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 ebbylicious
  • Posts: 2
  • Joined: Aug 15, 2018
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#49675
I am a bit confused on this question. I figured that the right answer would NOT be conditional and therefore eliminated all answers that started with "if", clearly this is wrong, but will someone explain to me why the right answer is in conditional form and why is it not D.
 Vaidehi Joshi
PowerScore Staff
  • PowerScore Staff
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  • Joined: Aug 16, 2018
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#49678
@ebbylicious

I understand the intuition that you have to rule out "If-then" statements as not being the Main Points/conclusions. I find this often to be the case, but not always--so don't take this strategy, as it is clearly dangerous in cases where the main conclusion (MP) CAN be phrased in a conditional way.

Let's start with why it's not (D)
(D) says:
To inspire the perpetual curiosity of others, one must constantly broaden one’s abilities and extend one’s intellectual reach.

So (D) is saying that the stimulus is saying that "constantly broadening abilities/intellectual reach" is necessary for "inspire perpetual curiosity of others"
or to put that in diagram form:
inspire perp. cur. of others --> constant broad. abilities/intell.

However, is this really what any part of the stimulus says? The closes we come to this is: " Constantly broadening one’s abilities and extending one’s intellectual reach will enable one to inspire that curiosity."
which is saying that "constantly broadening abilities/intellectual reach" is sufficient for "inspire perpetual curiosity of others"
or, in a diagram:
constant broad. abilities/intell. --> inspire perp. cur. of others

so this is the INVERSE! the stimulus states the inverse, which is NOT the same as the original statement

however, if we diagram (B), we get:
constant broad. abilities/intell. --> inspire perp. cur. of others

Oh hey! Look at that! that's the exact same as what the stimulus says! looks like a winner, no?

Let me know if you still have lingering questions
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 ashpine17
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#92962
I've heard rationales that the first sentence cannot be a conclusion because it begins with "it is a given." But how do I know that that in itself isn't an opinion the author is trying to support? The last sentence supports the second sentence so does that mean the first does not support the second?
 Robert Carroll
PowerScore Staff
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#93066
ashpine,

If the author is trying to support it, why say it is "given"? It's already going to be incredibly unusual for an author to say "Assume X, but let me prove X anyway," which is what is required here for the first sentence to be the conclusion. But, whether that could ever happen anyway, it's definitely not happening here - the author is not trying to show the first sentence is true. Nothing in the rest of the stimulus is even intended as evidence for the first. So the first sentence is not a conclusion here.

Robert Carroll
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 ashpine17
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#93119
Does the first sentence support the second?
 Adam Tyson
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#93883
I would say it does not support anything here, and is therefore not a premise. But it also gets no support from anything else in the stimulus, so it cannot be a conclusion, either. Call it background information, perhaps, or a claim that establishes the subject matter of the argument. And to expand on what Robert said, if the author says "it is a given," that means they are not offering any evidence for that claim, but just expecting it to be accepted as true. A conclusion is only a conclusion if the author attempts to prove it by offering at least some evidence.

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