Dec 13 LSAT Section 5/Q 21

inlovewithpiper
Posts: 137
Joined: Sat Dec 21, 2013 5:20 pm

Dec 13 LSAT Section 5/Q 21

Postby inlovewithpiper » Fri Jan 03, 2014 4:57 pm

I am given to understand we can talk about specific questions now... If this is not the case, please don't ban me. Deleting the thread and PMing me would be preferable.

So, I am having trouble understanding why (A) is the correct answer for this one and not (D).

(A) does weaken the argument, at least to some extent, because if the scents reproduced are "close, but not perfect," the results of the study might be skewed by people who couldn't identify the scent because it wasn't close enough to the real thing.

(D), on the other hand, seems like irrelevant information. We already know sulfur gas fumes damage smell; why do other gas fumes matter?

Thanks!
Last edited by inlovewithpiper on Tue Jan 07, 2014 9:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.

inlovewithpiper
Posts: 137
Joined: Sat Dec 21, 2013 5:20 pm

Re: Dec 13 LSAT Section 5/Q 21

Postby inlovewithpiper » Tue Jan 07, 2014 9:28 pm

Anyone?

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Jeffort
Posts: 1896
Joined: Wed Jun 18, 2008 4:43 pm

Re: Dec 13 LSAT Section 5/Q 21

Postby Jeffort » Wed Jan 08, 2014 1:00 am

inlovewithpiper wrote:I am given to understand we can talk about specific questions now... If this is not the case, please don't ban me. Deleting the thread and PMing me would be preferable.

So, I am having trouble understanding why (A) is the correct answer for this one and not (D).

(A) does weaken the argument, at least to some extent, because if the scents reproduced are "close, but not perfect," the results of the study might be skewed by people who couldn't identify the scent because it wasn't close enough to the real thing.

(D), on the other hand, seems like irrelevant information. We already know sulfur gas fumes damage smell; why do other gas fumes matter?

Thanks!


The way (A) is phrased is a little tricky since by specifying 'not perfectly', it gets you to immediately think about that being problematic and perhaps pointing out a weakness in the way the study was conducted. If you focus only on that part it appears to weaken. However, that is not all the AC says. It also tells you that the chemicals used DO 'closely' reproduce the corresponding scents. This actually strengthens the argument! Even though the chemicals don't perfectly reproduce the scents, they are close to perfect rather than having scents that are significantly different from the corresponding natural scents. If the chemical scents were significantly different from the natural corresponding scents, then that would seriously weaken the argument by giving you an alternative reason for why people didn't correctly identify the scents. Ever smelled a peach scented candle while out shopping somewhere? Did it smell really similar to an actual peach or were you disappointed? (A) rules out that alternative cause (the chemicals smelled a lot different than what they were supposed to smell like) as a reason for the low rate of correct identification, therefore strengthening the argument. Although I really like how chemically scented watermelon candles smell (they are awesome! only second to cinnamon!), they smell nothing like a real watermelon. Same thing with coconut and a bunch of other artificial chemical scents. Blindfolded, I would have trouble guessing the real item they are supposed to smell like except for cinnamon.

(D) weakens the argument by pointing out an alternative cause for why the factory workers recognition of the scents was horrible that is different from sulfur fumes having damaged their senses of smell. The other noxious fumes (other than from sulfur) mentioned could be something that damaged the workers sense of smell rather than sulfur fumes being the culprit. Maybe the factories also emit lots of chlorine or ammonia fumes or whatever other noxious fumes you can think of, and those fumes could be ones that damaged the workers sense of smell instead of the sulfur fumes.




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