According to the passage, the LRCWA's report recommended that contingency-fee agreements

Olivia on March 3, 2020


I don't understand your explanation of why D is the right answer for question 15 and why you can't use the cause and effect model for this question. I understood why not for #14 but this one is less clear to me. Can you please clarify?

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on March 3, 2020

Hello @oliveds,

Let's walk through this argument.

We are presented with a correlation: "Most people who have pets are less happy than most people who do not." This is a premise that we are to accept as true.

What conclusion does the author draw based on this premise? "Therefore, any person who wants to be as happy as possible would do well to consider not having a pet." In other words, the author is saying that owning a pet reduces the happiness of the owner. The author is making a cause and effect argument based only on a correlation.

This is almost exactly the same format as question 14. "Snoring is more common among smokers than non-smokers" is a statistic just like the research from 15. Arguing that "smoking causes snoring" is just like saying "pets cause reduced happiness."

The difference between these two questions is the way in which the right answer weakens the argument. On question 14, a new variable is presented: stress might be the cause of both smoking and snoring.

On question 15, the right answer directly contradicts the author's cause and effect argument. D says that pets make people happier! Remember, the question stem says "if true," meaning that we can accept all of the answer choices as truth.

Here is what I was thinking as soon as I read the argument: "What if unhappy people are more likely to buy pets?" This is what Mehran means with the example of the lady with 50 cats. Always start thinking of alternative explanations for a given correlation.