LOGIC QUESTIONS TO THE ENTRANCE TESTS
The logical reasoning questions of the Logic Test of Medicine, Dentistry, Veterinary Medicine, Architecture and Healthcare Professions are made up of a short text to be analyzed to then reach a logical conclusion. There are several ways to go to the conclusion, for example through assumptions that are not explicitly written in the text. Often the text is accompanied by a question that aims to identify the wrong and not the correct reasoning. The conclusion must be a direct consequence of the premise, otherwise the reasoning is not valid. Finally, the premises must be accepted to be true only for the purpose of logical reasoning, even if we think they are wrong.
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METHOD TO SOLVE THE LOGIC EXERCISES
Let's take an example of logical reasoning present in the logic questions of the entrance tests.
The professor said she would lecture, otherwise she would send the assistant. The teacher can't teach, so the assistant will come.
The reasoning has this structure:
Foreword - The teacher said she would have lectured, otherwise she would have sent the assistant. The teacher can't teach.
Conclusion - the assistant will come.
In this reasoning the conclusion is quite evident, as introduced by "therefore". However, it is not always introduced by a conjunction, and sometimes we can find it at the beginning or within the reasoning:
The teacher can't teach, so the assistant will come. The professor said she would lecture, otherwise she would send the assistant.
The assistant will come. The teacher cannot teach, and said she would have taught, otherwise she would have sent the assistant.
Even in these cases the conclusion is always "the assistant will come", since the rest of the text leads to this conclusion.
Some logical reasonings lack fundamental steps to reach the conclusion, therefore it is necessary to make assumptions:
The fisherman will not be saved, the shark has almost caught up to him.
The passage does not explicitly say that the shark is dangerous, but we deduce it from the conclusion that the fisherman will not be saved, and from the fact that we know that the shark is a dangerous animal. In questions of this type, the question often contains a guess, so as to have a key to solving the question.
Therefore, the structure of a logical reasoning is the following:
Obviously, the logical reasoning present in the questions are longer and more complex than the examples cited, but the structure remains the same.
In the logic test we can find ourselves faced with 7 types of logical reasoning:
- Find the main message
- Draw a conclusion
- Find an implicit guess
- Strengthen or weaken an argument
- Find the wrong logical passage
- Find similar reasoning
- Identify and apply a principle
These types of logical reasoning can be easily recognized, as they are always accompanied by standard questions:
- Which of the following statements expresses the main message of the previous passage?
- Which of the following statements is totally supported by the previous passage?
- On what implicit supposition is the previous passage based?
- a) Which of the following statements, if considered true, weakens the previous argument? b) Which of the following statements, if considered true, reinforces the previous argument?
- Which of the following answers constitutes the wrong logical passage in the previous passage?
- Which of the following statements follows the same logical structure of the above reasoning?
- Which of the following statements highlights the principle behind the previous passage?
REASONING QUESTIONS: LOGICAL METHODOLOGY
Let's see together, through some examples, how to solve these types of logical reasoning.
Find the main message
Example. Cheese is a very caloric food and consequently has links with obesity and cardiovascular diseases. But that doesn't mean it should be completely ousted from a healthy diet, as it does well in many ways. 100 g of cheese provide a higher dose of calcium than a glass of milk. Cheese is a food that contains many proteins, contains 20 g of protein per 100 g and is very tasty. The bacteria found in cheese promote healthy digestion and strengthen the immune system.
Which of the following statements expresses the main message of the previous passage?
- A) Cheese can be carefully included in a balanced diet
- B) Cheese can cause obesity and cardiovascular disease
- C) Cheese is good in many ways
- D) Cheese is essential for a healthy life
- E) The cheese contains bacteria useful for health
The main thing to do in this type of question (and this applies to all) is to carefully read the passage, to then identify the sentence that contains the conclusion, which can be found anywhere in the passage. Once this is done, you can ask yourself which message the author wants to send us, and try to identify the sentence that contains it. Then, it is useful to reread the passage again, to understand if the phrase we have chosen is supported by all the text. Often the passage contains an intermediate conclusion, therefore only one of the passages that lead to the final conclusion, and consequently it is difficult to get there.
In our passage it is necessary to ask this question: why did the author write an article on cheeses? It is evident that the article was designed to counteract some clichés about cheese, and the author highlights the fact that, despite being a very caloric food, despite leading to obesity and cardio-vascular problems, it has many positive notes . Therefore, there is no reason why it should be eliminated from our diet. Many might think that the correct answer is C, but the fact that it does well we already know, and it is not the main message that the author wants to send us. What the author wants to say is the fact that it is right to include cheese in our diet, although many disagree. So the correct answer is A.
