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How to Approach “Parallel Flaw” Questions on the LSAT

“Flaw” questions on the LSAT can appear in a variety of forms, but all essentially ask you to focus on the same thing: the logical fallacy of the argument. The most common logical flaws are apparent to even the novice law student, but if you find yourself getting some of the harder “Parallel Flaw” questions incorrect on your LSAT practice tests, it may be that your approach needs to be stepped-up to get primed for LSAT Test Day.  The typical “Parallel Flaw” LSAT question asks: “Which one of the following contains a flaw that most closely parallels the flaw contained in the passage?” Try this LSAT critical reasoning flaw question before we review your method for this question-type.

Step 1 – Take apart the argument in the passage, using your scratch pad. If you don’t fully focus on the argument in the passage first, you can’t even begin to know what is “parallel.” If you’re getting this relatively easy question-type wrong, you’re probably jumping too quickly to the answer choices or failing to utilize your scratch pad. Your notes don’t have to be extensive, but even writing a couple choice words will “firm up” in your brain what the argument’s flaw is, and allow you to better remember it as you weed through the answer choices.

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Step 2 – Eliminate answer choices that are “obviously” wrong. The more exact your understanding is of the given argument’s flaw, the more quickly you’ll be able to weed out the obviously wrong choices. Spend more time up front of the passage, and you’ll breeze through the answer choices. Narrowed it down to two? Move on to Step 3:

Step 3 – Carefully compare any remaining choices. How are they different in terms of scope, word choice, etc. What is the basis for the flaw in each one? Remember, you are looking for the choice that best mimics the flaw in the argument, so it might not necessarily be the answer choice that is the same format or subject-matter. In fact, it commonly won’t be!

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• http://www.facebook.com/rose.lee.90834776 Rose Lee

Nice information. some useful LSAT Sample Questions