## PT 28 Section 3 Q 16

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sshaqsb

Posts: 16
Joined: Wed Jun 02, 2010 12:40 pm

### PT 28 Section 3 Q 16

I'm bit stuck on Q 16. It's an assumption question with a conditional conclusion. Also that is the only place where conditional reasoning seems to be present. I picked answer choice (A) since I think this proves the conclusion valid, however the answer is (b.) I'm confused because B actually looks like an opposite answer to me since I think it hurts the conclusion more then it helps. Does this have something to do with logical value of "some" in answer choice b, since some could be anywhere from 1% to 100%? I hope someone can tell me why answer choice A is incorrect and why B is correct.

Thanks a ton!

sshaqsb

Posts: 16
Joined: Wed Jun 02, 2010 12:40 pm

### Re: PT 28 Section 3 Q 16

OK so I kept thinking about it and I think I figured it out, could someone confirm my reasoning is correct?

answer A uses "None" which is too strong since the passage talks about trace elements mercury. Also when I negate it would be "some" which would actually help since you only need trace elements of mercury.

I was getting screwed up with the negation for answer B. The sentence structure is:

Some people in Beethoven's time did not ingest mercury.

At first I thought the only way to negate it would be to negate some or take out did not. This seems pretty similar to "some are not" (which the LR bible talks about) means practically the same thing. Since "some are not" is the same as "Not All," the proper negation for this would actually be "All." The negated answer would therefore flow as:

"All people in beethoven's time ingested mercury"

This would hurt the conclusion since if everyone consumed it, we couldn't tell if it was consumed because Beethoven has the disease or some other reason.

Am I one the right track?

If I am, hopefully this helps someone else. It seems like a pretty simple answer once I understood the proper negation.

Some...did not..=Not all

furrywalls

Posts: 86
Joined: Wed Jun 09, 2010 8:16 pm

### Re: PT 28 Section 3 Q 16

I think you are working through it and it's possible that I just look at this stuff differently but here's how I take on these LR questions. First of all, don't worry about whether or not it's conditional or needs to be diagrammed. I think diagramming should be a last resort bc of the time it consumes. Try to take a step back and as PS says personalize the argument. I think that might be the best advice out of all the books. It may be called a stimulus but remember it's a fucking argument and no one want's to lose an argument. Now for this question.... Some fucking historian comes up to you and starts rambling on about how we can determine if Beethoven fucked too many hookers and got VD. If this were real life I would be looking for the quickest possible exit while still managing to make this guy look like a douche (since we are trying to determine the unstated assumption he is relying on). So he claims that all they need to do is find traces of mercury in his hair to prove that he had VD because that was the common treatment back then for the clap. Quick, find me the answer choice that will shut this guy up and get me out of here. B) "uhh hey buddy i guess you're assuming that mercury wasn't ingested by everyone for any other reason (like being in their food, water, whatever). Because that would mean Beethoven would test positive but we still wouldn't know whether he banged a burner, would we?" Maybe this will help. The LSAT topics are dry by nature and after a while I had to make it interesting in order to keep studying. Maybe it will help you, I don't know I'm kind of just a smart-ass by nature so I liked these questions. Definitely learn those assumption questions because they are the underlying principle to a large percentage of LSAT questions that aren't even categorized as assumptions. If you think about it, that question stem could have been altered to a weaken question without changing the answer choices at all. Good luck. Let me know if I can help anymore.

sshaqsb

Posts: 16
Joined: Wed Jun 02, 2010 12:40 pm

### Re: PT 28 Section 3 Q 16

Thanks for the reply. I wasn't really diagramming; you're right it takes too much time. Thankfully I'm starting to see the conditional relationships and sentence structures in my head while I read, so I can can tell what it is without having too write much. I'm trying to get into the habit of personalizing questions, but sometimes it's just easier looking at it in an abstract way for me. I think your stimulus has gotta be more interesting then the original though haha. With this questions, once I understood the phrasing of the answer it made more sense (and the way you phrased it makes it even more obvious.) The reason I wrote it out step by step is that if I solve it methodically I usually don't make the same mistake again and it takes me much less time to arrive at the same conclusion.

furrywalls

Posts: 86
Joined: Wed Jun 09, 2010 8:16 pm

### Re: PT 28 Section 3 Q 16

No problem. There's no shortage of methods, strategies, and advice but the best thing you can do is find what works for you and your learning style and make minor tweaks when you hear something that might work better. Best of luck.