## The Decision Between Two, Both Very Tempting, Answer Choices

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lifeprincess13

Posts: 35
Joined: Sun Mar 18, 2012 11:33 pm

### The Decision Between Two, Both Very Tempting, Answer Choices

Does anyone have any good tips for determining which of two answer choices is the correct answer? I seem to pick the wrong one many of the times.

My method has mostly been stick to the safe one that is most directly linked to the passage, but that does not always work. So...any other tips?

Thanks!

kaiser

Posts: 2878
Joined: Mon May 09, 2011 11:34 pm

### Re: The Decision Between Two, Both Very Tempting, Answer Choices

The best tip when deciding between two answer choices: Try and find out which one is WRONG!

The worst thing you can do when faced with a 50/50 choice is to think that that there is a good answer and a better answer, and then try and determine which one is more "right". In reality, there are 4 answers that are completely, 100% incorrect (since even the slightest flaw makes it entirely wrong), and one answer that is airtight. The correct answer is correct for no other reason than the fact that it doesn't contain a flaw. Think about it. Isn't it easier to find the existence of something (a flaw) as opposed to searching for the LACK of something?

So always look for the incorrect choice by searching out the flaw. Try and disprove the answer choices by being critical and probing. When you find the incorrect choice, and can clearly explicate why it is wrong, then you will inevitably have the right one also.

lifeprincess13

Posts: 35
Joined: Sun Mar 18, 2012 11:33 pm

### Re: The Decision Between Two, Both Very Tempting, Answer Choices

Often, I am able to find a flaw in both answer choices and a positive aspect in both choices. It is hard to decide which flaw is bigger/smaller, therefore, making it hard to decide which one is the correct answer.

However, I shall try to apply that to whenever the case allows me! Thanks

kaiser

Posts: 2878
Joined: Mon May 09, 2011 11:34 pm

### Re: The Decision Between Two, Both Very Tempting, Answer Choices

lifeprincess13 wrote:Often, I am able to find a flaw in both answer choices and a positive aspect in both choices. It is hard to decide which flaw is bigger/smaller, therefore, making it hard to decide which one is the correct answer.

However, I shall try to apply that to whenever the case allows me! Thanks

Then you are not thinking in the proper mindset. The correct answer has no flaw. It is airtight and bulletproof (sure, the testwriters aren't gods, and sometimes there are tiny holes, but by and large, these questions are constructed and screened as to ensure that they are airtight).

What you said is essentially a summary of what you should NOT do. You are using the mindset that would imply that you have a "good" choice and a "better" choice. Assuming you are down to the right answer and a wrong choice (as opposed to two wrong choices), only one answer has a flaw. Only one answer has anything negative with regard to the argument at hand. One choice is 100% unequivocally right, and the other is 100% wrong, and you need to approach it from this mindset or else the 50/50 scenarios (and the whole test in general) becomes much harder.

Jaqen

Posts: 985
Joined: Wed Mar 21, 2012 6:23 am

### Re: The Decision Between Two, Both Very Tempting, Answer Choices

kaiser wrote:The best tip when deciding between two answer choices: Try and find out which one is WRONG!

The worst thing you can do when faced with a 50/50 choice is to think that that there is a good answer and a better answer, and then try and determine which one is more "right". In reality, there are 4 answers that are completely, 100% incorrect (since even the slightest flaw makes it entirely wrong), and one answer that is airtight. The correct answer is correct for no other reason than the fact that it doesn't contain a flaw. Think about it. Isn't it easier to find the existence of something (a flaw) as opposed to searching for the LACK of something?

So always look for the incorrect choice by searching out the flaw. Try and disprove the answer choices by being critical and probing. When you find the incorrect choice, and can clearly explicate why it is wrong, then you will inevitably have the right one also.

I have the same problem with choosing between two attractive answers. I've been trying to decide which is better, but your approach sounds credited. Ty.

lifeprincess13

Posts: 35
Joined: Sun Mar 18, 2012 11:33 pm

### Re: The Decision Between Two, Both Very Tempting, Answer Choices

Ok...let's assume I am now thinking that one answer choice is wrong and the other choice is right. How do I figure out which one has the flaw and which one does not if I can find a flaw in both?

I am really sorry; I am not trying to be argumentative or stupid or whatever. It is just that its hard to figure out the correct answer between two answers that both look good and bad at the same time. I can understand that one is right and one is wrong, I just cannot figure out the difference while taking the test. Afterwards, for most of the questions, I can figure out which one is right versus wrong when looking at the answer choice explanation, but not very often while taking the test.

Also, the questions that I do not get even after reading the explanation, I usually just peg as ones I would have gotten wrong even if I did not make a stupid mistake.

Thanks for all your help; I really appreciate it.

NoodleyOne

Posts: 2327
Joined: Fri May 25, 2012 7:32 pm

### Re: The Decision Between Two, Both Very Tempting, Answer Choices

It also depends on the question type. For na, the negation test ks credited. For sa I like inserting the assumption into the argument so I can get a feel for how the argument flows. Inference i put it at the end to see the flow, and et cetera. It tends to follow that the wrong answer will stand out more and the right one might flow well. Not fool-proof but it helps.

lifeprincess13

Posts: 35
Joined: Sun Mar 18, 2012 11:33 pm

### Re: The Decision Between Two, Both Very Tempting, Answer Choices

Sorry. Na means? Negation test? Ks credited? Sa = assumption questions?

