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The LSAT is unique among the various standardized tests in that it includes sections that try to show the logic capabilities of the test-takers, based on logically analyzing reading passages AND doing "logic puzzles".  You may have seen logic puzzles in various media, such as Dell(tm) puzzle books or Games(tm) Magazine.   A typical puzzle would be on the lines of "Mrs. Wiggins has a case with four shelves, each holding a different animal toy that she got from four different relatives in four different years.  From the clues determine which shelves have which animal, who gave her the animal, and the year she got it."  There are then clues such as "The cat is on the shelf below the one she got from her nephew and above the one she got in 2011 (which is not the dog)."  With those clues, the solution can be worked out.  The difference between these puzzles and the LSAT is that these puzzles have one and only one solution,... read more

In the past few days I've helped several students deal with statistic "packages" that are available to "help" people deal with those sort of calculations. The most famous of these is probably SPSS, but there are others such as STATA and R. The problem with all of these is that, while they are directed at those who are not necessarily well-versed in math, engineering, and computing, they demand expertise in all of those areas just to get on with getting a simple average. This is despite having newer graphical user interfaces available. In the case of SPSS, there's a tendency to throw jargon around, then have outputs that are phrased in a confusing manner. An example is showing "significance" by showing the value of p, which at high significance approaches zero---thus the question "is this statistic significant?" is answered "yes, this statistic with a ZERO in the "sig" column is significant". That's very counterintuitive for... read more

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