Thinking of support from premise to conclusion?

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wildcat1906

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Thinking of support from premise to conclusion?

Postby wildcat1906 » Tue Aug 29, 2017 3:20 am

I'm in need of some direction in terms of what to or how to think about the support between the premise and conclusion.

After reading a bit from the LSAT Trainer, I am approaching arguments by first identifying the conclusion and then its premise(s). Once I get those down, I think to myself what the flaw is between the two. Is this a right way of thinking about the premise-conclusion relation?
When I think of flaws, I don't try to name the flaw per se, rather I try to explain it to myself more conceptually. That way I can stay flexible with the answer choices, in case something unexpected pops up.

Should I instead be focusing on something else? Maybe instead of trying to identify the flaw of every argument, I should be thinking more broadly in terms of a gap in between the premise to conclusion?

How do you guys go about thinking of the argument or relation from the premise to conclusion?


Thanks in advance!

IvoryTowerTP

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Re: Thinking of support from premise to conclusion?

Postby IvoryTowerTP » Tue Aug 29, 2017 10:03 am

I think the trainer puts a little bit too much emphasis on the word 'flaw' (even though it's an excellent book overall). Assumptions/unstated premises aren't always flaws, per se. It's more 'what else needs to be the case for this explicitly given evidence to prove this conclusion?' or 'here's what the evidence has proven so far, so what extra do I need to be able to prove the conclusion?'

So, if I say 'We really should clean up the apartment before your girlfriend gets home, because if she comes in and sees this mess, she's going to be really disappointed in you,' it'd be correct to say 'that's assuming I care about what my girlfriend thinks of me.' It's an assumption, but not really a flaw to assume that. You could also say 'you're assuming she won't have been replaced by a clone, otherwise identical, that has been genetically modified to be unable to determine the messiness of an apartment.'

Obviously, the clone example isn't going to come up on the test. But there are lots of necessary assumption questions whose answers are things like, 'this argument assumes that governments should take reasonable steps to ensure the safety of its citizens'.

wildcat1906

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Re: Thinking of support from premise to conclusion?

Postby wildcat1906 » Tue Aug 29, 2017 5:55 pm

Hey thanks for the reply.

I suppose the book does put a lot of emphasis on it. But what way do you think for the premise-conclusion relation?
Do simply try to think of how the premise tries to justify the conclusion?
I'm just not sure in what way I should be thinking of it once I identify the argument. I feel that trying to understand the flaw before looking at the answer choices has helped, but it takes me way too long until I realize it.
Maybe I should think of how to jumped from one thing to another, rather than try to identify the flaw?



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