Draw a conclusion
Example . The "loyalty cards" of supermarkets have been designed to encourage customers to always shop in the same supermarket. However, nowadays all the big supermarket chains offer such "loyalty cards". The majority of customers have a "loyalty card" for each of the supermarkets in the area in which they reside. It is therefore useless for supermarkets to continue to offer such "loyalty cards" indiscriminately and it would seem more appropriate to stop offering them. From the situation just described it could be inferred that the "loyalty cards" are by no means the main reason why customers choose to shop in a certain supermarket. Which of the following statements is totally supported by the previous passage?
- A) Loyalty cards are not the main reason why people choose to shop in a certain supermarket
- B) Loyalty cards are too expensive for supermarkets
- C) The "loyalty cards" were designed to encourage the customer to shop in the same supermarket
- D) People now have "loyalty cards" for all the supermarkets in the area where they live
- E) Supermarkets should stop offering "loyalty cards"
In this case, in addition to carefully reading the passage, we must evaluate all the alternatives that have been provided to us, and identify the answer totally supported by the passage.
After carefully reading the passage, you need to understand what the question requires. In fact, it does not ask what the main message is, or what supposition can be made, but it wants to know explicitly what the passage totally supports. Answer A is a supposition, as it is deduced from the text and not read in the text. Answer B does not have much relevance to the text, as the passage does not speak at all about the cost of loyalty cards. Answer C is only a statement, and it informs us about something we already know: the piece starts from the fact that loyalty cards were invented to encourage the customer to shop in the same place, to then come up with something else. Answer D is also a finding, saying that people now have loyalty cards in all supermarkets. Then, after all these premises and affirmations, the author finally reaches the conclusion, contained in the answer E: since people have loyalty cards everywhere, and therefore the original purpose has been lost, it is not better to stop offering loyalty cards to customers ?
Find an implicit guess
Example . ”Migratory birds that are unable to fly very long distances without resting take advantage of the sea where the coasts are closest to each other. Birds migrating to and from Africa pass through the Strait of Gibraltar. For these birds, some of which are very rare, it is essential that this passage remains open. For this reason, it is important that the plan for the construction of wind turbines on the hills around the Strait of Gibraltar be blocked. " On what implicit supposition is the previous passage based?
- A) other bird species can fly longer and then use other passages for their migration
- B) there are no plans for the construction of wind turbines in other locations along the coast
- C) birds migrating through the Strait of Gibraltar are at risk of extinction
- D) the wind turbines for generating electricity must be built on the hills
- E) the wind turbines that could be built would make the use of this passage dangerous for migratory birds
The bottom line, in this passage, is that the plan for the construction of the wind turbines on the hills around the Strait of Gibraltar must absolutely be stopped. The question does not ask what the main message is, but the implicit supposition underlying it, argued through the information that the text gives us. Therefore, answers B and D are to be excluded, because they give information on the construction and on the best geographical positioning of the wind turbines. The answer C is not exact either, as it gives information already present in the passage, even if it is misrepresented, since the passage does not say that all the birds that cross the Strait of Gibraltar are at risk of extinction, but only the rare ones. Answer A may seem correct, but this is not an implicit supposition of the whole passage, but only of the first sentence. So the correct answer is E, since building wind turbines on the hills around the Strait of Gibraltar could be very dangerous for migratory birds.
Weaken or strengthen an argument
a) Weaken an argument
Example. "Some German scientists have discovered that cancer cells are coated with a protein that protects them from the immune system. They therefore believe that it is necessary to look for a drug that allows the elimination of this protein ". Which of the following statements weakens the previous argument?
- A) cancer cells reproduce very quickly over time;
- B) people with cancer have a stronger immune system than healthy ones;
- C) the proteins that coat the cancer cells are essential for correct liver function;
- D) tumors are more common in the elderly than in the young;
- E) it is necessary to allocate larger funds to pharmaceutical research in laboratories all over the world
The statement that weakens the argumentation of the text is contained in answer C. In fact, if the proteins that coat the cancer cells necessarily serve a correct liver function, the proposal to find a drug that eliminates this protein is questioned, otherwise you run the risk of having problems with liver function.
b) Strengthen an argument
Example. It has been shown that many bird species make intricate paths to confuse other birds about where they hide food. For example, if they realize that another bird has observed them while hiding food in a certain place, they return and go to hide it elsewhere; while, if they have not been observed, they do not care. This shows that birds have a certain level of imaginative empathy, are aware of the cognitive processes of other birds and are capable of predicting the behavior of their fellow humans.
If considered true, which of the following statements makes the previous argument stronger?
- A) Birds that have stolen food from other birds have a tendency to be more careful in hiding their food
- B) Birds show such shrewd behavior from the first weeks of life
- C) Migratory birds covering long distances gather for a short time before embarking on their journey
- D) Some birds have the ability to learn to use utensils to get food by observing other birds
- E) The behavior of some birds can be influenced by the singing of other birds
The passage claims that birds are endowed with extraordinary imaginative empathy, predict what their fellow humans will do and are aware of the cognitive processes of other birds. All this derives from the fact that they perform several tricks to hide food from others. Duque, the proposals indicated, what most reinforces the argument is the fact that the birds that have stolen food from other birds are more careful to hide their food, as they have done so and expect that others will . So the correct answer is A.
