LG #17 ambiguity?

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Law School Prep Blog
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LG #17 ambiguity?

Postby Law School Prep Blog » Tue Jun 12, 2012 1:01 pm

Am I crazy for thinking #17 was potentially ambiguous? In the interest of not posting a test question, it was worded similarly to this:

"What could be the maximum number of [LSAC staffers] working in a [cubicle] with [Wendy]?"

Did you interpret this as asking for:
1) The maximum number of [LSAC staffers] other than [Wendy] working with her in a [cubicle] (this would be 2); or
2) The maximum number of [LSAC staffers] working in a [cubicle] that includes [Wendy] (this would be 3)?

IMO, #1 is the most reasonable interpretation. The question is asking for the number of staffers working with Wendy. However, after talking with a few folks who interpreted it as #2, I thought I'd ask.

Cheers

Jredelman15
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Re: LG #17 ambiguity?

Postby Jredelman15 » Tue Jun 12, 2012 1:02 pm

Law School Prep Blog wrote:Am I crazy for thinking #17 was potentially ambiguous? In the interest of not posting a test question, it was worded similarly to this:

"What could be the maximum number of [LSAC staffers] working in a [cubicle] with [Wendy]?"

Did you interpret this as asking for:
1) The maximum number of [LSAC staffers] other than [Wendy] working with her in a [cubicle] (this would be 2); or
2) The maximum number of [LSAC staffers] working in a [cubicle] that includes [Wendy] (this would be 3)?

IMO, #1 is the most reasonable interpretation. The question is asking for the number of staffers working with Wendy. However, after talking with a few folks who interpreted it as #2, I thought I'd ask.

Cheers


I 100% agree with you on the ambiguity of this question IMO that #1 was the one I chose.

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phillykid
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Re: LG #17 ambiguity?

Postby phillykid » Tue Jun 12, 2012 1:08 pm

I don't think that's very ambiguous. Asking what is the maximum amount of people that could work WITH someone is automatically excluding that person.

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princeR
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Re: LG #17 ambiguity?

Postby princeR » Tue Jun 12, 2012 1:09 pm

I assumed it was OTHER than her because one of the answers was zero.

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Nova
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Re: LG #17 ambiguity?

Postby Nova » Tue Jun 12, 2012 1:12 pm

phillykid wrote:I don't think that's very ambiguous. Asking what is the maximum amount of people that could work WITH someone is automatically excluding that person.


+1

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Re: LG #17 ambiguity?

Postby Law School Prep Blog » Tue Jun 12, 2012 1:29 pm

princeR wrote:I assumed it was OTHER than her because one of the answers was zero.


Thank you for this. This definitely confirms that it would be #1, and I should have remembered that one of the answers was zero.

phillykid, the ambiguity is whether "with Wendy" modifies "working" or "cubicle" - I agree that if you read it as you read it, it's not ambiguous (and I personally read it as you read it), but others saw it as ambiguous first.

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Re: LG #17 ambiguity?

Postby maxmartin » Tue Jun 12, 2012 1:32 pm

agree
phillykid wrote:I don't think that's very ambiguous. Asking what is the maximum amount of people that could work WITH someone is automatically excluding that person.

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Re: LG #17 ambiguity?

Postby Law School Prep Blog » Tue Jun 12, 2012 1:36 pm

phillykid wrote:I don't think that's very ambiguous. Asking what is the maximum amount of people that could work WITH someone is automatically excluding that person.


One of the folks I talked to noted that in previous questions, they've used wording like, "If X is in the concert, then how many workers other than X must also be in the concert" to avoid a potential ambiguity.

I totally agree that the most reasonable interpretation is #1. I guess it's mainly surprising because this particular person was scoring in the 167-173 range. Of course, his games were last, so four sections of other LSAT crap can do wonders to cloud one's judgment.

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Re: LG #17 ambiguity?

Postby katesearches » Tue Jun 12, 2012 1:45 pm

OP - I think it was worded more like:

"What could be the maximum number of [LSAC staffers] working in a [cubicle] that [Wendy] works in?".

I remember prior practice tests had similar questions like this, but they always made it clear to ask either what was the maximum number of OTHERS other than [Wendy] or what was the maximum number of total people in the cubicles that [Wendy] is in. And when this question came up on the test, it threw me off, since technically [Wendy] could be counted as one of the [LSAC staffers] in the cubicle she works in.

