This post shared by Trevor Klee, Tutor, a Boston-based and online LSAT tutor who scored 175 on his LSAT.
1. How to Prepare for the LSAT
a) Start with a diagnostic test. What are your specific strengths and weaknesses? Use 21st Night to discern the patterns, and follow the error log’s patterns for review (don’t skip them)!
b) Do questions to focus on your weaknesses as revealed in the diagnostic test. Really try to understand the process of how to solve questions: you’ll find a lot of examples online. Ask yourself why certain techniques are used, and why your initial instinct may be wrong.
Don’t worry about speed, that comes with being confident and fluent in the techniques. As the old Army saying goes, “Slow is smooth and smooth is fast.” Focus on being smooth in your application of techniques.
c) Once you feel like you’ve covered your initial weaknesses, or you feel confused about about what to do next, take another practice test. Then start with a) again.
d) There are two parts to studying for the LSAT.
One part is like being a marathon runner. You need to put the miles in on the pavement to run a marathon. Anyone can do it, but it takes effort. Doing questions, getting them wrong, and then learning how to do them correctly is the equivalent of putting those miles in. It’s going to suck, but that’s how you learn.
The second part is like being your own coach. You need to reflect on your own progress and what you get wrong and right. What are the patterns in what you get wrong? What techniques do you have difficulty applying?
2. Your LSAT preparation materials
–Khan Academy LSAT Prep
-Error log helps you organize yourself, and show you what questions you still need to do, which questions you need to understand, and the patterns in what you’re getting wrong. It will also help you repeat questions, so you remember the strategies on test day.
-LSATHacks.com for answer explanations (thanks Graeme!)
-My recommendations: my videos
3. Your LSAT study plan
-Plan for roughly 100-150 hours of hardcore studying to go up 20 points
-So, if you’re starting at 150 and want to get to 170, plan to spend 3-4 months spending 20 hours a week studying (to give yourself some wiggle room)
-That’s 2 hours a day on weekdays, 5 hours a day on weekends
-It’s a lot! But packing it all into a few months is the best way to do it. People get discouraged when they spend months working on the LSAT, especially when it’s hard to see yourself making improvements week by week. Packing it into a short time prevents that.
–If you get to the point where you can not just do, but also explain every question in Khan Academy (why the right answer is right and why the wrong answers are wrong), you can get a 165+
4. How to review the LSAT sections
-This is both how you should approach the questions, and, more importantly, how to analyze a question you got incorrect
-Analyzing incorrect questions is more important than doing new ones. Use these questions!
How did the passage fit together (i.e. why did the author include each paragraph in the section)? What precise part of the passage did I need to read to get the correct answer?
How does the argument’s reasoning lead to its conclusion (or, if it doesn’t, why not)? How does the correct answer fit into the argument’s flow from reasoning to conclusion?
What’s the model of how the game works (i.e. what would be one correct answer to the game)? How can you minimize the logical steps you need to take to get or eliminate an answer (think of it like golf, and get a low score)?
5. When to get LSAT tutoring
You should get tutoring when
- You took an LSAT and it didn’t go well
- You feel overwhelmed
You don’t have to start with tutoring!
But, if you do want an LSAT tutor, contact me at trevor [at] trevorkleetutor.com .