GMAT Critical Reasoning: Tips

GMAT Critical Reasoning


Critical Reasoning is one of the three sections in GMAT ® Verbal Part. The various questions in GMAT Critical Reasoning can be broadly grouped into 11 types. At times, you might encounter a different type of question(s) from the types given below.


Critical Reasoning: Question Types


  • Inferences
  • Assumptions
  • Strengthen the Argument
  • Weaken the Argument
  • Flaw in the Argument
  • Evaluate the Argument
  • Complete the Argument
  • Paradox in the Statements
  • Boldfaced Lines
  • Parallel Reasoning
  • Method of Reasoning

  • Page Title

    GMAT ® Official Guide Critical Reasoning Questions

    Question No: 544

    Source: GMAT Official Guide 2018

    Graduate Management Admission Council ®


    Neuroscientist: Memory evolved to help animals react appropriately to situations they encounter by drawing on the past experience of similar situations. But this does not require that animals perfectly recall every detail of all their experiences. Instead, to function well, memory should generalize from past experiences that are similar to the current one. (Stimulus)

    The neuroscientist's statements, if true, most strongly support which of the following conclusions? (Question Stem)

    (A)At least some animals perfectly recall every detail of at least some past experiences.

    (B)Perfectly recalling every detail of all their past experiences could help at least some animals react more appropriately than they otherwise would to new situations they encounter.

    (C) Generalizing from past experiences requires clear memories of most if not all the details of those experiences.

    (D) Recalling every detail of all past experiences would be incompatible with any ability to generalize from those experiences.

    (E) Animals can often react more appropriately than they otherwise would to situations they encounter if they draw on generalizations from past experiences of similar situations.


    GMAT Critical Reasoning: Inference Techniques

    Explanation


    1. Read the Question Stem first

    2. Analysis of the given Stimulus

    3. Central Idea of the Stimulus

    4. GMAT CR Inference Techniques: Elimination Process

    5. How to CHOOSE the BEST Option for INFERENCE Question


    1. Read the Question Stem first

    Note: When solving GMAT Critical Reasoning Questions, you should read the Question Stem first because it has some keywords indicating the type of the given question.

    From the Keywords of the Stem- "The neuroscientist's statements, "if true", and "following conclusions"- we understand that the given quetstion is an INFERENCE Question.


    2. Analysis of the given Stimulus


  • Memory, by drawing generalizations on the past experience of similar situations, helps animals react appropriately to situations
  • Animals do not require to perfectly recall every detail of all their experiences

  • 3.Central Idea of the Stimulus

    In animals, the Ability to Draw Generalizations from the past experience of similar situations (X), LEADS to the Ability to react appropriately to situations (Y)


    4. Elimination Process

    Eliminate the Option if

  • it has a new fact or idea not supported by the stimuls.
  • it is not related to the rest of the related statements
  • it appeals to common sense but not supported by the stimuls.
  • it has extreme claims having strong Modifiers such as Never, Always, Only, and Most which the given Stimulus does not support


  • 5.How to CHOOSE the BEST Option for INFERENCE Question?


    The BEST Option for INFERENCE Question should have all the KEYWORDS of Central Idea of the Stimulus. In fact, an Inference is a restatement of the Central Idea of the given information in a different way.

    In the case of the above question, the Keywords are: "Draw Generalizations", "past experience of similar situations" and "react appropriately to situations"


    Analysis of the Options and Elimination


    (A) At least some animals perfectly recall every detail of at least some past experiences.

  • This option does not refer to the Keywords of the Central Idea of the given stimulus: "Draw Generalizations" or "react appropriately to situations". Moreover, the stimulus does not support the extreme claim: "perfectly recall every detail...". Hence, it is Eliminated.
  • (B)Perfectly recalling every detail all their past experiences could help at least some animals react more appropriately than they otherwise would to new situations they encounter.

  • The given stimulus asserts:"But this does not require that animals perfectly recall every detail of all their experiences." However, the stimulate does not suggest the result of the animals' perfectly recalling every detail of all their past experiences. This option is Beyond the Scope of the given information. Hence, it is Eliminated.
  • (C) Generalizing from past experiences requires clear memories of most if not all the details of those experiences.

  • The given Stimulus does not support the Extreme claim: "Generalizing ... requires clear memories of most details.....Hence, it is Eliminated.
  • (D)Recalling every detail of all past experiences would be incompatible with any ability to generalize from those experiences.

  • The given Stimulus does not support the New Fact or Idea of "Recalling every detail...incompatible with...from those experiences. . Hence, it is Eliminated.
  • (E) Animals can often react more appropriately than they otherwise would to situations they encounter if they draw on generalizations from past experiences of similar situations.

  • Animals....react more appropriately....if they draw on generalizations from past experiences of similar situations. This is the Central Idea of the given Stimulus.Hence, it is the Best Option.

  • Detailed Analysis of GMAT ® Critical Reasoning Inference Questions will follow.Stay tuned.


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