for RC, most of the passages range from 450-550 words. i took journals and just counted the words so that it would be very similar to a RC passage that the lsat will provide. my method was somewhat makeshift, but i took the first few paragraphs that came close to the 500 word mark and then read them. i asked my wife to make up questions about them...very specific questions...and then ask me those questions.
i know its a bit different than what the lsats ask, but what i was trying to do was speed up my reading ability while looking for details. most of the books tell you not to look too much into details, but i tend to disagree because details save you the time of going back and looking at the passage again. my goal in doing this was to read the passage ONCE, then try to ascertain each question and answer them without going back. of course, you WILL have to go back, no matter what...BUT, this REALLY REALLY REALLY helped me on 3 things: 1)focusing on the passage, 2)speeding up my reading ability, and 3)ability to comprehend the passages more quickly.
i RC was my mid weak section (i stank at LR and LG came pretty easy for me). the best thing i did was take a few of these RC passages in real lsats and i just assessed what my main weakness was...and mine was speed. so i just kept reading and reading 500 word clumps until i got each passage down to about 1.5-2 minutes. i figured, there are 4 passages, and if you average about 1 min 45 sec per passage, then you yave 7 minutes to answer the questions per section. when i started, i was averaging about 3-4 minutes a passage because i kept going back trying to focus on the topic.
one other bit of advice that helped me: i used signs to mark certain paragraphs.
- used a (-) minus sign when there was a passage that dealt with a counter or opposing argument; (+) when there was an affirmative argument
- used a checkmark whenever there were specific inferences to people
- underlined all dates (years, time spans, days, etc)
- bracketed the main point [ ]
and i used a few other things that i cant remember off the top of my head.
i hope this helps clarify...