Two star flaw help (lol) - PT 88.S4.Q10

emmorensemmorens Core Member
edited December 2021 in Logical Reasoning 1470 karma

I feel silly for getting this two star flaw question wrong in timed and in BR lol. I actually pre-phrased both answers which is why I found this one so difficult.

When I read the stimulus the first issue I noted was that we have no context about what the number of fatalities mean relative to how many people climbed the mountain/are on the roads every day. Maybe there were only 200 people who attempted to climb Mount Everest over a span of 80 years, given that it’s one of the most dangerous in the world, in that sense, nearly every person who tried to climb it died! This would make it seem pretty dangerous.

What drew me to AC E is that the argument does address a generalization flaw? It concludes that 'mountain climbing dangerous have been exaggerated' and appeals to evidence based on death tolls for one of the most dangerous mountains. How does AC E not address this issue?

After analyzing the Q this the only explanation I can come up with: even if we knew numbers about other mountain fatalities, we are still lacking the relevant context about what those numbers would mean in terms of how dangerous those mountains are. (ie: how many people climbed those mountains, was it enough to make the danger factor lower or higher).

Would appreciate if someone could let me know if these thoughts are correct! I'd love to not waste time on two star flaw questions lol. I guess I'm still left confused because, in some sense, wouldn't you need to know data on other mountains to come to such a general conclusion?



  • hopeful0LLbeanhopeful0LLbean Core Member
    edited December 2021 45 karma

    I guess the missing piece to understand this flaw would be to consider how many people go up to Mt. Everest in the span of 80 years vs. how many people traveled in France for 80 years. If there are only around 300 people who climb Mt. Everest in 80 years, then the 2/3 ratio of climbing fatalities to climbers is quite high right? How many people traveled in total on French road in 2002? From that, I think the ratio of traffic fatalities to people traveling on road would be much smaller than Mt. Everest ratio, and the columnist's comparison is inadequate to draw out the conclusion "mountain climbing dangers have been exaggerated." And your thought process is pretty thorough imo!

    Here's how I saw A C and E:

    A is questioning whether the traffic fatalities in 2002 France was higher than other years <- this to me sounded like it's trying to pin the flaw on an outlier data point. Not really the flaw here, since it doesn't matter if traffic fatalities in 2002 was higher than any other year, it's still higher than that of Mt. Everest across 80 years.

    C: I don't think the stimulus is concerned with stricter safety measures or reducing the number of fatalities. It's more concerned with how the media has exaggerated the dangers of mountain climbing, and here are the two statistics that prove it.

    E: I can see why the columnist extrapolating the mountain climbing dangers in general from climbing one of the world's most dangerous mountains can qualify as a flaw in this question. However, the issue here is still comparing a large ratio of mountain fatalities over the course of 80 years from a seemingly limited sample size (my necessary assumption here is that the number of people who climbed mt Everest in an 80-year span does not exceed the number of people who traveled on French road in 2002) to a larger sample size with a seemingly larger fatalities number (people traveling on French road.)

    => D is the right one since it points out the flaw in sample size! ~200/300 in mountain climbing fatalities is definitely higher than, for example, ~7000/3 million.

    lmk if this makes sense to you!!

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