This article titled ‘How to solve questions related to Strengthening the statement: Tricks and Practice Questions’ is written by Aditya Kumar and discusses the tricks to solve questions related to strengthening the statement along with practice questions on the same. I. What do you mean by strengthening the statement? Strengthening the statement, as the name suggests, will require you… Read More »

This article titled ‘How to solve questions related to Strengthening the statement: Tricks and Practice Questions’ is written by Aditya Kumar and discusses the tricks to solve questions related to strengthening the statement along with practice questions on the same.

I. What do you mean by strengthening the statement?

Strengthening the statement, as the name suggests, will require you to strengthen whatever it is that an argument is stating. However, do keep in mind that strengthening does not mean confirming an argument. Even if an option can provide a small point in favour of the argument, it is strengthening the argument.

Similarly, even if an option can remove a small doubt from your mind about the argument, it is again strengthening the argument. To strengthen an argument, it is imperative that the stimulus have a conclusion. So strengthen questions will always contain a stimulus that is in the form of an argument.

Example

Of all the laptops available for sale in Ireland, those manufactured by Ivy Infotech must have the fastest processors. Over the last six months, Ivy Infotech has sold three times as many laptops as its closest competitor. Additionally, Ivy Infotech order books are full for the next 12 months.

Which of the following options, if true, most strengthens the argument?

  1. Ivy Infotech is the oldest manufacturer of laptops in Ireland.
  2. Ivy Infotech has had the largest market share in laptop sales in Ireland for the past five
  3. Ivy Infotech sources its processors from the company which is the world’s biggest manufacturer of laptop processors.
  4. All the laptops available for sale in Ireland are the same in every aspect except for their processors.

D The correct answer. If the only difference among the laptops is the processor speed and if people are still buying laptops manufactured by Ivy Infotech, then these laptops must have the fastest processors.

II. How to Approach Strengthen Questions

  1. Read the argument and be clear on the evidence and the conclusion.
  2. Try to predict the assumption because the strengthener will, in some way, be linked to this.
  3. Go through the options and eliminate those that weaken the argument or that are otherwise outside the scope of the argument.
  4. Remember to take into consideration the evidence as well—don’t just strengthen the conclusion in isolation.
  5. Always Strengthen the Connection Between the Evidence and the Conclusion try to strengthen the connection between the evidence and the conclusion.

III. Tips to solve Strengthen Questions

  1. Remember that bolstering a statement does not imply that it is proven. It’s all about determining which argument is most likely to support a given statement
  2. Focus on those arguments that are neutral. There may be options that don’t help to strengthen the statement but are only there to confuse you. Keep an eye out for such a situation.
  3. Do not use your own knowledge while solving the passage. There may be some arguments in the passage which may be factually true or not. Answer the questions only on the basis of facts and arguments mentioned in the passage.

IV. Practice questions

1. Many Caliovian consumers are committed to using products containing recycled materials. Caliovia’s government is about to publish a book that will help consumers identify such products. The book offers a comprehensive listing, by product type and brand, of goods sold in Caliovia that contain recycled materials. However, consumer advocates predict that the book will not lead to a significant increase in Caliovia in the use of products containing recycled materials.

Which of the following, if true, provides the best grounds for the consumer advocates’ prediction?

  1. Caliovia does not require product labels to specify whether the product contains recycled materials.
  2. For the most frequently purchased product types listed in the book, all the brands available in Caliovia contain recycled materials.
  3. In many cases, manufacturers that have used recycled materials in their products have done so in order to keep costs low.
  4. New brands of products coming on the market in Caliovia that are made with recycled materials will be at a disadvantage

2. A soccer league is divided into a junior and a senior division, separated not by age but by a player’s skill level. This year, to determine the division for which an aspirant is best qualified, the league held a week-long trial, after which coach A and coach B selected players. Coach A nominated sixteen of the forty players for the senior league. Amongst Coach B’s nominations for the senior division were four players not nominated by Coach A. Therefore, there will be twenty players in the senior division.

Which of the following, if true, provides the strongest basis for the conclusion above to be warranted?

  1. To be selected for the senior division, a player need only be nominated by one of the two coaches.
  2. Of the sixteen players nominated by coach A, coach B nominated more than half to play in the senior division.
  3. All of the players not assigned to the senior division by both coaches were assigned to the junior division.
  4. Of those chosen by both coaches to play in the senior division, all will end up playing in the senior league

3. Archaeologist: After the last ice age, groups of paleo humans left Siberia and crossed the Bering land bridge, which no longer exists, into North America. Archaeologists have discovered in Siberia a cache of Clovis points—the distinctive stone spear points made by paleo humans. This shows that, contrary to previous belief, the Clovis point was not invented in North America.

Which one of the following, if true, would most strengthen the archaeologist’s argument?

  1. The Clovis points found in Siberia are older than any of those that have been found in North America.
  2. The Bering land bridge disappeared before any of the Clovis points found to date were made.
  3. Clovis points were more effective hunting weapons than earlier spear points had been.
  4. Archaeologists have discovered in Siberia artefacts that date from after the time paleo humans left Siberia.

V. Solutions

  1. B is correct because it indicates that consumers, who are in fact committed to using recycled materials, are already enacting the plan by purchasing goods that already contain recycled materials
  2. A is correct for the conclusion to hold true—there will be 20 players on the team—players need only be selected by one coach. If both coaches have to choose a player, then there is no way that conclusion can be validly drawn. At most, 16 players could be chosen, but that’s assuming coach B would choose every play that coach A choose.
  3. A is correct. This strengthens the argument, because if the spear points found in Siberia are older than the spear points found in North America, why would we ever think they were invented in North America?

Reference

1. Gmat club forum


Updated On 2021-12-08T09:55:30+05:30
Aditya Kumar

Aditya Kumar

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