# Common Logical Reasoning Practice Test 3

Question – 1

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1. According to a consumer research group survey, the majority of kitchen appliances purchased in the United States are purchased by men. This would seem to belie the general impression that women spend more time in the kitchen than men.Which of the following best resolves the apparent contradiction in the passage above.

• A. With more and more women joining the work-force, an increasing number of men are spending more time in the kitchen.

• B. If men purchase the majority of kitchen appliances in the United States, it does not necessarily follow that they are their primary users.

• C. Since old, long-standing impressions take a long time to die out, the traditional image of women still lingers in the minds of people.

• D. The consumer research group survey does not specify the types of kitchen appliances purchased mostly by men.

• E. The methodology used by the consumer research group survey is questionable.

Analysis: Option (A), by taking a stance against the ‘general impression’, maintains the contradiction in the passage rather than resolving it. Hence, it is a wrong answer option.When one realizes that there is a difference between buying something and using it, the apparent contradiction in the passage gets resolved. Since Option (B) implies that appliances bought by men may well be often used by women, it is the correct answer choice.

Option (C) is not very convincing as an appropriate answer choice. When a change has occurred that stares one in the eye, it is unlikely that it will not register in people’s minds.

Specifying the types of kitchen appliances purchased by men is not likely to be of any help in resolving the said contradiction. Hence, Option (D) is irrelevant to the issue.

In the light of the fact that the apparent contradiction admits a rational resolution, as proven by Option (B), Option (E) loses its validity.

Question – 2

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2.Exit polls suggested that the incumbent mayor was going to lose the election by a wide margin. But, in fact, the incumbent won the election by a narrow margin.Which of the following most closely parallels the reasoning used in the argument above?

• A. Though the meteorological department predicted that a coastal depression would cause heavy rainfall on Tuesday, there was no rain on that day, and the sky was only partially clouded.

• B. Though Raj suffered a serious injury on his leg yesterday, he appeared for the examinations today.

• C. Despite being a serious scholar, he is a talented mountaineer.

• D. Astrologers suggested that he would become an engineer. But, in fact, he became an architect.

• E. There was a rumor that he had died. But, in fact, he had only fainted.

• Answer Explanation:Analysis: The pattern of the argument is this: a professional study predicts the outcome of an event as A, but what actually occurs is B, which is almost the opposite of A in the light of this fact.

In Option (A), meteorologists, who are professionals, predict that the outcome of the coastal depression will be heavy rainfall, but the day in question turns out to be rainless, though partially cloudy. Hence, this option closely parallels the reasoning used in the argument above.

The reasoning pattern in Option (B) is different from that of the argument above. There is nothing in it resembling a professional forecast.

Option (C) does not follow the reasoning pattern of the argument. There is nothing contradictory between being a scholar and a mountaineer.

Though Option (D) mentions a professional opinion which does not materialize, the result that occurs, that is, becoming an architect, is not almost the opposite of the prediction made, that is, becoming an engineer.

Option (E) neither involves any professional viewpoint nor is the occurrence it reports almost the opposite of the initial incident it mentions. Therefore, it is a wrong answer choice.

Question – 3

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3. Scientists wishing to understand the kinetic movements of ancient dinosaurs are today studying the movements of modern-day birds, which many scientists believe are descended from dinosaurs. A flaw in this strategy is that birds, although once genetically linked to dinosaurs, have evolved so far that any comparison is effectively meaningless.The author’s point is made primarily by:

• A. Drawing a similarity between birds and dinosaurs.

• B. Presenting dinosaurs as ancestors of birds.

• C. Referring to a scientific methodology for the study of ancient animals.

• D. Implying that dinosaurs were reptiles and, therefore, could not have been the ancestors of birds.

• E. Pointing out that, though birds may once have been genetically linked to dinosaurs, their continuous evolution has wrought significant changes in the way they function.

