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Identify the Inference /Must Be True Question

These type of questions are extremely common. An Inference means the same thing as “must be true”. Conclusions differ from inferences in that conclusions are the result of premises and inferences are something that must be true. The following are the typical Inference (Must be true) based Questions:
  • If the statements above are true, which of the following must also be true?
  • Which of the following is [implied, must be true, implicit, most reasonably drawn] in the passage above?
  • Which of the following inferences is best supported by the statement made above?

How to tackle “Identify the inference / Must be true questions”:

  • Read the stimulus and look for the argument.
  • Note that Must Be True questions may not contain an argument. They may just be a series of facts. Nevertheless, try to find the argument.
  • Avoid choices which contain absolute statements - never, always, none, only etc. Although these words might appear in some correct choice, you should be very sure about them.
  • Some of the options can be eliminated as they go beyond the scope of the passage. Note that an inference can be based on only some of the information provided and not the complete passage.
Example 1 : Stimulus Argument

Increases in funding for police patrols often lower the rate of crimes of opportunity such as petty theft and vandalism by providing visual deterrence in high-crime neighborhoods. Levels of funding for police patrols in some communities are increased when federal matching grants are made available.

Question :
Which of the following can be correctly inferred from the statements above?
(a) Areas with little vandalism can never benefit from visual deterrence.
(b) Communities that do not increase their police patrols are at higher risk for crimes of opportunity late at night.
(c) Federal matching grants for police patrols lower the rate of crimes of opportunity in some communities.
(d) Only federal matching grants are necessary to reduce crime in most neighborhoods.
Solution (C)
(c) is a summary of the information provided; it is the logical end of a chain of reasoning started in the stimulus argument. The sequence of events goes like this :
Increased funding Description: 479.png Increased visual deterrence Description: 484.png Lower crime
The last statement could be mapped as follows:
Federal grants Description: 489.png Increased patrol funds
(c) makes the chain complete by correctly stating that federal grants can lead to lower crime in some communities. Now the logical chain becomes:
Federal grants Description: 494.png Increased funding Description: 500.png Increased visual deterrence Description: 505.png Lower crime
The other answer choices may not be correctly inferred because they go beyond the scope of the argument. They may be objectively, factually correct, or they may be statements that you would tend to agree with. However, you are limited to the argument presented when choosing a correct answer.

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