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LSAT Advanced Prep Weekend Toronto – May 13, 14/17

The LSAT Advanced Prep Weekend

Who: John Richardson

Where: University of Toronto – St. Michael’s College – Room TBA

When: May 13, 14 – 9:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Price: $495 + HST = $559.35

Registration: See below

Why: Lately I have been receiving a number of calls where people say something like …

I have already taken the LSAT. I have taken this LSAT course or that course. I have used this LSAT tutor or that LSAT tutor, I have used this LSAT book or that book. I am overwhelmed by all the steps and procedures. I need to take the LSAT again, etc, etc, etc.

It’s clear that these people do NOT need a “beginners” LSAT course. What they do need is to learn:

“How to get a larger number of right answers by applying a fewer number of skills.”

Furthermore, the reasons that people have trouble with the LSAT are more related to their reading than to their reasoning. The single most important skill tested on the LSAT is to accurately read and understand the INFORMATION you are expected to then REASON with.

That said, the focus of this weekend will be overwhelmingly on LSAT Logic Games and LSAT Logical Reasoning

But, I would like you to start right now. Here is a post that describes your objective in LSAT preparation and what you must achieve. Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication in both LSAT and in life.

During the weekend, you will learn how to:

– why the LSAT is more of reading test than a reasoning test. In fact, the LSAT really should be called the “READ Test

– identify a smaller number of LSAT skills/techniques that are ALWAYS relevant

– Simplicity is virtue. How to make the complex simple

– learn how to better understand what the LSAT question is telling you and HOW to work with that information (it is not possible to work with all the information that the LSAT throws your way)

– the Logic Games Toolbox (doing more with less)

– adjust the order in which you do the questions

– understand the differences between “diagramming” and “positioning” and how to get started answering questions more quickly

– conditional statements, parallel reasoning and how to better use “conditional statements” (a former president of Law Services call “conditional reasoning” the “basic LSAT reasoning task”) – but watch our for the most common of LSAT mistakes in conditional reasoning

(See my interview with Professor Deborah Bennet: Author of: “Logic Made Easy”)

– how to get your “best guess on record more quickly” (sometimes  you are better off getting a question wrong quickly than getting it right slowly). “Different strokes for different folks.” How your personality type will affect the way that you answer LSAT questions.

– while we are on the topic of personality, there is some evidence that LSAT Prep affects your brain

– why you should NOT categorize LSAT Logical Reasoning questions and what you should ask about all Logical Reasoning questions

– identifying and avoiding the most common LSAT Logical Reasoning flaws

– how to strip LSAT arguments down to their bare essentials (so, what’s an LSAT argument anyway?)

– and more (plus you will actually have a lot of fun) …

My goal is to help you do more with a fewer number of skills that ALWAYS matter.

Pre-Course Prep:

I once wrote a post on “Pre-LSAT Prep” …

But, before the weekend …

1. I urge all attendees to purchase and read “The New Official LSAT SuperPrep” from LSAT. There is a new edition available, but if you can’t get the new edition, the Old “Official LSAT SuperPrep” is fine.

2. I want you to read my list of “Best LSAT Blog Posts“. I have worked hard on them over the years.

Registration – Three ways:

1. Phone VISA or Mastercard: 416 410 7737

2. Eventbrite

3. Email us at: LSATPreparation at gmail dot com

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Toronto Mastering The LSAT Preparation Courses

John Richardson – Mastering The LSAT  – Toronto, Canada – 416 410 7737

Put 30 Years of LSAT Teaching Experience and Law School Admissions Consulting To Work For You!

The only complete LSAT and Law School Application Course!

New Law School Preview Program – Everything you need to know about law school and how to succeed!

Who: John Richardson – Author: Law School Bound and Mastering The LSAT (of the bar of Ontario)

Where: University of Toronto – St. Michael’s College

When: Multiple start dates – Courses starting on any of:  November 16, 23, 30

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Introducing LSAT Logical Reasoning – The Terrain @LSATPreparation

Introducing LSAT Logical Reasoning – The Terrain

A study of arguments should be part of any LSAT preparation course.

Introduction – What Skills Does The LSAT Test?

The LSAT is a test of reading and reasoning in context. Your reading and reasoning skills will tested in the broad  contexts of:

LSAT Logical Reasoning

LSAT Logic Games

LSAT Reading Comprehension
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Planning your legal career: Advice from a former Supreme Court Justice

The above tweet references an article written by former Supreme Court of Canada Justice Ian Binnie. There are two aspects of the post that are of interest to those considering a legal career. The first aspect focuses on career advice for the individual. The second contains observations about the role (possibly diminishing) that lawyers will play in our society.

Career advice for the individual …

Finally, nobody will be a success if they don’t like their work, especially if it’s in a disagreeable environment. The law offers terrific opportunities for a fulfilling career if you follow your own instincts, chart your own path and keep your independence so you’re able to walk away from an intolerable situation. Above all, if you don’t enjoy what you’re doing, stop doing it.

Observations about the role of the legal profession …

If lawyers can’t or won’t supply the service, the legal system will find ways to deal with disputes without resorting to lawyers. PayPal and eBay rely on online-dispute resolution systems to resolve 90 percent of the 60 million user conflicts that occur each year. Online dispute resolution is also a reality in British Columbia for small claims court. Keep this in mind as you plan your career.

Those taking the June LSAT may be interested in our Toronto LSAT Preparation courses.

The #GRE joins the #LSAT as an objective and reliable admissions test

The above tweet references an article at TaxProf blog reporting that Harvard Law School (you would be surprised how many famous people are Harvard Law School Graduates) is the latest and possibly most important law school to allow applicants to submit the GRE rather than the LSAT.

