Critical Reasoning

Paragraph:

In order to determine automobile insurance premiums for a driver, insurance companies calculate various risk factors; as the risk factors increase, so does the premium. Certain factors, such as the driver’s age and past accident history, play an important role in these calculations. Yet, these premiums should also increase with the number of miles that the driver drives. After all, a person’s chance of being involved in a mishap increases in proportion to the number of times that person drives.

Critical Reasoning Test : Question 1 :
Which one of the following, if true, most undermines the argument?

A. People who drive infrequently are more likely to be involved in accidents that occur on small roads than in highway accidents.
B. People who drive infrequently are less likely to follow rules for safe driving than are people who drive frequently.
C. People who drive infrequently are less likely to violate local speed limits than are people who drive
D. People who drive frequently are more likely to make long-distance trips in the course of a year than are people who drive infrequently.
Answer:B
Explanation:
The argument is that the people who drive frequently should be made to pay higher premiums as their chances of being involved in accidents are higher. However, the statement that ’people who drive less frequently are less likely to follow the traffic rules’ undermines the given argument. This is because they(people who drive infrequently) would then be more susceptible to accidents and hence it would be wiser to charge them higher premiums than the people who drive frequently.

Critical Reasoning Test : Question 2 :
The claim that insurance premiums should increase as the frequency with which a driver drives increases plays which one of the following roles in the argument?

A. A premise of the argument
B. The conclusion of the argument
C. Evidence offered in support of one of the premises
D. An assertion phrased to preclude an anticipated objection
Answer:B
Explanation:
The claim made in the paragraph is a conclusion to the argument that risk factors should also include the frequency with which a driver drives.

Paragraph:

At an enormous research cost, a leading chemical company has developed a manufacturing process for converting wood fibers into a plastic. According to the company, this new plastic can be used for, among other things, the hulls of small sailboats. But what does the company think sailboat hulls used to be made of? Surely the mania for high technology can scarcely go further than this.

Critical Reasoning Test : Question 3 :
The author’s opinion of the manufacturing process described in the passage is based primarily on the fact that

A. The research costs of developing the process outweigh any savings possible from the use of the plastic
B. A small sailboat is not normally regarded as a high-tech product
C. Hulls for small sailboats can be made from wood without converting it into plastic
D. Many other spheres of human activity are in far greater need of technological research
Answer:C
Explanation:
The tone of the author implies that he is suggesting that the hulls of boats are already being made of wood without converting it into plastic and hence, there is no reason for a new technology.

Critical Reasoning Test : Question 4 :
Which of the following, if true, would most seriously weaken the author’s conclusion?

A. The wood used in producing the plastic is itself in increasingly short supply.
B. The plastic produced by the process is considerably lighter, stronger, and more watertight than wood
C. The cost of the manufacturing process of the plastic increases the cost of producing a sailboat hull by 10 to 15 percent.
D. Much of the cost of the research that developed the new process will be written off for tax purposes by the chemical company.
Ans:B
Explanation:
The best way to weaken the author’s conclusion is to show that there’s a distinct advantage to making the wood into plastic before using it to make the boat hulls, rather than simply building boat hulls out of wood.

Critical Reasoning Test : Question 5 :
Because people are generally better at detecting mistakes in other’s work than in their own, a prudent principle is that one should always have one’s own work checked by someone else.Which one of the following provides the best illustration of the principle above?

A. The best elementary school math teachers are not those for whom math was always easy. Teachers who had to struggle through math themselves are better able to explain math to students.
B. One must make a special effort to clearly explain one’s views to someone else; people normally find it easier to understand their own views than to understand others’ views.
C. Juries composed of legal novices, rather than panels of lawyers, should be the final arbiters in legal proceedings. People who are not legal experts are in a better position to detect good legal arguments by lawyers than are other lawyers.
D. People should always have their writing proofread by someone else. Someone who does not know in advance what is meant to be said is in a better position to spot typographical errors.
Answer:D
Explanation:
The principle mentioned in the paragraph is that ’one should always have one’s work checked by someone else.’ Accordingly, people who write should have their writing proof read by someone else, as they are in a better position to spot errors.

Critical Reasoning Test : Question 6 :
Recent research indicates that increased consumption of fruits and vegetables by middle-aged people reduces their susceptibility to stroke in later years. The researchers speculate that this may be because fruits and vegetables are rich in folic acid. Low levels of folic acid are associated with high levels of homocysteine, an amino acid that contributes to blocked arteries. Which one of the following statements is most strongly supported by the information above?

