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LSATLearn To Tackle Correlation, Causation Arguments On The LSAT

In this week’s Law School Lowdown post, Shawn P. O’Connor outlines how to identify and attack the single most important question type of the LSAT—the correlation, causation questions. It is the most important question type because the way the LSAT is structured; mastery of it could lead to significant improvement of LSAT scores.
The three multiple-choice sections of the LSAT are reading comprehension, analytical reasoning, and logical reasoning. Regardless of question type, being able to identify and comprehend common argument structures can go a long ways to answering correctly. According to O’Connor there are three main argument structures used on the LSAT.
Correlation and causation tells you two things correlated and that those two things either happen at the same time or quickly after one another (and that one thing caused the other to occur). An example could be this: During one basketball game, a player shoots 50% from the free throw line, making five out of ten shots. She spends a week shooting 100 practice shots every day. A week later she shoots 70%, or seven out of ten free throws. The added practice is correlated to (presumably) a higher percentage of making buckets, but there is no way to prove it caused the higher percentage.
The reason why there is not causation, in this example, comes down to four different potential answer types that will be in the answer bank. For example, the argument (saying the practice caused a higher percentage of making the free throws) is flawed (the answer will describe the correlation and causation with an issue), has an assumption (there is an alternative cause), strengthens the causation or weakens the causation.
Knowing how to identify those four potential answers is the first step to improving LSAT scores. The next step is to practice and practice.
Source: U.S. News

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