• Answer Explanation:Analysis: The passage emphasizes the fact that, whatever their similarities might have been in the past, birds and dinosaurs are now very dissimilar. Hence, Option (A) is not tenable.

In so far as the passage questions the soundness of trying to understand the kinetic movements of ancient dinosaurs by studying the movements of modern-day birds, it certainly does not make its point through Option (B).

The passage rejects the methodology employed by the scientists in question, and hence Option (C) is an incorrect statement.

The passage does not make any implication as Option (D) suggests.

The author’s point is made primarily by the argument set forth in Option (E), namely, that their genetic connection with dinosaurs notwithstanding, birds have undergone such a long period of evolution that they have changed significantly from what they once were.

Question – 4

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4. In the 1980’s, strategic planning was an abstract top-down process involving only a few top corporate officers and hired guns. Number crunching experts came into a company and generated tome-like volumes filled with a mixture of abstruse facts and grand theories which had little to do with the day-to-day realities of the company.If the above statements are true, which of the following conclusions is most strongly supported by them?

• A. The function of strategic planning is to position a company for long-term growth and expansion.

• B. Where too many strategic plans go astray is in their implementation.

• C. Modern-day strategic planning is more hands-on than previously, and includes key middle managers in its planning sessions.

• D. Strategic planning helps companies anticipate change.

• E. Outsiders cannot help facilitate the process ofstrategic planning.

• Answer Explanation:Analysis: Since the passage is not about the function of strategic planning, there is no question of the above statements supporting Option (A).

The passage deals with the aspect of planning business strategies rather than with their implementation, and as such Option (B) does not constitute a conclusion of the passage.

Option (C) is strongly supported by the above statements. The passage hints that the method of planning strategies has changed from being top-heavy to being inclusive.

Option (D) is not within the ambit of the passage, and therefore it is not supported by the above statements.

Option (E) is not a fully accurate statement, as what the passage is saying is not that outsiders are not helpful but that they should be more connected with the ground realities of the company they are associated with to be of any real use.

Question – 5

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5. If you run out of time without having answered all the questions in a section, the computer just moves on to the next section. The computer keeps a running score throughout each section. If you don’t get to answer some questions, the computer deducts points and gives you a score based on what you have answered. You might think it is better to skip any questions you don’t have time to answer – but, in fact, the reverse is true.Which of the following, if true, would explain why it would be better not to skip any questions?

• A. The penalty for each question skipped is greater than the penalty for getting one of those questions wrong.

• B. Skipping questions diminishes an examinee’s confidence.

• C. If an examinee’s preparations have been adequate, there is no way he will run out of time.

• D. When an examinee skips questions, he keeps thinking about the questions he skipped even while proceeding to the next section, thus wasting valuable time.

• E. When an examinee skips questions, he creates an impression of not having tried sufficiently.

• Answer Explanation:Analysis: When an examinee is not certain about the answer of a question, he can either guess the answer or skip the question. In the event that he is penalized more for skipping the question than for providing an incorrect answer, he will naturally risk the second choice. Hence, Option (A) gives a cogent reason why it would be better not to skip any questions.

Since not knowing the answer to a question and guessing it can also diminish an examinee’s confidence, Option (B) does not provide a satisfactory explanation as to why it would be better not to skip any questions.

Option (C) does not address the question under discussion, and therefore it is not the correct answer.

What Option (D) says about skipping questions could equally apply to giving doubtful answers, and as such this option does not satisfactorily explain why it is advisable not to skip questions.

As an examinee may also skip questions because of not knowing the answers, Option (E) has to be rejected as an answer.

Question – 6

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6. Whenever a major airplane accident occurs, there is a dramatic increase in the number of airplane mishaps reported in the media, a phenomenon that may last as long as a few months after the accident. Airlines officials assert that the publicity given to the gruesomeness of major airplane accidents focuses media attention on the airline industry, and the increase in the number of reported accidents is caused by an increase in the number of news sources covering airlines accidents, not by an increase in the number of accidents.The bolded phrase plays which of the following roles in the argument above?

