Test: Critical Reasoning- 2

25 Questions MCQ Test Verbal Reasoning for GMAT | Test: Critical Reasoning- 2

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QUESTION: 1

DishClean, a dishwasher and dish washing solution manufacturing company, ran a promotional campaign last year through which it sold a significant number of units of its new dishwasher at a discounted price in exchange for old dishwashers. However, the company’s sales team’s proposal to run the same campaign this year was rejected on the grounds that whatever extra profit the company made from the sales that came through the campaign last year was offset by the cost it incurred in marketing the campaign. Which of the following, if true, provides the best support for an assertion against the rejection of the above mentioned proposal?

Solution:

Pre-Thinking

Conclusion Clarification

There is no stated conclusion by the author. The question stem asks us to provide support for an assertion against the rejection of the proposal mentioned in the argument. As the assertion is against the rejection, we are in effect required to weaken the rejection by weakening the reasoning behind it: extra profit from the increased sales last year was counterbalanced by the marketing cost of the camp.

Pre-Thinking Approach

In order to weaken the rejection of the proposal, we will look at the logical structure, focusing on linkage 1 - the reasoning for the rejection of the proposal.  Thus, the way to support an assertion against the rejection will be to find a piece of information that weakens or shatters the grounds for the rejection.

• Weakener – What if the campaign this year will NOT be comparable to the campaign last year in terms of the balance between the cost incurred on and profit made from the same?
• Instance 1: what if a factor this year will lead to lower marketing cost or higher sales, leading to higher profit than last year?

In order to argue against the rejection of the proposal, we need to think of a scenario that highlights a discrepancy between the campaign this year and the campaign last year in terms of their impact on the economic interests of the company.

With this understanding in mind, let’s take a look at the option statements.

A

Last year, the campaign was able to attract many new customers who otherwise would not have purchased its product.

Incorrect - Irrelevant

Attracting new customers might have led to extra profit made by the company last year. However, the proposal was rejected on the grounds that this extra profit was countered by the marketing cost of the campaign.

B

The company can reuse most of the marketing artifacts used for the last campaign without much re-work.

Correct

This choice is written along the lines of our pre-thinking per the Linkage. It talks about the reuse of most of the marketing artifacts used for the last campaign. As the reuse doesn’t require much re-work, the marketing cost of the company could possibly be lower this year than it was last year.

C

The committee that rejected the sales team’s proposal has made some wrong business decisions in the past.

Incorrect - Irrelevant

The fact that committee made some wrong decisions in the past doesn’t help us determine whether its decision to reject the proposal to run the campaign this year is wrong as well.

D

Through the last campaign, the company was able to achieve its sales target for the very first time.

Incorrect - Irrelevant

The passage already states that the company sold a substantial number of new DWs through the campaign last year. However, given the fact that extra profit from sale was counterbalanced by the additional marketing cost incurred by the company, this option doesn’t provide any reason to argue against the rejection of the proposal.

E

Cleanomax, DishClean’s chief competitor, is soon going to launch a similar campaign in which it will replace any old dishwasher with a new one at a price lower than the cheapest model by DishClean.

Incorrect - Irrelevant

The details/merits of a competitor’s campaign do not give us a reason to argue against the rejection of the campaign by DishClean, a rejection based on the lack of possible monetary benefit from the campaign itself.

QUESTION: 2

Although dried roots in well-watered orchids are caused primarily by the deficiency of a chemical compound called Vitadex, researchers believe that the presence of Ditalex in the soil could also be a cause of the same. Traces of Ditalex were found in 70 percent of the orchids with dried roots, but in only 10 percent of the orchids without dried roots. Ditalex was accidentally added to a few pesticides last year and researchers hypothesize that these affected orchids are from farms that once used this particular batch of pesticides. Which of the following, if true, most strongly supports the researchers’ hypothesis?

Solution:

Argument Analysis

Pre-Thinking

Conclusion Clarification

The argument contains 2 independent conclusions referred to as “Researchers’ Belief” and “Researchers’ hypothesis”.  However, if you refer to the question stem, it says “Which of the following, if true, most strongly supports the researchers’ hypothesis?”. Therefore, the question is referring to the “Researchers’ hypothesis” only.

Pre-Thinking Approach

Let’s see how we can increase the belief in the conclusion.  To do so, we will look at the logical structure, focusing on linkage 1 and the conclusion (researchers’ hypothesis).

When we look at the logical structure, we see that the hypothesis talks about a possible cause of Ditalex found in some orchids.  Here the possible cause refers to the usage of Ditalex containing pesticides in the farms that grew the orchids.

Strengthener – A reasoning that tells that: Some other factor did not lead to Ditalex in these orchids. (alternate cause)

• For example, preliminary test reveal that ABC chemical, which reacts with certain chemicals in the soil to form Ditalex, was not present in the areas where the orchids containing Ditalex were found.

Strengthener – Evidence that shows: Ditalex was not found in farms that did not use the batch of pesticides that contained Ditalex. (no cause, then no effect)

• For example, no complaint was received regarding Ditalex in orchids that were grown in other farms.

With this understanding, let us evaluate the option statements.

A

Regulations in the pesticides manufacturing industry have now banned the usage of Ditalex.

