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Author Topic: so discouraged and need some advice  (Read 4735 times)

Framboise

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Re: so discouraged and need some advice
« Reply #20 on: January 19, 2011, 08:59:43 PM »
It measures a type of thinking. I don't understand how you can rationally think anyone can be in the top 20% when only 20% of people can be in the top 20%. I am not sure if either of you actually attend law school, but it is amazing no matter where you go everyone is convinced they will be in the top 10%. No matter what anyone does only 10% of the people end up there. NO matter how hard you prepare etc. The same is true of the LSAT you obviously can improve and that is studying, but you take a diagnostic test and you can usually rise from there to some level. There are people that pull a 180, but most people are not capable of doing this. This is indicative of a test that is not the same for everyone. Very few people get a perfect score no matter how hard they try.

Reading comp, man, reading comp.  The argument is that any reasonably intelligent person (barring those with some serious anxiety issues that would probably prevent one from becoming a successful lawyer anyway) should be able to achieve a 160 or above.  How do you not understand that argument?  Take percentiles and percentages out of the equation.  They seem to confuse you too much.

bigs5068

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Re: so discouraged and need some advice
« Reply #21 on: January 19, 2011, 11:45:17 PM »
Well why doesn't everyone get a 170 then. If it is just work ethic everyone should be able to get a 170 or 175. If someone wants to put a standard that is above you I am sure you will say that is to far. Do you even go to law school by the way out of pure curiosity? Generally people that speak with such condescending tone on an internet site with anonymous people don't get so upset.

My whole point was that everyone has limits on their LSAT score. Of course you can improve it, but not everyone gets a 180. Percentiles come into the mix believe it or not it is a standardized test in which 80% of people will finish in the bottom 80%. Percentiles etc are part of standardized testing. If the ABA put a limit saying you should have to get a 160 to be in law school then that would be fine. Maybe they could even make it 170. Anti improved by 18 points and 151 + 18 as I understand it is 169. Maybe we should set the bar at 170 if you can't get a 170 on the LSAT you should not be in law school. You can set the bar wherever you want and at some point only a few people will be able to achieve it. This is because human beings have limitations I imagine even you cannot pull a 180 on the LSAT no matter how hard you try. Although if you have not officially taken the LSAT yet I hope you do pull a 180. That would be awesome and I wish everyone could score that highly, but reality is a female dog and very few people score as high as they would have expected or hoped. This is because only 20% of people can finish in the top 20%. If you are not in law school yet you will realize the same thing happens with your grades. On the first day of class everyone is convinced they will be in the top 10% and your grades will be based on work ethic etc. Some people at the beginning go so far as to say they cannot understand how anyone could not finish in the top half of the class. Sadly the people that make those kind of statements don't realize they have a 50% chance of being in the bottom 50% and 50% of the time they end up in the bottom half.

EarlCat

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Re: so discouraged and need some advice
« Reply #22 on: January 20, 2011, 12:41:31 AM »
So yes the LSAT is an IQ test that measures someone's ability to think like a lawyer.



I don't understand how you can rationally think anyone can be in the top 20% when only 20% of people can be in the top 20%.

You're assuming that "anyone" means "everyone."  And even with that assumption, you're still mistaken because the percentiles are set before anyone takes the test.  If by some fluke every single test taker scored a 163, they would all be in the "20th (or whatever) percentile."

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Well why doesn't everyone get a 170 then.

Because a lot of them would have to practice for 10 years to do it, which would be stupid.  That doesn't mean they can't do it.  They simply choose not to because getting the damn thing over with and going to law school is more important than breaking 170.

Tossy

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Re: so discouraged and need some advice
« Reply #23 on: January 20, 2011, 12:50:55 AM »
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This is because human beings have limitations I imagine even you cannot pull a 180 on the LSAT no matter how hard you try.

Actually, I would take the bet that Anti09 could pull pretty damn close to the 180--with some practice, if the incentive were great enough.  LSAT performance is highly trainable.  There is actually no real debate about that.  All the testing companies are selling themselves on the fact that LSAT performance is trainable.  Will some people plateau before 180?  Yes, likely, but most of the low scores aren't going to be attributable to folks who are inherently stupid and have low IQs (which is not legitimately measured through multiple choice questions).  It'll be because they have poor attention spans, don't really prepare, are bad readers, have had inadequate exposure to collegiate vocabulary or just plain have bad luck on exam day (several people were informed in the middle of my own exam administration that their cars were being towed--I'm certain that affected their scores).  The fact is that most people whom I have met who can score in the high 160s don't have these problems, and could, with adequate preparation (not in 10 years time, more like 10 weeks time) score in the 170s. 

bigs5068

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Re: so discouraged and need some advice
« Reply #24 on: January 20, 2011, 01:45:17 AM »
Well if it was just that easy I am surprised more people don't go to Harvard. I would bet against anyone scoring a 180 and I would likely become a rich man. There is no dispute you can raise your score by learning how to take the test. However, just take your diagnostic test everyone's diagnostic differs. There is a reason for this and generally you can improve 10-20 points from this score. If you don't mind me asking what was your LSAT score and did you yourself get a 180?

the white rabbit

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Re: so discouraged and need some advice
« Reply #25 on: January 20, 2011, 06:49:58 AM »
I don't understand how you can rationally think anyone can be in the top 20% when only 20% of people can be in the top 20%.

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Anti09

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Re: so discouraged and need some advice
« Reply #26 on: January 20, 2011, 09:42:40 AM »
Well why doesn't everyone get a 170 then. If it is just work ethic everyone should be able to get a 170 or 175.