A. An increased risk of stroke is correlated with low levels of homocysteineA
B.  decreased risk of stroke is correlated with increased levels of folic acid.
C. An increased propensity for blocked arteries is correlated with decreased levels of homocysteine.
D.A decreased propensity for blocked arteries is correlated with low levels of folic acid.
Answer:B
Explanation:
Research indicated that the increased intake of fruits and vegetables reduced the susceptibility of people to stroke. The reason behind this development was speculated to be due to the reason that fruits and vegetables are rich in folic acid. Hence, if it is true that decreased risk of stroke is correlated with increased levels of folic acid, then this statement strongly supports the given information.

Critical Reasoning Test : Question 7 :
Mr. Janeck: I don’t believe Stevenson will win the election for governor. Few voters are willing to elect a businessman with no political experience to such a responsible public office. Ms. Siuzdak: You’re wrong. The experience of running a major corporation is a valuable preparation for the task of running a state government. M. Siuzdak’s response shows that she has interpreted Mr. Janeck’s remark to imply which of the following?

A. Janeck considers Stevenson unqualified for the office of governor.
B. No candidate without political experience has ever been elected governor of a state.
C. Janeck believes that political leadership and business leadership are closely analogous.
D. Voters generally overestimate the value of political experience when selecting a candidate
Answer:A
Explanation:
Siuzdak counters Janeck’s statement by saying that the experience of running a major corporation is a valuable experience to run for office and that he is qualified. This means that Siuzdak interpreted Janeck’s remark to be suggesting that Stevenson was unqualified for the office of governor.

Critical Reasoning Test : Question 8 :
At one time, European and Japanese companies tried to imitate their American rivals. Today, American appliance manufacturers import European scientists to lead their research staffs; American automakers design cars that mimic the styling of German, Italian, and French imports; and American electronics firms boast in their advertising of “Japanese-style” devotion to quality and reliability. In the world of high technology, America has lost the battle for international prestige.Each of the following statements, if true, would help to support the claim above EXCEPT:

A. An American camera company claims in its promotional literature to produce cameras “as fine as the best Swiss imports.”
B .An American maker of stereo components designs its products to resemble those of a popular Japanese firm.
C. An American manufacturer of video games uses a brand name chosen because it sounds like a Japanese word.
D. An American maker of frozen foods advertises its dinners as “Real European-style entrees prepared by fine French and Italian chefs.
Answer:D
Explanation: Explanation:
While cameras, stereos, and video games arguably rank as ’high technology’, frozen foods certainly do not. Thus, this choice fails to strengthen, and is correct.

Critical Reasoning Test : Question 9 :
Johnson is on firm ground when he asserts that the early editors of Dickinson’s poetry often distorted her intentions. Yet Johnson’s own, more faithful, text is still guilty of its own forms of distortion. To standardize Dickinson’s often indecipherable handwritten punctuation by the use of the dash is to render permanent a casual mode of poetic phrasing that Dickinson surely never expected to see in print. It implies that Dickinson chose the dash as her typical mark of punctuation when, in fact, she apparently never made any definitive choice at all. Which of the following best summarizes the author’s main point?

A. Although Johnson is right in criticizing Dickinson’s early editors for their distortion of her work, his own text is guilty of equally serious distortions.
B. Johnson’s use of the dash in his text of Dickinson’s poetry misleads readers about the poet’s intentions.
C. Because Dickinson never expected her poetry to be published, virtually any attempt at editing it must run counter to her intentions
D. Although Johnson’s attempt to produce a more faithful text of Dickinson’s poetry is well-meaning, his study of the material lacks sufficient thoroughness.
Ans:A
Explanation:
The main point of the author in the paragraph is that ’although Johnson is critical about the early editors of Dickinson, his text itself contains distortions.’

Critical Reasoning Test : Question 10 :
A law requiring companies to offer employees unpaid time off to care for their children will harm the economic competitiveness of our nation’s businesses. Companies must be free to set their own employment policies without mandated parental-leave regulations. Which of the following, if true, would most seriously weaken the conclusion of the argument above?

a. Many businesses in this country already offer employees some form of parental leave

B. A parental-leave law will serve to strengthen the family as a social institution in this country.

C. In most polls, a majority of citizens say they favor passage of a parental-leave law.

D. Some of the countries with the most economically competitive businesses have strong parental-leave regulations.

Ans:D

Explanation:
The conclusion is that the economic competitiveness of the nation’s businesses will be harmed if a law is passed which mandates employeed to take time off to spend with their children. But if it is true that in some countries with the most economically competitive businesses have strong parental-leave regulations, then this would seriously weaken the author’s argument.

Critical Reasoning Test : Question 11 :
Dear Applicant:
Thank you for your application. Unfortunately, we are unable to offer you a position in our local government office for the summer. As you know, funding for summer jobs is limited, and it is impossible for us to offer jobs to all those who want them. Consequently, we are forced to reject many highly qualified applicants.
Which of the following can be inferred from the letter?

