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CE Logical Reasoning Tips
Important Tips for Logical Reasoning
- Study the question carefully. A brief explanation of why each choice is correct or incorrect follows each practice question. If you understand this reasoning for the practice items, you will do well on the actual assessment.
- NEVER assume or use any information that the question fails to give you. This is NOT an assessment of how much you know about economics in general! Consider ONLY the information given in each reading passage when choosing among the alternative responses.
- Read both the factual passage and the sentence completion instruction carefully. Both must be considered in making your choice.
- Be sure to read all the response choices carefully before choosing one.
- In questions that ask you to select a valid conclusion, always choose the one conclusion that must definitely follow from the information you are given. In questions that ask you to find the invalid alternative, choose the one conclusion that does not definitely follow from the information.
- Pay special attention to words like "all," "some," or "none" when you read the factual information each question gives you. Other qualifying words such as "other than," "only" or "unless" are important, too. These words can play a critical part in precisely specifying the facts to be used in your reasoning.
- Pay attention to negative prefixes also, such as non-, un-, or dis-. These can be crucial to specifying the basic facts in the paragraph.
- "Test-taking" courses or your college instructors may have advised you to avoid any response choices that contain the quantifiers "all" or "none." In both the practice questions here and in the actual economist assessment, these words are NOT signs of incorrect response choices. They will appear in both correct and incorrect response choices.
- Pay close attention to the word "ONLY" and to the phrase "IF AND ONLY IF." Saying "The door will open IF AND ONLY IF both keys are used" sets up a highly specific condition that must be met. There is exactly one way to open the door-you must use both keys. By contrast, if the sentence says, "The door will open if the key is used," there may be several ways to open the door besides by using the key.
- The questions in the assessment will vary in difficulty level, and difficult questions will be mixed in with easier ones throughout the assessment. When you encounter a question that is difficult for you, try drawing diagrams or other schematic notes on the "scratch" paper provided to support and confirm your thought processes. Also, bear in mind that you can stop working on a difficult question temporarily and return to it later.