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Introduction to Fact, Inference, Judgement

Facts: deal with pieces of information that one has heard, seen or read, and which are open to discovery or verification. Verification is the key word

 

Inferences: are conclusions drawn about the unknown, on the basis of the known


Judgements: are opinions that imply approval or disapproval of persons, objects, situations, and occurrences in the past, the present or the future.


While solving a question, in my opinion, students are able to decide upon Facts very easily. For example: 1.85 lakh students took CAT 2011.


They face difficulty in deciding upon if the given statement is a Judgment or Inference.

Judgment is somewhat “personal”. It is what a person believes to be true, and do not have any proof that if it will be accepted by everybody. So it is like a “personal opinion”. For example, a teacher looks at the progress report of his student and says that – You will be a rich man in future. This statement is a personal opinion of the teacher, and everybody around may not agree with the statement. Besides, this statement cannot be verified to be true at the same time.


Difference between Judgment and Inference:

Judgment and Inference differ on the ground of “logically verifiability”. Inference can be logically verified to be right or wrong whereas Judgment is a personal opinion and does not have scope of being verified.


Consider the following example from CAT 2006:

  1. According to all Statistical indications, the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan has managed to keep pace with its ambitious goals.
  2. The Mid-day Meal Scheme has been a significant incentive for the poor to send their little ones to school, thus establishing the vital link between healthy bodies and healthy minds.
  3. Only about 13 million children in the age group of 6 to 14 years are out of school.
  4. The goal of universalisation of elementary education has to be a pre-requisite for the evolution and development of our country.
    1. IIFJ
    2. JIIJ
    3. IJFJ
    4. IJFI
    5. JIFI

Consider Statement 1

According to all Statistical indications, the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan has managed to keep pace with its ambitious goals.


 Explanation:

This statement talks about some goals, and how Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan has managed to achieve those. To substantiate it, statement resorts to “all statistical indications”. To analyze this statement, we would start with the Double Y Junction test:


Can we verify this for being true or false? – Yes, definitely.

Since we can verify this statement to be true or false, hence, this statement is Inference.

Consider Statement 2

The Mid-day Meal Scheme has been a significant incentive for the poor to send their little ones to school, thus establishing the vital link between healthy bodies and healthy minds.


Explanation:

Can we verify “thus establishing the vital link between healthy bodies and healthy minds” this?


We are not required to verify the link between healthy bodies and healthy mind. Rather we need to verify the linkage between Mid-day Meal Scheme and poor sending their little ones to school?


We cannot reliably verify this statement, hence, this statement is Judgment.

Consider Statement 3

Only about 13 million children in the age group of 6 to 14 years are out of school.


Explanation:

This is not an opinion, neither personal nor collective. This is simply a piece of data – hence, a fact.

Consider Statement 4

The goal of universalisation of elementary education has to be a pre-requisite for the evolution and development of our country.


Explanation:

This statement is again a personal opinion – talking about future. There is no reliable way through which we can check the veracity of this future event. Hence, this statement is a Judgment.


Now we summarize the whole discussion:

  • Statement 1 Inference
  • Statement 2 Judgment
  • Statement 3 Fact
  • Statement 4 Judgment

Hence, option (c) is the answer.





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