PowerScore GRE Forum

Short Passage 'Must Be True'

When working on the short passages in the verbal section, is the 'must be true' something that needs to be recognized in order to do the problem? I didn't find it too clear in the online demonstration when to paraphrase and/or must be true. This question I assume will not make sense, but that is because I am confused on how I should visualize the problem when I first see it.

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  • RyanBornPowerScore PowerScore Staff
    edited September 2016

    Let's start with a quick review. 'Must be True' is a term in your coursebook for Reading Comp questions that require you to either:

    1. Recognize an accurate paraphrase or restatement of material in the passage.

      Typical wording: "According to the passage…", "The passage mentions…"

      Link to an example from an official practice test: The passage mentions which of the following…

    2. Draw a conclusion from the passage.

      Typical wording: "The passage suggests…", "It can be inferred from the passage that…"

      Link to an example from an official practice test: The passage suggests that…

    You'll recognize your task based on the wording of the question. So, if you familiarize yourself with the way these questions are often written, you'll know what you need to do when you see the question.

    Whether it's task (1) or task (2), you first step is to assume everything the passage says is true. Then, If you're doing task (1), the correct answer will be the one that must be true because it simply rewords what the passage says. If you're doing task (2), the correct answer will be the one that must be true because it's the conclusion of a valid argument that you can make using statements from the passage as premises. (Note: a valid argument is one where the conclusion must be true if the premises are true.)

    Let me know if you still have questions. Also, you'll find the full text of the above examples in the Practice Book, 2nd edition [PDF].

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