Section 3, Question 1:
Situation: Someone living in a cold climate buys a winter coat that is stylish but not warm in order to appear sophisticated.
Analysis: People are sometimes willing to sacrifice personal comfort or pleasure for the sake of appearances. The analysis provided for the situation above is most appropriate for which one of the following situations?
(A) A person buys an automobile to commute to work even though public transportation is quick and reliable.
(B) A parent buys a car seat for a young child because it is more colorful and more comfortable for the child than the other car seats on the market, though no safer.
(C) A couple buys a particular wine even though their favorite wine is less expensive and better tasting because they think it will impress their dinner guests.
(D) A person sets her thermostat at a low temperature during the winter because she is concerned about the environmental damage caused by using fossil fuels to heat her home.
(E) An acrobat convinces the circus that employs him to purchase an expensive outfit for him so that he can wear it during his act to impress the audience.
A good plan of attack for logical reasoning questions is a simple one- read the question, identify what question type it is, plan out the answer in your head, then proceed to look at the answers. Go ahead and make an attempt at this and then come back here and we will step through how to get to the correct answer.
First, we can determine that this is a “must be true” question type- so we must find an answer choice that has the same logic pattern as presented to us in the question. The logic pattern boils down to trading one thing (comfort) for another (appearance). First, let’s take a look at option (a)- here we have someone buying a car despite having public transportation. There is no sacrifice here that involves comfort for appearance, therefore we can eliminate (a). Option (b) is choosing a car seat where you sacrifice safety for comfort and colors, which can seem tempting but is not the exact fact pattern that we are looking for- so we eliminate (b). Option (c) is sacrificing pleasure (of their favorite wine) for appearance (to impress the guests). This aligns exactly with the logic pattern we are looking for, so we can state (c) is the correct answer. Let’s go through the other options just to make sure though. Option (d) sacrifices comfort (lowering thermostat) for the sake of the environment- this does not fully align up with the fact pattern we are looking for. So, we can eliminate (d). In (e) there is the sacrifice of money for appearance, and again this may partly align with the fact pattern, but not completely. Therefore, (e) also holds to be false. Therefore (c) is our correct answer since there was a sacrifice of comfort for appearance- just like in the original question. If you’d like more practice, here are a few more logical reasoning example questions from AdmissionsConsultants.