Incorrect - Irrelevant

We already know that Ditalex was accidentally used in pesticides in a particular batch. All we are trying to validate is – whether the same batch of pesticides led to Ditalex in certain orchids that were grown in the farms that used the pesticide.

B

Recently tested samples of the pesticides used last year have revealed traces of Ditalex.

Incorrect - no new information

This option does not introduce any new information since we already know that the batch of pesticides contained traces of Ditalex.

C

On farms where the infected pesticide was never used, the samples of orchids that had dried roots did not contain Ditalex.

Correct

It matches the second strengthener that we identified in the pre-thinking analysis

D

In some cases, orchids exposed to Ditalex are not affected by dried roots.

Incorrect - does not support the hypothesis

This option does not address the causal relationship that the hypothesis is trying to establish.

E

There is no direct proof that dried roots are primarily caused by Vitadex.

Incorrect - Irrelevant

This option does not talk about the relationship that pesticides containing Ditalex used in farms led to Ditalex in orchids that grew there.

QUESTION: 3

The Ramsai World Financial Center is shorter in height than the Ramsai Tower. However, since the Krate World Heritage Center is shorter than the Royal Clock Tower Hotel, it can be concluded that the Ramsai World financial Center is shorter than the Royal Clock Tower Hotel. Any of the following, if added to the argument as an extra premise, makes the argument above logically correct EXCEPT:

Solution:

Pre-Thinking

Conclusion Clarification

The argument concludes by saying “Ramsai World financial Center is shorter than the Royal Clock Tower Hotel”. The question stem says that “Any of the following, if added to the argument as an extra premise, makes the argument above logically correct EXCEPT”. Therefore, we need to find an option statement that does not strengthen the conclusion.

Pre-Thinking Approach

Let’s see how we can make the conclusion logically correct.  To do so, we will look at the logical structure, focusing on linkage 1 and the conclusion and identify the scenarios where the argument will be logically correct. Once we determine such scenarios, the option statement that does not fit in to any of the following scenarios shall be the correct option statement.

We know for fact that RW < RT and KW < RC. However, from these two relationships, the author jumps to comparing RW and RC. Hence, we need to establish one of the following relationships to prove that the conclusion is logically correct:

Strengthener 1 – RT <= KW (since we already know that KW < RC)

• Instance 1: RW < KW
• Instance 2: RW = KW
• Instance 3: RT < KW
• Instance 4: RT = KW

Strengthener 2 – RT <= RC (Even if we do not know the relation between KW & RW or KW & RT, if we still know the relation between RW & RC or RT & RC, it will help us determine the logical accuracy of the conclusion)

• Instance 1:  RT < RC
• Instance 2: RT = RC

With this understanding in mind, let's take a look at the answer choices.

A

The Ramsai Tower is shorter than the Royal Clock Tower Hotel.

Incorrect - Opposite

RT < RC

This matches the Instance 1 in Strengthener 2

B

The Krate World Heritage Center is shorter than the The Ramsai World Financial Center.

Correct

KW < RW

This statement does not help us prove that the conclusion (RW < RC) is logically accurate as it is possible that although RW is ? KW but it is still shorter than RC.

C

The Royal Clock Tower Hotel and the Ramsai Tower are of the same height.

Incorrect - Opposite

RC = RT

This matches the Instance 2 in Strengthener 2.

D

The Ramsai Tower is shorter than the Krate World Heritage center.

Incorrect - Opposite

RT < KW

This matches the Instance 3 in Strengthener 1.

E

The Ramsai World Financial Center and the Krate World Heritage Center are of the same height.

Incorrect - Opposite

RW  = KW

This matches the Instance 2 in Strengthener 1.

QUESTION: 4

Cellular phones built by Minivarta have gone down in quality over the years. In a comparative study of cell phone models that were introduced ten years ago when the company had just ventured in to producing cell phones but that are still sold by the company and those only recently produced by the company, it was found that the former were sturdier, had more voice clarity and were easier to use than the latter.

Which of the following, if true, most strengthens the above argument?

Solution:

Argument Analysis

Pre-Thinking

Conclusion Clarification

The conclusion states that cellular phones built by Minivarta have gone down in quality over the years. The conclusion is based on a comparative study between CP10 and CPR.

Pre-Thinking Approach

Let’s see how we can make the conclusion more believable.  To do so, we will look at the logical structure, focusing on linkage1. Note that linkage 1 is based on a study that compares the quality of specific features in the cellular phones from the two different periods. Thus, the way to strengthen the conclusion will be to support this linkage based on the comparison.

• Strengthener 1 – In order to make its newer models affordable, Minivarta has been reducing the manufacturing cost of the phones by using inferior quality spare parts in them.

The above strengthener presents new information that directly increases our belief in the author’s conclusion.

• Strengthener 2 – The criteria used to determine the quality of the cellphone models has remained almost same over the last couple of decades.

The above strengthener suggests that the aspects on which the quality of a cell phone model is adjudged are still the same. This fact suggests that the author hasn’t judged the recent cell phone models produced by Minivarta on features that are currently not considered important or significant in determining the quality of cellphones.

With this pre-thinking in mind, let’s evaluate the answer choices.

A

Over the past five years, Minivarta has not been able to successfully live up to customers’ expectations in terms of price and affordability of its cell phones.

