QUESTION TYPE: Parallel Reasoning
CONCLUSION: Tomorrow’s test pilot probably won’t find it hard to operate the plane.
REASONING: None of the previous test pilots found it hard to operate the plane, and there have been many test pilots.
ANALYSIS: This is a good argument. The conclusion sticks to probability. The past can’t guarantee the future, but it can show us what’s probable.
To parallel the argument, look for a statement about the past, and a conclusion that’s merely probable.
- This switches between book reviewers and average readers. The original was comparing the same group: test pilots. This also switches between “well written” and “enjoy”. A well written book might not be enjoyable! (e.g. If the book were on a dull subject.)
- As with A, this answer switches between reviewers and “people who buy the book”. Reviewers may have different tastes than normal readers. The stimulus stuck to test pilots.
- The stimulus mentioned many test pilots. This just gives evidence about two reviewers. If this had said “none of the many reviewers”, then this would have been correct.
- CORRECT. This matches. All of the many reviewers disliked the book. So it is probable that the next reviewer will dislike it.
This answer did you different wording. It said: “Many…have read….but none….enjoyed”. However, this sentence is logically equivalent to saying “of the many who flew….none found it difficult to operate”.
- This is a bad argument. We don’t know how many reviewers there were. Also, the general public is large. A small minority of people are easily offended. So most books probably offend someone, even if 100 reviewers would find nothing offensive.
The stimulus only made a conclusion about the next test pilot. They didn’t say “it’s unlikely any test pilot will find this difficult to operate.”
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