Human life is full of tricky situations. Difficult choices are to be made, including choosing between what to believe and what not to. We often disagree with other’s points of view on the solution to a particular problem due to the subjective nature of human judgment and the capability to look at the same situation from different angles. The mechanism through which we are able to move beyond individualistic notions to establish fact is called Logical Reasoning (LR).
The word “logic” has an important role here in ascertaining what is more credible and which reasoning is sound. It is not always about finding the ‘truth’. Logic’s prime interest is which fact can be established, using the most appropriate strand of reasoning supported by the most sensible argument. For example, if we are discussing the direction from which the sun rises, we have facts in favour of the east, than any other direction. Assuming, at a later stage, we get proof substantiating the south, we become liable to turn our reasoning towards the south. Hence, logic is a tool used to find the strength of an argument put forward in favour of or against something.
The key topics in which you should be well versed when it comes to the LR Section of CAT are Clocks, calendars, binary logic, seating arrangement, blood relations, logical sequence, assumption, premise, conclusion, linear and matrix arrangement. These will test your logic AND mathematical skills. In the computer-based test for CAT 2016, the Logical Reasoning section will be a part of the DI-LR (Data Interpretation-Logical Reasoning) section in CAT comprising of 32 questions.
Most problems give a variety of conditions and you must use an “if”-“then” approach to choose the most appropriate hint or clue. The smartest and most important way to do that is to read the entire problem before solving the question(s). When practising LR, making a chart or drawing a picture are good strategies, especially if you are a visual thinker. Keep the following points in mind while approaching an LR problem:
- Study the questions carefully. Never assume any information. Consider the problem statement for that particular passage and take down the given facts without assuming any secondary shades of the facts.
- Both the factual passage and the sentence completion instruction will give you the underlying facts to be known and both must be considered in making your choice. Here, the method of elimination proves extremely handy.
- In questions that ask you to select a valid conclusion, always choose the one conclusion that most definitely follows the information given. In questions that ask you to find the invalid alternative, choose the one conclusion that most definitely doesn’t follow the information.
- The questions in the assessment will vary in difficulty level throughout the CAT Paper. When you encounter a question that is difficult for you, try to visualize the problem statement (draw diagrams or schematics) on your “scratch” paper provided.
Find out the top 5 ways to improve Logical Reasoning for CAT in the linked article.