Incorrect - Irrelevant

Not being able to meet expectation in terms of price and affordability doesn’t support any decline in quality.

B

Industry parameters to gauge the quality of communication devices have changed only slightly over the past fifteen years.

Correct

This choice is written along the lines of our pre-thinking per Linkage #1, strengthener 2.

C

Various trade analysts believe that in the next five years, Minivarta might just be able to recover its cost of production from most of its models and hence may not be driven out of business.

Incorrect - Irrelevant

A prediction about the company’s future is not relevant to determining whether the quality of its cell phones has declined over the last decade.

D

In the past two years Minivarta’s ad campaigns have been more focused on highlighting the design and style aspects of its cell phone models rather than the usability of the models.

Incorrect - Irrelevant

This option talks about only a period of 2 years. Also, the fact that usability of the models has not been highlighted doesn’t indicate any decline in usability.

E

Minivarta has not made any key additions in the past ten years to its research and development team that looks after the quality aspect of its cell phone models.

Incorrect  -  Irrelevant

We get to know that the R & D team is responsible for looking after the overall quality aspect. However, there is no stated or implied link between the lack of key additions in the team and a decline in the quality of the phones.

QUESTION: 5

In an effort to prevent accidents from distractions caused by texting while driving, auto companies are now offering built- in audio systems that link themselves through the Bluetooth technology to the individual’s mobile phone and automatically read texts as and when they are received. These companies are hopeful that their initiative will be appreciated by people who are increasingly voicing concerns over the rising number of auto-accidents reported in which the cause of the accident was the driver’s lack of focus on the road while texting.

Which of the following, if true, most strongly supports the assertion that the people will not appreciate the initiative taken by the auto companies?

Solution:

Pre-Thinking

Conclusion Clarification

There is no stated conclusion in the passage. However, the question stem asks us to support an assertion that goes against the expectation of auto companies.  Hence, we are asked to weaken this expectation, which we’ll treat as the conclusion for the purpose of this question.

Pre-Thinking Approach

Let’s see how we can make the conclusion less believable.  To do so, we will look at the logical structure, focusing on linkage 1 and the conclusion.  Thus, the way to weaken the conclusion will be to break this linkage i.e. find a new piece of information that suggests that the expectation will not be fulfilled, i.e. the companies’ initiative will not be appreciated by the referred people.

• Weakener 1 – What if concentrating on the audio message leads to an equal or higher number of distractions while driving?
• Instance: As the audio system reads texts as and when they are received, a person has to listen to the texts in all situations even if he/ she would have ignored reading a message in some of those scenarios.
• Weakener 2 – What if the audio systems lack the much sought after feature of privacy provided by texting and hence leads to an even greater degree of distraction while driving since now the message is shared with all the passengers in the car? In such a case, it’s highly doubtful that the initiative will be appreciated.

With this understanding in mind, let’s take a look at the option statements.

A

The price of automobiles fitted with such audio-systems is expected to be higher than the price of automobiles not fitted with such systems.

Incorrect -  Irrelevant

The aim is to prevent accidents due to texting. Price of automobiles is not a consideration in the argument.

B

Consumers are generally apprehensive of any major alteration in the standard features offered in an automobile.

Incorrect - Irrelevant

As we don’t know whether installing audio systems would require a major alteration, this choice is not relevant.

C

Studies have shown that five seconds is the average time a driver’s eyes are off the road while texting.

Incorrect - Irrelevant

This option is not relevant to the companies’ initiative, which deals with an alternative to the kind of texting mentioned in this choice.

D

In the past five years, most innovations in the auto-industry have received only a lukewarm response from industry experts.

Incorrect - Irrelevant

The option doesn’t tell us the response of industry experts on this particular innovation. More importantly, the expectation of the auto companies deals with people concerned with the issue and not just industry experts.

E

It is a commonly known fact that an individual driving a vehicle can lose focus by either a lapse in visual attention or an audio distraction.

Correct

This option is written along the lines of our pre-thinking linkage weakener 1.

QUESTION: 6

Recently, a plane crashed near the outskirts of Berlin within minutes after its takeoff from Berlin airport. Initial analysis confirmed that the crash was caused by either the usage of substandard fuel or a fault in the control board. Since the airport staff tested the control board before the plane took off, analysts hypothesize that the reason behind the plane crash was substandard fuel.

Which of the following options, if true, most strengthens the analysts’ hypothesis?

Solution:
QUESTION: 7

In Varisland, when a subscriber of one telecom operator calls a subscriber of a different telecom operator, the latter’s telecom company charges a small connection fee to the originating operator, a fee stipulated by the regulator and same for every operator.  Almost all the new telecom operators are enticing customers by charging much lower call rates than charged by the existing operators. Since the connection fee is one of the sources of revenue for new companies, the regulator should increase the connection fee, improving the financials of the new telecom operators and thereby enabling them to better compete in the market.

Which of the following statements provides the strongest reason to suggest that the recommendation of the author would have an effect opposite to the one envisaged?

Solution:

Pre-Thinking

Conclusion Clarification

The author concludes that the regulator should increase the connection fee, improving the financials of the new telecom operators and thereby enabling them to better compete in the market.

