low in the index range of admitted students at schools you want to apply to. 

Of course there is always the option to re-take the test if you really think you can score higher the next time.  Most schools now focus on the higher score rather than averaging multiple scores but then you have the complications involved with not having your application complete for review and consideration until December test scores are released (around X-mas) plus many more weeks of LSAT prep purgatory. 

Studying for the LSAT / Re: Two Questions
« on: September 26, 2009, 09:03:26 PM »
And do people usually have more trouble with the experimental section b/c it includes unfamiliar concepts?

ALSO: I have one more question, but I didn't want to make a new thread for it. What are the most relevant series of real lsat tests (for example: over or under a certain test #)? I ask b/c I've heard some are outdated.

Peoples experience with the difficulty level of experimental sections they get varies.  Sometimes experimental sections are more difficult overall than typical scored sections of the same type while others are easier, and some just feel weird or different in the balance or in some other way to people that have taken many of the PrepTests for practice.

The psychometrics and processes used to develop, pre-test and rate the difficulty of individual questions and sections to assemble unique test forms that measure the same skill set consistently are very complex. 

Since it is a standardized test, NO, they do not test you on unfamiliar or new concepts in experimental sections.  The LSAT does and has been testing the same core set of acquired (yes, that means you can learn to do this stuff better with education and practice) logic, reading, comprehension, reasoning, and analysis skills in pretty much the same ways since 1991. 

The writing style has slowly and subtly changed over the years as has the difficulty balance between sections and the score conversion charts, but the LSAT is still testing the same stuff as it was in 1991. 

One notable difference to keep in mind when practicing with older Preptests is that during the '90s numerous really unique off the wall logic games popped up including some super hard ones and some LG sections that were just plain brutal or that contained a one of a kind 'odd-ball' game.   That phase seems to have fizzled out pretty much.  The LG sections of the tests administered in the last several years (6-9+ years) have been extremely consistent with the same regular game types and patterns. 

Bottom line: 

-  All the available preptests are useful and good for preparation and practice. 
-  If you get the older ones and take some of them as full timed tests do not rely on your scaled score result as an indication of how you would score on an LSAT administration now.  Use the older tests to learn the concepts and practice with, not as score predictor indicators. 
-  If you cannot or are not going to get and work all the available previously administered tests, definitely get the more recent ones leading up to the most currently released test. 
-  However many you get for prep and practice, save several of the most recently administered tests (say 2006-2009) in full test form (do not look at ANY of the questions ahead of time) to use as full timed practice tests in the final weeks before you take it for real.  Those will be the best gauge of your probable scoring range leading up to test day.

Studying for the LSAT / Re: Absent vs. Cancel Score
« on: September 26, 2009, 06:32:23 PM »
Holy crap!

Yea, after being 'Absent' for a while I'm not canceled, instead I'm home again and back from the DEAD

Studying for the LSAT / Re: Absent vs. Cancel Score
« on: September 26, 2009, 02:15:52 AM »

Putting in the effort to show up, supposedly give it a shot and then cancel your score for whatever personal reasons (that you don't have to explain if you don't want to, adcomms really don't care much about ONE cancellation but want explanations about 2+) looks better than flaking out and having a no-show 'absent' on your score report no matter how you look at it.

Adcomms tend to be curious/suspicious about and want a good explanation/excuse when they see an "Ahead of time I registered and paid good $$$ to take the test that influences my future but didn't show up at the location with a few pencils that morning" 'absent' note on a score report. 

Giving it a shot, having a bad day and deciding to cancel is understandable, everyone has bad days.  However, unless you are incapacitated (like being in the hospital) or are otherwise physically incapable of making it to the test center for a verifiable reason (sudden military deployment?), pulling an absent has FLAKE, can't handle the stress, pressure and demands of LS written all over it.   

Studying for the LSAT / Re: Sept 09 LSAT
« on: September 26, 2009, 12:54:51 AM »
Yes, Good luck to everyone taking the test in the morning!

Get a good breakfast in you with quality carbs/energy food (oatmeal and some fruit is good), don't overload on a ton of coffee or other liquids/stimulants that deviate from your normal routine that has been working.

A good energy bar and/or an apple or something like that with a SMALL amount of water is good for a snack during the break to energize you for the last two sections.

During the test try not to focus on and obsess about how much time is remaining in each section.  Time spent thinking about that is time wasted that you should be using to carefully analyze and answer each question you face.

You do NOT want to be the person being chased by the clock like this:

Time management and pacing yourself appropriately is a major key now to achieve a good score under the strict testing conditions. 

Remember, the really hard/time consuming questions are only worth one point each, just like the easier questions.  Therefore, do NOT let yourself linger and get stuck for a while on a few hard/long questions along the way that could cost you the time to be able to fully analyze and answer other questions in each section.   

When you encounter the few of them per section that are stop you in your tracks mind benders and you just don't know which answer to select, rather than sitting there stuck on it, go with your best judgment, select an answer choice and move on to collect more points from other questions.  Go back and double check those mind benders if time permits.  Otherwise, let them go in order to rack up as many raw points as you can from other less difficult questions. 

There is nothing worse for your ultimate score than letting a few hard questions along the way tie you down and rob you of the time you need to address and correctly answer several more less difficult questions during the allotted time. 

While in line checking in and during the break DO NOT talk to anybody about the LSAT, lawschool stuff, etc. and DO NOT listen in on the stress fueled conversations others around you will be having about it all.  You have enough stress and pressure on you already facing a real administration of the LSAT, you do not need to get riled up any more by thinking about all the nonsense the rest of the stressed people will be talking about. 

Either tune out and quietly ignore everyone else while getting into your mental 'zone' or alternatively, if you feel like being social to get relaxed, make jokes or talk about stupid stuff like the weather or why Taco Bell and Pizza Hut got married! 


Good luck everyone! 

Dear LSD folks,

PSA:  The tenure of Jeffort on LSD and other LSAT related boards has come to an end.  

My discussion site and my LR Question Type finder tool that was on that site have been deactivated.  

The times I have had here dispensing LSAT advice and explanations while also having lots of fun have meant a lot and I hope they have been as fun for you as they have been for me.

As is well known, I previously taught classes for TM for many years. I have now rejoined the company and will be working full-time in the research and development department as well as teaching classes.

I wish everyone taking the June LSAT or later test administrations good luck.

I will miss working with all of you in this venue. This is my last post.

Post Edited 01/08/2010

The above is redacted.  I'm back alive and well and is back online and like before I'll be floating around to give LSAT prep advice and answer questions.  

« on: June 09, 2008, 06:35:12 PM »

Dear LSD folks,

PSA:  The tenure of Jeffort on LSD and other LSAT related boards has come to an end.

The times I have had here dispensing LSAT advice and explanations while having lots of fun have meant a lot and I hope they have been as fun for you as they have been for me.

As is well known, I previously taught classes for TM for many years. I have now rejoined the company and will be working full-time in the research and development department.

I wish everyone taking the June LSAT good luck with it, as well as the people prepping for October.

I will miss working with all of you in this venue.

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