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June 2007, Logical Reasoning 1, Question 10


Okay, the questions down here. Which of the following most accurately expresses the main conclusion of the argument? When you were being asked for the main conclusion of the argument, well, we call that a Main Point question. A Main Point question is asking you to simply identify the part of the argument that is the conclusion.

Now that's the first step on pretty much every question in the argument family. The difference here is, once we find the conclusion, that's it, we can go straight on to the answer choices. Of course, if the entire point of the question is, what is the conclusion? They typically make it a little bit harder to find than in a normal argument question.

You often have to use your understanding of what a conclusion is to find it. Remember, the conclusion is the part of the argument that everything else is set up to explain. All the evidence is trying to demonstrate the truth of the conclusion. Here the conclusion is the first sentence. Double-blind techniques should be used whenever possible in scientific experiments.

The way we know that's the conclusion because the rest of the argument is explaining why. If you phrase that first sentence as a question, why should double-blind techniques be used whenever possible in scientific experiments? Well, because they help prevent misinterpretations and scientists want to avoid misinterpretations.

That's why you should use double-blind techniques. They do something that scientists want to get done anyway. When we go to the answer choices, we're gonna be looking for either a direct quote of the part that we currently have underlined in blue, or a rephrasing of what we have underlined in blue. Answer choice A is really the first piece of evidence, we're not looking for the evidence, we're looking for a conclusion.

Answer choice B, it is advisable for scientists to use double-blind techniques and as high a proportion of their experiments as they can. So this is a rephrasing of our conclusion. They basically took the last part of the conclusion right at first, the first part wrote it last and then instead of saying, whenever possible, they say, in as high proportion of the experiments as they can.

That's a fancy way of saying, whenever possible, so answer choice B is our answer. A glance of the other answer choices just to see why they're wrong. Answer choice C, scientists sometimes neglects to adequately consider the risk of misinterpreting evidence on the basis of prior expectations and opinions. Well, this is something the argument implies not something it states outright.

If it's not stated outright, it can't be the conclusion. The conclusion is always explicitly stated. On to answer choice D. Whenever possible, scientists should refrain from interpreting evidence on the basis of previously formed expectations and convictions. Notice the answer choice is trying to fool you because it uses that phrase from the conclusion, whenever possible, but the rest of the answer choice is not the conclusion.

The conclusion isn't whenever possible they should refrain from interpreting evidence on the basis of previously formed expectations. It's whenever possible they should use double-blind techniques. Answer choice E, double-blind techniques are often an effective way of ensuring scientific objectivity. This is another piece of evidence, it's not the conclusion.

It's not our answer, answer B is our answer.

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