Pre-Thinking Approach

Let’s see how we can make the conclusion less believable.  To do so, we will look at the logical structure, focusing on linkage 1.

• Weakener – What if increasing the connection somehow deteriorates the financials of the new TOs? Such a situation is possible if the hike in CF increases the net outflow of money from the new TOs. Since as per the definition of CF, it is the charge paid when a telecom subscriber calls another telecom subscriber of different company, more the number of outgoing calls (to other companies) from a telecom company, more is the outflow of funds.
• Instance: For the new TOs the number of outgoing calls will be significantly higher than the number of incoming calls.

With this understanding in mind, let’s move on to the answer choice analysis.

A

The connection fee is such a small component of revenues of any telecom companies that no company could survive by just relying on this.

Incorrect - Irrelevant

The information given in this choice doesn’t suggest that an increase in connection fee will have a negative effect. It can only imply that an increase or decrease in connection fee might not have much effect on the financials since it is such a small component of revenues. Therefore, this is not the correct choice.

B

In the past, whenever regulator has been advised a course of action by an outside agency, the regulator has taken a completely opposite action step.

Incorrect - Irrelevant

The question stem talks about a situation only when the recommendation is implemented; if the regulator does something opposite, it is not relevant to the question.

C

The financial health of a telecom company is determined by the total profits generated by the company, irrespective of the source of revenues.

Incorrect - Irrelevant

Very similar to option A. It doesn’t suggest that an increase in connection fee will have a negative impact on the financials of the new TOs.

D

Due to highly competitive call rates, the number of outgoing calls from an average user of a new telecom company is expected to be much greater than the number of incoming calls.

Correct

This is similar to our pre-thinking answer. If the number of outgoing calls is expected to be greater than the number of incoming calls, increasing the connection fee will increase the losses of the new telecom companies and thus will negatively impact their financial health.

E

Increase in the connection fee will not be welcomed by many existing telecom operators as they will have to pass on the charges levied on them by the new operators to their customers.

Incorrect - Irrelevant

This choice talks about an impact on the existing TOs that is not related to any adverse financial impact on new TOs.

QUESTION: 8

A recently published paper concludes that tenured professors or those on their way to tenure don’t enhance student learning as much as full-time lecturers outside the tenure system. Clearly, the difference between professors in the tenure system and other full-time lecturers has to do with the reward system for the former. The criterion for rewarding tenured faculty typically places a greater emphasis on research than teaching.

The above argument is based on doubts on the validity of which of the following statements?

Solution:
QUESTION: 9

While fossil fuels are rapidly being replaced by inexhaustible natural resources in order to conserve perishable resources, fossil fuels are still required to a certain extent to run power plants that generate alternative forms of energy. Some experts are of the opinion that fossils located in submarine regions should no longer be accessed, since such regions are difficult to reach, and undersea mining operations cost at least twice as much as subterranean mining does.

Which of the following, if true, mostly strongly supports the recommendation that submarine fossils should continue to be mined?

Solution:

Pre-Thinking

Conclusion Clarification

The argument presents the conclusion of some experts. They recommend that fossils located in submarine regions no longer be accessed. The question requires us to support the conclusion that submarine fossils should continue to be mined. As this recommendation is against the conclusion drawn by some experts, the question requires us to weaken this conclusion.

Pre-Thinking Approach

Let’s see how we can make the conclusion less believable.  To do so, we will look at the logical structure, focusing on linkage 1 and the conclusion.  Thus, the way to weaken the conclusion will be to break this linkage i.e. find a new piece of information that  suggests that the recommendation made in the conclusion should not be followed i.e. submarine fossils should continue to be mined.

Linkage#1Submarine regions are difficult to reach, and undersea mining operations cost at least twice as much as subterranean mining does.

• Weakener – What if despite the higher cost, mining submarine fossils is extremely advantageous? In such a case, the conclusion drawn by some experts won’t hold.
• Instance 1: For example, what if the fossils found undersea are of significantly higher quality than the SM fossil in terms of the output of fuel they generate?

With this understanding in mind, let’s take a look at the option statements.

A

The amount of time taken to access submarine fossils is at least twice the amount required to access subterranean fossils.

Incorrect - Opposite

This option favors the recommendation by some experts by highlighting a negative aspect associated with submarine fossils.

B

The usability of fossils for the purpose of fuel generation is dependent on the chemical composition of the fossil, and some submarine fossils do not meet the stipulated requirements.

Incorrect - Opposite

This option too highlights a negative aspect associated with some submarine fossils. This information supports the conclusion drawn by some experts.

C

Some perishable resources are located above the surface level of the ground in areas such as caves and river banks and can be accessed far more easily than subterranean fossils can.

Incorrect - Irrelevant

This choice presents a superfluous comparison between SM fossils and perishable resources located above ground. The argument is about SM and UM fossils.

D

Each unit of energy generated for each submarine fossil is at least twice as much as the energy generated for each unit of subterranean fossil.

Correct

This option is written along the lines of our pre-thinking linkage. The higher energy generated can compensate for the higher cost.

E

Most companies in the mining industry are insured against injuries caused to their employees while mining for fossils in areas where accidents are frequent.

Incorrect - Irrelevant

First of all, insurance against injuries isn’t linked to the argument in anyway, Second of all, this choice doesn’t specify which operations these companies are involved in – UM or SM.