First of all, I didn't say I thought everyone could get a 170 or 175 - obviously you recognize the distinction between the 80th percentile and the 99th percentile.  And the reason why everyone doesn't get a 170, or a 160, or whatever, is precisely because of their lack of work ethic.  The LSAT is an immensely trainable test, and with enough time and practice, it is possible for most people to improve their score.  How much they improve is almost entirely up to them and how hard they are willing to work at it.

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Anti improved by 18 points and 151 + 18 as I understand it is 169. Maybe we should set the bar at 170 if you can't get a 170 on the LSAT you should not be in law school. You can set the bar wherever you want and at some point only a few people will be able to achieve it. This is because human beings have limitations I imagine even you cannot pull a 180 on the LSAT no matter how hard you try.

I don't consider a 180 impossible at all.  I don't think I'd be ready by Feb, but if I studied all spring I think I'd have a good chance at scoring in the deep 170s by June.  To be honest, I feel I could have scored better in Dec, but a stupid mistake on LG cost me my 170. 

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This is because only 20% of people can finish in the top 20%. If you are not in law school yet you will realize the same thing happens with your grades. On the first day of class everyone is convinced they will be in the top 10% and your grades will be based on work ethic etc. Some people at the beginning go so far as to say they cannot understand how anyone could not finish in the top half of the class. Sadly the people that make those kind of statements don't realize they have a 50% chance of being in the bottom 50% and 50% of the time they end up in the bottom half.

sigh

Have you ever taken a statistics class?  Maybe... take one.

Tossy

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Re: so discouraged and need some advice
« Reply #27 on: January 20, 2011, 10:53:18 AM »
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There is no dispute you can raise your score by learning how to take the test. However, just take your diagnostic test everyone's diagnostic differs. There is a reason for this and generally you can improve 10-20 points from this score. If you don't mind me asking what was your LSAT score and did you yourself get a 180?

My diagnostic put me in the low 150s.  Two intense weeks later, with self-study advice and a single borrowed book from a friend, I was in the 170s.  I ultimately scored in the 170s.  I have 5 undergraduate classmates who went on to law school in the 4 or so years following graduation.  All of them, every last one, had final scores in the 170s, all of them diagnosed in the low 160s or below.  One classmate had English as her 3rd language, she started in the 140s and she still ended up in the 170s, it just took her longer to get there.  I'm not going to be modest and pretend we weren't all pretty bright, but we also weren't geniuses.  We were extremely disciplined, willing to do whatever it took to become good test-takers for this particular test, and we all agree that is what made the difference.

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Well if it was just that easy I am surprised more people don't go to Harvard.

Harvard fills their classes until they are full.  The dean of the school has admitted that they have far far more qualified candidates than they can hope to accept.  Even if the world were filled with people who had scored 180s, only 400 or so folks are going to be in the class every year.  Besides, there are many things to choose from besides LSAT scores, and given the abundance of high scores, Harvard differentiates based upon other things.  Short answer -- a 180 doesn't guarantee Harvard, neither does a 179, 178 etc. on down the line.  Not to speak of the folks who turn Harvard down to go to schools more to their liking.


 

bigs5068

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Re: so discouraged and need some advice
« Reply #28 on: January 20, 2011, 11:50:35 AM »
 I have 5 undergraduate classmates who went on to law school in the 4 or so years following graduation.  All of them, every last one, had final scores in the 170s, all of them diagnosed in the low 160s or below.  . Also can I ask what undergrad you were attending? If you were attending Harvard undergrad I would expect all of you to achieve a 170 on the LSAT. We could then trace it back to the SAT where again not everybody scores a 1500+.  This is again because people have their limitations.



 


You diagnosed in the 160's and improved your score by roughly 10 points. Not everyone diagnoses at 160 in fact not everyone diagnoses at 150 or even 140. Simply because you started somewhere does not mean everyone else does. I don't understand how you argue this. People start from different areas and you can train your brain to improve, but everyone has their limits. If you start at 160 odds are you are going to have a much higher score than someone who diagnosed at 145. If your diagnostic starts at 160 you have knack for the test. A 180 is probably not impossible if you start at that score at 160. Again, I highly doubt the vast majority of people have a starting score of 160. It is AWESOME that you yourself did. Many people diagnose at 140-145 they can improve 10-20 points from there.

You might be right in that if someone literally spend 10 years studying for the LSAT they could go from 145 diagnostic to 170. However, that is also unrealistic unless you have rich parents that will pay for all your LSAT courses and let you sit around unemployed for 10 years. Even with all that I still don't know if someone that diagnosed at 145 could achieve a 170. It might be possible, but unlikely.





bigs5068

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Re: so discouraged and need some advice
« Reply #29 on: January 20, 2011, 12:21:59 PM »
=
Quote
This is because only 20% of people can finish in the top 20%. If you are not in law school yet you will realize the same thing happens with your grades. On the first day of class everyone is convinced they will be in the top 10% and your grades will be based on work ethic etc. Some people at the beginning go so far as to say they cannot understand how anyone could not finish in the top half of the class. Sadly the people that make those kind of statements don't realize they have a 50% chance of being in the bottom 50% and 50% of the time they end up in the bottom half.

sigh

Have you ever taken a statistics class?  Maybe... take one.

I have not yet taken a statistics class, but maybe you can enlighten as to how more than 20% of people can finish in the top 20%. Maybe I am way off base, but as my rudimentary math skills go if I had 10 people taking a test only 2 of them could finish in the top 20% of test takers. If I am mistaken on that premise then the Los Angeles Unified School District failed me miserably and hopefully you can help me out.