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Author Topic: Best prep-course company?  (Read 2177 times)

cvargas84

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Best prep-course company?
« on: December 05, 2010, 10:25:20 PM »
I'm taking the LSAT in June and taking a prep course for it. Kaplan seems to be the go-to choice in my school, but I'm wondering if there are any real differences between them? I'm doing a PR book before the course, just to get started.

BikePilot

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Re: Best prep-course company?
« Reply #1 on: December 06, 2010, 11:05:33 AM »
I did kaplan and thought it was just fine.  I don't know anyone who did more than one prep course so its hard to get a useful comparison. I tend to suspect that some of the 'elite' courses might be better if you are starting out in the high 160s/low 170s and want to hit mid-high 170s.  Kaplan is particularly strong for students scoring in the 140s and 150s who wanna be in the 160s imho, though it certainly works for 160s students who want 170s as well.
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marcus-aurelius

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Re: Best prep-course company?
« Reply #2 on: December 06, 2010, 12:01:49 PM »
Kaplan helped me achieve a score in the 170s.  As with most courses, you get out what you put in

EarlCat

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Re: Best prep-course company?
« Reply #3 on: December 06, 2010, 12:42:28 PM »
It's not about the company, it's about the instructor.  Find someone who has been in the game a long time.  If the company won't reveal who your instructor will be, they're probably hiding something (like the fact that he's still in training).

Also, OP, don't use a TPR book if you're going to take Kaplan (and vice versa).  Wait until you've settled on a company/tutor, and only use their materials.  Mixing methods is a really really bad idea.

cvargas84

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Re: Best prep-course company?
« Reply #4 on: December 06, 2010, 05:28:44 PM »
great, thanks for your input! :)

BikePilot

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Re: Best prep-course company?
« Reply #5 on: December 06, 2010, 10:01:44 PM »
The instructor is key, though I think most companies won't say who the instructor will be, and even if the did it'd be pretty useless as there's no way I know of to tell beforehand whether the instructor will be a skilled teacher or whether the instructor's teaching style will mesh well with your learning style.  Maybe see if you can sit-in on a class or two to see how you like them. 

FYI I was a kaplan instructor for a bit and got 100% perfect evals from my students my first time teaching so time teaching may not be a great proxy for quality of teaching. The kaplan program is pretty regimented and there won't be a huge variation in substance from one instructor to another, though of course the instructors' ability to convey the substance and explain things during Q&A could vary quite a bit. 
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cvargas84

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Re: Best prep-course company?
« Reply #6 on: December 07, 2010, 11:06:18 PM »
Bikepilot... Thanks for your input. I guess you answered my question because I was trying to gauge difference in "standards" of teaching, and if instructors at Kaplan seem to be chosen or judged in the same way, this might be good. However, I'm concerned with so much information out there. Some (most) people have told me that a course is unnecessary. Others swear by Powerscore, and completely disregard the others are useless or for low-scorers. When such judgments are made, I find it difficult to bite the bullet and sign up. So, in essence I guess I'm still undecided on which one :)

Specks

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Re: Best prep-course company?
« Reply #7 on: December 08, 2010, 04:42:50 PM »
I did Kaplan and it was pretty good but the general problem with the Kaplan method is that it is weak in games as well as reading comprehension IMHO. I was a private tutor for a while and the students who took Kaplan consistently had trouble in those areas. Logical Reasoning,  not so much. I would recommend taking Kaplan for an overview and shoring up your games skills with a powerscore supplement like the Logic Games Bible. If you are already scoring in the low 160s, Kaplan is prolly not for you. If you are scoring lower than that, Kaplan's pretty good.

I also recommend test master if that course is available in your area. It has a really good reputation for churning out high scoring students. Also, both test master and powerscore require their tutors and instructors to score in the 170's. Kaplan only requires that you score in the 90th percentile. Don't know if that will sway you either way. but more info can't be bad right?  Hope this helps!

marcus-aurelius

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Re: Best prep-course company?
« Reply #8 on: December 08, 2010, 05:18:29 PM »
Kaplan's regular LSAT class requires 90th percentile.  The extreme class requires 99th% and has online sessions for those in the class who are scoring in the 160s to help you hit 170s

Specks

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Re: Best prep-course company?
« Reply #9 on: December 08, 2010, 06:46:16 PM »
Kaplan's regular LSAT class requires 90th percentile.  The extreme class requires 99th% and has online sessions for those in the class who are scoring in the 160s to help you hit 170s

Huh. I didn't know that about the extreme class requirement. It must be something new. When I took the extreme class, my instructor had a 165 score. Also, I hit a block once I broke the 162 mark and had to resort to powerscore thereafter. The Kaplan booklet helped some, but it gets hard when you are only getting the score you're getting because of one horribly weak spot (games) which Kaplan is bad at teaching to begin with. That said, if you're good at games, and mid-range at RC, Kaplan will totally be helpful for  you reaching the 170's or high 160s