A. The application of the person who received the letter was considered carefully before being rejected.
B. The applicant who received the letter was considered highly qualified.
C. The number of applicants for summer jobs in the government office exceeded the number of summer jobs available.
D. Very little funding was available for summer jobs in the government office.
Ans:D
Explanation:
The sentence fragment ’impossible for us to offer jobs to all those who want them’ suggests that the number of applicants are more than number of jobs available.

Critical Reasoning Test : Question 12 :
Studies of fatal automobile accidents reveal that, in the majority of cases in which one occupant of an automobile is killed while another survives, it is the passenger, not the driver, who is killed. It is ironic that the innocent passenger should suffer for the driver’s carelessness, while the driver often suffers only minor injuries or none at all.
Which of the following is an assumption underlying the reasoning in the passage above?

A. In most fatal automobile accidents, the driver of a car in which an occupant is killed is at fault.
B. Drivers of automobiles are rarely killed in auto accidents.
C. Auto safety experts should increase their efforts to provide protection for those in the passenger seats of automobiles.
D. Most deaths in fatal automobile accidents are suffered by occupants of cars rather than by pedestrians.
Ans:A
Explanation:
Studies revealed that the passenger was more often the one who was killed in an accident, and not the driver. The author concludes from this that the innocent passenger has to suffer for the driver’s carelessness. The assumption that the author made in order to come to the above conclusion is that the driver of the automobile in which an occupant has been killed is at fault.

Critical Reasoning Test : Question 13 :
Are you still reading the other newspaper in town? Did you know that the Daily Bugle is owned by an out-of-town business syndicate that couldn’t care less about the people of Gotham City? Read the Daily Clarion, the only real voice of the people of Gotham City!
Which of the following most directly refutes the argument raised in the advertisement above?

A. Over half of the advertising revenues of the Daily Clarion come from firms whose headquarters are located outside of Gotham City.
B. The Daily Clarion usually devotes more of its pages to out-of-town news than does the Daily Bugle.
C. The editor-in-chief and all the other members of the editorial staff of the Daily Bugle have lived and worked in Gotham City for ten years or more
D. The Daily Bugle has been published in Gotham City for a longer time than has the Daily Clarion
Ans:C
Explanation:
It is claimed that the Daily Bugle is owned by an out-of-town syndicate and hence it is not the real voice of Gotham City. The advertisement assumes that the owner of the newspaper writes the content that appears in the newspaper. However, if the editor-in-chief and all other members of the editorial staff of the Daily Bugle have lived and worked in Gotham City, then this refutes the arguments made by the advertisement.

Critical Reasoning Test : Question 14:
Anthropologist: Climate and geology determine where human industry can be established. Drastic shifts in climate always result in migrations, and migrations bring about the intermingling of ideas necessary for rapid advances in civilization.
The anthropologist’s statements, if true, most strongly support which one of the following?

A. Climate is the primary cause of migration
B. All shifts in climate produce a net gain in human progress.
C. A population remains settled only where the climate is fairly stable.
D. PoLulations settle in every place where human industry can be established.
Ans:C
Explanation:
(a) Climate is one of the causes of migration, but there is no evidence to show that it is the primary cause. Hence this cannot be the answer.
(b) Drastic shifts in climate always result in migration, and migrations bring about rapid advances in civilization. But that does not mean all shifts in climate will produce the same result.
(c) If there are drastic changes in climate it results in migration. From this it is obvious that a

Critical Reasoning Test : Question 15 :
The earth’s resources are being depleted much too fast. To correct this, the United States must keep its resource consumption at present levels for many years to come. The argument above depends on which of the following assumptions?

A. Per capita resource consumption in the United States is at an all-time high.
B. The United States uses more resources than any other country
C. Curbing U.S. resource consumption will significantly retard world resource depletion.
D. The United States imports most of the resources it uses
Ans: Explanation:
The author says that earth’s resources are fast depleting and the remedy for this situation is that the United States must keep its resource consumption at present levels. Hence the underlying assumption is that curbing resource consumption by the U.S. will retard global resource depletion.

Critical Reasoning Test : Question 16 :
The earth’s resources are being depleted much too fast. To correct this, the United States must keep its resource consumption at present levels for many years to come. Which of the following, if true, would most strengthen the argument above?

A. The United States consumes one-third of all resources used in the world.
B. New resource deposits are constantly being discovered.
C. Other countries need economic development more than the United States does.
D. The United States has been conserving resources for several years
Answer:A
Explanation:
The argument is that in order to save earth’s resources from depleting too fast, United States must keep its resource consumption at present levels. The statement that the United States accounts for one third of the resource consumption in the world will strenghten the argument, as curbing the U.S resource consumption would then be a necessary measure.