Weaken Questions

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Weaken Questions

Postby gobosox » Tue Jan 15, 2013 11:48 pm

Anyone have any sage advice out there for weaken questions? I miss at least 2 each section and that is the biggest source of lost points for me per LSATQA.com.

I've tried drilling, read and re-read Manhattan... Now turning to TLS.

I am consistently -0 on LG and improving RC (-3 or so), but weaken questions are still killing me. Thanks for the help.

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Re: Weaken Questions

Postby TripTrip » Wed Jan 16, 2013 12:12 am

Negate each answer choice you don't eliminate and see if it strengthens the argument.

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Re: Weaken Questions

Postby gobosox » Wed Jan 16, 2013 12:13 pm

Any other tips? Seems like a weird question set to struggle on...

bp shinners
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Re: Weaken Questions

Postby bp shinners » Wed Jan 16, 2013 1:44 pm

Break weaken questions down into two camps:
1) Causal arguments
2) Non-causal arguments

If it's a causal argument, look for an answer that:
1) Gives you the same Cause with a different Effect;
2) Give you the same Effect with a different Cause; or
3) Identifies an alternate possible Cause.

If it's a non-causal argument, then take a second to find the flaw in the argument. The correct answer will either:
1) Point out the flaw; or
2) Be a new fact that highlights the flaw in some way.
That last one is the trickiest to find.

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LSAT Hacks (Graeme)
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Re: Weaken Questions

Postby LSAT Hacks (Graeme) » Thu Jan 17, 2013 11:35 am

BP Shinner's advice is solid. I want to chime in with some pre-phrasing advice.

I find a lot of weaken questions are tricky because they imply that a situation will go a certain way. Whereas there are other possibilities. So most weaken questions can be answered by asking 'is there another way this could go?'.

For example, take questions 4, section 1, LSAT 55. It's not a weaken question, but you can find the error in the reasoning using this same method.

Paraphrased: You can't predict how well a vacuum cleans based on how powerful it's motor is. The efficiency of dust filtration systems varies wildly between vacuum cleaners, even though with the same motor.

The way this question is phrased, it's implied that dust filtration has an impact on cleaning. That's what they want you to think. They imply that the premise leads to the conclusion.

But there is only one premise, and only one conclusion. So if you ask yourself 'what if there was another way - what if dust filtration doesn't affect cleaning?' then you've found the flaw. Depending on the question stem, you can then look for the appropriate answer.

Stretch your mind and imagine other possibilities. This will get most weaken questions.

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Joined: Mon Feb 21, 2011 8:28 pm

Re: Weaken Questions

Postby gobosox » Thu Jan 17, 2013 4:27 pm

All awesome advice. Thanks for that. I'm going to refocus-- I think a bit of "back to the basics" help assists.

Took PT 53 today and got 173 on it... Didn't miss a single weaken question, so this has helped immensely. Thanks!

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