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Author Topic: Wildly divergent scores  (Read 1043 times)

mononym

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Wildly divergent scores
« on: June 25, 2009, 09:09:31 AM »
I'm studying for Septemberís test and having problems with consistency. Most of the time, I'll score in the 175-180 range, but sometimes when I sit down to take a test I'll do much, much worse. The last test I took was a 164. Normally I read and understand the questions on each section well and answer the questions accordingly. On this test though, nothing seemed to work. I'd read a reading comp passage and have no idea what was discussed or have to read a simple reasoning passage 3 times to get the correct answer. I didn't finish any section on time but I normally finish each section with several minutes to go. Whatís really strange is the next day, without having looked at the correct answers, I took the test again and scored a 177. On the second run through everything was clear. Questions Iíd read before and found incompressible were straightforward and easy like they would normally be.  I have one test like this for every ten or so that Iíve taken so itís rare but still disconcerting. I canít figure out what could be causing this, but Iíd like to iron it out so an outlier doesnít happen to be Septemberís test.

KaplanLSATInstructor

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Re: Wildly divergent scores
« Reply #1 on: June 25, 2009, 09:30:12 AM »
There could be a number of reasons for this, but more information would be needed for an accurate diagnosis.

There are some concerns that pop into my head instantly:

You said that you're taking the exam in September, but that these aberrant scores happen every tenth test or so when you practice. This leads to at least three questions:

1.) How often are you taking these tests?
2.) How much do you review the tests after you've taken them?
3.) How many tests have you taken?

The first two questions can be most important in diagnosing your problem. First off, if you're simply taking these tests back-to-back on a daily basis, you could just be experiencing fatigue by the time that 10th test comes around. If they're more spaced out, then what are you doing in between tests?

One thing you should be doing is reviewing any work that you do. Reviewing work is vital to understanding what went wrong on any particular question or test. You said that you retake the test next day and score back in your normal range. While that's great, do you understand what went wrong the day before? Do you remember what your frame of mind was? Was there one question that threw you off and set off a chain reaction? Do you really know what was tempting you away from the right answers? If you don't analyze this, your susceptible to making the same mistakes again.

Finally, that last question -- how many tests have you taken? And what tests are they? Are you currently using older exams or more recent exams? Plus, the September exam is still three months away! Are you worried that you might run out of practice materials by then?

Of course, a lot of this also depends on how long you've been studying, what you've used to study to bring you up to such a high score range, and a few other factors. If you share a little more information, perhaps we could help you out a little better.

- Chris

mononym

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Re: Wildly divergent scores
« Reply #2 on: June 25, 2009, 03:16:59 PM »
I take tests every few days and review them afterwards. Iíve take around 30 tests at this point over a 6 month period. Most of my problem seems to have something to do with my frame of mind. Itís as if I forget how to do the tests, but only for one day as Iím fine the next day. Iím working my way from old to new tests, but Iíve squeezed in some tests in the 50s just to see how I would do. I score as well on test 7 as I do on test 54, itís just this issue thatís bothering me.

new2law

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Re: Wildly divergent scores
« Reply #3 on: June 25, 2009, 03:32:35 PM »
Keep studying, but if your lowest was a 164 then you should be ok. You still have lots of time to study untill then. Even a 164 on the real LSAT should get you at least looked at by a lot of lawschools, if you get into the 180's like you mentioned some tests being then even better. Just dont stress it too hard. Remember if you freeze up on the real thing out of fear thats worse than anything. If you just study and relax based on what you've told us you shoud do just fine.  ;)

Katfid54

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Re: Wildly divergent scores
« Reply #4 on: June 25, 2009, 03:57:40 PM »
Keep studying, but if your lowest was a 164 then you should be ok. You still have lots of time to study untill then. Even a 164 on the real LSAT should get you at least looked at by a lot of lawschools, if you get into the 180's like you mentioned some tests being then even better. Just dont stress it too hard. Remember if you freeze up on the real thing out of fear thats worse than anything. If you just study and relax based on what you've told us you shoud do just fine.  ;)

Trust me.
You will be more than fine if you score in the 180s.

mononym

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Re: Wildly divergent scores
« Reply #5 on: June 25, 2009, 04:56:15 PM »
Keep studying, but if your lowest was a 164 then you should be ok. You still have lots of time to study untill then. Even a 164 on the real LSAT should get you at least looked at by a lot of lawschools, if you get into the 180's like you mentioned some tests being then even better. Just dont stress it too hard. Remember if you freeze up on the real thing out of fear thats worse than anything. If you just study and relax based on what you've told us you shoud do just fine.  ;)

Trust me.
You will be more than fine if you score in the 180s.

You're probably right, but since I'd prefer to cover all possibilities has anyone experienced anything similar? If so, how did you fix it? The best summary I can come up with is that everything breaks down. Instead of intuitively knowing the correct answer after reading a question once it takes 2 or 3 reads to get an answer you still feel only vaguely comfortable with. Reading comp passages are nearly incomprehensible and games just slow down. Any help would be appriciated.   

Jamie Stringer

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Re: Wildly divergent scores
« Reply #6 on: June 25, 2009, 06:11:40 PM »
Keep studying, but if your lowest was a 164 then you should be ok. You still have lots of time to study untill then. Even a 164 on the real LSAT should get you at least looked at by a lot of lawschools, if you get into the 180's like you mentioned some tests being then even better. Just dont stress it too hard. Remember if you freeze up on the real thing out of fear thats worse than anything. If you just study and relax based on what you've told us you shoud do just fine.  ;)

Trust me.
You will be more than fine if you score in the 180s.

You're probably right, but since I'd prefer to cover all possibilities has anyone experienced anything similar? If so, how did you fix it? The best summary I can come up with is that everything breaks down. Instead of intuitively knowing the correct answer after reading a question once it takes 2 or 3 reads to get an answer you still feel only vaguely comfortable with. Reading comp passages are nearly incomprehensible and games just slow down. Any help would be appriciated.   

Quote from: Tim Mitchell

F*cking bi+ch drinks a 1 oz bottle of goose and thinks she's French

mononym

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Re: Wildly divergent scores
« Reply #7 on: June 25, 2009, 08:18:19 PM »

new2law

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Re: Wildly divergent scores
« Reply #8 on: June 26, 2009, 12:19:18 AM »
I think that she is trying to say that you are "golden" and will be fine.




I'm not sure I follow you.

eyeoftheligrr

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Re: Wildly divergent scores
« Reply #9 on: June 26, 2009, 12:45:25 AM »
I was having this same problem until recently, except worse: 1 bad test for every 2 good ones.  I think the factors contributing to my inconsistency were:

- Fatigue.  After three months of studying, I had a hard time focusing on every practice test.  At a certain point, my brain was just ready to take the real deal.
- Irregularity.  To combat this fatigue, I began taking only 2 tests per week.  On some in between days, I couldn't motivate myself to review the previous test or take practice sections.

Now the good news.  About two weeks before the test (I test 6/28), my brain clicked into full-focus-"Pookie!-let's-burn-this-mutha-down" mode.  Since then my practice tests have consistently been 175+.

I guess my advice to you is to relax a little.  Take one or two days off per week.  The test isn't until September and you're scoring in your target range 90% of the time.  Once the test is approaching, immerse yourself in study again and you'll find that you haven't lost much, if anything.  You don't want to peak too early.