I definitely will try putting the inference answer at the end; I can visualize that helping a lot. And the flow part I can definitely apply...

Thanks so much!

Nova

Posts: 9113
Joined: Sun Apr 15, 2012 8:55 pm

### Re: The Decision Between Two, Both Very Tempting, Answer Choices

NA= Necessary Assumption

SA= Sufficient Assumption

ks= typo for is

kaiser

Posts: 2878
Joined: Mon May 09, 2011 11:34 pm

### Re: The Decision Between Two, Both Very Tempting, Answer Choices

lifeprincess13 wrote:Ok...let's assume I am now thinking that one answer choice is wrong and the other choice is right. How do I figure out which one has the flaw and which one does not if I can find a flaw in both?

I am really sorry; I am not trying to be argumentative or stupid or whatever. It is just that its hard to figure out the correct answer between two answers that both look good and bad at the same time. I can understand that one is right and one is wrong, I just cannot figure out the difference while taking the test. Afterwards, for most of the questions, I can figure out which one is right versus wrong when looking at the answer choice explanation, but not very often while taking the test.

Also, the questions that I do not get even after reading the explanation, I usually just peg as ones I would have gotten wrong even if I did not make a stupid mistake.

Thanks for all your help; I really appreciate it.

Just because you are finding flaws in both doesn't mean there are actually flaws in both (unless of course both answer choices are incorrect). It seems like you are mentally manufacturing flaws that aren't really there (again, since the correct answer is correct for the sole reason that it HAS NO FLAW). If you are finding the flaw in the incorrect answer, then great. But if you are also finding things wrong with the correct choice, then those "flaws" don't exist in reality. Its a matter of you not interpreting the answer choice correctly.

Keep the big picture in mind, and think of the argument as a whole. Think of the answer choice as just a piece of a puzzle that fits into something much bigger. Sure, the correct answer may seem weak in certain ways, but those weaknesses may be irrelevant to the question, in which case it still functions in an airtight manner for purposes of the question asked. After all, the only way to determine that something is a flaw is to place it within the larger context, so don't assess the answer choices in a vacuum.

lifeprincess13

Posts: 35
Joined: Sun Mar 18, 2012 11:33 pm

### Re: The Decision Between Two, Both Very Tempting, Answer Choices

Noodley One: Thanks for all the great advice. It has really helped me out!

Nova: Thank you for all the translations. I definitely did not know there was a difference between the types of assumptions, as I had been using PowerScore and TestMasters. Although it is definitely stressing me out like no other to learn all this a week before the test, I am sure I will do better now that I am educated in these. Shout out to both you and Noodley One: thank you so much.

Kasier: I guess you are totally right. I am probably overthinking the answer choices when I am trying to decide between the last two. I am hoping the puzzle/vacuum idea will a good tool to use, especially since I am very visual. Thanks for your patience and advice.

Thank you to all! You guys are invaluable and such a great resource.

vegso

Posts: 67
Joined: Wed Aug 22, 2012 2:08 pm

### Re: The Decision Between Two, Both Very Tempting, Answer Choices

kaiser wrote:
lifeprincess13 wrote:Ok...let's assume I am now thinking that one answer choice is wrong and the other choice is right. How do I figure out which one has the flaw and which one does not if I can find a flaw in both?

I am really sorry; I am not trying to be argumentative or stupid or whatever. It is just that its hard to figure out the correct answer between two answers that both look good and bad at the same time. I can understand that one is right and one is wrong, I just cannot figure out the difference while taking the test. Afterwards, for most of the questions, I can figure out which one is right versus wrong when looking at the answer choice explanation, but not very often while taking the test.

Also, the questions that I do not get even after reading the explanation, I usually just peg as ones I would have gotten wrong even if I did not make a stupid mistake.

Thanks for all your help; I really appreciate it.

Just because you are finding flaws in both doesn't mean there are actually flaws in both (unless of course both answer choices are incorrect). It seems like you are mentally manufacturing flaws that aren't really there (again, since the correct answer is correct for the sole reason that it HAS NO FLAW). If you are finding the flaw in the incorrect answer, then great. But if you are also finding things wrong with the correct choice, then those "flaws" don't exist in reality. Its a matter of you not interpreting the answer choice correctly.

Keep the big picture in mind, and think of the argument as a whole. Think of the answer choice as just a piece of a puzzle that fits into something much bigger. Sure, the correct answer may seem weak in certain ways, but those weaknesses may be irrelevant to the question, in which case it still functions in an airtight manner for purposes of the question asked. After all, the only way to determine that something is a flaw is to place it within the larger context, so don't assess the answer choices in a vacuum.

Yes don't do this, test makers pray on this often. Especially when they know you're dealing with subject matter that everyone is quite familiar with and people will inherently come in with outside knowledge/preconceived assumptions