QUESTION: 10

According to local farmers, the recent significant decline in the yield of Einkorn, a variety of wheat cultivated primarily in Ingrostia, is due to the unfavorable weather conditions last year.  However, a government spokesperson recently made a statement claiming that the yield of Einkorn has declined because of the decline in the usage of pesticides by the local farmers.

Which of the following, if true, most seriously calls the spokesperson’s claim into question?

Solution:

Argument Analysis

Pre-Thinking

Conclusion Clarification

There is no given conclusion by the author. However, the question stem asks us to weaken the spokesperson’s claim. Hence, we’ll consider this as the conclusion. In the conclusion, a government spokesperson claims that the YOE has declined because of the decline in the use of pesticides. This conclusion challenges the belief of local farmers that unfavorable weather conditions last year are responsible for the decline in YOE.

Pre-Thinking Approach

Let’s see how we can make the conclusion less believable.  To do so, we will look at the logical structure, focusing on linkage 1 and the conclusion.  We see that the conclusion is drawn regarding the cause of the decline in the YOE. Thus, the way to weaken the conclusion will be to weaken this linkage and causal relationship.

• Weakener1 – Since the conclusion of the spokesperson counters the belief of the farmers, an option that increases our belief in the stated cause by the farmers will weaken the spokesperson’s conclusion.
• Weakener2 – What if even with a decline in the use of pesticides, it was found that the farmers were using enough pesticides? Surely then, the spokesperson’s conclusion will be weakened.
• Instance 1: Independent studies have shown that farmers in Ingrostia had been using excessive pesticides for years and the recent decline in this usage was a conscious effort to use only sufficient amount of pesticides.

With this understanding in mind, let’s take a look at the option statements.

A

Weather conditions in Ingrostia have been the same this year as they were last year.

Incorrect - Irrelevant

Knowing that the same weather conditions have persisted this year too doesn’t tell us whether the weather conditions last year are responsible for the decline in YOE.

B

Einkorn has been losing its popularity to another variety of wheat called Durum that requires cheaper seeds and fewer fertilizers.

Incorrect - Irrelevant

Declining popularity of Einkorn doesn’t give us any information about the cause of decline in YOE.

C

The yield of Spelt, a variety of wheat grown in Ingrostia that requires the same weather conditions as Einkorn but is extremely resistant to pests has also declined.

Correct

This choice is written along the lines of our pre-thinking per Linkage weakener 1.  It supports the view of the local farmers while suggesting that insufficient use of pesticides is not likely to be the cause for the decline in YOE.

D

The spokesperson is not from an agricultural background, whereas the farmers are more knowledgeable about agricultural conditions.

Incorrect - Irrelevant

The background of the person making the claim doesn’t give us any information about the correctness of that claim.

E

The global yield of Einkorn has been lower this year than in the previous years.

Incorrect - Irrelevant

This option only highlights the global impact on the YOE; however, it gives us no information about the cause of such a decline.

QUESTION: 11

Bercedez Meiz, an Italian automobile manufacturer has final plans approved for a new model that replaces their current model NL670 belonging to their flagship series. It is predicted to be by far the best in the SUV segment and expected to be launched 16 months from now. Altrix, their marketing partner has suggested that Bercedez Meiz start advertising about the new model to maximize the initial sales of the SUV model. But the company has decided to wait another 12 months before starting to market the new model.

Which of the following, if true, provides Bercedez Meiz with the best reason for postponing advertising the new model?

Solution:

Argument Analysis

Pre-Thinking

1. Assumptions:

• Apart from the stated benefit of maximizing initial sales, there is a potential downside to advertising this early.

2. Strengtheners:

A

Since the costs of marketing has gone up, Bercedez Meiz has to shell out 10% more than it had in its previous marketing drive.

This choice does not highlight a downside of early advertising.  Note that the choice does not say that marketing costs are expected to go down in the near future.

B

According to the previous statistics Bercedez Meiz has seen a considerable decrease in sales of the current model of cars whenever a new one was advertised.

This choice provides an evidence of a potential downside of advertising per the suggestion of the marketing partner.  Clearly BM will not want to do something that will considerably decrease the sales of the current models of their cars.

C

Many customers do not buy models that have been in the market for less than a year.

If this was the reason for BM to not start advertising 16 months prior to the launch of the SUV, then their decision to start the advertising campaign 4 months prior to the launch of the SUV is also not correct.  Thus, this statement does not support the conclusion.

D

ECW, the rivals of Bercedez Meiz is rumored to be coming up with a similar new model vehicle with better features than Bercedez Meiz’s latest model in the market.

This statement is not specific to the context of the discussion.  This choice states that a competitor is rumored to come up with the competitive product that has better features than the already launched latest model in the market.  The argument is concerned about the advertising of the TO BE LAUNCHED SUV.

E

The new model that is going to be launched in 16 months would be the most expensive model of its kind in the market.

This statement does not support the conclusion since cost of the SUV is not the topic of discussion.

QUESTION: 12

New research shows that some marine organisms such as eels are facing a severe threat to their survival because of the increasing marine noise pollution. Researchers found that when exposed to acute noises such as those typical of large fishing ships, European eels reacted very differently to predator attacks; the likelihood of their response to an ambush by a predator decreased by 50% and the reaction times of the ones that did respond were delayed by as much as 25%.