• A. The bolded phrase states an assumption that the Airlines officials are making.

• B. The bolded phrase focuses on the Airlines officials’ attempt to divert attention from charges of inefficiency.

• C. It is with the bolded phrase that the author sums up his viewpoint on the topic of media coverage of airplane mishaps.

• D. The bolded phrase states a premise of the argument.

• E. The bolded phrase states the Airlines officials’ conclusion.

• Answer Explanation:Analysis: These are the premises of the above argument: (1) Any major airplane accident gets a great deal of publicity; (2) For the next several weeks many more airplane accidents are reported. The conclusion is: The increase in the number of reported accidents does not reflect a real increase in the number of accidents, but only in the frequency of their reportage.

Assumptions are not explicitly stated. Option (A) is not an assumption.

There is no charge of inefficiency in evidence in the passage, which makes Option (B) untenable.

Option (C) is not a viewpoint of the author, but of the Airlines officials. Therefore this option constitutes an incorrect statement.

As has been shown above, Option (D) is correct – the bolded phrase does state a premise of the argument.

As the bolded phrase is not a conclusion but a premise, Option (E) stands invalidated.

Question – 7

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7. As its reputation for making acquisitions of important masterpieces has grown, the museum has increasingly turned down gifts of lesser-known paintings it would have in the past accepted gratefully.Which of the following can properly be inferred from the passage above regarding why the museum in question has been turning down lesser-known paintings?

• A. In the context of its recent acquisitions, it has insufficient storage space to accommodate the lesser-known paintings

• B. The lesser-known paintings have far less re-sale value than the masterpieces.

• C. The fact that the lesser-known paintings are gifts indicates that they are of low quality.

• D. Since its acquisitions of important masterpieces, the museum has acquired a new image which it does not wish to tarnish by accepting lesser-known paintings.

• E. Exhibition of the lesser-known paintings would diminish the value of the masterpieces.

• Answer Explanation:Analysis: There is no hint in the passage concerning the absence of storage space in the museum mentioned, and therefore Option (A) has no validity.

Museums do not generally acquire paintings to re-sell them, and there is no indication in the passage that the museum in question is an exception. Hence, Option (B) is not an inference one can make on the basis of the passage above.

Option (C) constitutes a statement of dubious value, particularly in the light of the fact that the museum did accept such gifts in the past. Therefore, this option has to be ruled out as an answer.

It is obvious from the passage that the museum has entered into a new phase of success and renown after the acquisition of important masterpieces, and that it does not wish to compromise its new-won reputation. As such, Option (D) is an accurate inference from the passage above.

Implicitly, the museum authorities feel that exhibition of the lesser-known paintings would diminish the value not of the masterpieces, but of the museum itself. Therefore, Option (E) is not a reasonable inference one can make from the given passage.

Question – 8

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8. An artist who sells her paintings for a fixed price decides that she must increase her income. Because she does not believe that customers will pay more for her paintings, she decides to cut costs by using cheaper paints and canvasses. She expects that, by cutting costs, she will increase her profit margin per painting and thus increase her annual net income.For the artist’s argument to be logically correct, which of the following must be assumed?

• A. Customers will not pay more for her paintings.

• B. Using cheaper paints and canvasses will not lead to fewer people buying her paintings.

• C. There is a possibility of an economic inflation in the country she belongs to in the period in question

• D. The public demand for paintings has been steadily falling.

• E. She must change her policy of selling her paintings for a fixed price, and try to get as much as possible for each painting.

• Answer Explanation:Analysis: Option (A) has been stated in the passage as an opinion that the artist holds. Hence, it cannot be an assumption.

If the sales of the artist’s paintings drop because of her use of cheaper paints and canvasses, her plan of action will obviously fail. Therefore, for her plan to succeed, it has to be assumed that using cheaper paints and canvasses will not lead to fewer people buying her paintings. Thus, Option (B) is the correct answer option.

