Law School Discussion

Nine Years of Discussion
;

Poll

Do you believe the highest increases can be achieved for a 160 actual test takers from:

Self Study i.e. PowerScore Bible, Actual Tests?
 6 (66.7%)
$1000+ Prep Class
 3 (33.3%)

Total Members Voted: 9

Author Topic: Self Study vs. Prep Class  (Read 660 times)

DontQuestionMe

  • Sr. Citizen
  • ****
  • Posts: 218
    • View Profile
Self Study vs. Prep Class
« on: July 28, 2008, 02:48:20 AM »
Please feel free to discuss. Here is my view:

Prep Class: Lot of time spent studying material you may already know. Very expensive.

PowerScore Bible/Previous Tests: Can spend time focusing on specific weaknesses. Relatively inexpensive.

DontQuestionMe

  • Sr. Citizen
  • ****
  • Posts: 218
    • View Profile
Re: Self Study vs. Prep Class
« Reply #1 on: July 28, 2008, 02:50:38 AM »
Let me add, for someone scoring in the 150 range, there is probably something fundamentally wrong. In this case, I would recommend a prep course, especially if the person is able to read quickly enough to finish all of the sections in time.

160+ = different story.

Lindbergh

  • Sr. Citizen
  • ****
  • Posts: 4358
    • View Profile
Re: Self Study vs. Prep Class
« Reply #2 on: July 28, 2008, 03:08:51 AM »
What if someone started at 150, and then got up to 160 with the bibles, etc.  what would you recommend at that point?

DontQuestionMe

  • Sr. Citizen
  • ****
  • Posts: 218
    • View Profile
Re: Self Study vs. Prep Class
« Reply #3 on: July 28, 2008, 03:15:17 AM »
What if someone started at 150, and then got up to 160 with the bibles, etc.  what would you recommend at that point?

I am not going to say someone cannot learn something in a Kaplan class, even if they have scored a 175 on an actual test. I am sure there is always something someone can learn, even Robin Singh, but if someone has gotten their score up to a 160 on an actual test they can make more efficient use of their time on their own.

A lot of the material in a prep class will be below their level once they are scoring 160+ on an actual test. Spending their time working hard to understand every question in the PowerScore Bibles will be far more efficient than sitting in a class that spends time going over things like reading a question stem first, etc.

blairchuckalways

  • Sr. Citizen
  • ****
  • Posts: 178
    • View Profile
    • LSN data
Re: Self Study vs. Prep Class
« Reply #4 on: July 28, 2008, 07:55:55 PM »
While I agree somewhat with the point that prep classes can be slow at times, especially for those who score around the mid-160s on a diagnostic, I also think that the value someone takes out of a prep class depends on how they learn.

For example, I am definitely a visual learner -- diagrams, proofs, etc. written out on a board instead of in a book help me learn material better than if only written in a book. I also learn from having someone describe out loud the various logical phrases -- sufficient v. necessary, etc. Perhaps that makes me strange, but it's how I learn.

For me, I scored below 160 on my initial diagnostic, but I got a lot out of my prep class teacher watching him draw diagrams and logical statements up on a board and listening to him explain them, rather than reading the material out of a book. I literally have some of the harder game diagrams that we reviewed in class "burned" into my mind's eye, so that when I come across a similar game on a prep test, I recall the image of a diagram and go from there.

However, once I started PTing in the upper-160s, I stopped going to class. Teacher was otherwise a jerk, and the class moved way too slowly for me for my strong sections, and too fast for my weaker sections. I think if you're consistently PTing in the 165+ range, it's better to just go through the PS bibles and copy sections from PTs to practice the PS concepts. So, for example, if you're going over the PS bible, do the practice problems in the book, but then copy only games sections from like 5-6 PTs and practice bible concepts with those games.

I found this strategy most effective for me. If you are scoring only in the 150s, however, for your PTs, take a course. It may seem like a lot, but it's definitely worth the investment if it helps you bring up your score to one that will make you eligible for schools in a higher tier. Also, if you're a spatial learner, a prep class might be better for you just because you'll see the diagrams up on the board, rather than only in a book.

HYSHopeful

  • Sr. Citizen
  • ****
  • Posts: 181
    • View Profile
    • LawSchooli.com
    • Email
Re: Self Study vs. Prep Class
« Reply #5 on: July 30, 2008, 01:17:30 PM »
I think that it really depends on your learning style.

I was the type of student in college who wouldn't retain too terribly much from lectures in-class, but quickly picked up concepts and retained them quite well by reading the text outside of class. I would also describe myself as a "self-starter," who doesn't require much structure in order to keep myself on track. Knowing my learning and studying styles, I chose to self-study and found that to be very successful.

If, on the other hand, you are the type of student who finds lectures to be very helpful, or if you believe that you need the structure of a course in order to keep yourself motivated to study, then perhaps a course would be a worthwhile investment.

There is no right answer for everyone across the board. You have to take a close look at yourself and play to your strengths and your particular learning style and situation.