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Acing The LSAT

The LSAT is administered by the Law School Admission Council, a nonprofit organization whose members are U.S. and Canadian Law Schools. All or virtually all American and Canadian Law Schools require the LSAT in order to be considered for admission, and usually the LSAT is one of the most important factors in determining admission.

The LSAT is given in five 35-minute sections, followed by a writing sample. Four of the five test sections are graded, while one section is an experimental section the LSAC uses in refining the LSAT and making changes to future tests. The experimental section is not graded and your performance (or lack of performance!) on the experimental section will not factor in your LSAT score in any way. The five sections will contain three different types of test formats: 1) Reading Comprehension; 2) Analytical Reasoning (Logic Games) and 3) Logical Reasoning.

Here are Ways To Ace The LSAT

     1. Measure Twice, Cut Once

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Spend about 2/3 of the time you have on a given section or question understanding and analyzing the problem, and only about 1/3 actually answering the questions. Have you ever had the experience of looking at a question and thinking, "That's really easy!", and being able to answer it in about 10 seconds with complete confidence? Usually, this is because you thoroughly understand the material, and once you have that understanding, answering the question doesn't take very long. Conversely, if you don't understand the material at all, you can take five or six minutes answering a single question, because you don't know where to go in the material to find the answer. This rule is especially helpful in Analytical Reasoning and Reading Comprehension. Too many of us rush to start in on the questions without taking the time to understand the material -- don't make this basic mistake.

2. Two Minute Warning

On average, you have between a minute and a minute and a half to answer a question. If you find yourself taking more than two minutes on a single question, move on, and come back later to make an educated guess based on your notes

3. Work straight through, and take notes

Work each section through in order, answering the questions in the order presented (subject to the Two Minute Warning). Use the margin and make notes on each question, so if you do have to come back, you will not have to re-work that part of the question you have already figured out.

4. The 3/5 Rule

LSAT questions have five possible answers. Usually, it is fairly easy to spot three of the wrong answers. Make sure you cross these out as you go along, so you do not have to do this twice if you have come back to a question.

5. The Five Minute Rule

If you are going to run out of time on a section, stop working when the proctor gives you the five minute warning. Use the last five minutes to make educated guesses on your unanswered questions, using the 3/5 rule and your notes on questions you previously left blank. If you can eliminate the three obvious answers, your percentage correct will be 50% instead of 20%. There is no penalty for guessing on the LSAT, so never, ever leave a question blank. If you are managing your time correctly, you should always be able to make an educated guess, but if you completely run out of time, random guessing is better than leaving answers blank.

6. Don't "Experiment"!

One of the five test sections is an experimental section. I recommend you do not even think about this fact, or let it impact your test strategy. While it is possible to identify which type of section the experimental section is, it is completely impossible to identify with any certainty which section is actually the experimental section. Putting time and energy into identifying the experimental section is, in my opinion, a mistake. Forget about it.

7. Don't Freak Out!

If you feel you aren't doing well on a section, try not to let it bother you. You can miss about 30% of the answers and still get a 160, a score most of us would be very happy with. Also, you may not be doing as poorly as you think.

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