My diagraming seems to be one big reason I take so long on games. 3:39 on average after doing about 10 mixed games last night, just over the three minute mark on every game no matter what it was.
LSAT Kung Fu Forum / How long does it take you to diagram a game?
How long does it take you to diagram a game?
Huh. That's way too much time—where's your time going?
For reference, since you asked I just setup all four games from PrepTest 63 with a stopwatch on, and it took 3:14 to do the diagram and rules for all 4 of them together. Now, I'd anticipate that I may be a little faster than most test-takers (a decade of experience will do that to a guy), but there's no magic I'm performing that should make me four times as fast as you.
For me, there was very little thought involved. It was exactly as I work through games in all the video explanations—What does this game want me to do? Oh, put things in order? I know what that diagram looks like. And as a result of having done so many games (and many of them over and over and over), the rules were absolutely standard (I mean, there's the occasional—like, once-in-a-section—exception, but better than 90% are just like rules we've seen before).
So I'm really curious where you're spending time. I know we can cut that way down, in any case.
I'll be doing four games in just a few minutes and I'll see what's taking me so long. I try not to rush through anything so I don't write fast or anything I might be too relaxed. I'm also paranoid about getting a rule wrong so I really make sure I'm doing things right. I've had some bad experiences with getting a rule wrong and screwing up an entire game.
Yeah; I could've really been clearer on that point. Please don't think of 45 seconds per game as a benchmark that you must meet. You're so right that you need to be careful and avoid careless errors. I'd say about 1:30 is appropriate on average.
How'd your work go this weekend?
Hey Dave, thanks for following up. Games are still a weak point for me mainly having to do with timing issues. I think I'm going back over the games chapters to see what I'm missing, I did games sections from a few of the lsat PEs and was getting about 15/23 and usually missing one entire game with that score. So not horrible as far as accuracy, but not great either and again, time is my worst enemy.
The logical reasoning and reading sections are pretty strong for me. I finished one entire LR section minus one question and got a 22/26 the LR portion of your study material is pure gold my friend kudos. The only questions I'm missing are tricky assumption questions and the much hated and time consuming parallel questions because I haven't covered that chapter yet. I think I'll be covering those tomorrow and dedicate the rest of the week and all of next week to strengthening my games.
I like what I'm hearing about your LR and RC!
For the games, I cannot overstate the importance of the procedural nature of the thing; if you get good at the process, you'll be good at games. This means repetition (exactly like learning to play the piano!)—doing the same thing over and over is how you become fast at that thing.
I have 70+ games in order by difficulty from my last run at the LSAT. I might hit those up. I've cut my diagraming to 1:41. Just by going faster and not farting around. I have games from last week that I will replay. I circled my wrong answers and the questions I had trouble with so I'll be reviewing that.
Is there a way I can gauge how long a game should take? Like a tutor I had told me I had done great on a game once and I thought I sucked at it because it took me 12 minutes. But he said it was a tough game. I just don't know when a game is hard or just hard to me. Is there a way to get a time for a given game to say ok, this game should be 7 minutes, this one 5 this one 13 etc?
You can get a good estimate of a game's difficulty using the 4-star assessment method in your manual.
Generally, difficulty is measured by distance from familiarity—these games are so much alike, that many of them ought to be easy, not in a vacuum, but because you've essentially done them before. So, we come back again to the idea of repetitive practice: once you've done them enough times to recognize them when you see them, you'll know whether the game in front of you is recognizable (and thus likely easy/easy-ish).
Combine this thinking on familiarity with your assessment method and you should have a strong sense of how long a game ought to take.
Dave, I think I figured out what my problem was. Apparently doing games while sitting on a bed with papers everywhere and no backing to your pile of papers is a bad thing. I've taken to sitting at my kitchen table with a timer and my times have improved. Easier games are being done in under 6 minutes and wrong answer choices are fairly rare. I've studied all sections on my bed and have improved but games are different and the level of organization needed is higher, thanks again.
Awesome! Thank you for the update—I do so love it when a plan comes together!