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#15 - Earthworms, vital to the health of soil
LSAT Master
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So when I as reviewing my test I think I understand why D is incorrect.

So when I negated D it read: By itself, acidity of soil does something to hasten decomposition of dead plants. After negating this, I reasoned that this is actually irrelevant to the argument and does not weaken the conclusion. B/c the conclusion is about the crushed limestone being more attractive to earth worms b/c of it being highly acidic.

So B is the correct answer b/c when I negated it:

After its application to the soil's surface, crushed limestone does not stay in the top soil's top layer long enough to neutralize some of the top layers acidity. So this would weaken the conclusion b/c if crushed limestone does not stay in the soils top layer it will not be attractive to earthworms b/c it will not be able to neutralize the top layer's acidity. Is this the correct thought process?

Clay Cooper
PowerScore Staff
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Hi Sarah,

Perfect! Thanks for your question. You nailed the reasoning, both with answer choice D and with answer choice B. Great job! Be encouraged - this seems to me to demonstrate improvement in you approach to assumption questions.

Keep working hard!
LSAT Apprentice
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Hi Powerscore! I understand why B is right, assumption negation is a wonderful techique to deal with assumotion questions.However, I only needed clarification on my reasoning for C being incorrect. Is it because 'calcium and magnesium, both are just as vital' is extra information, even though its given that the soil is made more attractive to earthworms? Thanks
Jay Donnell
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Hi nihals23!

You are spot-on with your suspicions in regard to C giving more than we need to know. Though that would provide an additional benefit for earthworms in the big picture, the answer for an Assumption question has to provide something necessary for the potential validity of the argument, which means we need to focus on exactly what the conclusion specifies.

Though it's an added bonus that the crushed limestone can help boost earthworm functionality in that it offers calcium and magnesium, those added benefits are superfluous to the conclusion which is strictly about making "the soil more attractive to earthworms."

I hope that helps!