Main Point Questions

blk418
Posts: 18
Joined: Thu May 19, 2011 1:12 pm

Main Point Questions

Postby blk418 » Sat Aug 20, 2011 1:45 pm

I know these questions should be easy, but I am having a lot of difficulty with the harder problems of this question type. I know in order to find the correct answer you need to find the answer that summarizes the conclusion of the argument, and I have no problem finding the conclusion, I just can't seem to get the right answer. Do you guys have any tips/tricks you use for these questions?

Thanks for your help!

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minnbills
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Joined: Thu Sep 02, 2010 2:04 pm

Re: Main Point Questions

Postby minnbills » Sat Aug 20, 2011 2:15 pm

You have to learn to paraphrase the conclusion. Understand precisely what the conclusion is, and then find the right answer.

To cut out wrong answers, look for mismatches in the scope of the language and for negations.

For example, if the conclusion is: "Some people don't like to go to work in the morning wearing all black clothes."

Wrong answer choices could be:
-"Everyone likes to go to work in the morning wearing all black clothes."

or

-"Some people like to go to work wearing no black clothes."

or

-"No people like going to work in the orning wearing some black clothes."

Obviously a facile example but you should get the point. They'll throw minor adjustments at you knowing that some test takers won't notice.

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Storm
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Joined: Wed Jun 22, 2011 2:42 pm

Re: Main Point Questions

Postby Storm » Sat Aug 20, 2011 2:50 pm

I used to have trouble with these and what helped me the most was finding an answer choice that didn't have evidence or examples in it. I would often get answers wrong because I mistook background information or a stated principle as part of the conclusion, and would pick answer choices that contained that background information or general principle. I realized that the stimulus would sometimes state a general principle and build upon it to reach their conclusion, but that this principle was not part of the conclusion itself. I'm not sure if this is 100% accurate, or even if it can necessarily be applied every time, but it has been working for me so far.

bp shinners
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Joined: Wed Mar 16, 2011 7:05 pm

Re: Main Point Questions

Postby bp shinners » Sat Aug 20, 2011 7:31 pm

Storm wrote:I used to have trouble with these and what helped me the most was finding an answer choice that didn't have evidence or examples in it. I would often get answers wrong because I mistook background information or a stated principle as part of the conclusion, and would pick answer choices that contained that background information or general principle. I realized that the stimulus would sometimes state a general principle and build upon it to reach their conclusion, but that this principle was not part of the conclusion itself. I'm not sure if this is 100% accurate, or even if it can necessarily be applied every time, but it has been working for me so far.


I would say that's generally good advice. I'd also add that, if there's a study/survey/two viewpoints, the main point is usually what the author says about that study/survey/other viewpoint (The Congressmen are wrong, the survey is flawed, the study is incomplete, etc...). Not 100% of the time, but I feel it's a good rule of thumb.




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