Cartographer: Maps are like language: they can be manipulated in order to mislead. That most people are not generally...

shafieiava on March 31, 2020


It would be really helpful to get an A-E explanation of the answer choices here. I jumped straight to analogical case because that seemed to be the rhetorical strategy of the passage. I particularly struggles with answer choices A and D what is the difference here between choosing between descriptors here such as analogical case, distinction, and support? I am having a lot of trouble seeing the distinction and see more of an analogy in this stimulus. Any help in breaking down this question would be great! Thanks in advance.

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Skylar on April 4, 2020

@shafieiava, happy to help!

Let's start by breaking down the passage:
P: Maps are like language because both can be manipulated to mislead.
C: We should not assume most people are not misled by maps just because most people are not misled by language.
P: Most people are taught to be cautious of language, but there is no comparable education on maps.

The question asks us about the first part of the statement that we identified as our last premise- that most people are taught to be cautious of language.

(A) is incorrect because the specific statement in question does not present an analogy. In fact, it works to show how language and maps are different rather than similar (we are educated about one and not the other). While the first sentence of this passage sets up an analogy, it is important to note that the last two sentences depart from this and discuss differences instead.

(B) is incorrect because the lack of education about maps does not offer support for this earlier statement about the existence of language education. The statement in question is not a conclusion.

(C) is correct. The statement in question is part of a distinction- the distinction between a present education about language and a lack of education about maps. Moreover, we identified this distinction as a premise that supports the argument's conclusion. So, (C) is the correct answer.

(D) is incorrect because the statement in question is offered as support for the second sentence of the passage (which is the conclusion), not the first sentence of the passage.

(E) is incorrect because we know that this statement is part of a premise which supports the overall conclusion stated directly before it. It is not a conclusion.

I would recommend looking at all parts of an answer choice rather than focusing only on specific descriptor words. For example, we could eliminate (D) even if we weren't sure of the word "contention" because (D) incorrectly identified the conclusion.

Does that make sense? Please let us know if you have any other questions!