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Law school advice

Discussion in 'Anything goes' started by FileNotFound, Jun 1, 2015.

  1. FileNotFound

    FileNotFound Well-Known Member

    ... not for me, but perhaps worse: My daughter is considering this path after her impending college graduation.

    At this point, I'm neither trying to talk her into or out of it; that part will come soon enough. She has asked me to ask about LSAT review resources. Any recommendations on that topic?
  2. Dick Whitman

    Dick Whitman Well-Known Member

    I have lots of thoughts on this.

    When I was preparing, the best books were those made by Powerscore. Get them from Amazon. Anything by Kaplan's or Barron's or any of those other big names that you can buy off the rack are a total waste. They don't have real questions in them. She doesn't really need to take a class, either. The Powerscore books, particularly the Logic Games Bible and the Logical Reasoning Bible, are the best investment she'll ever make.

    There are a couple other books that I found somewhat useful that I can look up and post here at some point.

    My other strong piece of advice would be to take every single real LSAT that's ever been given. The most recent ones are the most useful, because the test definitely evolves. Take the sections under test conditions, for the most part. And then go over each question, whether she got it right or wrong, and figure out why it was right and the others were wrong. Some people advocate taking the entire test in one sitting, to build endurance. But I never did that. I didn't feel it was necessary, and I think I was right. It was more valuable for me to go over my questions and answers while it was all completely fresh.

    Reading Comprehension is a bitch, also. It's the hardest to prepare for. Somehow, I killed it, though. I had it down to a science by the end.

    I scored a 169, FWIW. The scale is really tough, because people keep getting better and better at beating the test. I think I missed nine questions. A few years before, I think, that would have been a 175 or 176. I think I had to make a wild guess four times, and missed every one of those guesses.
  3. Amy

    Amy Well-Known Member

    I did absolutely no LSAT prep. It was quite the surprise when one entire section of the freaking test was math. I had taken no math in college. My last math class had been in 11th grade. I did OK but not good enough to get into a good school, although I did get into a not so good law school.

    On the other hand, I now make more money than Ragu can dream of.
  4. Webster

    Webster Well-Known Member

    The legal market is very tight right now and unless you do very well, get a scholarship or go to a very good school, it is not a great financial deal.

    In terms of prep -- I attended a Kaplan class for a few basic lessons and then spent the 3 weeks before the test at the Kaplan center taking tests 8 hours a day. I aced the test and it helped me get into a better law school, so based on a small sample size, I would recommend my method.
  5. The Big Ragu

    The Big Ragu Moderator Staff Member


    I dream big -- and you (or your paycheck) have never been in any of my dreams, for what it is worth.

    I did do LSAT prep -- it amounted to going through a lot of old exams to get a feel for what to look for. This was back in 1989 when I was pretty carefree and felt like the world was my oyster. I actually wasn't committed to going to law school -- it was sort of option D for me -- but it seemed prudent to at least know what was on the exam since I decided to take it to keep my options open. I would have figured anyone who actually wanted to be a lawyer would have gone into the exam at least as prepared, if not more, than I was.

    I got a great score on the test and was accepted to a bunch of law schools that I suspect you consider the "good" schools. I decided to do other things.

    I'm glad you are happy with how things worked out for you -- if that is what you were trying to say. Not sure why I needed to be a part of it.
  6. da man

    da man Well-Known Member

    I think she was just funnin' ya, Ragu. You might want to lighten up, just a little.
    Donny in his element likes this.
  7. Guy_Incognito

    Guy_Incognito Well-Known Member

    It's been quite a while since I did this, I guess I took the LSATs almost 20 years ago. I took Kaplan, and was happy I did. That said, at the time the biggest benefit was their bank of good test questions, the real ones and to a lesser extant the ones they came up with. It wasn't hard to tell the difference, but the Kaplan fake ones were better than any of the Barron's books, and there wasn't much else back then. If by now you have as many real LSATs available as I would guess, then I'm not sure you need it.
    Another advantage of Kaplan is that it's a good work environment that kept me on task. I have some undiagnosed attention issues.
    I actually took the test, screwed up the grid on what turned out to be the experimental section, but messed me up enough so that I did poorly on the section in between that one and the break, when I was able to figure out that it was the experimental one. I got wait listed from the school I wanted to go to, and then pulled myself off when I decided to take a year off before law school anyway and I took it again a year later. When I took the Kaplan diagnostic a year later and did much better than the previous year, the guy behind the counter freaked out because they had a guarantee that you go up 6 points. Got into the school pretty comfortably that time.
  8. lcjjdnh

    lcjjdnh Well-Known Member

    Take as many practice tests as possible. Don't think a class is necessary unless your daughter will not be motivated to study on her own.

    Although the legal job market has tightened, it actually seems like a decent time to apply to law school because applications have plummeted. Easier to get into even the top law schools now than it was a few years ago.
  9. qtlaw24

    qtlaw24 Active Member

    My most important piece of advice on law school is do it because you want to study the law; not because its a means to an end (high $$ supposedly, etc.) Its a subject that she will be around the vast majority of her time if that's the career she chooses and she decides to invest 3 years of her life studying it. Sure it can be lucrative, but if you hate it, the job, the subject, you're likely to never put in the necessary time and effort to become successful anyways to reach that perceived end of the rainbow. I've been at this nearly 25 years and I really enjoy meeting and helping my clients; that's the "journey", not the paycheck.

    As for prep, yes its been a very looong time since I took Kaplan but to me, it was a worthwhile exercise because it gave me a destination and a regiment to follow along with counseling so that I could excel on the LSAT. I did really well (and got accepted to a really good school) and while it was definitely my work, I did not have the discipline to self-study, so I would not have done as well.

    If your daughter really wants to go for it, I encourage her to do so, whatever her ultimate destination.
  10. Baron Scicluna

    Baron Scicluna Well-Known Member

  11. Dick Whitman

    Dick Whitman Well-Known Member

    To clarify, the Kaplan's classes do use real test questions. The books you can buy at Amazon or B&N do not.
  12. Guy_Incognito

    Guy_Incognito Well-Known Member

    Kaplans used to use both. The real tests were gold resources that we used sparingly and strategically.
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