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Critical Reasoning


During GMAT Preparation, Critical Reasoning and Data Sufficiency sections require a great deal of adjustment compared to GMAT Reading Comprehension and Sentence correction, as the latter follows a format that you have seen in Computer Adaptive Tests, undergraduate level tests, and other job interview evaluation. The linear thinking that involve variables, data substitution, rules, and logical thinking might not completely work for 700+ GMAT CR and DS sections.

Let us look at a simple example that will show how our logical minds work, and the assumptions that come into play while solving a problem. An L-Shaped object has 4cm and 2 cm sides.


GMAT Assumption Mistakes - Figure 1
How do you divide this L-Shaped object equally? Immediately our mind will parse towards vertices that can divide this object. And as you might have guessed it, a line from Point A to the opposite vertex divides the L-Shaped object equally.

Dividing the Object into Two Equal Parts

...


Q) Vegan Diet proponents have often claimed that low-carb, high-fat diets integral in a non-vegetarian diet is dangerous, and therefore, they have a superior and balanced diet. In fact, vegan diets lack important nutrients, responsible for brain function and blood formation.

Which of the following statements support the conclusion of the argument?

a) Carnosine - a protective agent against aging is found only in Animal Foods.

b) Vitamin B12, found mostly in meat, and responsible for vital brain functions, is deficient in a Vegan diet with a recent study showing 92% of vegans lacking this crucial nutrient.

c) There are no conclusive studies to support the theory put forward by Vegan Diet proponents that meat, eggs, saturated fat or cholesterol cause any harm.

d) Vegan diets require you to avoid sugar, trans fat, and vegetable oil. This is the reason for the health benefit, and not abstinence from Meat

e) Vegan diets have health benefits in the short term but nutrient deficiencies follow that require steady intake of supplements.

For answer and explanation, Download F1GMAT's Mastering GMAT Critical Reasoning (Read the Chapter on How...


Q) If you go by the popularity of Gaming units, as of Jan 4th 2015, Sony’s PS4 sold 18.5 million units and reached 10.9 million PlayStation Plus subscribers, a growth of 37.9% from October 2014.  Despite the massive growth, Sony’s PlayStation is behind Microsoft’s Xbox One, which in November 2014 accelerated its sales due to a $50 price cut, and a bundle of free games. On 28th January 2015, Spotify, the leading music subscription service announced an exclusive partnership with PS4, and offered digital music to 64 million PlayStation Network users. With the announcement, Feb 2015 saw a spike in sales for the PS4 units by 45%.

Which one of the following conclusions is valid for the above statements?


a) PS4, on itself, does not have the brand reach nor the mass following needed to overtake Microsoft’s Xbox One.

b) Demand for Microsoft’s Xbox One declined during Feb 2015

c) Bundling of services has increased the market share for Sony’s PS4

d) Price Cut had a direct impact on sales of Gaming Units

e) Sales of Sony’s PS4 will overtake Microsoft’s Xbox One in 2015

For answer and explanation, Download F1GMAT's Mastering GMAT Critical Reasoning...


Q) The Chorus from Sam Smith's "Stay With Me" has an eerie resemblance to Tom Petty's 1989 song - “I Won’t Back Down. Mr. Petty and Jeff Lynne, the Songwriters, filed a copyright violation case and settled out of court. Modern song creation has evolved away from the standard process - starting with the lyrics, the sheet music, and finally the tune. For new song creators, it would be impossible to fight cases where some parts of the song had similar sheet music as the songs in the 70s and 80s.

Which one of the following statements weakens the argument?


a) According to Muzic82 - an aggregated opinion database from Music Experts, 98% of the experts felt that Sam Smith's song had a more traditional choir gospel theme than Tom Petty's Chorus.

b) Sam Smith chose to settle the case out of court, to avoid any disruption in his promotional tours.

c) In a similar case, Marvin Gayle's family was awarded $7.3 million as compensation when Robin Thicke and Pharrell Williams - the songwriter-producer of the 2013 hit "Blurred Lines", infringed on the copyright of the 1977 Marvin Gaye Song "Got to Give It Up" without any due credit.  

d) In modern songwriting - tone, intensity, and feel are equally important to identify the uniqueness of the song

e) In another instance, 2013's #1 Song “Thrift Shop", by Macklemore & Ryan Lewis...

Categories : Critical Reasoning

Answering GMAT Critical Reasoning Weaken QuestionsGMAT Critical Reasoning Weaken Questions follows a familiar pattern. The argument is constructed in such a way that there are enough gaps between the premises and the conclusion. The new information included in the answer choice either weakens the conclusion directly or negates the premise, and in effect weakens the conclusion.

Let us see if you are naturally good at weakening arguments with the Wason 4-card trick. If you are familiar with the problem, ignore this exercise.

Wason 4-Card Trick: You are shown four cards from the same deck. Each card has a letter (A, B, C, D, E…Z.) on one side and a number on the other side. You have to test the rule “If there is a vowel on one side, there must be an even number on the other side” by turning the minimum number of cards from four cards.

Here are the Cards

A 7 4 L

Which cards would you turn to make sure that there is a relationship between even numbers and vowels in the set?

Think…

Think…

Done?




Answer Below

Most readers pick A & 4, the two cards that fit the condition.

Why is this approach...

Categories : Critical Reasoning

GMAT CR Conclusion Question TypeReaching a conclusion in an argument depends on the premise(s) and the assumption.

In simple terms,

Premise(s) + Assumption = Conclusion

What confuses GMAT test takers is the extent to which assumptions can be used to reach a conclusion. A wrong answer choice can plant the idea that it is alright to use personal biases, and knowledge outside the given statements to reach a conclusion. The subtle clues in the answer choices will misguide the test takers. That is why it is important to write down the premises(s) in separate lines.

Let us try one question.

Q) If you go by the popularity of Gaming units, as of Jan 4th 2015, Sony’s PS4 sold 18.5 million units and reached 10.9 million PlayStation Plus subscribers, a growth of 37.9% from October 2014.  Despite the massive growth, Sony’s PlayStation is behind Microsoft’s Xbox One, which in November 2014 accelerated its sales due to a $50 price cut, and a bundle of free games. On 28th January 2015, Spotify, the leading music subscription service announced an exclusive partnership with PS4, and offered digital music to 64 million PlayStation Network users. With the announcement, Feb 2015 saw a spike in...

Categories : Critical Reasoning

GMAT Critical Reasoning Bold FacedThe structure of an argument in GMAT Critical reasoning comes in two forms: Bold Faced and Summary. In Bold Faced question type, the parts of the arguments that the test taker should focus are marked in Bold Font, while for the Summary, the test creators will ask how the argument is structured – whether the author starts with supporting evidences followed by a conclusion, a supporting premise, followed by a contradicting evidence, and finally a conclusion. The permutation and combinations are many. Before you read the answer choices, you have to understand the essential and non-essential elements of a compelling argument.

At its basic level, an argument has a Premise, Assumption, and a Conclusion, but when the question is about the structure of the argument, assumptions are never part of the answer choice. It is the one ‘invisible’ element. What we have are seven building blocks, not all of them mandatory but most of them will be part of one permutation or the other.

1) Primary Evidence/Premise (Mandatory)

2) Primary Evidence not Relevant to the Argument (Optional)

3) Primary Evidence weakening the Conclusion (Optional)

4) Secondary Evidence/...




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