Newscaster: In order for the public to participate in a meaningful way in the current public policy debate, one requ...

Mansi on May 19, 2016

Help

I don't understand how the structure varies between d and e. Why is e the right answer?

6 Replies

Mansi on May 19, 2016

Is the difference that d says "must" and e says "might" like in the stimulus

Benjamin on May 22, 2016

From my understanding it is. The conclusion certainty level in the stimulus must match the correct answer choice. D has an absolute certainty level in"must," while the stimulus conclusion is not absolute: "...at least might be able to participate in a meaningful way..."

In fact I saw the certainty level of the conclusion in the stimulus and glanced at the answer choices' conclusions and immediately crossed out A, B & D. This can save time on such time consuming questions. I'm not an instructor, but I hope this helps.

Mehran on May 26, 2016

That is absolutely right. (D) says "must," while (E) says "might." The stimulus' conclusion says "might."

Additionally, notice that for the necessary conditions, (E) says "one must at least have" and the stimulus says "one requirement is." (D) on the other hand just says "must."

Here is a complete breakdown.

The conclusion is "the public at least might be able to participate in a meaningful way in the current public policy debate."

Why? The support provided is:

(1) "In order for the public to participate in a meaningful way in the current public policy debate, one requirement is that the issues be stated in terms the public can understand."

AND

(2) "The mayor's speech has just stated these issues in such terms, . . . "

We can diagram the first sentence, which is the general principle of this argument, as follows:

PR: PMWCPPD ==> STPCU

We are then told that the mayor's speech was stated in terms the public can understand.

P: STPCU

From this the Newcaster concludes that the public at least might be able to participate in a meaningful way in the current public policy debate.

C: might PMWCPPD

The Newcaster is taking the existence of one necessary condition to conclude that the sufficient condition might exist.

Let's take a look at the structures of (D) and (E).

(D):

PR: DMSUW ==> UGD
P: UGD
C: DMSUW

(E):

PR: SVCC ==> WC
P: WC
C: might SVCC

Hope this helps! Please let us know if you have any other questions.

Mehran on May 27, 2016

I just wanted to add another point here.

It is important to realize that the stimulus here is a VALID argument.

(D), on the other hand is flawed, so you can eliminate (D) for this reason as well.

(E) is also a valid argument.

Here is why:

The principal we are given in the stimulus is that one of the requirements for the public to participate in a meaningful way in the current public policy debate is that the issues be stated in terms that the public can understand.

"One requirement" implies that there is more than one.

Let's pretend there were three requirements.

A ==> B & C & D
not B or not C or not D ==> not A

The stimulus is telling us that B is present and then concludes that A MIGHT be present. "Might" is the keyword here.

If it said A MUST be present, this would be a flawed argument (just like answer choice D).

The rule regarding "don't just reverse" is related to what can we conclude with 100% certainty.

We cannot conclude A exists from the existence of B, but we can say that A might exist if B exists.

Hope this helps! Please let us know if you have any other questions.

Caitlin on February 6 at 03:21PM

I got this one right; however, can someone please explain how to eliminate answer choice c, please?

Ravi on February 6 at 09:20PM

@mcduffeeee,

Happy to help!

Taking a look at the stimulus, we're told that the public must be able
to understand the terms of issues in order for the public to
participate in a meaningful way in the policy debate. Then we're told
that the Mayor's speech has accomplished this. The argument concludes
that the public at least might be able to participate in a meaningful
way.

Public participate meaningful way - >issues stated so public can
understand (first sentence)

Mayor's speech: states issues so the public can understand (satisfies
necessary condition)

Conclusion: possible for the public to participate in a meaningful way
(sufficient condition is possible)

What's this argument doing? It provides a conditional statement, says
the necessary condition has been met, and then concludes that the
sufficient condition could happen.

(C) says, "One cannot confuse the majority of one's students if one
wants to be a good teacher. Hugo wants to be a good teacher;
therefore, he might be able to avoid confusing the majority of his
students."

(C)'s structure is

Wants to be a good teacher - >cannot confuse the majority of one's students

Hugo: wants to be a good teacher (satisfies sufficient condition)

Conclusion: Hugo might be able to avoid confusing the majority of his
students (weaker version of the necessary condition)

See how this argument is different? It's satisfying the sufficient
condition and providing a weaker version of the necessary condition of
the argument's premise.

The stimulus, on the other hand, satisfies the necessary condition of
its premises and concludes that the sufficient condition is possible.
This is why (C) doesn't match up.

Does this make sense? Let us know if you have any questions!