Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Zen Student Journal - Why Online LSAT Tutoring?

The following is the first journal entry from an online tutoring client for the February 2011 LSAT. She's currently in Pakistan, working for democratic reform. The Internet is pretty darn cool. You can also read all the previous entries in the full Zen Student Journal.
Towards the very end of my LSAT take, I stumbled across Zen of 180. I remember wishing I had found it sooner, but while my prep was a little shaky, my last few PrepTests had been in the range of 170-75. I was confident that, at worst, I would get a 170 on the actual day.

However, the exam did not go as planned, and from what I have read on the forums, it does not for most people. Most LSAT re-takers would agree, once the flow of LSAT prep is broken, it is really hard to get it back. Even though I knew that my exam had not gone as smoothly as I was expecting, I still hoped for the best and delayed the inevitable. Yep, procrastination, my ultimate flaw. When my result came in, I had a 165, and while not surprised, I felt a little saddened. 

A voice in my head echoed "this is not reflective of your skill". So I registered for a re-take

It was already the 10th of January by the time I registered. I immediately found my bookmark of the website, and contacted Mr. Bennett for a consultation, as I wanted my prep to be more focused and efficient due to the lack of prep time.

My free initial consultation with Mr. Bennett went really well, and I decided to hire his online tutoring services. He asked me to take a few prep-tests, so that he could customize a prep plan for me.
Some of the features available in our online LSAT tutoring.
So far, I have had two sessions with him, and we have been working on the Logical Reasoning section

Even though I had been consistently tracking my mistakes, I had been unable to find much of a pattern towards the end of my last prep cycle. I would only get 3-4 questions wrong on average, and they didn't seem to be from a single question type. However, Mr. Bennett picked up on my problem as not having to do with a certain question strand, but various aspects of the entire "extrapolation" strand. 

From then on, we have been working on different questions that require extrapolation. According to my study schedule, I will be taking a double Prep-test tomorrow, and will find out about my progress. From the PrepTest I took three days ago, I seemed to be smoother on those types of questions. Sometimes, its the re-calibration of our internalized thinking processes that is the hardest.

In our next sessions, we'll start on Logic Games and Reading Comp

During my last prep cycle, I had become quite efficient at the LG section. Though I was still struggling with timing, my accuracy rate was almost perfect. I am counting on retaining my accuracy as I proceed with more practice and will dedicate a whole day of doing 5-6 LG sections. I am, more than anything, counting on Mr. Bennett to identify problem areas and help me focus my prep, as all I have left now is one week. I know that given the time, I could do so much better, but because I do not want to wait another year, this is a chance I have to take. 

It is truly comforting to have Mr. Bennett in my corner. I have come to appreciate that a more experienced third person can notice weaknesses we ourselves can consistently miss.