Episode 7: How To Prepare For The LSAT During The Final Two Weeks

March 13, 2019

In this episode Dave and Jon start with a discussion of the latest test prep scandals—they haven't affected the LSAT yet, but someday soon they certainly could—before turning their attention to the final two weeks of prep for those planning on a March LSAT date. As part of that conversation they give key tips for these remaining two weeks, including advice on mentality, practice tests and proper review (including a full deconstruction of an actual test question to illustrate the ideal technique), and the appropriate study/life balance for optimal results.

0:00 to 5:38:

In a PowerScore PodCast first, Jon and Dave were fortunate enough to record this episode side-by-side from Dave’s office in Napa Valley. Less fortunate was how they were both feeling after touring vineyards for several days, and catching two heavy-hitting Muse shows in Sacramento and Oakland (hence the two of them sipping water to recover, another PodCast first).

The concerts proved useful, however: they inspired tonight’s song choice, which is the Muse song Pressure, a fitting choice as we approach the final two weeks before the upcoming March LSAT. (Less musical, but good for a laugh, were Dave’s sound effects on his new Otamatone; Dave’s still a novice, but there’s hope for him yet)

5:39 to 23:33:

Before discussing how to best use these final weeks, talk turned to one of today’s most alarming—and relevant—headlines: the massive college admissions cheating scandal that broke shortly before our recording began. Dubbed Operation Varsity Blues by the FBI, the investigation revealed the largest college admissions scam ever prosecuted by the Department of Justice, and managed to nab a huge number of celebrities, lawyers, college coaches, and other high-profile individuals as part of a scheme spanning nearly a decade and involving over $25 million in payouts and bribes to secure their children’s entry to the nation’s most elite universities.

Given LSAC’s recent focus on test security this type of fraudulent behavior is clearly both concerning, and potentially a threat to the purported equity meant to exist in the admissions process, and Jon and Dave pull no punches in condemning it.

23:34 to 26:55:

It was a relatively quiet week in the LSAT World, but there was a new podcast, “Keeping Up To Data,” that looked at admissions statistics for the cycle thus far (transcript).

26:56 to 27:34:

And now we get to tonight’s main topic: How to use the last two weeks before an LSAT to prepare! This is most obviously geared towards the March test two weeks away, but the talking points to come ultimately apply to the final few weeks before any future LSAT.

27:35 to 35:39:

As they often do at the outset of prep discussions, Dave and Jon begin by talking mentality. Namely, that success in the final days and weeks becomes less and less about how much more you can learn, and instead often centers on the mindset you’re able to foster and maintain. Tips are given for staying positive in the home stretch, avoiding burnout, and managing test day anxiety when the exam’s in progress.

35:40 to 38:00:

One key to focus on as the test approaches is the idea of “quality over quantity” in prioritizing your time and efforts. That idea is introduced briefly, and serves as a central theme for much of the discussion that follows.

38:01 to 46:20:

With the notion established of valuing the quality of your prep over its sheer volume, the next step is learning as much as possible, and as specifically as possible, about your strengths and weaknesses at this final stage. Comparing those to our predictions about what’s most likely to appear on the March test allows you to create a precise game plan for finishing strong, so Jon and Dave outline exactly how to determine those elements.

46:21 to 53:29:  

Whether you’re focused on targeted concept drills, individual test sections, or full practice tests, knowing how much to do, when, and where will help you continue to improve without burning yourself out.

53:30 to 1:00:52:

Not only is it critical that you properly review everything you study (as described in the last section), but there are also a handful of recent, real LSATs that you should be extremely familiar with before test day. This portion of the chat will tell you both how, and what, to review.

1:00:53 to 1:26:40:

To demonstrate the review process in action, a sample LSAT question is presented and then thoroughly deconstructed (June 2007 LR1, #14). Do your best to mirror these techniques in your own question analysis!

1:26:41 to 1:31:04:

Finally, some last-minute encouragement and words of reassurance concerning your late-stage life/work balance: how and when to take some personal time, diet and nutrition (and recreation) suggestions, and a general reminder that if you’ve prepared properly everything will work out just fine.

1:31:05 to 1:32:35:

Outro. Be sure to subscribe, leave us a rating, and send us any questions or topics you’d like us to cover in a future episode: lsatpodcast@powerscore.com. We appreciate you listening!