ANALYSING THE STIMULUS
- As you read the stimulus, intially focus on making a quick analysis of the topic under discussion and read the entire stimulus very carefully. The requirements forced upon you to read carefully is what makes the time constraint so difficult to handle.
- *****SPEED & PATIENCE*******
ARGUMENT VS FACTS
An argument can be defined as a set of statements wherein one statement is claimed to follow from or derived from the others (called conclusion).
Facts sets, on the other hand, are a collectionof the stamenents without a comclusion.
DETERMINE WHETHER THE STIMULUS CONTAINS AN ARGUMENT OR IF IT IS ONLY A SET OF FACTUAL STATEMENTS
- Conclusion, as summary statements, are supposed to be drawn from and rest on the premise.
- - because
- - since
- - for
- - for example
- - for the reason
- - in that
- - given that
- - as indicated by
- - due to
- - owning to
- - this can be seen from
- - we know this by
- - thus
- - therefore
- - hence
- - consequently
- - as a result
- - so
- - accordingly
- - clearly
- - must be that
- - shows that
- - concludes that
- - follows that
- - for the reason
THERE COULD BE SENTENCES WITHOUT PREMISE OR CONCLUSION INDICATORS
ORDER OF PRESENTATION HAS NO EFFECT ON THE LOGICAL STRUCTURE OF THE ARGUMENT. THE CONCLUSION CAN APPEAR AT THE BEGINNING, THE MIDDLE, OR THE END OF THE ARGUMENT.
IF THE STIMULUS CONTAINS AN ARGUMENT, IDENTIFY THE CONCLUSION. IF THE STIMULUS CONTAINS A FACT SET, EXAMINE EACJ FACT.
One confusing form: "therefore, since higher debt has forced to lower their savings, banks mow have less money to loan."
WHAT IS CAUSALITY?
- When examining events, people naturally seek to explain why things happned. The search often results in cause and effect reasoning, which asserts or denies that one thing cause another, or that one thing is caused by another.
- On LSAT, cause and effect reasoning appears in many logical reasoning problems, often in the conclusion where the author mistakenly claims the one even cause another.
- Most causal conclusions are flawed because there can be alternate explanations for the stated relationship: another cause could account for that effect; a third event could have caused both stated cause and effect; teh situation may in fact be reversed; the events may be related but not causally; or the entire occurence could b just by chance.
- Causality occurs when one event is said to make another occur.
HOW TO RECOGNIZE CAUSALITY.
Following terms often intriduces cause and effect relationship.
- - caused by
- - because of
- - responsible for
- - reason for
- - leads to
- - induced by
- - promoted by
- - determined by
- - produced by
- - product of
- - played a role in
- - was a factor in
- - is an effect of
THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN CAUSALITY AND CONDITIONALITY
- 1. The chronology of the two events can differ. The cause must hapn before effect but suff. and nec. condition can happen before, same, or after one an other.
- 2. The cause physically makes the effect happen.
- In conditional statements the sufficient and necessary conditions are often related directly, but one does not have to make the other happen. The suff. condition just indicates that nec. condition must occur.
CAUSALITY IN CONCLUSION
CAUSALITY IN PREMISES
If the causal statement is in the conclusion, then the reasoning is flawed. If the causal statement is the premise, then the argument may be flawed, but not because of the causal statement.
Mistaken cause and effect reasoning is amde when a causal assertion is made in the conclusion, or the conclusion presumes a causal relationship.
SITUATIONS THAT CAN LEAD TO ERRORS OF CAUSALITY
- 1. One even occurs before another. When one even ocurs before another event, many people fall into the trap of assuming that the first even caused the second event.
- 2. Two (or more) events occur at the same time. When two events occur simultaneously, many peoply assume that one even caused the other.
THE CENTRAL ASSUMPTION OF CAUSAL CONCLUSION
- Understanding the assumption is very improtant for a causal conclusion.
- When LSAT test makers concludes that one occurence caused another, that means they assumed that the stated cause is the ONLY possible cause of the effect and that consequently the stated cause will ALWAYS produce that effect. This assumption is incrediably extreme and far-reaching, and often leads to suprizing answer that would appear imcorrect unless you understand this assumption. Very improtant for strengthen ans weaken questions.
HOW TO ATTACK A CAUSAL CONCLUSION
Causal statement stimuli are usually followed by strengthen or weaken questions.
- 1. find and alternate cause for stated effect.
- 2. show when cause occur, the effect does not occur
- 3. show that effect can occur without cause
- 4. show that stated relationship is reversed
- 5. show that a satistical problem exists with the data used to make the causal statement.