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Kefah on March 15 at 05:39PM

Question 4: Weaken Except

Hello, so the idea that I think is relevant here. is to pick an answer that sometimes is irrelevant because it does not weaken an argument? Is this the correct train of thought, or am I missing something?

1 Reply

Skylar on March 15 at 08:16PM

@Kefah-Abdelrahman, happy to help.

Question #4 is a Bizarro Weaken question, meaning that it asks us to identify the only answer choice that does not weaken the argument ("weaken EXCEPT"). Therefore, the correct answer will either be irrelevant to the argument or it will strengthen the argument (in this specific question, the correct answer is irrelevant). This is the key concept here.

In typical Weaken questions, the right answer will weaken the conclusion of the argument. It can do this in a variety of ways, including by showing that the conclusion does not necessarily follow from the premises, providing a counterexample, providing an alternate cause, showing cause without effect or effect without cause, showing that a cause-effect relationship is backwards, showing that correlation was mistaken for causation (by naming something else that caused both things), or showing a Sufficient condition without the Necessary condition. You are also correct that an answer that is irrelevant or leaves you room to ask "okay sure, but why does this matter?" does not typically weaken an argument. The best way to grasp these concepts is to do practice problems and take the time to thoroughly review both why the correct answer was correct and why the incorrect answers were incorrect.

Does that make sense? Please let us know if you have any other questions and best of luck with your studies!