Identify the wrong logical step
Example. “Over the past year, some 32, 000 car fires have occurred and an estimated 9% of motorists travel with a fire extinguisher in their car. If more motorists were encouraged to travel with an extinguisher on board, then the number of car fires would be considerably reduced. " Which of the following answers constitutes the wrong logical passage in the previous passage?
- A) it is assumed that carrying a fire extinguisher allows you to put out the fires;
- B) the fact that there are several fire extinguishers for different types of fires is not considered;
- C) the possibility that fires cannot be put out with a fire extinguisher is not taken into consideration
- D) it is assumed that the occurrence of car fires is linked to the lack of a fire extinguisher;
- E) the fact that millions of motorists have never suffered a fire in their car is not considered
In this case the candidate must identify the wrong logical passage present in the passage, which does not allow to reach the conclusion starting from the premises presented. Therefore, it is necessary to proceed in this way:
- identify the premise and conclusion
- understand how to reach this conclusion through the passage
- finally identify the wrong logical passage within the piece, that is, the missing link in the reasoning.
The wrong logical passage of this passage is the connection between the fact contained in the first proposition and the conclusion expressed in the second proposition. No conclusion can be drawn from the fact contained in the first proposition, therefore the correct answer is D. In fact, the presence of an extinguisher in the car does not imply that a fire cannot occur. The fire extinguisher is used to put out the fire, but it certainly cannot prevent it. Therefore, there is no connection between the presence of an extinguisher in the car and the reduction of fires in cars.
Identify similar arguments
Example. “Usually when I'm about to get the flu I always have a headache first. I feel a fever, but I don't have a headache, so I'm not going to get the flu. " Which of the following statements follows the same logical structure of the above reasoning?
- A) if I had locked the door when leaving the house, I would have the keys with me. Unfortunately I don't have the keys with me, so I can't have locked the door when I left;
- B) if Mario gets excellent marks at school, he wants to enroll in the medical faculty. He didn't get good marks last year, so he is unlikely to study medicine;
- C) if the sky is red in the evening, the next day will be a beautiful day. The sky is red tonight so you can expect a nice day for tomorrow;
- D) if I win the lottery I would not give anything to my family because my family members said that if they won they would not give me anything;
- E) if Tamara had already gone to the cinema, Claudia would have gone with her. Tamara is not out yet, so we can be sure that Claudia hasn't left yet
In this type of logical reasoning we ask to identify the similarities between different reasonings. We must look for similarities within the structure of reasoning. To do this, you can search the passage for recurring sentences, written each time in a different way.
The first proposition in the passage can be schematized as follows:
- A. If I'm going to get the flu
- B. Then I have a headache first
So the second:
- A. If I don't have a headache
- B. Then I'm not going to get the flu
Among the various alternatives proposed by the answers, it is necessary to look for reasoning that has the same structure. The correct answer is then A:
- First proposition : A. If I had locked the door B. Then I would have the keys with me
- Second proposition : A. If I don't have the keys with me B. Then I didn't lock the door
Identify and apply a principle
Example. “Smokers who suffer from heart disease caused by non-smoking
they should be able to benefit from free medical care, as such cases are typical examples of self-induced diseases. Those who caused illness or trauma to themselves should contribute financially to their medical care. " Which of the following statements highlights the principle behind the previous passage?
- A) Children should receive dental care for free even if they eat caries that cause tooth decay.
- B) Those who suffer from heart disease and can afford to pay for medical treatment should not benefit from it for free.
- C) Smokers who cannot afford to pay for medical care should be able to take advantage of free health care in case of illness.
- D) People who are injured in a traffic accident should be able to take advantage of free medical care regardless of whether they were wearing seat belts or not.
- E) Motorcyclists who injure themselves in the head for not wearing a helmet should contribute financially to their care.
To understand what the principle of the passage is, one must first identify it. The principle is applied to a specific case, but can extend to other cases. For example, if we use the principle of "lying is wrong" in the Christian context, we can accept this principle and extend it to other cases: telling lies for good is wrong, telling lies to save a person's life is wrong.
In order to identify the principle, one must first find the premises and the conclusion, in order to understand on which principle the passage is based. The reasoning in question expresses the conclusion that smokers who contract heart disease should not receive free medical care, as they have done the damage themselves. So, if we have to think of a general principle, we can say that those who cause diseases to their body, should face the medical expenses alone.
Therefore, the correct answer is E, as motorcyclists who do not use a helmet self-procure head injuries, therefore they do not have the right to receive free treatment.
Read also: Medicine entrance test 2019 logic questions
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