Law School Discussion

Afghanistan/Post Deployment LSAT Plan

Afghanistan/Post Deployment LSAT Plan
« on: June 19, 2010, 10:13:55 AM »
Currently, Im in the Marine Corps, and Im in Afghanistan.  I was wondering what you all thought of my plan to study for the LSAT and take the exam in February.


While Im out here in AF, i dont have much time to study.  I study during the slow parts of the work day.  So i can do about 1-2 sections a day.  But there are a lot of distractions.  Im fairly brain dead from working 12-15hrs a day every single day for the last 4-5 months or so.  Therefore, I focus on the reasoning and reading comprehension, since they require less brain power than the logic games do (for me, at least). 

So basically, ive been doing 1-2 sections a day.  Often times disjointed.  So i'll do 2 or 3 questions of the reasoning or i'll do 1 section of the reading.  Do some work stuff and then do another section.  So, obviously, my studying is un-timed.  But i always have the time in back of my mind.  I focus on the question and try to get the correct answer, but try to do so fairly rapidly without sacrificing quality of work.  I plan to do this until I return to the US of A in the October time frame.


When I return, i hope to focus on the logic games, which are a bit more difficult for me. I'll have about 1-2 weeks off when I return, which will allow me to study A LOT for the logic games.  Go at it hard at first and then go into a routine similar to what i am doing now -- 1-2 section a day. After work for about an hour, or during my lunch break for about an hour.  Even when Im in the states, Im still working a lot.  Ill still do the other 2 sections fairly often so that I keep fresh, however. 

Over the Christmas time frame, I plan to treat my studying like a job.  Taking full length practices, timed, etc.  Fine-tuning my skills.  I'll have a lot of time off (2-3 weeks for Christmas).

Then I plan to take the February exam.


Currently, on my untimed and disjointed reasoning and reading sections, I am scoring about 78-85%.  I've only done 4 sections of each though.  I figure that the fact that they are untimed is offset by the fact that there are constantly people bugging me, etc.  Perhaps not though.  On the other hand, despite that I do untimed 99% of the time, I do time myself everyonce in a while on random questions, and they normally take between 40s and 1:35.  So I dont anticipate the timing will be THAT big of an issue -- though, i dont anticipate it being a cake walk, either.

Ive read the logic game bible (most of it), and ive done enough logic games to know that it will take some serious studying to get good at them.  I did 1 or 2 sections after reading the bible and scored about 60% on each.

Any thoughts on my plan?  I like the idea that Im doing a little bit each day, with one final cram session lasting 2-3 weeks.  I have a very very long attention span and am quite self-motivated, so I dont anticipate getting burned out.  My goal is to get a 165-170.  I have a 3.8 GPA from a major state school (e.g., U of Texas, U of Florida, U of Maryland, etc).  I will also have 5 years of Marine Corps experience on my resume, which I'd imagine would prove useful... hopefully.



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Re: Afghanistan/Post Deployment LSAT Plan
« Reply #1 on: June 20, 2010, 10:23:03 AM »
I like your plan.  A little bit every day is much better than a short-term cram fest.  This is not a test you can cram for.

One thing about timing.  Timing (speed, really) is important, but speed doesn't come from simply trying to work fast.  It's counter intuitive, but increasing your speed (without sacrificing accuracy) comes from working very slowly, and getting yourself to the point where you fully understand every argument, every game, every passage, and every question.  So I wouldn't worry at this point about how fast you can answer questions.  I want to know how accurately you can answer them.

Think about math.  If the LSAT was a 2nd grade math test, you would have no problem finishing quickly.  But you didn't have to practice by racing the clock to get that fast.  You just did tons of untimed math homework as a kid until the concepts became second nature.  Now you can solve those problems almost instantly.  This works the same way.  You want to spend enough time with these questions so that answering them becomes second nature.  So at this point, don't worry about trying to go fast.  Worry about answering questions with 100% accuracy and understanding exactly why each right answer is right and why each wrong answer is wrong.

Also, I wouldn't forego paying attention to games.  You mentioned you're going to spend like 2 straight weeks on games, but if I were you I'd throw some into your current prep (again, no time pressure) every few days.  And as you're working them, think about other games you've done.  What is similar?  What is different?  You're looking for the things that LSAC recycles into their games over and over again.  Get familiar with those patterns--they'll be on your test.