Which of the following can be concluded on the basis of the information given in the above passage?

Solution:
QUESTION: 13

In an attempt to improve the economic and social welfare of the people, the government has recently announced a scheme under which it will provide certain staple foods at 30% discount to the authorized dealers. The reduction in the prices of these foods will significantly improve the economic conditions of the people from low income groups.

Which of the following would be most useful to establish in evaluating the argument?

Solution:

D. Whether the prices that dealers charge for the staples will reflect the lower prices they would be paying the government. If yes. Only then the low income people will be benifited

QUESTION: 14

Studies have shown that the number of times a car breaks down per year is significantly dependent on whether the owner conducts regular maintenance for the vehicle. Most customers who buy luxury cars are extremely particular about the maintenance of the cars. The owners of luxury cars who employ chauffeurs are more careful in the maintenance of their cars than the owners of economy cars are.  Therefore, such luxury car owners will suffer fewer car breakdowns than the owners of economy cars.

Which of the following, if true, most strengthens the conclusion drawn above?

Solution:

Pre-Thinking

Conclusion Clarification

N/A

Pre-Thinking Approach

To pre-think assumptions, let’s see how we can falsify this conclusion.  To do so, we will look at the logical structure, focusing on linkage 1.  We will understand the condition under which the conclusion is falsified.  The assumption then will be that condition does not exist and any choice that states one of the assumptions or supports it will be a strengthener.

• Falsification Condition:  Yes, the car breakdowns are dependent on maintenance and LC owners are more careful about maintenance than EC owners. But what if LCs are inherently significantly more fragile than ECs? In that case, even if they are maintained better, they could still suffer more breakdowns because of being less sturdy. If this were true, then the conclusion will be falsified.
• Assumption: Luxury cars are not prone to significantly more breakdowns in general than economy cars.

Linkage#2 –Falsification Condition:  Yes, the LC car owners who employ chauffeurs are more careful about the maintenance of their cars but what if their drivers are not careful about the handling of the car? In that case, if the LCs are being driven by the drivers for a significant proportion of time then they could end up in a condition worse than ECs. If this were true, then the conclusion will be falsified. Accordingly, a possible strengthener could be:

• The chauffeurs employed by the owners of LCs are careful about the handling and maintenance of these cars.

With this understanding in mind, let's take a look at the option statements.

A

On average, luxury cars driven by chauffeurs have almost the same number of breakdowns that sports cars driven by car owners do.

Incorrect - Irrelevant

This choice compares luxury cars driven by chauffeurs with an irrelevant section.

B

Most chauffeurs employed by luxury car owners are trained to fix breakdowns.

Incorrect - Irrelevant

The conclusion is concerned with the chances of the occurrence of an event whereas this option statement talks about the situation when the event has already occurred.

C

Only luxury cars come with a special training program for the drivers of the cars, a program focused on the careful handling of these cars.

Correct

This choice is written along the lines of our pre-thinking per Linkage #2. It tells us that these drivers are possibly trained regarding the careful handling of these cars, a factor that could contribute to fewer breakdowns in such cars.

D

On average, the cost per breakdown in a luxury car is not higher than the cost per breakdown in an economy car.

Incorrect - Irrelevant

This option is not relevantas it talks about cost of breakdowns, which the argument is not concerned with.

E

Many luxury cars give the same mileage per unit of fuel that most economy cars do.

Incorrect - Irrelevant

This option is not relevant as it talks about mileage per unit of fuel, which the argument is not concerned with.

QUESTION: 15

In North America, of the people who buy cell phones, the percentage of people who bought phones from local manufacturers has decreased by five percent in the past one year. Since many local phone manufacturers in North America depend heavily on the local population for their customer base, this reduction is likely to have caused a noticeable negative economic effect on these manufacturers.

Which of the following, if true, most seriously weakens the argument?

Solution:

Pre-Thinking

Conclusion Clarification

N/A

Pre-Thinking Approach

Let’s see how we can make the conclusion less believable.  To do so, we will look at the logical structure, focusing on linkage 1 and the conclusion. We see, that the author has drawn a conclusion on the basis of some statistics. Thus, the way to weaken the conclusion will be to show that a statistical problem exists with the interpretation of the data used to draw the conclusion.

• Weakener – Show that author’s interpretation of the data (proportion ? = absolute number ?) is not warranted. In what scenario can the proportion of the people decline but the absolute number remain constant or increase?

It’s possible if the overall population of people buying cellphones in North America has increased significantly.

• Instance: For example, if the population increased from 10,000 to 20,000 and the PPLM declined from 15 to 10% (decline of 5%). The number of people buying phones from local manufacturers has actually increased from 1500 to 2000.

With this understanding in mind, let’s take a look at the option statements.

A

In the past year, the total number of people buying new cell phones has increased considerably in North America.

Correct

This option is written along the lines of pre-thinking.

B

Some people from Asia also buy cell phones from manufacturers in North America.

Incorrect - Irrelevant

The argument focuses only on the phone manufacturers that depend heavily on the local population for their customer base.

