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PrepTest 73, Logical Reasoning 1, Question 14


Question 14, when a question asks you how someone responds, that's a type of method of reasoning question. There are two people here, Inez and Winona. Inez gives an argument, Winona gives an argument. This question is asking us to describe how Winona's argument works. Of course, in order to do that, we have to break the arguments down.

And we have to break both of their arguments down, even though they're just asking us about Winona. Because probably, we're not gonna be able to understand the response unless we know what she's responding to. Inez's conclusion comes at the end of her paragraph, we can't afford not to invest in space exploration.

And she gives us one big reason, space exploration programs pay for themselves many times over. And then she further explains what she means by that, and kinda says it a couple different times. But those programs result in lots of technological advances. It's more than just the search for knowledge.

It's this productive investment in developing new technology. So when she says that they pay for themselves many times over, she means it allows us to develop new technologies. And that's very productive, and that's why we can't afford not to invest in space exploration. Now Winona, her conclusion comes at the beginning.

It's absurd to try to justify funding for space exploration merely by pointing out that such programs will lead to technological advances. In other words, Inez, you're wrong. But you're not wrong necessarily about whether space exploration is good. You're just wrong to try to justify it the way that you just did. Then she gives her evidence, if technology with practical applications is all that is desired, then it should be funded directly.

So notice a couple things. Winona doesn't say that we don't need space exploration, just that you can't justify it in the way that Inez did. And then she gives evidence to explain why you can't justify it in the way that Inez did. That's her argument.

When we hit the answer choices, we're looking for something that describes her argument the right way. We have to be flexible because there's probably a lot of different ways you could phrase that. We just need one that works. Answer choice A, then, showing there is no evidence that the outcome Inez anticipates will in fact be realized.

This is not our answer because Winona isn't arguing that space exploration isn't going to bring about good things. In fact, she's arguing that you could bring about those good things other ways, not that they won't happen. So A is not the answer. Answer choice B, suggesting Inez has overlooked evidence that directly argues against the programs Inez supports.

Be careful, Winona actually isn't opposed to space exploration. She has no evidence that argues against it. She just says you can't justify the way that you justified it. So B is not the answer. Answer choice C, demonstrating the pieces of evidence that Inez cites contradict each other.

There's no contradictions here. A contradiction is saying, you said that you were home all night last night, but also that you were out with your friends all night last night. Can't be both, you can't be at home and out, a contradiction. There was no contradiction here. Answer choice D, providing evidence that the beneficial effects that Inez desires can be achieved only at great expense.

That could be a reason to argue against Inez, but it's not one that Winona gave. Winona never said, well, it's just too expensive. Rather, look, you can fund that directly. You don't have to fund it through space. So answer choice E must be the answer, let's see why it is. E says claiming that a goal that Inez mentions could be pursued without the programs Inez endorses.

And that is what she did. She said you should fund them directly rather than doing the programs that you want. So instead of the space exploration programs, you could get there a different way. E is what we wanted, it is our answer.

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