University president: We will be forced to reduce spending next year if we do not increase our enrollment. So, if we ...

teddyteddted on August 10, 2018

Can You Please Diagram?

It's a short passage and I was wondering if a conditional diagram would have been beneficial for finding the correct answer choice. Thanks in advance.

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MichelleRod on August 15, 2018

Thanks for your question @teddyteddted

This question is an excellent candidate for diagramming, because it is comprised entirely of conditional statements. Diagramming will helps us find the missing logical link between this premises and the conclusion.

Let's go ahead and diagram the stimulus and its contrapositives:

p: not IE - > RS
not RS - > IE

p: not MPA - > not IE
IE - > MPA
c: MQP - > MPA
not MPA - > not MQP

This diagram allows us to see that the missing logical link is between maintaining the quality provided (MQP) and reduced spending (RS)

letc on December 13, 2018

I am not sure about the link here, can you please explain a little more?

Ravi on December 14, 2018


Let's map the premises and conclusion so that we can see where the missing link is more easily.

Premise 1: /Inc enrollment - > reduce spending
Premise 2: /aggressive marketing - >Inc enrollment

With these two premises, we can link them together since they both have /Inc enrollment in them

/aggressive marketing - >/Inc enrollment - >reduce spending

Conclusion: /aggressive marketing - >/maintain quality

See where the gap is now?

With the premises, we have A - >B - >C.

With the conclusion, we have A - >D.

What's missing? C - >D. We need to connect concept C (reduce spending) to concept D (/maintain quality) in order to make the argument valid.

Now, let's look for an answer choice that gives us reduce spending - >/maintain quality

Answer choice (D) gives us what we're looking for. It says, "The university will not maintain the quality of the education it provides if it reduces spending next year."

This maps out to

reduce spending - >/maintain quality

We have found the missing link, and we can confidently answer this question with answer choice (D).

letc on December 19, 2018

Great thanks!

Ravi on December 19, 2018

@letc happy to help!