C

The cost price of cell phones has increased considerably, and so the selling price has also increased correspondingly.

Incorrect - Irrelevant

The argument focuses on the impact of decline in PPLM on the economic condition of these manufacturers.

D

Many new cell phone manufacturers have entered the market in North America.

Incorrect - Irrelevant

The author’s conclusion is based on an interpretation of the drop in the proportion of people buying phones from local manufacturers. Now why, the drop has taken place, for e.g. due to increased competition from the new cell phone manufacturers (we are not told that they are local), is not important.

E

Those who do not purchase from local manufacturers do not pay a high price for phones.

Incorrect - Irrelevant

Again, like choice D, a possible reason behind the drop is not important.

QUESTION: 16

Chairperson of College Board: We spend a substantial amount of money on compensating fresh college graduates as part-time faculty for introductory courses. However, we can easily save most of this expenditure by giving our final year students, who have themselves studied such courses, the opportunity to teach these courses, which are mostly taught to first-year students. The final year students can be given extra credits and a minimum stipend for this role.

Which of the following, if true, provides the best support for the conclusion that the college should not employ final year students to teach introductory courses?

Solution:

Pre-Thinking

Conclusion Clarification

N/A

Pre-Thinking Approach

Let’s see how we can make the conclusion less believable.  To do so, we will look at the logical structure, focusing on linkage 1and the conclusion.  Thus the way to weaken the conclusion will be to weaken this linkage i.e. find a new piece of information that will suggest that the plan (employ final year students to teach IC) may not be successful in achieving its aim (save the expenditure on compensating fresh graduates working as part-time faculty).

Linkage#1 – Save most of the expenditure by giving our final year students who have themselves studied such courses the opportunity to teach these courses, which are mostly taught to first-year students.

• Weakener – What if overall expenditure of employing final year students to teach the introductory courses to first year students is equal to or more than that of hiring fresh graduates?
• Instance 1: The cost of training final year students to teach IC will be higher than the cost of paying fresh grads to teach IC.

• Weakener - What if the college has to spend a substantial amount of money in order to compensate for any academic loss of final year students because of teaching IC?
• Instance 1: The college will have to spend a substantially high amount of money to re-conduct some of the lectures missed by final year students because of their involvement in teaching IC.

With this understanding in mind, let’s take a look at the option statements.

A

Final year students have a relatively light schedule and can easily find the time to teach introductory course classes, which are typically of a shorter duration than classes for other courses.

Incorrect - Irrelevant

The information given here goes in favor of  employing final year students as faculty for IC classes; however, it doesn’t reflect anything on the cost angle brought up in the conclusion.

B

The total amount paid in overtime to full-time senior lecturers for training the final year students to conduct the introductory classes will be equal to the amount paid in remuneration to the college graduates hired as part-time faculty to whom no such training is provided.

Correct

This choice is written along the lines of our pre-thinking per Linkage 1. If the remuneration to the lecturers in lieu of training final year students will be equal to the amount paid to the fresh graduates, the college will not be able to realise any savings by employing final year students. In fact, the minimum stipend paid to them will be an additional expenditure for the college.

C

The fresh college graduates hired as part-time faculty are generally students who are in the process of applying to various colleges for research fellowship programs.

Incorrect - Irrelevant

The argument focuses only on reducing the expenditure incurred by employing these graduates as part-time faculty.

D

The final year students who will be considered for the teaching positions will be among the top ranking students in the class.

Incorrect - Irrelevant

The argument deals only with the expenditure incurred on employing final year students to teach introductory classes.

E

The college does not have to spend any money on advertising for part-time jobs since it has a surplus number of applicants for the limited teaching positions required for the introductory courses.

Incorrect - Irrelevant

The passage does not give us any information regarding the current expenditure incurred by the college on this account.  So, this information does not impact the logic of the argument.

QUESTION: 17

Prior to 1971, the United States was on various forms of a gold standard through which the value of the dollar was backed by gold reserves and paper money could be redeemed for gold on demand. Since 1971, the United States dollar has been a fiat currency backed by "full faith and credit” of the government and not backed by, valued in, or convertible into gold. A gold standard restricts the ability of government to print money at will and to spend more than it earns in tax revenue. Besides, the economy has historically performed best under a gold standard. Therefore, for reasons above, the voters should vote for a party that backs the return of the gold standard in the country.

Which of the following data sets can be best used by the author of the above argument to further his conclusion?

Solution:
QUESTION: 18

Some geologist propose haloclasty, a process of salt crystallization responsible for the weathering of rocks, as an explanation for the specific weathering pattern observed on the Egyptian Sphinx. This explanation is rejected by some other geologists who hold the opinion that the type of weathering evident on the Sphinx enclosure walls, along with that on the core blocks of the Sphinx and Valley temples, could have only been caused by prolonged and extensive rainfall and hence date the construction of the Sphinx back to the 6th or 5th millennium BC.

Which of the following, if true, provides the best support for the assertion that the weathering on the Sphinx could not have been due to haloclasty but instead due to extensive rainfall in the area?

Solution:
QUESTION: 19

A person is considered obese if her BMI i.e. Body Mass Index, a ratio of a person’s weight to square of her height, exceeds a certain number. In 1990, the average BMI of the population was just below the threshold level for obesity. However, in a recent survey conducted, it was found that the average weight was 10% more than that of the population in 1990. Given that there has not been any increase in average height of the population since 1990, the obesity levels in the country must have increased.

