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RC passages- elements

lawana
LSAT Apprentice
 
Posts: 14
Joined: Mon Oct 17, 2016 10:29 pm
Points: 14

Hi, I'm currently on chapter 6 in the RC bible. RC has become a bit of a nightmare for me, I don't know if it is because English is my second language, and that's why it is taking me longer to read, and comprehend all the information fast.

Chapter 6 has two whole passages to work on, and as it embarrassing as it sounds, it took me an hour each passage. I believe each passage had 5 to 6 questions. The first passage, I only got two questions right. The second passage, I got 3 questions right. It is very scary how long it takes me, since on the test I only have 8 minutes to read. comprehend. choose answer.

I have several questions about this section, and hopefully with your explanations I can feel more confident about approaching passages.
1. how to recognize the main point?
2. how to recognize arguments (viewstamp), I know its not the same as viewpoints, but I'm not sure.
3. what is a valid and an invalid argument in RC?
4. is the structure a brief abstract of each paragraph, or every how many paragraphs ?
5.what is the difference between the structure and the organization of the passage, I think of them as equal.
6. what is compare and contrast ? is that when you have several viewpoints, and you have to compare and contrast each other? or is it like a counter-argument ? I'm not sure what this really is, or what it does to the passage itself.
7. can the main point be within the author's viewpoint? or this never happens?

thanks for your attention.
Dave Killoran
PowerScore Staff
PowerScore Staff
 
Posts: 3138
Joined: Fri Mar 25, 2011 1:18 pm
Points: 3,134

Hi Lawana, I've divided up your questions in order answer each individually. I'm terribly sorry to hear things are a struggle for you, and hopefully some of the info below will be a help. I do think that English being your second language is causing you a lot of problems, in part because the test makers assume you will have a working knowledge of terms and ideas like "com[are and contrast." understandably, those things aren't second nature to you, and that is a problem when dealing with RC. You may want to consider using a tutor to help you with RC, because based on your questions I feel as if having someone to talk to would be a huge benefit for you. In the meantime, let's look at what you asked about:


lawana wrote:1. how to recognize the main point?

This is actually a question that is a main focus of the book, and is touched on in many different ways and places within the text. So, it's beyond the scope of what I can say here, but broadly, you are looking for the point the author is driving at as a whole. What's the theme or idea that keeps coming up in the text? Or, what idea does the author want you to take away from the passage after reading it?


lawana wrote:2. how to recognize arguments (viewstamp), I know its not the same as viewpoints, but I'm not sure.

Like number 1, this isn't something that can be answered in even a lengthy reply here. You are looking for the points the author is making, and the reasons provided behind those points. It's the same in Rc as it is in LR, just in RC there are usually more points and the passage/stimulus is longer :-D


lawana wrote:3. what is a valid and an invalid argument in RC?

I answered this in one of you other posts, so I'll let that answer stand for now: viewtopic.php?t=15305&p=40066#p40066


lawana wrote:4. is the structure a brief abstract of each paragraph, or every how many paragraphs ?

I consider it a brief abstract of each paragraph, which, when taken together, adds up to a picture of the whole passage.


lawana wrote:5.what is the difference between the structure and the organization of the passage, I think of them as equal.

They basically are equal :-D


lawana wrote:6. what is compare and contrast ? is that when you have several viewpoints, and you have to compare and contrast each other? or is it like a counter-argument ? I'm not sure what this really is, or what it does to the passage itself.

Comparing is to look at two different sections and see how they match up to each other. Contrasting is specifically how they differ. When combined, "compare and contrast" is the process of seeing how two different things are similar and where they differ.


lawana wrote:7. can the main point be within the author's viewpoint? or this never happens?

The main point is very often the author's viewpoint. For example, if an author is arguing that a new law should be adopted, the main point would be that we should adopt the law and the author's viewpoint would be the same.

Thanks!
Dave Killoran
PowerScore Test Preparation

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