If Option (C) were to come true, it would upset the artist’s plan altogether, so this is not an assumption that would tie up with the logical correctness of the artist’s argument.

Option (D) cannot be an assumption if the artist’s argument is to be logically correct. Her argument is based on the supposition that the public demand for her paintings will remain the same.

Option (E) has to be ruled out as an answer because the passage categorically states that the artist does not believe that her customers will be willing to pay more for her paintings.

Question – 9

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9. It was recently reported that Country B had been running a covert intelligence operation within the borders of Country A. While a spokesperson for Country B admitted the charge, the spokesperson said that it was common knowledge that all countries do this, and that Country A was no exception.Which of the following, if true, most seriously undermines the spokesperson’s defense of Country B’s covert intelligence operation within the borders of Country A?

• A. In the past, Country A and Country B have enjoyed good diplomatic relations.

• B. Country A has never, in its history, gone to war against any other country.

• C. There is no evidence of Country A running any covert intelligence operation within the borders of Country B.

• D. The government of Country A, like that of Country B, has an intelligence wing.

• E. The report of the said covert intelligence operation has led to a crisis in the relationship between Country A and Country B.

• Answer Explanation:Analysis: Option (A) has to be rejected as an answer because, if anything, it provides a good reason for Country B not undertaking a covert intelligence operation within the borders of Country A.

Option (B) also undermines the necessity of any nation carrying out a covert intelligence operation against it.

Option (C) would give the lie to the contention of the spokesperson of Country B that ‘all countries do this’, and in so doing, it would seriously weaken the mentioned defense of the spokesperson of Country B. Therefore, Option (C) is the correct answer.

Since it does not necessarily follow that, because a government has an intelligence wing, it should undertake covert intelligence operations against other countries, Option (D) does not really connect with the defense of the spokesperson in question. Hence, this option is not the correct answer.

Option (E) states a result of Country B’s covert intelligence operation and has no relationship with the quoted defense of its spokesperson. As such, this option does not provide the correct answer..

Question – 10

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10. Founded at the dawn of the modern industrial era, the nearly forgotten Women’s Trade Union League (WTUL) played an instrumental role in advancing the cause of working women throughout the early part of the twentieth century. In the face of considerable adversity, the WTUL made a contribution far greater than did most historical footnotes.Which of the following can be inferred from the information above?

• A. The WTUL’s role in advancing the cause of working women is an important part of the history of the early twentieth century.

• B. The WTUL’s contribution to the advancement of women greatly furthered the cause of the feminist movement in the country.

• C. The role of the WTUL, which once seemed very significant, has now diminished to being a mere historical footnote.

• D. Though the WTUL is now a historical footnote, its contribution to society overshadows most other historical footnotes.

• E. Today nobody remembers the WTUL.

• Answer Explanation:Analysis: Option (A) is inaccurate. Firstly, its role has been described as ‘nearly forgotten’ in the passage, and secondly, the term ‘historical footnotes’ has been used in connection with it.

There is no direct or indirect reference to the feminist movement in the passage. Hence, Option (B) has no connection with it.

The passage presents the role of the WTUL not as one that ‘once seemed very significant’, but as one that truly made a marked difference to advancing the cause of working women. Hence, Option (C) would be an incorrect inference from the information above.

Option (D) is correct. The tone of the passage suggests that the achievements of WTUL deserved a larger place in history than being a historical footnote, which, unfortunately, it presently is.

Option (E) is not fully accurate, because there is a difference between being ‘nearly forgotten’ and being completely forgotten.

Question – 11

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11. A system-wide county school anti-smoking education program was instituted last year. The program was clearly a success. Last year, the incidence of students smoking on school premises decreased by over 70 percent.Which of the following, if true, would most seriously weaken the argument in the passage?