The article includes:
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The revolution is beginning: Forget The #LSAT. This Law School Will Accept Your #GRE Scores

The revolution is beginning. The use of the GRE as a substitute for the LSAT is a development that I have been predicting for years.

Listen and enjoy …

The Blueprint For How #LawSchools Will Pull Out Of ‘Death Spiral’

The above tweet references the above article in Forbes.

Of interest to pre-law students is:

LSAT scores are a good predictor of whether a student will pass the bar exam, and a recent analysis by the advocacy group Law School Transparency shows a steady decline in scores.

Last year, LSAT scores at 37 law schools were so low that half of incoming students were considered to be at high risk of failing the bar. In 2010, the same could be said for only nine schools.

The paralegals of today have taken over from the “sole practitioners” of yesterday

The above tweet references an article from my “Pre-Law Forum” blog.

My motivation for writing this …

Yesterday I found myself involved in a conversation with a lawyer who has been admitted to the Ontario bar for MORE THAN 50 YEARS! Yes, she is still has an active law practice. Interestingly, she is one of the few remaining sole general practitioners in a large urban area. She works on her own (well, she has an administrative assistant) and serves clients in a general way. She manages “every day” legal problems. She is one of the best lawyers I know. But, she is a “jack of all trades” and perhaps a “master of none”. (Or maybe she is a master of all?).

In any event, we were discussing how the practice of law has changed. We were also discussing how the the “paralegal professions” has gradually absorbed the kind of work that general practitioners used to do.

There are lots of people who want to do legal work. It is clear that “paralegals” do substantial legal work” but are NOT lawyers. Might this be of interest to some of you?

I encourage you to read my post which includes:
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Could it be that there are fewer jobs for lawyers but more jobs in the legal services industry?

The above tweet references an interesting article that reinforces the idea that:

“There are lies! Damn lies and statistics!”

The article suggests that although there may be fewer hired as lawyers, that the market for people with a legal education may be strong.

The Article includes:

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The ABA requires a “valid and objective admissions test”. What is the reason for this requirement?

The above tweet references an article which appeared in the Wall Street Journal on March 31, 2016.

The overall theme of the article is that because grades are no longer a reliable indicator of student abilities, then standardized tests are the only thing that schools really have.

An excerpt from the article includes:

It might seem unfair that admissions officers place almost as much weight on a one-morning test as they do on grades from four years of high school, as a 2011 survey from the National Association for College Admissions Counseling showed. But there’s a simple reason for this emphasis on testing: Policy makers and educators have effectively eliminated all the other ways of quantifying student performance.

Classroom grades have become meaningless. Last year a public-school district in northern California decided to score on an “equal interval scale”—meaning every letter grade is assigned a 20-point range. Students who score above 80% get an A. Only those below 20% will be given an F. This is only part of a larger trend.

A comment to the article included:

I have never recruited for an academic institution, but I have done a great deal for businesses. When recruiting for entry level technical or management career path positions, SAT, ACT, GRE, LSAT and other competitive standardized tests are great indicators of a candidate’s general mental “horsepower” and ability to learn relative to other candidates. Grades by subject matter areas give an idea of where a candidate’s interests and proclivities are. The presence of difficult subject matter courses, even with mediocre grades, gives a sense for work ethic. Extracurricular activities give an idea of a candidate’s psychological balance and social engagement. Absent a work history, these indicators, supplemented with personal interview results, work pretty well to predict success when matched up with job requirements. Businesses look at SATs and the rest because the information they convey is very predictive of performance.

This debate has been going on since the beginning of the standardized testing industry.

#Law Grad learns: No guarantee that attending #lawschool will result in a job – Consider alternatives

The above tweet references an article about a law school graduate who sued a law school on the grounds that the school misrepresented the employment prospects.

The article included:

SAN DIEGO (AP) — A jury found Thursday that a San Diego law school did not mislead a graduate who sued on the grounds she was lured to the school by false promises that her degree would land her a job after graduating.

The San Diego Superior Court jury rejected Anna Alaburda’s claim against the Thomas Jefferson School of Law on a 9-3 vote that was reached after about four hours of deliberations over two days.

While more than a dozen similar lawsuits have been filed in courts across the country, the case is believed to be the first of its kind to go to trial.

Alaburda, who filed her lawsuit in 2011, argued that Thomas Jefferson used inflated data to bolster the success rate of its job-seeking graduates. The 37-year-old woman graduated near the top of her class in 2008 and says she has been unable to find a full-time job as a lawyer. Meanwhile, she said has been saddled with $170,000 in student debt. She sought $125,000 in damages.

The trial came amid growing debate over such promises by schools competing to recruit students. The lawsuit was among more than a dozen similar ones filed in recent years against law schools, including Golden Gate University School of Law in San Francisco and the University of San Francisco School of Law. Though most of the lawsuits have been dismissed, critics say they point to a need for greater regulation and transparency for law schools, so prospective students know their employment prospects, the debt they will incur and their chances of successfully passing the bar.

Michael Sullivan, an attorney for the law school, acknowledged “isolated mistakes” and “clerical errors” in data collection but said there was no evidence that the school lied. He said the verdict set no precedent but may send a signal to other students who sue. “Having an opportunity where it’s fully litigated, and depositions and documents examined, to see the hype, the chatter about that did not prove to be the truth, as found by a jury, I think that’s a helpful message,” Sullivan told reporters after the verdict.

Is the problem the law schools or the market for lawyers?
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