Critical Reasoning





Example-6


Which of the following best completes the passage below?

In a survey of job applicants, two-fifths admitted to being at least a little dishonest. However, the survey may underestimate the proportion of job applicants who are dishonest, because. ------

(A) some dishonest people taking the survey might have claimed on the survey to be honest.

(B) some generally honest people taking the survey might have claimed on the survey to be dishonest.

(C) some people who claimed on the survey to be at least a little dishonest may be very dishonest.

(D) some people who claimed on the survey to be dishonest may have been answering honestly.

(E) some people who are not job applicants are probably at least a little dishonest.

Analysis


The first sentence says that 2/5 of the applicants admitted that they were at least a little dishonest.

We are asked to spot that choice which is in the nature of a reason that could lead us to suspect that the proportion of the dishonest applicants is, in fact, more that 2/5.

This reason must obviously be one that implies that at least some of the remaining 3/5 of the applicants are also at least a little dishonest, though they have claimed to be honest. (In their cases, claiming to be honest would itself be on act of dishonesty!)

It is (A) which states this, and is the answer.

(B) and (C) are wrong, because honest people would not claim to be dishonest, and even if they had wrongly claimed so, it would reduce and not increase the proportion of really dishonest people.

(D) would only confirm the proportion of dishonest persons as 2/5, and would not result in its underestimation.

(E) refers to persons who had not applied for jobs, and would therefore result in neither underestimation nor overestimation of the proportion of dishonest persons among the job-applicants.


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