• A. The success was measured on the basis of a representative sampling of 300 students.

• B. A critic of the anti-smoking program was heard commenting that students were now probably smoking more on the sly.

• C. Another survey in the same area, conducted by a professional research group, discovered that, during the same period, the incidence of students smoking outside school premises had risen by 5 %.

• D. The said anti-smoking education program featured a talk by a popular television star.

• E. In the year under discussion, there were reports of three major brawls breaking out on the premises of schools where the anti-smoking program had been instituted.

• Answer Explanation:Analysis: If the sampling mentioned in Option (A) was ‘representative’, then the statement in this option strengthens rather than weakens the argument in the passage.

The critic’s observation in Option (B) seems more like guess-work, qualified as it is with the adverb ‘probably’. This prevents it from weakening the argument in the passage.

If, indeed, more students than previously took recourse to smoking outside school campuses, then the anti-smoking education program was not truly successful, as its effect was limited to curtailing smoking only within the campuses. As such, Option (C) is the correct answer option.

Option (D) provides information which has nothing to do with either weakening or strengthening the argument in the passage.

Option (E) constitutes a piece of isolated reporting which cannot be shown to have any proven bearing on the argument under discussion. Hence, it has to be rejected as an answer.

Question – 12

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12. There is now an increasing tendency among major department stores in large urban centers to begin their ‘January sales’ or price reduction campaigns before Christmas, some time before the end of the calendar year.Which of the following, if true, would best explain why the information given above is not surprising?

• A. Price reduction campaigns will ensure higher sales and stock clearance better before Christmas and New Year than later in January, when goods were previously sold at lower prices to offset the drop in demand following the Christmas rush.

• B. So-called ‘price reduction campaigns’ are really ploys to make a fool of the common man – it is made to appear that prices are reduced, whereas in reality they are not. However, this is a trick that the public easily falls for.

• C. For administrative reasons, department stores prefer to sell off all their old stock before the New Year begins.

• D. At first, the price reduction campaigns used to be held in January, but many department stores have now begun to hold them towards the end of the calendar year.

• E. It is difficult for department stores to handle a second onrush of customers almost immediately after the Christmas rush.

• Answer Explanation:Analysis: Option (A) logically explains how and why ‘January sales’ have come to be held in December. As a result, the information given above becomes credible and understandable.

Option (B) does not address the issue in question, and therefore it has to be rejected as an answer.

Option (C) fails to explain why price reduction drives conducted in December should be termed ‘January sales’.

While Option (D) accounts for the origin of the term ‘January sales’, it offers no reason as to why these sales began to be conducted in December.

As people in business give financial profitability high priority, Option (E) does not constitute a satisfactory explanation. Additionally, it makes no attempt to give a valid explanation for the term ‘January sales’.

Question – 13

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13. Compared to the drivers who live in Mountainview, a greater proportion of the drivers who live in Oak Valley exceed the speed limit regularly. This explains why there are more accidents each year in Oak Valley than in Mountainview.Which of the following most closely parallels the reasoning used in the argument above?

• A. The students of Mount Elmont study for longer hours than the students of Ray Academy. That is why the academic results of the former are better than those of the latter.

• B. Compared to cricket, football is a less time-consuming game. This explains why, in India, cricket is more popular than football.

• C. Compared to litchis, apples are more nutritious. This explains why there is a saying, ‘An apple a day keeps the doctor away.’

• D. Compared to New York, a greater proportion of the children of Delhi miss breakfast. This explains why breakfast cereals have a larger sale in New York than in Delhi.

• E. Compared to the rich, a greater proportion of the poor are uneducated. This explains why, in the elections, more rich people vote than the poor.

• Answer Explanation:Analysis: In this argument, two things are compared and, on the basis of the discussed qualities, different results occur in a specified area with regard to these two things.

