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How to restart studying

LSAT Leader
Posts: 69
Joined: Fri Jul 07, 2017 1:32 am
Points: 65

Hi there,

I was originally planning on taking the September 2017 LSAT, but I did not feel ready after studying for just 2 months. My diagnostic was 147 and my score was staying in the low 150s whenever I took a practice test (took a total of about 5, each was timed). Therefore, I postponed the exam and I'm planning on taking it this June (2018). I did one on one tutoring through Powerscore. Because time was of the essence, we went rather quickly through the material. I am starting to study again after taking a 3 month break (way too long - I know. I'm already kicking myself in the butt for it). So my question is... how do I start studying again??

Should I review all of the lessons by watching the lesson videos and taking notes? (I never saw the videos since I learned most lessons in person with my tutor)

I already did the homework (with pencil and then corrected with red pen, so I can't erase anything) so would reviewing homework problems be useful at this point, or because I've seen them all, is it a waste of time?

When I do start taking practice tests again, should I be taking them as a whole or just drilling specific sections like logic games or logical reasoning? Also, should I only take tests timed? I've never taken one untimed, so I guess that would help me understand if timing really is my issue.

I enjoy watching 7sage's logic game videos online for explanations, as I find that more helpful than reading the answers. Will doing so conflict with the powerscore technique?

I was debating buying the LSAT trainer and Manhattan's Logical Reasoning solely for their practice problems and to do drills (since I've used up all of the powerscore questions in the lessons/homework). Is that a bad idea?

How much time should I allot to reviewing the material vs taking practice exams and drilling sections? I was hoping to finish reviewing everything within the next month, so I can have 3 solid months of taking practice exams. Is that unrealistic?

Let me know your thoughts,

Claire Horan
PowerScore Staff
PowerScore Staff
Posts: 260
Joined: Mon Apr 18, 2016 3:03 pm
Points: 188

Hi Jessica,

I am sure others may have different advice, but here's my opinion, judging also from your own reflections about your progress.

First, I want to say good for you for assessing your readiness and deciding to postpone the test. Too many students feel unready but go forward anyway, which leads to having to take the test a second time, but with more anxiety and pressure!

Now to the question of how to start studying again. You have studied the lessons, watched videos, and had one-on-one tutoring. With all of that under your belt, I believe you have most likely learned all of the techniques you need. So my suggestion is to use practice tests. You can order preptests through the LSAC website and order more as needed. Start with the most recent tests and work your way backwards. Take a mix of timed and untimed, and a mix of individual sections and full tests so that you can diagnose whether to change your pacing, whether stamina is an issue, how to keep your energy up, etc. As you near the test, begin to take a greater proportion of timed practice tests and work untimed less and less.

Use these tests to diagnose your strengths and weaknesses. I would suggest you use the material you've been exposed to(lessons, videos, whatever you want) to address your weaknesses by reviewing the relevant strategies. That will be more time-effective than reviewing everything, even areas that you are already successful in. Redoing old problems is fine, but you also want to maximize exposure to different types of problems, passages, and games, so don't get stuck in a rut of only redoing past work. Coming up with a mix will help you avoid burnout, which you need to consider when studying for several months at a time.

Great questions, and good luck, Jessica!