Which of the following, if true, would cast the strongest doubt on the conclusion drawn above?

Solution:
QUESTION: 20

A restaurant that comes up with an innovative dish can normally increase its profits by capitalizing on the novelty of the dish. Since recipes can be easily replicated, the restaurant with a new dish advertises it aggressively to attract customers while the novelty factor can still be used as a selling point. But aggressive advertising generates a fear of losing customers in the competitors and gives them a strong incentive to quickly replicate the new dish. Therefore, the strategy to maximize overall profit from a new dish is to advertise it selectively.

Which of the following, if true, strengthens the suggestion given by the author?

Solution:
QUESTION: 21

Parent: It is as misleading to conclude that decreasing attendance in after-school extra classes shows that our children’s academic requirements are finally being fully met in regularly-scheduled classes as it is to reason that teachers do not get negative ratings from students because students respect and admire teachers. The real cause behind the decreasing attendance is that the same teachers who teach the regular classes teach the after-school ones, and students don’t like the methodology used by these teachers in the first place.

The parent’s statements, if true, best support which of the following conclusions?

Solution:
QUESTION: 22

The seafront properties in Southern coastal regions of India had always been expensive and most sought after. After the Tsunami hit the coastal regions of India last year, the prices of the seafront properties dropped as most inhabitants started evacuating their homes and moved inlands.  As a result the property values of inland homes started increasing.  The installation of the Tsunami sensors will definitely bring the seafront property prices to its original glory and thus the original price.

Which of the following, if true, most calls into question the reasoning on which the plan is based?

Solution:
QUESTION: 23

Linda: In the 1800s, it was found that one in every six women who gave birth in hospitals died of a fever they had contracted after delivering the child and that the mortality was not as high if they gave birth at home with the help of a mid wife. It was found that the doctors had a poorer sense of hygiene and that their dirty hands and instruments were leading to pathogens entering a woman's bloodstream. Thankfully, hygienic conditions today are much better and women are safer.
Fiona: But doctors today are so overworked that a number of doctors, while aware of the need for better hygiene, barely find the time to wash their hands. The likelihood of infections caused by doctors is probably not any better.
Q. Which of the following can be used by Fiona to further establish that Linda need not be correct in her reasoning?

Solution:

Step 1 of solving this GMAT CR Question:

• Analyzing the Argument Look for differences across the answer options to identify what is being tested in the sentence. Linda’s argument has a cause-effect relationship and a comparison element as well.
(i) The causal argument is that the safety of women (or low mortality among women) is dependent on the hygiene awareness among the doctors.
(ii) The comparison element is that women today are better off than the women in the 1800s.
• If Fiona is to question Linda’s argument, she has to establish that one of these two (the causal and the comparison) relationships do not actually hold true. This is the reason that Fiona’s argument tries to establish that awareness is not enough. Mortality is also affected by the actual practices of the doctors.
• To further weaken Linda’s argument, the correct answer Option must extend this discussion or question whether women today are actually better off than the women from the 1800s.

Step 2 of solving this GMAT CR Question: Eliminating Options

• Option (A) can be eliminated because we do not know whether these hospital-acquired infections were because of poor practices of the doctors or because of other factors.
• Option (B) can be eliminated because the option adds further support to Linda’s argument, when in fact the objective is to weaken her argument.
• Option (C) can be eliminated because the option again adds support to Linda’s argument. Some people wonder about the usage of the words “self-reported”, which might imply that the 90% figure may not be accurate. However, it cannot be assumed that the doctors are lying or that the actual rate is much lower than 90%.
• Option (D) seems to imply that the nurses do not have proper practices in place. At first glance, the option seems to work. However, the option assumes that doctors do not adhere to the schedules, implying that nurses are as bad. Nurses and doctors could both be GOOD at sticking to the cleansing schedules. Moreover, the focus of the discussion is on the practice of doctors and not of nurses.
• Option (E) works because it establishes another reason for carelessness among doctors when it comes to hygiene. If doctors believe they do not carry pathogens, they are more likely to be careless about cleansing schedules.
QUESTION: 24

Choice overload is a term used to describe the effects of having too many options to choose from while making a decision. Under such conditions, people usually feel paralyzed and as a result are unable to make decisions for themselves. However, various studies have shown that when making decisions for others, people face what is called “reverse-choice overload”. In other words, people are enthused and more decisive while making decisions from a wide variety of available options. Clearly, people are less careful while making decisions for others and hence are not overwhelmed with the stress to make the choice.

Which of the following, if true, provides the most support for the argument?

Solution:
QUESTION: 25

Analyst 1: Many parents take their children along when they go for shopping for toys because they want to know whether the children will really enjoy playing with a toy before buying it for them. But in many cases, children ask for toys that are either out of their parents’ budgets or are somewhat unsafe for the children. Either way, it is not a good idea to take children along when shopping for toys.

Analyst 2: But since parents have the ultimate authority to decide whether to purchase a particular toy, your consideration is not valid.

Which of the following, if true, most helps to strengthen the conclusion drawn by analyst 1?

Solution:
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