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Welcome to LSAT Logic Games 101, where we will discuss what is more formally known as the Analytical Reasoning section. Whether you are just starting your LSAT prep, or you've been at it for a while, you've come to the right place. In this brief article, we will discuss basic detail about Logic Games, highlight effective practice methods, and more. Includes a video and lots of downloadable infographics. Let's get started.
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LSAC, the organization responsible for the LSAT, offers one free sample test on their website, and they also offer additional practice exams for sale.
All of the tests LSAC offers are previously administered official exams.
The exams come in bundles of ten (which are known as the "10 Actuals") and as individual tests. The 10 Actuals offer a much better value and are the best choice for most students.
Please click on any of the links below to access the free sample exam offered by LSAC and the prep tests LSAC offers for sale on Amazon.
Free Practice Offered By LSAC (All from the June '07 exam)
"10 Actuals" Books For Sale on Amazon
You can also purchase individual practice tests on the LSAC Amazon page.
Logic Games are designed to test your ability to relate different pieces of information—the game scenario and rules—to one another. In order to do this, you'll want to develop a notational system for these various Logic Games scenarios and rules. This is what is commonly discussed as diagramming strategy.
Being able to diagram Logic Games is the equivalent of being able to write out math problems on paper—it allows us to be far faster and more accurate, and it also allows us to follow long or advanced chains of thought that most of us are not capable of following otherwise. And in large part, your success on Logic Games will be dictated by your ability to diagram Logic Games situations and rules, and your ability to utilize your diagram in order to answer the various questions that you will face.
The great news is that there is great consistency to the design of Logic Games, and the same situations and rules appear over and over again. With the right instruction and the right practice, diagramming is very, very learnable, and once you are comfortable drawing out just about any games scenario you might run into, the Logic Games section becomes markedly more manageable.
The Trainer Question Breakdown organizes all Logical Reasoning questions from exams 29 - 75 by type. Please click to open.
Here is an infographic that highlights the key characteristics common to all LSAT Logic Games. Please click to open.
Finally, here are some tips to help ensure your Logic Games study success.
1. Try to account for both the forest and the trees
In studying games, it helps to at times get very specific in your focus, so that you can just think about ordering games, or just think about conditional rules, and so on, and at times it helps to think big picture—to think about how all games relate to one another.
Students often underperform because they fail to pay attention to the details, or because they have failed to properly organize and bring together all that they have learned. Make sure not to fall into either trap.
2. Play games again and again until you feel mastery
It takes a while for your brain to get used to playing Logic Games, and you don't want to burn through a ton of practice before you get a chance to get good. For every game you encounter in your practice, your expectation should be that if you don't play it well, you will play it again and again until you can. Try to master every game you practice—repeating and carefully studying just a few games can often be far more helpful than trying to rush through a ton of them.
3. Try to adopt flexible strategies
Yes, all games are very much alike and related to one another, but that doesn't mean that they fit into rigid categories. Students can cause themselves unnecessary trouble if they try to learn games in terms of these rigid categories, and then, in turn, try to force games into them. Students also cause themselves trouble when they develop diagramming systems for one "type" of game that contradict or don't work along with diagramming systems for other "types" of games. Make sure to work to develop flexible strategies that are easy to adjust should you, as you invariably will, run into hybrid games or games that for various other reasons don't fit neatly into set categories.
About the Author
Mike Kim is the author of The LSAT Trainer, the most popular and acclaimed new LSAT learning product to be released in over a decade. Previously, he co-created ManhattanLSAT. Inspired by self-study students who prepare for the exam on their own, Mike set out to write the ultimate self-study guide, and The LSAT Trainer is the result.
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