To discover what percentage of teenagers believe in telekinesis—the psychic ability to move objects without physicall...

Michelle on July 7, 2019

Answer explanation for Q2

Hi, I correctly chose answer choice C for this question, but guessed between C and D. Would someone be able to tell me why D is wrong? Thank you!

1 Reply

Irina on July 13, 2019


Let's look at the stimulus.

To discover what percentage of teenagers believe in telekinesis - the psychic ability to move objects without physically touching them - a recent survey asked a representative sample of teenagers whether they agreed with the following statement: "A person's thoughts can influence the movement of physical objects." But because the statement is particularly ambiguous and is amenable to a naturalistic, uncontroversial interpretation, the survey's responses are also ambiguous. The reasoning conforms most closely to which of the following propositions?

The author of the passage claims that because the survey question is ambiguous, the responses are also ambiguous.

Now let's look at the answer choices.

(A) is irrelevant, whether it is useful or useless is out of scope;
(B) is again irrelevant, it makes no connection to the survey responses;
(C) is essentially a mistaken negation. It talks about unambiguous responses to well-phrased questions, whereas our argument discusses ambiguous responses to the poorly-phrased questions;
(D) is the correct answer choice as it strengthens our conclusion;
(E) is irrelevant, it does not matter whether the statement can be given naturalistic interpretation.

Let me know if this makes sense.