I personally thought it WAS ambiguous, but I went with #1 of your interpretations.. honestly don't know how it'll be scored though

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ManOfTheMinute
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Re: LG #17 ambiguity?

Postby ManOfTheMinute » Tue Jun 12, 2012 3:19 pm

phillykid wrote:I don't think that's very ambiguous. Asking what is the maximum amount of people that could work WITH someone is automatically excluding that person.


I agree... its not ambiguous at all.

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Nova
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Re: LG #17 ambiguity?

Postby Nova » Tue Jun 12, 2012 3:22 pm

katesearches wrote:OP - I think it was worded more like:

"What could be the maximum number of [LSAC staffers] working in a [cubicle] that [Wendy] works in?".

I remember prior practice tests had similar questions like this, but they always made it clear to ask either what was the maximum number of OTHERS other than [Wendy] or what was the maximum number of total people in the cubicles that [Wendy] is in. And when this question came up on the test, it threw me off, since technically [Wendy] could be counted as one of the [LSAC staffers] in the cubicle she works in.

I personally thought it WAS ambiguous, but I went with #1 of your interpretations.. honestly don't know how it'll be scored though


With this wording, I would have included Wendy as an extra variable in the cubical.

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phillykid
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Re: LG #17 ambiguity?

Postby phillykid » Tue Jun 12, 2012 3:29 pm

Nova wrote:
katesearches wrote:OP - I think it was worded more like:

"What could be the maximum number of [LSAC staffers] working in a [cubicle] that [Wendy] works in?".

I remember prior practice tests had similar questions like this, but they always made it clear to ask either what was the maximum number of OTHERS other than [Wendy] or what was the maximum number of total people in the cubicles that [Wendy] is in. And when this question came up on the test, it threw me off, since technically [Wendy] could be counted as one of the [LSAC staffers] in the cubicle she works in.

I personally thought it WAS ambiguous, but I went with #1 of your interpretations.. honestly don't know how it'll be scored though


With this wording, I would have included Wendy as an extra variable in the cubical.


Yes, that would include Wendy. But I'm 99% that wasn't the question. And $%!# if it was. Anyone else remember?

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Re: LG #17 ambiguity?

Postby shntn » Tue Jun 12, 2012 3:34 pm

katesearches wrote:OP - I think it was worded more like:

"What could be the maximum number of [LSAC staffers] working in a [cubicle] that [Wendy] works in?".

I remember prior practice tests had similar questions like this, but they always made it clear to ask either what was the maximum number of OTHERS other than [Wendy] or what was the maximum number of total people in the cubicles that [Wendy] is in. And when this question came up on the test, it threw me off, since technically [Wendy] could be counted as one of the [LSAC staffers] in the cubicle she works in.

I personally thought it WAS ambiguous, but I went with #1 of your interpretations.. honestly don't know how it'll be scored though


Odd, I (think I) distinctly remembered seeing the word "with" and being on the fence as to how to interpret it. After looking at the answers, I also went with the first explanation as it seemed the most logical...I mean, say I'm standing in a room with [some number] of my best friends and someone asks me, "How many people are standing in the room with you?" My answer would, of course, include everyone EXCEPT me. Unless you're right about how it was worded, in which case I would have had a different answer.

Yet another reason why this test seemed weird. The language in the LSAT is usually incredibly precise, and this one had several instances of (what I considered to be) pretty ambiguous wording.

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Re: LG #17 ambiguity?

Postby shntn » Tue Jun 12, 2012 3:35 pm

phillykid wrote:
Nova wrote:
katesearches wrote:OP - I think it was worded more like:

"What could be the maximum number of [LSAC staffers] working in a [cubicle] that [Wendy] works in?".

I remember prior practice tests had similar questions like this, but they always made it clear to ask either what was the maximum number of OTHERS other than [Wendy] or what was the maximum number of total people in the cubicles that [Wendy] is in. And when this question came up on the test, it threw me off, since technically [Wendy] could be counted as one of the [LSAC staffers] in the cubicle she works in.

I personally thought it WAS ambiguous, but I went with #1 of your interpretations.. honestly don't know how it'll be scored though


With this wording, I would have included Wendy as an extra variable in the cubical.


Yes, that would include Wendy. But I'm 99% that wasn't the question. And $%!# if it was. Anyone else remember?


Yeah, I saw the word "with". Put me down for 99% certainty too.

