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Main Point Questions

Hello! I am having trouble with main point questions. These questions to me have the hardest ACs to distinguish from each other. I am doing well in my studies, with a typical low 170s score and usualy -4/-5 but can be up to -7 on RC. I find that I always get a main point question wrong. Even if I feel i have a solid understanding of the passage and get no other questions wrong for that passage.

Any tips? What processes or tricks do you guys use for main point questions?


  • Determined_Determined_ Monthly Member
    710 karma

    Try and pause and ask yourself the following Q: What is the author trying to sell me?

    Remember that you're looking for the BEST AC- not the perfect one. Sometimes the correct AC won't have every component and that's okay. You gotta pick the best answer choice available. Good luck :)

  • pugloverpuglover Monthly Member
    148 karma

    Break the argument apart. Your task is to find the "main point" aka the conclusion of the argument. You first have to realize there is a conclusion somewhere in the stimulus. The conclusion can be a sentence or even a phrase such as (i.e. "the critics are misguided"). Use indicator words to guide you to determine what's a premise vs the conclusion. Typically the questions in the first half of the section are more obvious, while the second half is a bit harder with subsidiary conclusions that may trick you to being the conclusion. Once you figure out what the conclusion is highlight it in a designated color for conclusions, and look at the AC. The correct AC will restate or paraphrase the conclusion. Incorrect AC will usually be premises/subsidiary conclusions or parts of the argument that are not the conclusion.

    Mainly focus on spotting the conclusion. Then once you have the conclusion go to the AC and find the one that says what the conclusion is.

  • kanel1995kanel1995 Alum Member
    edited December 2021 111 karma

    I don't know if this helps, but what you're looking for (at least what I look for), is an AC that summarizes as much of the passage as possible. One or two of them will be clearly wrong; 2 of the remaining 3 choices may touch on what was discussed in 2 out of 4 paragraphs. These are not the correct choices. The correct one will typically cover almost the entire passage. From first to the last paragraph.

    But like someone already mentioned, the correct answer may not be perfect; that is, it may only summarize 80% instead of 100% of the passage. And that's okay. But the correct answer typically goes the furthest.

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