Polls have shown that a higher percentage of graduating university students are against proposals to reduce governmen...

Filippo on June 17, 2020

Why is D correct

Could anyone please explain why D is the correct answer? I am very confused by this question.

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Skylar on June 17, 2020

@filozinni, happy to help!

The passage tells us that a higher percentage of graduating college students are against proposals to reduce government social services than are entering college students. The passage takes this to conclude that people with a university education are more likely to be against proposals to reduce government social services (AKA are more likely to favor retaining or increasing the current level of government social services) than are members of the overall population. We are asked to weaken this argument.

We should take issue with this passage. It uses polls comparing graduating college students with entering college students to make a claim comparing university-educated people to the overall population. This is inconsistent, as the both graduating and entering college students would assumedly be in the university-educated group. Moreover, how can we make a statement about the overall population based only on entering college students? We can't. The key takeaway here is that graduating students are not an accurate enough sample of all university-educated people and entering students are not an accurate enough sample of the overall population to make the concluding claim.

(D) "Polls of those who graduated from a university more than five years before being polled show a higher percentage of people in favor of reducing government social services than do polls of the overall population."

This shows a new sample of university-educated people who are more in favor of reducing government social services than are members of the overall population. This is the opposite of what the passage says, making (D) correct.

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

Filippo on June 18, 2020

Thank you @Skylar!