LSAT 10 – Section 4 – Question 22

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Type Tags Answer
Curve Question
PT10 S4 Q22
Must be true +MBT
+Hardest 148.194 +SubsectionMedium

This is a must be true question, indicated by the question stem: Which one of the following conclusions can be validly drawn from the passage?

Our stimulus opens with the conditional indicator only, which indicates necessity. We learn that for someone to understand Patrick’s irrational behavior it’s required that they be an expert in some branch of psychology. Unfortunately for Patrick, the next sentence, beginning with the conditional indicator no, informs us that if you’re an expert, then you won’t be certain of your ability to solve someone else’s problem. So the only people who will understand Patrick’s problem will be people who won’t be certain about their ability to solve it, right? Wrong. An important inference we should make is that a key detail in that second conditional is that it only applies to someone else’s problem. We need to remember that for all we know Patrick himself could be an expert in some branch of psychology, in which case it would be entirely possible that he understand his own behavioral issues and is certain that he can solve them. Our final sentence tells us that Patrick wants to solve his problems; interesting, but want doesn’t tell us much beyond Patrick’s desire. And that’s all we get! This is a 5 star question, and it is easy to see why. Let’s take a look at the answers:

Answer Choice (A) As always on a must be true question, we should be judging answer choices based on whether they could be false. As noted in our breakdown of the stimulus, we don’t know whether Patrick is an expert in some branch of psychology, so this answer could be false.

Answer Choice (B) Same issue as A but more explicit; we have been given no information about Patrick except that he (i) has a behavioral problem, and (ii) wants to solve it.

Answer Choice (C) Answers A to C all depend on you failing to recognize that we don’t know whether Patrick is an expert. But even if he was, our experts being uncertain rule only applies with reference to someone else, so this still could be false.

Answer Choice (D) We have been told that you need to be an expert in psychology to understand behavioral problems, but we haven’t been told this understanding is required to offer solutions.

Correct Answer Choice (E) Since we know that experts are never certain about solving other’s problems, the only way Charles could be certain is if he wasn’t an expert and therefore couldn’t understand Patrick’s problems.

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