LSAT test prep: courses you'd recommend in NYC?
September 6, 2018 8:07 AM   Subscribe

Do you know of a LSAT test prep class that you would recommend? I'm in NYC, and willing to invest what I need to. My goal is to get a score of 170 or higher. (Please do not recommend self-study as opposed to a course - your mileage very much varies from mine. Though I will accept prep materials you may no longer need!) Thanks, y'all
posted by anthropoid to Education (5 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I taught LSAT prep.
My recommendation is to take a free practice test first to see where you are scoring. Getting to 170 is very doable if you're in the 160s and you're willing to learn a few test taking strategies. This varies by where the points are missing though. If you're mostly struggling in reading but doing great on logic, there are lots of points to gain. Logic - people can move from poor to good but moving from good to great is tougher.
Getting to 170 from the 150s though can be incredibly difficult.

If you're in the 150s, I'd do a class and take it seriously and then once you're in the 160s, do tutoring to focus more on specifics. If in the 160s, tutoring.
posted by k8t at 8:42 AM on September 6, 2018 [1 favorite]

I also taugh LSAT prep for three companies. Whatever the marketing says, LSAT courses are designed to move someone who gets a 140 on their diagnostic to a 160. They are good at that. If that is what you need to do after your diagnostic, Manhattan Review is probably the current gold standard. (I never worked for them, but wish I had).

If you get a 160 or above on your diagnostic, you should not waste your time and money on courses. I scored a 179 by working through a printed guide (Manhattan or PowerScore are your best bet), and then taking every LSAT ever written and painfully and personally articulating in writing why I got each question I got wrong, wrong. Learn the LSAT the hard way and you will do better than you think possible for very little cash. It is hard—but I consistently scored 177-180 in the month running up to my LSAT after starting in the low 160s. There is an LSAT tutor (I think in NY) who sells daily or weekly study plans—those are great guidance as you structure your plans.

Good luck!
posted by suncages at 1:20 PM on September 6, 2018 [1 favorite]

Another former LSAT instructor here—I would be very hesitant to take an in-person class if you are prepping at 160 (which is about the 80th percentile) or more. Prep companies seem to have aimed their classes at the middle 50 percent since it’s very hard to effectively teach to people who are very far apart in skill level. Classes at my old company used to be aimed higher, but I think the market has changed a lot with the availability of so much very high quality material online.

If you do end up taking a course, just make sure it’s with an instructor who has taught the class several times and scored a 170+ on a real LSAC-administered LSAT. Don’t take Kaplan.
posted by skewed at 5:13 PM on September 6, 2018 [1 favorite]

So helpful, all! I need to get a more accurate sense of my starting score (haven't sat down to do a full-on, proper test) then set expectations and decide on coursework vs tutoring from there. Thank you!
posted by anthropoid at 6:35 PM on September 6, 2018

Awesome! Feel free to memail me after you take your diagnostic—I miss teaching and would be happy to point you in the direction of the best resources for you given whatever your score is. (Oh—and for the diagnostic to have any meaning, you must take it timed. Kaplan used to offer free proctored diagnostics. You definitely should not use Kaplan to study, but no harm in using them to proctor/time your diagnostic).
posted by suncages at 9:08 AM on September 8, 2018

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