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Test Prep courses..Which is best?

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by LDfan, May 7, 2003.

  1. LDfan

    LDfan Supporting Actor

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    I'm going to take the LSAT but I am trying to decide on the best prep course to take. Some people say Kaplan, some say Princeton Review and I also came across the Powerscore course. They are all the same price so it's kinda difficult to decide.

    Any suggestions and/or experiences with any of them?

    Thanks,
    Jeff
     
  2. mark alan

    mark alan Supporting Actor

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    I would use my approach. Sign up the last moment, do absolutely no preparation, and score in the 95th percentile.

    Seriously, I would say that an LSAT prep course is a waste of money. Trust me, if you are going to law school, you are going to have plenty of opportunity to waste your money.
     
  3. Dennis Nicholls

    Dennis Nicholls Lead Actor

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    I was a little older when I took the LSAT (age 38) so I had been away from such tests for 20 years or so. I just got some of the old tests from the LSAT people and worked through them on a timed basis so that I could get in the "rhythm" of the test. But I only scored in the 94th percentile doing this.
     
  4. Scott_lb

    Scott_lb Supporting Actor

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    I don't know if this will help, but I used the Kaplan test preparation books for the GMAT. I did very poorly on the actual exam. I scored horribly on the math section which is understandable- I somehow tested out of math in college and hadn't taken a math course since I was 17. Also, I did poorly on the English portion, even though I tutored English and was in the University English honors program in college (go figure). However, I did manage to score in the top 8th percentile on the writing portion which was pretty cool. I found the test prep books to be well written and organized, and I don't blame my failure on them. I've also heard that the Barron's test prep books are good. You might want to contact a few lawyers and see what they say as well. The quality for the LSAT books might be somewhat different than the other types of exams (doubtful, but possible).
     
  5. mark alan

    mark alan Supporting Actor

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    Hey Dennis,

    Another patent attorney I see. Only us science geeks are stupid enough to decide to go to law school in their 30's. I was 33 when I went back. You an engineer by any chance?
     
  6. LDfan

    LDfan Supporting Actor

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    Hi Mark and Dennis,

    Funny you mention Patent Law because that is what I'm actually considering pursuing. I have a biology undergrad degree. It's a pretty hot field and I have a good source of info since my wife works for the largest IP firm in the country.

    Jeff
     
  7. Dennis Nicholls

    Dennis Nicholls Lead Actor

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    Mark you're not on the roster. What gives?

    Jeff: bio is a hard sell in patent practice unless you have your PhD. You might want to check this out a little more. The hiring is mostly in physics/ee/cs. My background is ba physics, ma applied math, and 17 years of experience as a ee.
     
  8. LDfan

    LDfan Supporting Actor

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    Thanks for the input Dennis. I tried to get in with the PTO but they kinda told me the same thing. For biology stuff they prefer advanced degrees.
    My friend that works there also said I could take the Patent Bar exam without even going to law school.

    Jeff
     
  9. mark alan

    mark alan Supporting Actor

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    I am on the roster Dennis. I cheated and used first and middle name on the registration here. I am still listed as an agent, as I graduated last year and haven't gotten around to completing the paperwork to change it.

    48521

    I could have guessed your background when I saw who you worked for. By background is chemical and environmental engineering. Just out of curiousity, did you start with I____ right out of school, or did you work for a firm first?

    Jeff, I would go along with Dennis. A bio undergrad would make you eligible to sit for the patent bar, but definitely won't be a big help in getting a job. However, if you go to a good school, get good grades and pass the patent bar (preferably before you even start LS), you would have a big leg up over your competition.
     
  10. Erik_C

    Erik_C Stunt Coordinator

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    I took Kaplan. It was a good prep course, and I kicked ass on the actual exam because of the test prep.
    -Erik
     
  11. LDfan

    LDfan Supporting Actor

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    Mark and Dennis,

    What are you supposed to study in order to take the patent bar? I've looked on their website and all I could find is how to register for the exam. It doesn't tell you what to study.


    Jeff
     
  12. mark alan

    mark alan Supporting Actor

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    There are prep courses for the patent bar exam. However, nothing will beat taking the old exams and reading the MPEP (Manual of Patent Examing Procedure). They are both available on the patent office website.

    I don't know how good the patent bar prep courses are, because just like the LSAT and the regular bar exam, I did not sign up for any prep coures. I mean, why waste money on study courses when you can spend it on dvds[​IMG]
     
  13. Dennis Nicholls

    Dennis Nicholls Lead Actor

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    To get to the PTO website just click on my homepage icon.

    The PTO agent's exam is open book and is a test of PTO procedure. The open book part is a bad thing: they ask some of the most detailed stupid things like "what is the fee for filing a response 2 months late?" Basically you need to memorize the MPEP. There are numerous prep courses such as the PRI/Irving Kayton self study books with optional in-class sessions.

    Take the PTO exam seriously. It's worse than any of the state bars. Usually the pass rate is about 40%.[​IMG]

    Mark: the "small obscure semiconductor comapany" I work for is aggressively hiring patent attorneys at this time. We ask for 4-5 years of law firm experience first - which is what I had.
     
  14. tiffany

    tiffany Auditioning

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    TestMasters is the best. I have a friend who took the class, and then got hired to teach Kaplan and he said that Kaplan was so bad that he started teaching techniques devised by TestMasters. Well, Kaplan found out and so he had to stop - especially since TestMasters copyrights their tricks.

    But the really cool thing about TestMasters is that by the end of the course you'll have seen every single LSAT question there was ever written! Crazy, eh? I think that's way better than taking courses that make up their own tests.
     

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