Physician: Clinical psychologists who are not also doctors with medical degrees should not be allowed to prescribe ps...

Isabel on July 21, 2020

Difference between C and D?

I was stuck between C and D and ultimately chose D. Can you explain why C is better than D?

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Shunhe on July 22, 2020

Hi @Isabel-Zuniga,

Thanks for the question! So let’s take a look first at what the stimulus is saying. We’re told that clinical psychologists who aren’t doctors with medical degrees shouldn’t get to prescribe psychiatric medications. Why? Because clinical psychologists only get a few hundred hours of education in neuroscience, physiology, and pharmacology, but doctors with medical degrees get years of training.

Now we’re looking for a principle that would help to justify the reasoning in the physician’s argument. Before we even look at the answer choices, we should know that it’ll have something to do with connecting the amount of training with if you ought to prescribe medications. Take a look at (C), which tells us that no one without years of training in neuroscience, physiology, and pharmacology should be allowed to prescribe psychiatric medications. In other words, years of training is a necessary condition for being able to prescribe psychiatric medications. We can diagram this as

Should be allowed to prescribe psychiatric medications —> Years of training in neuroscience, physiology, and pharmacology

And we can see how this gets us to the conclusion, since the contrapositive is

~Years of training —> ~Shouldn’t be allowed to prescribe

And since clinical psychologists don’t have the years of training, they shouldn’t be allowed to prescribe.

Now take a look at (D), which says that training in neuroscience, physiology, and pharmacology required for a medical degree is sufficient for a doctor to be allowed to prescribe psychiatric medicine. This is a reversal from (C), it tells us that years of training is a sufficient condition, or if we diagram this

Years of training —> Should be allowed to prescribe??And that’s what separates (C) from (D), and is also why (D) is wrong, since it can’t get us to the conclusion.

Hope this helps! Feel free to ask any other questions that you might have.