It’s always nice when your rooting interest dovetails with your vocation. There’s a terrific article in this week’s New York Times Magazine on Mariano Rivera, the great closer for my beloved Yankees. Even players for the Boston Red Sox, among the few teams to have some success against Mo, concede that there’s no one else like him (unlike many Yankees fans, I have a lot of admiration for the Red Sox—worse in some quarters, I root for the New York Mets, too).
Takers of the June LSAT will soon be receiving their scores. Many will be satisfied that they obtained their best LSAT score. Congratulations! Now your job will be to assemble a compelling law school application package (and enjoy your summer).
The U.S. made the Knockout Round! That should continue Americans’ intermittent interest in soccer (sorry, “football”) for a little while longer. A New York Times Magazine article by Michael Sokolove analyzes how soccer stars are made in Europe and why the system there seems to work better than it does here. I’m sure he’ll take it all back if the U.S. wins the World Cup (what are the chances?).
The “Goldilocks problem” is the difficulty many LSAT takers have calibrating the right amount of time to spend studying for the LSAT. The key is to be at your peak—neither past it nor not yet at your best—on exam day. Those who are serious about their LSAT prep tend to take too much time, in some cases far too much.
I often talk with eager prospective law school applicants who want to take as long as possible preparing for the LSAT. I’ve even talked to people who have spent, gulp, 5-10 years, off and on, getting ready to take the LSAT.
You have to love the internet. If you’re looking for the spectacularly silly without a hint of self-reflection, you’ll find it, always joined by a cheering section of even greater silliness. Here’s an example, a discussion of techniques of LSAT takers to psych out other takers, on the principle that if the psych-ee does worse, the psych-er (or psych-o) will have done better. T-shirts? Offensive odors? The “Best Way to Distract Other Test-Takers”? Really?
The May 17 New Yorker has an article by the always-interesting Malcolm Gladwell called “The Treatment” http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2010/05/17/100517fa_fact_gladwell. (If you’re a New Yorker online subscriber, you can click through to get the full article; otherwise, you’ll get an abstract.) Gladwell describes the search for a magic bullet in cancer research. Drawing from the history of successful treatment of acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL), a form of childhood leukemia, he concludes that “perhaps there isn’t a master code. Perhaps there is only what can be uncovered, one step at a time.” The breakthrough treatment of ALL involved a constant adjustment of drugs, dosages, time of treatment and a host of other variables. There was a theory but it was perpetually fine-tuned based on practical results.
I recently read a post on TheLawyerist.com about preparing for law school the summer before entering.
Last Thursday, March 18, I participated in an LSAT forum of major LSAT prep companies held by Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh. Attendees other than Advise-In Solutions were sales representatives from Kaplan, Princeton Review and Test Masters, a Pittsburgh-area instructor from PowerScore and Knewton (by remote access).
You don’t prepare to take the LSAT from a vacuum. You have a particular biography, methods of thought, ways of learning, strengths and weaknesses. The ideal LSAT program will account for those and, based on knowing who you are, will help take you from where you are to where you need to be in a focused way that builds on (and gently reconstructs some of) your foundations.
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