Colin Elzie

Back before I came to my senses, I wanted to go to law school. I initially took the LSAT in 2005, and I was hooked. That last sentence does not, strictly speaking, have any truth to it. But after not knowing what to do with with a German major from Cal, I somehow wound up teaching the damn thing. Which has been great, because it allows me to get by working 15 hours per week and waking up at two in the afternoon every day. This causes some people to assume I smoke a lot of weed, and I feel like I’m missing a big opportunity by not being a pothead.

I often find myself asked the question, “Colin, with such a great LSAT score, why aren’t you going to law school?” To which I usually respond, “Leave me alone, Mom.” This is usually followed by a plethora of follow-up questions, mostly revolving around why I can’t be more like my brother.

Due to a personality flaw I have yet to identify, I actually enjoy taking the test. This is partly because the LSAT is quickly turning me into an encyclopedia of the most random facts imaginable. I’m like a walking sack of Snapple bottle caps. I can tell you anything you want to know about dinosaurs, Thurgood Marshall, or peat bogs. Seriously. (Did you know you can buy peat in gas stations in Scotland?) Also, the LSAT and I share a deep hatred of astrology.

My blog will be about whatever strikes me as interesting at the moment, and how I can jimmy that into some sort of LSAT relevance.

Author Archive:

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From the Archives: Tricky LSAT Phrases to Keep an Eye Out For

This post originally ran on January 15, 2013 – but as it turns out, LSAC is still up to the same tricks. Avoid wording-related confusion on the LSAT by brushing up on these commonly-confused phrases.

The skills that the LSAT tests are complicated and difficult to learn. Whether it’s diagramming conditional statements, assembling the setup to a game, or knowing what to pay attention to in reading comp, this stuff ain’t easy. But what can make things even harder is when the LSAT buries these already-confusing concepts in perplexing linguistic phrasings.

Luckily, we’re here to help.

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Tips to Improve Your LSAT Study Habits (and LSAT Score)

LSAT prep season is getting in full swing. This winter, per usual, was a quiet time in the pre-law world; few people sit for the February LSAT, and there’s a lull of activity in the early months of the year. But after a busier spring of June LSAT prep, even more people are gearing up for the October. So what should you do if you’re planning on taking the test in a few months? Well, this may sound obvious, but you should study. You should study frequently, you should study well, you should study regularly. You should study.

LSAT Study Tip I: Do the work

For those of you taking an LSAT prep course, whether online or in-person, it’s not enough to just do the lessons.

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Start Your Halloween with This Haunting Logic Game

Halloween is just around the corner, but if you’re studying for the December LSAT you probably haven’t had time to think about it.

Allow us to put you in the Halloween mode with this autumnal LSAT Logic Game:

Hayride: A school has taken a number of first, second, and third graders on a field trip to a pumpkin patch. Some of these children will get to go on a haunted hayride. Three trucks will be used for the hayrides. One truck is red, one truck is green, and one truck is black. Each truck will give only one hayride, and each hayride will transport at least one child. The following conditions apply:

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From the Archives: 5 Things to Repeat on LSAT Test Day

The February LSAT is next weekend. You probably want to panic, but don’t. This is exciting. You’ve prepared for weeks and weeks, and all that hard work is going to pay off. Keep reminding yourself of that, all the way until the test. And when you’re taking the test itself next Saturday, keep telling yourself these things to stay calm:

It’s Just Another Practice Exam – People tend to think that their LSAT will somehow be different. They think that since it’s the real LSAT exam, it will somehow be harder. But it won’t be. Sure, things change here and there, but for the most part it’s not going to be new or different. Remember: Everyone around you on LSAT test day studied for the same thing.

The LSAT is Incredibly Interesting – This applies mostly to LSAT Reading Comp. We all know that Reading Comp can really suck. Who wants to learn about 20th century literature? You do. That’s right. Get excited, because you’re reading about the most interesting thing you’ve ever heard of.

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How I’ve Been Holding Up Since My Breakup with the LSAT

I started teaching the LSAT in 2008. I stopped in 2013. I’ve been LSAT sober for four months.

