QUESTION TEXT: Journalist: The trade union members at AutoFaber…
QUESTION TYPE: Parallel Reasoning
CONCLUSION: A strike is likely.
REASONING: A strike will definitely happen unless everyone agrees to obey the arbitrator. But the union probably won’t agree to that.
ANALYSIS: This is a good argument. Past experience can’t guarantee the future, but it can help predict the future. The conclusion is appropriately hedged. A strike isn’t certain, but it’s probable.
Note: There’s a potential flaw in this question. I wrote the LSAC about it. If you’re interested in seeing their response, go to this link:
I had no difficulty choosing the right answer under timed conditions. I only noticed the potential flaw when a student asked about it. Under timed conditions I wouldn’t worry about an ambiguity as small as this.
- This is a good argument, but it’s too certain. The stimulus was uncertain. (The structure is “no stock ➞ downsize ➞ shareholders want change”)
- This is a bad argument. Rodriguez will donate only if the wing is named after her. That’s a necessary condition, so she might still not donate.
- This is a good argument. The two business partners fail to meet a necessary condition for being good partners. But this doesn’t have the uncertainty of the stimulus.
- CORRECT. The conclusion is appropriately uncertain. It’s unlikely that Lopez will win, because a necessary condition for his winning (hydration) is unlikely to be met.
- This is a bad argument. The department might get a qualified instructor before spring.
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My entire approach to this problem was finding a solution that paralleled the flawed reasoning that just because one method of averting a situation didn’t work, does not mean that the situation was likely to occur. I wasted quite a few valuable minutes because none of the solutions came close to that. I ended up settling for E as my time was about to run out, but chose D during my blind review. Anyway, just wanted to say I was not satisfied with LSAC’s response either and think this question is fundamentally flawed. Thanks for all the solutions, they are quite helpful!