A gram of the artificial sweetener aspartame is much sweeter than a gram of sugar. Soft drinks that are sweetened wit...

on October 13, 2019

Why is itC?

Doesn't D better align with the idea of developing a preference? Please help

2 Replies

on October 14, 2019

Hello @kristinsmith04,

With flaw-in-reasoning questions, I like to make my own criticism of the argument before I even look at the answer choices.

How do we know that the amount of aspartame put in a soft drink is the same as the amount of sugar put in a soft drink? We know that the substance is sweeter, not that the drink itself is sweeter.

Also, you are correct, there is a problem with saying that aspartame drinkers will develop a preference. There is no evidence to support that.

Answer choice C matches my first criticism almost perfectly, because it ignores the amounts. Maybe there are 25 pennies in one bank and 5 nickels in the other, making them equal. Maybe there are 40 grams of sugar in one drink and 30 grams of aspartame in the soft drinks, making them equally sweet.

I see what you mean about answer choice D. However, the difference is that the passage assumes that a certain effect will come from drinking sweet products, for which there is no evidence. D is the opposite, it gives us the effect (Stephanie likes hot weather more than Katherine), and assumes a cause for which there is no evidence.

Irina on October 14, 2019


The argument tells us that a gram of aspartame is sweeter than a gram of sugar, thus people that drink drinks sweetened with aspartame will develop a preference for extremely sweet drinks. This conclusion is flawed because it fails to consider that the amount of aspartame in soft drinks could be substantially lower than the amount of sugar, thus the drinks are not necessarily sweeter.

(C) exhibits a similarly flawed reasoning. It is true that one nickel is worth more than a penny but we have no information about the amount of nickels and pennies in their piggy banks, hence we could not conclude that a piggy bank with nickels overall has more money on it.

Let me know if this makes sense and if you have any further questions.