PT74.S1.Q16 - debater: as a pedagogical practice

bjphillips5bjphillips5 Alum Member
edited July 2016 in Logical Reasoning 1137 karma
Hi folks,

I'm struggling with this question in BR. So I figured I'd post my reasoning and see what you all think of it.

Premise 1:Because lecturers are superior to students in mastery, lecturing requires hierarchy.
Premise 2: People learn best from peer interaction.
Conclusion: Hierarchy in lecturing is a weakness.

Premise 1: Because teaching/learning requires simple to complex instruction, teaching/learning requires hierarchy.
Illustration of premise: In math, you must learn arithmetic before calculus.
Conclusion: Hierarchy in lecturing is a strength.

What the respondents' reply most vulnerable to criticism for?
There is more than one flaw, so I listed the ones I could see.
Flaw 1: Response does not address what is sufficient for a strength or defend against a weakness, it simply states that it is required.
Flaw 2: Requirement/necessity does not equal strength.

I'm sure there are more, but those were most obvious to me.

A: Initially I thought this was correct because I thought the argument ignored some assumptions of the debater. But it doesn't. When the debater assumes that peer interaction implies not hierarchy, the respondent responds all teaching/learning is hierarchical.
B: We must accept the premises as true so the argument did not assume that methods in math are as effective in other disciplines. It's an illustration of the premise. Eliminated.
C: Irrelevant to Respondent's argument. We are only talking about whether hierarchy is a strength or a weakness.
D: This is correct. They are talking about two different kinds of hierarchy. The first is lecturer to student hierarchy, the second is simple to complex material hierarchy!
E: Again, must accept premises as true.

Found the correct flaw! They're talking about TWO different kinds of hierarchy! Woo.

Wow. In the 30 minute process of typing this post, I figured it out. If this isn't a good advertisement for a damn good blind review process, I don't know what is. I started out defending A was correct, realized it was wrong, and figured out D was correct. Woo!


  • BinghamtonDaveBinghamtonDave Alum Member 🍌🍌
    8684 karma
    The debater and the respondent here are essentially talking at cross purposes when it comes to their understanding of a key term. This is a flaw as old as the LSAT (See PT 19 Section 2 Question 1 for a throwback and more transparent example of this flaw.) The respondent is using the word "hierarchy" as a way to describe learning that builds on previous learning. The debater is using the word in more or less a pejorative sense to describe something that doesn't seem to mesh with peer- interaction learning. The LSAT is up to a slight variation on an old trick ;)

    Great job breaking it down! This is the kind of BR that we should all strive for!
  • bjphillips5bjphillips5 Alum Member
    1137 karma
    Thanks @David3389 :)
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