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Critical Reasoning

Let's have an Argument!!

Hurraah!! Another post :-)

Before starting off...lock your prejudices and biases in a box and open it up only when you've reached the apping stage. CR has no room for prejudices. It's all about what's written in the argument. (Okay now...before starting the CR...make yourself comfy with the jargon...go through the doc which has definitions for bold face CR's). If you are not comfy with the jargon and you confuse between inference and conclusion, you shouldn't be reading this post. I am not going to tell you that!!

Okay so you've done your homework then!! Let's start with the pointers:
  1. Familiarize yourself with the concepts tested. Make yourself aware of all the question stems.
  2. One very good way to learn about the logical patterns is to go through the AWA guide. Download it and go through the list of fallacies. It's very very helpful. It opened my eyes to new fallacies which earlier went past by unnoticed.
  3. Keep your eye out for assumptions, evidences on which the author relies for his conclusion. Don't just buy his words...ask him...hey mister!! How could you say that??
  4. Substitue long confusing proper nouns for good old X's and Y's. It's better to counter the quesn this way.
  5. Always always make sure you have understood the explanation and content with the logic behind. Kaplan has good CR.
There are many categories in CR. Those are given in Kaplan...I am not going to tell you that. I would like to use this space to tell you something important!! If there's any concept which will help you crack most of the questions, then that has to be SCOPE SHIFTS. You can easily eliminate most of the choices becoz they are outside the "scope". If I say: there are no buyers for these yellow pencils. And you counter me by saying : That's bizarre!! Everyone's buying pencils these days...there are hardly any pencils left in the stores!!

Then you've gone beyond the scope!! Why?? It's easy to miss "yellow" there!! You've shifted the scope. You broadened the scope...shifted it...that's a logical error. The yellow pencils might still be not selling.

Also most of the times the choices sound correct and convincing and are mostly the popular choices as in they wud have something like an universal truth...like Shakespeare was good in prose and poetry both....but this may not be concluded from the argument...don't be tempted...see whether it follows from the argument.

Then there's this causation thingy. Which is basically when you muddle up the cause and effect. Master this!!

Finally I used something which might sound rude but it helped...picking out the logical errors in your friends' arguments....you'll be surprised how many we commit.

Suggested Books : Kaplan 800, Kaplan Verbal Workbook, Official Guide