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Re: LG #17 ambiguity?

Postby phillykid » Tue Jun 12, 2012 3:42 pm

Shinton, I just pm'ed you.

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bdeebs
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Re: LG #17 ambiguity?

Postby bdeebs » Tue Jun 12, 2012 4:08 pm

I'm with people on it being an ambiguous question. I forget the exact wording, but I spent my last 5 minutes deciding which version to go with. I think I changed my answer twice and ended up deciding on the version #1 answer because most similar questions in previous tests were looking for that bit of information rather than including the person in the question. I reported this question to the proctors before I left, and also e-mailed LSAC to look at the ambiguity. Hopefully it gets thrown out.

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Re: LG #17 ambiguity?

Postby princeR » Tue Jun 12, 2012 4:13 pm

bdeebs wrote:I'm with people on it being an ambiguous question. I forget the exact wording, but I spent my last 5 minutes deciding which version to go with. I think I changed my answer twice and ended up deciding on the version #1 answer because most similar questions in previous tests were looking for that bit of information rather than including the person in the question. I reported this question to the proctors before I left, and also e-mailed LSAC to look at the ambiguity. Hopefully it gets thrown out.

But... I got it right :(

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phillykid
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Re: LG #17 ambiguity?

Postby phillykid » Tue Jun 12, 2012 4:17 pm

I can't remember ever seeing an LG question that was struck.

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bdeebs
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Re: LG #17 ambiguity?

Postby bdeebs » Tue Jun 12, 2012 4:19 pm

If I could remember what I actually answered, I'd be with you on that. I'm 80% sure I answered correctly, but that 20% scares me. I need all the points I can get to compensate for my weaker sections :/

katesearches
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Re: LG #17 ambiguity?

Postby katesearches » Tue Jun 12, 2012 4:34 pm

Hm, looks like people were really sure about the word "with". That might be the case then... Honestly, I was pretty dazed after the test. I do remember going back and forth between two interpretations including/excluding Wendy, and scanning the question stem for words like "with" or "other" that would exclude Wendy (but not finding any?!).

Are people reporting any other ambiguities to LSAC? Do they generally take our input into consideration?

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Re: LG #17 ambiguity?

Postby FlatFox » Tue Jun 12, 2012 4:36 pm

I remember "with" and didn't hesitate about whether or not this excluded "Wendy." I assumed it excluded her. Oy. Now I'm worried. I wasn't before!

katesearches
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Re: LG #17 ambiguity?

Postby katesearches » Tue Jun 12, 2012 4:40 pm

shinton88 wrote:
katesearches wrote:
Odd, I (think I) distinctly remembered seeing the word "with" and being on the fence as to how to interpret it. After looking at the answers, I also went with the first explanation as it seemed the most logical...I mean, say I'm standing in a room with [some number] of my best friends and someone asks me, "How many people are standing in the room with you?" My answer would, of course, include everyone EXCEPT me. Unless you're right about how it was worded, in which case I would have had a different answer.

Yet another reason why this test seemed weird. The language in the LSAT is usually incredibly precise, and this one had several instances of (what I considered to be) pretty ambiguous wording.


I ended up coming to the same conclusion as you.. mainly because the other tests I've done usually ask for the "other" people (min/max) that could be with someone/something.

For some reason, I just remember it being worded a lot more vaguely along the lines of asking for how many people could be in the room that Wendy was also in.. BUT, I think the daze I was in may have fogged things up. I could be completely rememebring everything wron glol

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princeR
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Re: LG #17 ambiguity?

Postby princeR » Tue Jun 12, 2012 4:40 pm

princeR wrote:I assumed it was OTHER than her because one of the answers was zero.

Read this.

katesearches
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Re: LG #17 ambiguity?

Postby katesearches » Tue Jun 12, 2012 4:46 pm

princeR wrote:
princeR wrote:I assumed it was OTHER than her because one of the answers was zero.

Read this.


Yeah, I read that the first time. the thing is... just because something is given as a choice, I don't think we could necessarily assume it could be true, after all it's one correct answer and four incorrect answers. But if anyone does remember the wording more specifically, please post? it's more of a haze for me

NickCollison
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Re: LG #17 ambiguity?

Postby NickCollison » Tue Jun 12, 2012 4:47 pm

How did people get banned for discussing exactly the same thing while this thread is allowed to stay?




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