preLaw - Fall 2016 - 33
don't learn to play a song and then throw
away the music. You play and play and
play until it's rote and you've developed
4. Master the art of timing.
When students don't perform as well as
they had hoped to on the LSAT, timing
may be part of the problem, Mantis said.
Students who don't hone their ability to
take timed tests may run out of time on
test day. To master timing, follow the
lead of one of Mantis' students who did
particularly well on the LSAT. Every day
at the same time, she spent 35 minutes
completing one timed test section, Mantis
said. Some students may need months of
this type of time-focused practice.
"A lot of people would be more comfortable with the LSAT if they got the
timing down," she said.
5. Take time to review results.
It's crucial not only to take timed practice tests but also to go over your results
methodically, Hall said, trotting out a basketball analogy. Think of taking a practice
test as playing in a basketball game, and
think of reviewing your results as practicing shots alone in the gym, he said.
"It's hard to learn very much while taking a practice test with half of your brain
jumping up and down and the other half
screaming, 'Go faster,'" Hall said.
When you review your results, mark
every answer you got wrong, then dig in
to figure out why you picked the incorrect answer. Also mark every question that
you got right not because you were 100
percent sure of the answer but because
you made an educated guess. Figure out
how you arrived at the correct answer so
you can replicate that thinking on future
questions, he said.
"Some people spend too much time
on the hardest sections, when they could
be eliminating mistakes on the easiest sections," she said.
7. Don't just work on what you
Some students make the mistake of putting too much emphasis on sections they
find fun, Teti said.
"It's a funny little human foible," she
For example, many students dislike
and fear logic games at first, but once they
understand the basics, they begin to enjoy
and devote too much time to that area.
On the other hand, many students neglect
practicing reading comprehension because
they find it boring.
"It tends to be these large tracts of
dense text, so people kind of stay away
and don't tackle it with the same rigor
they do the other sections," she said.
8. Up your game in the last
In the final two weeks before your test,
increase the time and energy you're devoting to test prep. Hall jokingly recommends that his students practice "death by
LSAT" in the weeks leading up to test day.
"At that point you'll have learned about
90 percent of what you're going to learn,"
he said. "The more work you can do to
confirm it, the better."
If you'll have to get up at, say, 6 a.m.
for the test, rise at that time every day for
one week before test day, Teti said. "You
want your brain to be functioning on the
day of the test," she said.
9. Do a test run for test day.
A few days before the test, do a dry run.
First, cue up your GPS and drive to the
testing center, Teti said. Run through
everything you'll do on test day, from
parking the car to walking to the testing
center. This prevents a scenario where
you're "running around campus with a
map in your hand freaking out on the day
of the test," she said.
10. Limber up before the test.
On the day of the test, eat a good breakfast
and pack a snack, Teti said. Take along a
few logic games, logical reading questions
and reading comprehension passages, but
make sure they're ones that you've seen
before, she said. Before you go into the
testing room, look over the materials you
brought in order to "wake up your brain
and get into LSAT mode," she said.
As you walk in to take the test, take a
deep breath, summon your inner winner
and visualize yourself conquering the test.
"Attitude is the key to acing the LSAT,"
6. Go for easy gains.
Many students waste precious prep time
reviewing the questions they aced, said
Anna Ivey, former dean of admissions at
The University of Chicago Law School
and founder of Anna Ivey Consulting.
"It feels good, but it's a waste of time,"
On the flip side, some students focus
a lot of time and energy on the sections
they find most difficult, she said. A better
strategy is to go after "low-hanging fruit"
first by analyzing the questions you got
wrong within the sections you find easiest,
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