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How to Use This Book and TESTware®
It’s all about well-focused practice.
Improvement on the Law School Admission Test takes a lot of practice. And it’s not just about putting in time, but putting in time well spent. Use this book as a resource to help you do the intense, arduous, and well-focused practice that will improve your LSAT score.
The LSAT is unique among standardized tests. It covers many subjects, but does not test your knowledge of any of them. The heart of the test is the human faculty of reasoning, and the LSAT attempts to assess the development of that faculty in the test-taker. For someone trying to improve his or her score, there is no substitute for working with real LSAT tests. That is why this book centers on the analysis of an actual LSAT exam. (Content taken from the actual LSAT exam is set off in its official font.)
The goal of this book is for you to understand what the LSAT is asking you to do and then doing that well. (Basically, you should get better at the test by getting better at doing what the test tests.) Each major chapter (1 through 3) is devoted to understanding a particular section of the LSAT. This helps you learn what to focus your practice on, so you can use your study time to your best advantage.
You can improve your test score by analyzing what the exam is testing. This may seem hard at first, but the more you practice, the easier it will be to understand what the problems, tasks, and situations are asking you to do.
Take, for example, Chapter 1 on Logical Reasoning problems. Work through the analysis there to understand what that section is testing, how it does so, and consequently, what you want to be able to do in order to answer questions correctly. Then, practice developing that ability: work logical reasoning problems using those techniques and applying the understanding from the chapter. The key here is to take the theory and use it to analyze the problem so you can address it effectively.
Follow this method with each of the three major question types and keep doing the focused practice.
Use this book as a resource for the kinds of questions found on the exam and refer back to it as often as necessary. It is likely that for most questions you encounter on the LSAT, we have analyzed a similar question you can use as a model.
Try to learn from everything you do when practicing. The more you recognize or understand particular problems or processes, the better and faster you will become at answering the problems. Don’t settle for not understanding why a correct answer is correct. Use the analysis in these chapters to develop that understanding. After practicing for a couple of weeks, go back and reread the chapters. Your experience with LSAT questions may have helped you develop a background that will increase your analytical skills.
While there is no adequate substitute for practicing on real LSATs with LSAT questions, the practice tests included here will prepare you for the exam. These problems, tasks, and situations are built to boost your familiarity with the types of problems you will encounter on the LSAT. You may find it useful to refer to the sections of the test as you review the chapters. This will help you practice and develop your understanding of the particular test sections before taking actual LSAT exams.
Our interactive CD-ROM includes two timed practice tests with automatic, instant scoring. The CD enables you to access the practice questions by typewhich can be useful for initial practice or for focusing on a type of question you find particularly difficult. Detailed explanations of all practice test answers are provided, so you can follow the process of working through the question to determine the right answer. Presenting the answers in this way will help you learn what to focus on as you practice.
And that’s what it’s all about: well-focused practice.