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  • Posts: 6
  • Joined: May 28, 2016
on p. 248 of the weekend course this was bothersome:

q. 30. the author's conclusion depends on which one of the following?
Yes, you guessed it i chose "Justify the conclusion" no, it is Assumption. can you help me see what i am missing?
 Jon Denning
PowerScore Staff
  • PowerScore Staff
  • Posts: 878
  • Joined: Apr 11, 2011
Hi bobbiejean,

Sure thing! The focal point here is the word "depends." That's a word synonymous with the idea of "need," or "requirement," and thus at the heart of Assumption questions.

Again, I'll point you back to the discussion of Assumption questions on pages 66-68 for a detailed breakdown, and hit the highlights here: Assumption questions ask for an answer that is required by the argument. In other words, an unexpressed idea that the author's conclusion simply cannot live without. Put another way, an idea that the conclusion "depends" on. That's why #30 is Assumption.

Justify on the other hand asks for an idea that the conclusion doesn't need, but rather that would make the conclusion undeniably true. If you think back to the discussion of conditional reasoning in the course, Assumptions function like the Necessary conditions (they're required by something else), and Justify answer acts like the Sufficient conditions (they're enough to conclude an additional idea). That's the key distinction between the types, and the easiest way to tell the question stems apart.

I hope that helps!
  • Posts: 6
  • Joined: May 28, 2016

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