to the top

LR Chap 14 2016 edition bible problem #4 method of reasoning

lawana
LSAT Apprentice
 
Posts: 12
Joined: Mon Oct 17, 2016 10:29 pm
Points: 12

LR chapter 14 in 2016 edition bible
page 465 problem #4 "nutritionist: Because....Thus, the more our diet consists of wild foods, the healthier we will be"
question stem: " the claim that humans are still biologically adopted to a diet of wild foods plays which one of the following roles in the nutritionist's argument ?"

From the question stem we can conclude that it is a method - AP (argument part)
According to the book's explanation on AP " features two conclusions - main conclusion and a sub-contusion- where the main conclusion is typically place in the first or second sentence of the stimulus without conclusion indicators, whereas the sub-conclusion is place in the last sentence of the stimulus WITH conclusion indicators, such as thus, therefore, etc. with that being said, question #4 AP - I identified "it is clear that humans are still biologically adapted to a diet of wild foods, consisting mainly of raw fruits and vegetables, nuts and seeds, lean meat, and seafood" as the main conclusion because is a AP question, the conclusion is at the beginning of the stimulus, it doesn't have conclusion indicators.
Accordingly, I identified "thus, the more our diet consists of wild foods, the healthier we will be." as the sub-conclusion.

I clearly got it wrong, because the book says that the main conclusion in the AP question was the last part of the stimulus, that one with conclusion indicators.
This is a total contradiction for me, and caused a big confusion.

I thought I knew how to differentiate sub-contusions from main conclusions. But I guess there is still a missing gap. Could you please explain their big difference and how to rapidly identify sub-conclusion and main conclusion.

My understanding was that sub-conclusion is the conclusion to the premise but the premise to the main conclusion.
main conclusion is the main point of the whole argument.

thanks for your attention.
Dave Killoran
PowerScore Staff
PowerScore Staff
 
Posts: 2341
Joined: Fri Mar 25, 2011 1:18 pm
Points: 2,335

Hi Lawana,

I'm, going to break your question into smaller pieces so I can reply more directly:

lawana wrote:According to the book's explanation on AP " features two conclusions - main conclusion and a sub-contusion- where the main conclusion is typically place in the first or second sentence of the stimulus without conclusion indicators, whereas the sub-conclusion is place in the last sentence of the stimulus WITH conclusion indicators...I clearly got it wrong, because the book says that the main conclusion in the AP question was the last part of the stimulus, that one with conclusion indicators.
This is a total contradiction for me, and caused a big confusion.



Note that in the book I often talk about what "typically" or "generally" occurs, and that's because there are almost always exceptions to argument construction rules. This is a good example of one, where usually the test makers do not place an obvious conclusion indicator before the main conclusion in an argument with a main and sub-conclusion. It's not a contradiction when they decide to do so, it's just a rarer case.

So, in this case, they chose the rarer route but you missing that doesn't point to some huge error in your understanding (and, as I mention below, your summary of how it works is 100% correct). I would instead suggest that you look carefully at how this problem is put together and see what they did that was different than what you expected (aside from the indicator before the main conclusion).

While there are some absolute rules on the LSAT, there are far more general guidelines, and those general guidelines will often hold true most of the time but not necessarily all of the time (here's another example: Arguments that start with the "some people say" construction usually go on to dispute what those people said, but not always; it's just a general situation to look for but the test makers can and will create exceptions!



lawana wrote:I thought I knew how to differentiate sub-contusions from main conclusions. But I guess there is still a missing gap. Could you please explain their big difference and how to rapidly identify sub-conclusion and main conclusion.

My understanding was that sub-conclusion is the conclusion to the premise but the premise to the main conclusion.
main conclusion is the main point of the whole argument.

thanks for your attention.



I separated this section out because I wanted to confirm for you that your understanding of the relationship between sub-conclusion and main conclusion is correct. Everything you say in the quoted section above is correct. However, simply knowing the definition doesn't guarantee that you always identify the various parts, in part because it can be confusing and in part because the test makers sometimes put in really tough-to-understand answers. In this case, I wouldn't question your entire approach simply because you missed this question and the construction caught you off guard :-D
Dave Killoran
PowerScore Test Preparation
Follow me on Twitter at http://twitter.com/DaveKilloran
My LSAT Articles: http://blog.powerscore.com/lsat/author/dave-killoran