stargirl wrote: Blueprint LSAT wrote:
Not uncommon at all. The LSAT is a lot more like an athletic competition than an academic test. I know this happens all the time with my golf game
If your studying just consists of practicing and familiarizing yourself with one part of the test so much that you start to spot a few of the pitfalls more often, but generally you are still relying on your gut and natural talent, the benefit you get will fade when you move your attention elsewhere.
To get a lasting benefit you need to break down the test until you understand how they build it and exactly what they are looking for. This replaces your gut/talent with knowledge and skill so it may make even make you slower and less accurate at first, but once you get it, it should stick. There are a lot of materials out there to help you do this. Not sure how much of this sort of approach you have already attempted, but even if you have already tried there are plenty of aides to help you try again from a different angle. You can use the guides on this forum to study or find other free online resources or sign up for an online or in-person course. I teach for Blueprint and I think our method is pretty great, but feel free to ask around
Once you know the test you can drill PTs until you can do it under timed conditions. Any skill will get rusty with disuse, but as long as you keep a few of each section in the rotation you shouldn't lose much progress as you shift your focus.
Another thing you might try is taking a few days off. The LSAT requires peak attention and burnout can sneak up on you so slowly you don't even notice it. If you are starting to burn out, or you are just tired one day there are times when your brain will go on autopilot and you will fall into traps, even when you know better. Again, just like a physical skill. If you run every day for a month you are going to be tired even though you have probably built a ton of stamina and strength, but if you take day 32 and 33 off then run on day 34 you will feel like a super hero compared to how you felt on day 31.
Andrew McDonald, Blueprint Instructor
Thank you so much for your detailed response. I have recently started my blueprint course, so how interesting that you reached out to me! I am currently undergoing the online course, and took some time off practice tests because of burnout you've mentioned, and focused on creating practice sets and drilling the areas I need work on according to my exams. It just seems that when after I do drills on the worst, my best starts to taper down. But as you said a few factors can really contribute to this, and I think I have to slow down and really try to take a more balanced approach.
I would love to know how I can maximize my online course to the best of my ability, if you have any tips on that would be so helpful.
Thanks in advanced!
Hi Star Girl,
Like Andrew of Blueprint mentioned, the LSAT is more like an athletic competition than academic test. Like an athletic competition, there are many different components needed for success. It can be challenging when you start out, because you may just start to get good at one thing, then ignore it for a few weeks to move onto something else and then feel like you've lost your previous progress.
I think the athletic metaphor is great, and let's stick with that for a moment. Pretend you're a professional NBA player with 10 years of experience. Now, if you went a month without shooting a foul shot, you could probably go back and perform just as well. If, however, you first learned to become good at shooting free throws and took a month off, you'd be much rustier when you come back.
This seems to make studying for the LSAT impossible because you have approximately 15-19 LR question types (depending on company methodology), 5 types of logic games and the RC section and it's impossible to drill everything in a given day.
There are 2 ways to get around this:
1.) You should never be completely ignoring the question and section types you've made progress on. A good rule of thumb is to spend 50-60% of time on your weakest section and the rest of the time dispersed between the two other section types. If you're struggling with games, a good rule of thumb would be to spend that week 50% on games, and 25% on each of the other two section types.
2.) Within a section, it is best to drill it in a way that enables you to practice in a way that applies what you've learned drilling one question type to another. Let me explain. While I don't want to conflict with your Blueprint approach, a necessary step on any assumption, strengthen, weaken or flaw question will be to recognize the conclusion. So if you're struggling there on these question types, I would actually advise first becoming really proficient and time efficient on conclusion and role of statement questions.
In addition, the step by step approach on assumption, strengthen/weaken and flaw questions will be very similar to each other with only slight changes to your thinking so even if you're disproportionately struggling with flaw questions, getting better at assumption questions will also make you better at flaw questions so there's no reason to only practice flaw questions. You can stagger your studying to say do 20 flaw questions and 10 necessary assumption questions, but there's no reason to ignore them entirely.