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Question
QuickView
Choices
Curve Question
Difficulty
Psg/Game/S
Difficulty
Explanation
PT16 S3 Q07
+LR
Method of reasoning or descriptive +Method
A
85%
168
B
10%
160
C
1%
150
D
3%
159
E
1%
157
132
144
157
+Medium 147.952 +SubsectionMedium

Here we have a Method of Reasoning question, which we know from the question stem: “How is Judy’s response related to John’s argument?”

After correctly identifying the question type we can use structural analysis to describe the Method of Reasoning used by our speaker.

Immediately we should note we have two speakers in our stimulus. That means we need to be on the lookout for two conclusions and two sets of explanations. Our first speaker, John, begins with a statistic. We learn that because 80% of fault accidents occur near the home, John concludes that people are driving less safely near the home. But where does that come from? Here, John is making an assumption. He presumes that because these accidents are congregated in one area, it must be the driver causing these accidents rather than the location contributing to that higher percentage.

Our second speaker, Judy, points out what John fails to consider. Rather than introduce her own conclusion Judy adds a consideration when evaluating John’s argument. While John assumes it’s the driver causing these accidents, Judy points out the frequency of the driving route plays a factor here. Explaining that most of our driving is done close to home provides an alternative explanation for the statistic John stated above. Giving us a reason to doubt John’s argument indicates that Judy is undermining the evidence used that would support John’s main point.

Knowing that our second speaker adds an alternative interpretation rather than a new claim, we can proceed into answer choice elimination.

Correct Answer Choice (A) This is what we are looking for. Judy is giving us reason to question John’s argument rather than giving us a reason to support a new conclusion. This is the only answer choice that correctly identifies how Judy calls out the assumption in John’s argument.

Answer Choice (B) This answer choice tells us that Judy restates the evidence provided by John rather than giving us a reason to question the evidence. In addition to this issue, if Judy were to “restate” the facts from John, we would expect to find only restated information we are already familiar with. For these reasons, we can eliminate this answer choice.

Answer Choice (C) Based on the stimulus, we know Judy is weakening rather than strengthening John’s position. Otherwise our second speaker would not be questioning the validity of the first speaker’s interpretation. Because this answer choice indicates Judy is supportive rather than against John’s reasoning, we can eliminate this answer choice.

Answer Choice (D) This answer choice starts out strong by telling us Judy points out some sort of assumption. But, this answer choice does not correctly outline what that assumption is. Rather than assuming when people are going on long trips, Judy is questioning the amount of short trips (close to home) these drivers are making.

Answer Choice (E) Here comes circular reasoning! This answer choice claims Judy accused John of circular reasoning. This type of reasoning occurs when we conclude the conclusion happened, well, because the conclusion happened. We know the correct answer will point out Judy’s questioning of interpretation of the evidence rather than repetition of evidence, so we can eliminate this answer choice.