In my five years of teaching this most wonderful of tests, I got to know it pretty well. Between classes, tutoring, and manning the email helpline, I worked with literally thousands of bright-eyed students (well, they started bright-eyed, anyway). I’ve done every single modern LSAT question. Even the rare out-of-print ones, even the awful ones from the early 90s that made people seriously reconsider going to law school. I’ve done most LSAT questions multiple times, and many of them many, many times. I’m pretty sure I could recreate the mauve dinosaur game from memory. I can certainly tell you all about Noguchi’s positive light sculptures. And I’ll never forget about the possible link between curing herpes and smoking pot.

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Things I Learned During My Time as an LSAT Prep Instructor

After many long seasons of teaching for Blueprint LSAT Preparation, I’m leaving the exciting world of LSAT prep and heading into the private sector. It’s been a lot of fun. My five years helping people get into law school have taught me a lot about the LSAT, and not just in regards to how one deals with a tiered grouping game.

Things such as:

The LSAT makes you a smarter, better person. When people first see it, they’re often frustrated by how the LSAT has seemingly nothing to do with the law. With tests like the MCAT, you’re at least being tested on things that you’ll use in your profession. But fear not, because the LSAT is good for you. It makes you better at spotting flawed arguments, better at quickly reading dense material while parsing out the relevant information, and gives you a better attention span.

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Don’t Freak Out About Your First LSAT Practice Exam Score

Most Blueprint LSAT Prep live courses for the spring started on Sunday. This is big time super fun news for our students as they embark on their journey to a big time super fun June LSAT score. But as far as journeys go, this can be a rather traumatic one. If you’ve never taken an LSAT before, it’s a punishingly difficult test that’s incredibly long and tiring to boot. As you take it for the first time, you generally have no idea what the hell’s going on as you frantically bubble in those 125 multiple choice answers. When it’s finally over you stumble home in a daze, grade your LSAT practice exam, then get your LSAT score.

At this point, most people panic. Feelings of dread and uncertainty fill you when you see that your LSAT score is lower than you’d like. Like, way lower. Like, “Jesus Christ, oh, Jesus Christ” lower than you’d like.

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LSAC Adds Abstract Reasoning (Math) Section to the LSAT

Well, it had to happen sooner or later. The LSAT is undergoing its first really major change since 1991. LSAC just announced that starting on the June LSAT, it’ll be adding an Abstract Reasoning section to the test.

Also known as math.

This sucks. We know. A lot of people will be complaining that math has nothing to do with law school (but some would say the same thing about logic games). LSAC adding math to the LSAT actually isn’t the most terrible thing in the world; after all, you already have a head start, since you studied math for a good twelve or so years of your life. With LSAT Logic Games you were starting from square one.

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For March Equinox, We Ask: Is Day or Night LSAT Prep Best?

The vernal equinox is upon us! For those of us who’ve forgotten what you learned in middle school Earth Science, that means it’s the first day of spring. It also means that today, and today only, will have equal parts day and night. As we go forward, you June LSAT test-takers will get more and more daylight, but the 12/12 split we get today got us to thinking about studying for the LSAT:

Is it better to prepare for the LSAT during the bright daytime hours, or under the cover of darkness?

Let’s take a look at each one’s case…

LSAT PREP IN THE DAYTIME – A bonus right off the bat with LSAT prep in the daytime is, you never have to be in search of light.

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Daylight Savings Shows the Value of an Hour in LSAT Prep

If you haven’t noticed, your cell phone and microwave may be displaying different times. That’s because Daylight Savings was this weekend. With spring officially on the way, that means daylight lasts longer, snow starts melting, and life in general starts feeling just a little less terrible.

With it will bring barbecues, day drinking in the park, bike rides, beach trips, and other such wonderment. Unless you’re studying for the June LSAT, in which case you’ll be seeing a lot more LSAT logic games than sunny afternoons.

But if you spend the spring fastidiously preparing for the June LSAT, you can spend the summer as a free man (or woman).