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How to Study for a Retake

Or What to Do When You Run Out of PrepTests…

Someone recently asked me, “What should you do if you have used a lot of your LSAT material already but need to retake?”


Here are 7 tips for anyone in this common situation:


1. Redo practice tests.

Even if you’ve done every PrepTest (you probably haven’t), you won’t remember every question. The purpose of doing practice tests is to analyze the logic of each argument, so make sure you actually think through each question, even if you know you’ve done it before. Soon enough, the right answers to each question will seem obvious even if you’ve never seen the question before.


2. Avoid fake practice tests like the plague.

They’re full of errors and not similar enough to real PrepTests. You’re better off redoing old PrepTests than spending time with bad materials. Check out my LSAT retake study schedules for tips on how to prepare for your retake.


3. Analyze your current performance on practice tests.

Save every PrepTest answer sheet from the first time. After a few months, retake these PrepTests and compare your performance between the 1st and 2nd times. If you answered the same question incorrectly both times, spend several minutes figuring out the reason.

Keep track of all your mistakes by making a big list with the PrepTest #, Section #, and Question #. Make two columns: one for every serious mistake and one for every stupid mistake. Don’t ignore stupid mistakes – they cost as many points as serious ones, and you can decrease the number of stupid mistakes you make.


4. Create strategies based on patterns in your performance.

Figure out the reason you consistently answer certain types of questions incorrectly. Even if you say you won’t make the same mistake again, this alone won’t prevent you from doing it the 2nd (or 3rd, 4th, or 5th) time.


5. Explain LSAT questions to a friend.

This will help you gain a fresh and concrete understanding of the arguments.


6. Try for perfection on each PrepTest.

Allow yourself to puzzle over every question you answer incorrectly. Make sure that you fully understand why the correct answer is correct and why that tempting, but incorrect, answer choice is incorrect.


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