Step by step approach for tackling inference based questions in verbal section.
This article will tell you about reading between the lines to tackle inference based questions in verbal RC and CR.
Critical Reasoning (CR) and Reading Comprehension (RC) both see the occurrence of inference questions. So the need to master these is more of a compulsion than a mere need. But the good news is that once you get the knack of doing inference questions of any one of the two categories you are good to go with the other.
The twist here is that RC and CR are given as based on some really tricky scientific data or are science based. So people often get trapped in the snare of it.
It also happens that inference questions come in the form of “Draw a conclusion” or “strengthen or weaken this argument”, these types are the trickiest of all and are often very misleading.
The problems start when we start imagining all sorts of things even if they are not mentioned in the passage and make our own conclusions. While the essence actually lies in deducing something that’s true form the information that’s available to you in the passage. Don’t assume anything that’s not mentioned in there.
For an example: I said “I love dogs”. With this statement given don’t go about assuming that I’ll pet your dog or I’ll take it out just because I love dogs….I might be allergic to dogs too!
How you tackle such questions using simple 4 step approach.
1) Categorize the Question: understanding structure
What question type is it? Look for the word inferred, assertions and conclusions which is your “bargain”: this is an Inference question type. It might also be quoted as-
The information above supports which of the following assertions? Or what conclusion can be drawn from the evidence above?
Which of the following assertions is most strongly supported by the evidence above?
Which of the following conclusions can most properly be drawn from the information above?
So once you are aware of the question type you are ready to move ahead!
2) Simplifying the Argument: reconstruction
Here comes the step where you simplify the un-understandable technical language of the argument. Put the jargons into simpler terms. Formulate your own approach here!
3) Final inference
Pay heed on the information give in the passage and use only that much to make inferences. It isn’t required that you use all the information given and rather avoid going further than the given information.
4) Working your way from wrong till right
While working through options, keep crossing of the wrong ones and once you are left with lesser options that seem right your task becomes easier.
Trying this step by step approach will definately help you tackle inference based questions in your exam.
Good luck with your studies..