QUESTION TEXT: Advertisement: In a carefully controlled study, blindfolded…
QUESTION TYPE: Flawed Reasoning
CONCLUSION: Sparkle Cola was the best cola.
REASONING: The participants were evenly divided into five groups. Most people preferred Sparkle cola.
ANALYSIS: This tests your understanding of the word ‘most’, and your ability to visualize five different groups. I’ll use an analogy. Let’s say that we’re determining the highest rated food. There are five groups, and each group is given the choice between spinach and one other food. Here are the alternate choices for each group, numbered 1-5:
- Rotten meat
- Ice Cream
Bleuck! Ugh! Ewww! Ick! ….Yum!
Groups 1-4 choose to eat spinach. They hate it, but the alternative is worse. Group 5 chooses to each ice cream, and loves it. So ‘most’ people chose spinach, but ice cream was the most highly rated food.
- CORRECT. It’s possible that one group had the cola of the gods, Ambrosia-Coke. They loved it, and preferred it to Sparkle Cola. The other groups preferred Sparkle cola, but gave it a low rating. Ambrosia-Coke got the highest rating of any of the colas.
- The argument didn’t say anything about what the volunteers would buy. An answer can’t be a flaw if it doesn’t happen.
- This isn’t a flaw! The study compared sparkle cola to other colas. The study didn’t claim that sparkle was the best cola in the world. The ad just said that Sparkle was the best in the study.
- This answer tests whether you read the question. The volunteers were blindfolded! Obviously, they didn’t choose colas based on packaging.
- So? The study was just a comparison of colas. You don’t need to ask people about wine or milk when you’re studying their cola preferences.
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