Since something complicated, circular, multi-level and possibly Satanic apparently happened on the February LSAT, LSAT forums and discussions have been awash with questions about how this should impact preparation for the Analytical Reasoning section of the LSAT.
To a great degree, the answer is “it shouldn’t”.
No matter who you were prepping with prior to the February LSAT, you undoubtedly received advice something along the lines of “Devote the bulk of your time to the games that appear most often, but be prepared for an unexpected twist.”
That was exactly the right advise before the February twist happened, and it’s the right advice now. Sure, the notation in some test prep materials that “we haven’t seen a game like this since 20XX” will have to be removed now…but, so what?
Is “we haven’t seen this game type in 10 years” really so different from “we’ve only seen this game type once in the past 10 years”?
That messy, unexpected game could be a sign of things to come; maybe we’re going to start seeing more varied game types. Maybe the Analytical Reasoning section is getting harder. Or, maybe LSAC threw in a twist. I don’t know. You don’t either. Neither does anyone who tries to tell you that he does, since the only people privy to that information are under a legal obligation to keep it to themselves.
Does that mean you should ignore the possibility that you’ll see an unexpected, complicated or unusual game type on the next LSAT, or the one after? Of course not. But, then, February test takers shouldn’t have been ignoring that possibility, either.
For the moment, the best advice is the same as it’s always been: get a solid foundation in the game types you know you’re likely to see, but prepare yourself for something unexpected. Fortunately, the work you do on more traditional game types helps prepare you for tackling something a little out of the ordinary, and past LSATs give you samples of the unexpected.
To quote Douglas Adams (or, if you prefer, All Time Low), DON’T PANIC. Put the bulk of your time where you expect to see the bulk of your points and then make a little extra investment in hedging your bets.
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