This is an explanation of the second logic game from Section III of LSAT Preptest 76, the October 2015 LSAT.
Six photographs are going to appear in a newspaper’s Lifestyle, Metro and Sports section (L, M, S). Exactly two photographs will be put in each section. The photographs are taken by three photographers: Fuentes, Gagnon, and Hue (F, G, H). You must determine the selections of the photographs based on the rules.
Time on second attempt: 6:06
See “repeating games” at bottom of section
This is a grouping game. As with most modern logic games, there aren’t really any upfront deductions. Instead, LSAC expects you to draw a clear diagram, know the rules that aren’t on the diagram, and not forget any rules.
That last bit is what causes 90% of logic games errors. You need to memorize the rules for new games. If you forget them, you go slowly and make mistakes.
You should generally set up the main diagram in the way that the first question sets it up. Like this:
Three newspapers sections, each with two photographs. I’ve also added the fourth rule: Gagnon can’t be in the sports section.
It’s best to place as many rules as you can directly on the diagram. For instance, the second rule says there must be at least one photographer in common between the Life and Metro sections. I find a short, curved line best represents this sort of thing:
The other two rules are:
- Hue’s lifestyle photos equal Fuentes’ sports photos.
- Every photographer has between 1-3 photos.
I couldn’t easily fit either one onto the diagram, so I drew them in a numbered list beside my diagram, like this:
Both are rules I’ve never seen before, so I invented symbols to represent them. You’re free to use different symbols, but you must make sure they meet the same goals. My symbols i. accurately represent the rule, and ii. Are clear and fast to read.
I’ve written elsewhere about the benefits of repeating games, to solidify your intuition for deductions. Note that the purpose of repeating games is to prove the answers right, so it doesn’t matter if you remember the right answer.
I repeated this game about three days after I first saw it, by which time I had forgotten the answers. I’ve written how long it took me on the second attempt. That time, or a couple minutes above it, is roughly the standard you should be aspiring to – a lot of people take 8-9 minutes on a repeat attempt, get everything right, and pat themselves on the back. But that’s too slow. The faster you go when repeating, the faster you’ll learn to go the first time you see a game.
(I say “a couple minutes above” my time because, after years of teaching the LSAT, I’m really, really fast. You should be almost as fast as me, but you don’t exactly need to match my pace to score -0.)
Time on second attempt: 6:06
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