Option (A) follows the line of reasoning indicated above. Students of Mount Elmont are compared with students of Ray Academy, and because they devote longer hours to study, they are shown as performing better academically.

The logic in Option (B) is questionable, as there is no reason given as to why the time-consuming quality of a game should be connected with its popularity.

Considering the fact that litchis and apples are only two among a large variety of fruits, Option (C) is an irrational statement, and does not parallel the reasoning used in the argument above.

Option (D) reads like a sweeping generalization made from an insufficient premise, as there could be plenty of better reasons than the one mentioned as to why breakfast cereals sell more in New York than in Delhi. This option, therefore, follows a different line of reasoning from the argument above.

Since there is no correlation between wealth and voting, Option (C) is not a logically sound statement. Its pattern of reasoning is different from that of the argument provided above.

Question – 14

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14. A company might shy away from hiring a young job candidate with a doctorate who wants to get into a regular management training program. Companies often feel that doctoral applicants are overqualified or simply too academically oriented.If true, all of the following weaken the above contention EXCEPT:

• A. Pace University offers a doctoral program in business that is designed for qualified executives who want to experience a rigorous study program while continuing their professional careers.

• B. Investment banking firms over the past five years have been hiring PhDs from the academic world at very high salaries.

• C. In recent years, an increasing number of newly minted PhDs in Business have opted for careers in the business world.

• D. Only a few schools encourage business-oriented students to take the doctoral program.

• E. One area of major demand for PhDs is for teachers at graduate business schools.

• Answer Explanation:Analysis: Since Option (A) offers words of encouragement for potential doctorates interested in entering the business world, it weakens the contention in the passage that a doctorate is not a very welcome candidate for a company’s regular management training program.

Option (B) provides motivation for doctorates in the business world, and therefore it weakens the impact of the passage above.

Option (C) weakens the above contention by indicating that career possibilities are increasing for doctorates in the business world.

Option (D) suggests that it is preferable for business-oriented students not to take the doctoral program. As such it strengthens the contention made in the passage, and so it is the correct answer to the above question.

Option (E) does not refer to companies but to business schools. Hence it neither strengthens nor weakens the said contention.

Question – 15

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15. Candidates for election pay close attention to statements and actions that will make the voters see them favorably. In ancient Rome, candidates wore pure white togas to indicate that they were pure, clean, and above any ‘dirty work’. However, it is interesting to note that such a toga was not worn after election.In more modern history, candidates have allied themselves with political parties. Once a voter knows and favors the view of a certain political party, he may vote for anyone with that party’s label. Nevertheless, divisions of opinion develop, so that today there is a wide range of candidate views in any major party.Which of the following conclusions could most properly be drawn from the information above?

• A. In ancient Rome, candidates for election were pure and clean, but today that is not the case.

• B. Today, there are differences of opinion within the same political party, so that voters find it very difficult to choose which party to vote for.

• C. It would be advisable for today’s politicians to take a leaf out of the book of the ancient Romans and wear white clothes before elections to demonstrate their resolve to be pure, clean, and above ‘dirty work’.

• D. While in Roman times people voted for individuals, in modern days they vote for political parties.

• E. The fact that, in Roman times, electoral candidates did not wear togas after election shows that they were as unscrupulous as today’s politicians.

• Answer Explanation:Analysis: Option (A) consists of two inferences that are not supported by the passage. These are that the electoral candidates in ancient Rome were pure and clean, and that their counterparts today are not so.

Nowhere does the passage state that voters today find it very difficult to decide which party to vote for. This invalidates Option (B) as an answer to this question.

Option (C) constitutes a misunderstanding of the text, where the advice suggested in this option is totally non-existent.

Option (D) is a justifiable conclusion to draw from the information given above, as is borne out by the line, ‘In more modern history, candidates have allied themselves with political parties’. As such, Option (D) is the correct answer to the question above.

Option (E) is a gross distortion of the content of the text, and therefore it has to be rejected as a conclusion.