Wednesday, November 12, 2008

The LSAT: A Dull Play in Six Parts

***Sawyer's Halloween pictures are at the bottom of this post***


The LSAT: A dull play in six parts, with a brief intermission.
Run time: Approximately 3 hrs. 45 min.

Note: With the exception of the Break and what is described below as Part Six, which invariably appears last, the following Parts could appear in any order.

Part One, Logical Reasoning, 23 to 27 questions, 35 minutes

In which our hero reads purportedly factual and sound arguments and answers questions about their conclusions, strengths, weaknesses, and methods of reasoning. ("Our tomato soup provides good nutrition: For instance, one bowl of our warm tomato soup contains more Vitamin C than does either a serving of apricots or fresh carrots!" The advertisement is misleading if which one of the following is true?)

Part Two, Analytical Reasoning, also known as "Logic Games", Four games, 23 to 25 questions, 35 minutes

In which our hero answers questions about rule-based scenarios. (John, Karen, Lynda, and Maxwell will perform exactly two vocal solos each at tonight's concert. Each vocal selection was composed by either Handel, Bach, or Mozart. The performance order is subject to the following restrictions: Lynda does not perform her solos consecutively. A selection composed by Bach is never performed immediately before or immediately after a selection composed by Handel. At least two, but no more than five of the selections were composed by Mozart. John performs both of his solos only after Karen has performed both of her solos. Etc., etc., etc., I certainly can't make up any more of these stupid rules, but there would be more. If Karen performs first, which of the following is a complete and accurate list of singers who could have performed eighth?)

Part Three, Reading Comprehension, Four passages, 25 to 27 questions, 35 minutes

In which our hero reads four dense passages of text, one each from the fields of natural science, law, humanities, and social science, one of which is a two-part comparative passage, and answers questions meant gauge to his understanding of the main point, details, inferences, structure, and attitude of the material. ("Which of the following, if true, would most seriously weaken the proponents' argument regarding the safety of using altered Pseudomonas syringae bacteria to control frost damage?")

Break, 10 to 15 minutes


Part Four, Experimental Section, 23 to 27 questions, 35 minutes

In which our hero has to do an unscored, likely more-difficult version of any of the above Parts. The questions in this Part are being tested for inclusion on future LSATs.

Part Five, Logical Reasoning, 23 to 27 questions, 35 minutes

In which our hero has to answer more of those argument questions described in Part One.

Part Six, Writing Sample, 35 minutes

In which our hero tries to use what is left of his brain to write an essay that advocates for one choice over another in relation to a supplied scenario.


As some of you know, Tyson is planning to take the LSAT (Law School Admission Test) next month. We are holed up in my parents' basement studying like crazy, so I don't have anything interesting to report. Honestly, Tyson has only left the house three times since we got here a couple weeks ago. Why do I say "we" are studying like crazy? Because I am probably going to take the test too. Just for funsies, you know. (Cuz doesn't it sound fun?!? Okay, okay, I'll admit it -- I LOVE tests. Homework, on the other hand...)

I don't get quite as much studying in since it's also my job to take care of Sawyer, but I think I'll end up doing pretty well on the test, and if I do well enough, I might be able to take a small, well-paid job as an LSAT instructor/tutor. For Tyson, there's a *leetle* more pressure, seeing as he's actually trying to get into the best law school he can. He's hitting the books hard, and if things don't go quite well enough in December, he may cancel the score and take it again in June.

Wish us luck!


Sawyer was a cute lion for Halloween. Tyson's mom lent us the costume. I need to get a couple pictures off my mom's camera from the actual Halloween night when we went trick-or-treating with Kara and her kids in our old Centerville neighborhood. (What fun it was to see all our dear friends and former neighbors!)

These are from when Sawyer tried on his costume over his pajamas at Charlene's house. I like the one where he's sneaking up to attack his "Da".


  1. I've been wondering how that studying has been! THanks for keeping us posted! That's awesome that you are taking it too! Good luck! You both are so smart so I am sure you will pass it with flying colors!! Sawyer looks so cute as usual!! miss you guys!

  2. Yikes good luck on the test!

    I took it a few years ago. It made the GRE that I took later on seem so easy in comparison.

  3. I'm SO glad it's OUR HERO whose doing all of this. It's nice to have people out there who are willing to take care of the rest of us! Way to take the test too. I'm sure you've gotten tons of practice helping people study. You'll have earned yourself an honorary law degree by the time you're done with all this! Sawyer looks adorable! Love the costume. He's changed so much since the last time I saw him! We can't wait to see you guys again!

  4. Sounds like a blast! I just bought an LSAT study preparation thing too.... for funsies... maybe I'll take it in June. No high aspirations about fancy lawschools for me though.... U of U sounds good!! You'll both do awesome on the test, fosho. Have fun going to Harvard!!