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 setara
  • Posts: 3
  • Joined: May 21, 2014
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#14794
"but no expert is certain of being able to solve someone else's problem. Patrick wants to devise a solution to his own behavioral problem" The wording was a bit strange here, could someone help analyze the wording properly to get to the right answer?
 Robert Carroll
PowerScore Staff
  • PowerScore Staff
  • Posts: 722
  • Joined: Dec 06, 2013
|
#14798
setara,

The first sentence is a conditional. It says that no expert is certain of being able to solve someone else's problem. So:

a person is an expert :arrow: that person is not certain of being able to solve someone else's problem

The contrapositive is then:

a person is certain of being able to solve someone else's problem :arrow: that person is not an expert

The last sentence is not a conditional and does not need to be diagrammed.

The first sentence, which was not mentioned (if that means you understood it perfectly, great!), is a conditional:

a person could understand why Patrick is behaving irrationally :arrow: that person is an expert in some branch of psychology.

And its contrapositive is:

a person is not an expert in some branch of psychology :arrow: that person cannot understand why Patrick is behaving irrationally

The question is a Must Be True, so we cannot use any information but what we've been given.

With that in mind, turn to the answers:

Answer choice (A) claims that Patrick does not understand his own behavior. Given that we must base our answer on the stimulus and no new information, we could only know someone is not able to understand Patrick if we knew that person was not an expert in some branch of psychology. But we are not told whether Patrick is or is not an expert, so this is not something that can be proven from the facts of the stimulus.

Answer choice (B) depends, like (A), on knowing whether Patrick is an expert. We can't know.

Answer choice (C) requires us to know whether Patrick is an expert, because that is the only thing that the facts of the stimulus tell us is connected with not being certain of being able to solve a problem. So, again, we lack the information we need to evaluate this.

Answer choice (D) claims that "Charles should not offer a solution." But we are only told in the stimulus when someone is certain of being able to solve a problem, or able to understand Patrick's problem. There is no claim of what should and shouldn't be done. So this answer is adding new information.

Answer choice (E) is the correct answer. Take the contrapositive above:

a person is certain of being able to solve someone else's problem :arrow: that person is not an expert

Apply that to Charles. If Charles can be certain, he is not an expert. But combine that with the following conditional:

a person is not an expert in some branch of psychology :arrow: that person cannot understand why Patrick is behaving irrationally

So if Charles is not an expert, he cannot understand why Patrick is behaving in this way.

The last sentence of the stimulus was not used, but it didn't have to be.

Robert Carroll

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