Pearl vs. Turd: First 10 Questions in 10 Minutes? (Ep. 325)

Ben Olson's headshot.

The guys kick off this week’s episode with a discussion of some apoplexy-inducing proctor issues that one November test taker reported. They let listeners know how to handle it when things don’t go perfectly as planned on test day. Then, they pick apart a Strengthen question and consider a Pearls vs Turds submission: Should students make it a goal to complete the first 10 questions in 10 minutes? Finally, they review some questions that every law school hopeful should ask themselves.

As always, if you like the show and you want to get more from the Thinking LSAT community, check out the links below. You can connect with other folks studying for the LSAT and get more useful resources from Nathan and Ben.

LSAT Demon

LSAT Demon Daily

Thinking LSAT YouTube

LSAT Demon YouTube

Important Dates

12.3.2021 — January LSAT Registration Deadline

12.29.2021 — February LSAT Registration Deadline

1.15.2022 — January LSAT

2.2.2022 — January LSAT Score Release

2.3.2022 — March LSAT Registration Deadline

2.12.2022 — February LSAT

3.3.2022 — February LSAT Score Release

4:20 - Test-Day Issues

Demon student Patrick ran into some ProctorU issues while taking the November LSAT. First, his proctor told him he had to take the test while sitting on the floor. (Sitting on a couch is apparently off limits.) Then, they interrupted Patrick’s test to “check something” on his laptop and didn’t bother to pause the timer while doing so. The guys apologize to Patrick and let him know that this situation super sucks. Nathan advises listeners to hope for the best but plan for the worst. Luckily, LSAC is letting Patrick take the test again at no cost, so he can treat this test as just another practice test in the bank.

15:00 - Test 73, Section 2, Q22

Ben and Nathan jump into this Logical Reasoning question by picking apart the argument. Doing this right off the bat ensures that they fully understand the argument. They are then able to go into the answer choices with a strong prediction. It’s a Strengthen question, but the guys start by predicting what would weaken the argument. They explain that attacking the argument up front sets them up to spot a “defensive strengthener” should one appear in the answer choices.

By knowing what to look for and fully understanding the argument, the guys are able to put a pin in answer choice A and quickly dismiss the other four. Read all the answer choices critically and don’t make unreasonable assumptions, and you will be able to dismiss the wrong answers without a second thought. Try this question here.

35:15 - Pearls vs. Turds

Listener Eric submits two pieces of advice as a Pearls vs. Turds candidate. Eric believes you aren’t ready to take the LSAT until you can:

  • Routinely get the first 10 LR questions correct, with complete confidence, in 10 minutes.
  • Typically get the first two logic games correct, with complete confidence, in 12 minutes.

Nathan promptly calls this out as a turd. He wants students to focus on accuracy, not speed. Ideally, students should be getting the first 10 questions in LR done correctly and quickly, but speed is not what students should be focusing on.

Got a Pearls vs. Turds candidate? Email, or find us on social @thinkinglsat.

46:00 - Should You Go to Law School?

Listener Lenneal shares a series of questions from Miller's book, Law School Confidential, designed to help students figure out if they should go to law school or not. The guys agree that these are important questions to consider before deciding if law school and becoming an attorney is truly for you.