8:54 am Evaluating An Argument

Critical Reasoning: Evaluating An Argument

Company Spokesperson: The allegations against our company that it has discriminated against women in its promotions and hiring is apparently false. Actually, the statistics show that the greater percentage of our employees are women. The answer to which of the following questions would evaluate relevantly the argument mentioned above?

  1. What is the tenure / average length of employment of women in the company?
  2. What is the percentage of women employees holding high level positions in the company?
  3. How has the number of women employees in the company has changed over time?
  4. What percentage of employees in other companies of the same industry are women?
  5. Is the CEO of the company a man or a woman?

Also read: Understanding Gmat Critical Reasoning

Which Choice Is Most Relevant In Evaluating The Subject Argument

The correct answer is (B). What makes this question look difficult is that some of the incorrect answers are somehow relevant to the argument mentioned above. However, their relevance is neither as direct nor as clear as choice (B).

We will analyze each choice and start with the correct choice which is choice (B).

The Answer to Choice (B) Directly Evaluates the Argument

We already know from the premises of the argument that percentage of women employees is larger than the one of men employees. In other words, the women employees are more than the men. This might support that the company has not discriminated against women hiring. However, we still don’t know if there is discrimination against women pertaining to promotion. The answer to the question of choice (B) would directly explain if the company discriminated against women. If the answer to the subject question is that there are many women in the company holding high-level positions; then, the charges against the company are apparently false as stated by the company’s spokesman. On the other hand, if the number of women holding high-level positions in the company is less than the one of men; then, the charges against the company are true. Because although the number of women employees is higher, the company does not promote them enough.

The Answer to Choice (A) does not Evaluate the Argument

The answer to choice (A) may reflect the termination practices of the company against women. Whether the average tenure of women in the company is long or short, it is not directly relevant to the hiring and promotion of women.

The Answer to Choice (C) does not Evaluate the Argument

The answer to this question; whether the percentage of the women in the company has changed over time slightly or greatly , is not directly relevant to the hiring and promotion practices of the company,  is not directly relevant to the hiring and promotion practices of the company

The Answer to Choice (D) does not Evaluate the Argument

The answer to this question is irrelevant to the argument. Because whether the percentage of women in other competing company is high or low; it is highly irrelevant to the argument.

The Answer to Choice (E) does not Evaluate the Argument

Choice (E) focuses only on one high level position in the company. Even if this position is held by a women; it does not mean that the company don’t have discriminations against women employees in other positions.

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Final Word

The evaluating to the argument mentioned above should be directly relevant to the premises of the argument. Some answers would be somehow relevant to the premises, but such relevance does not make them the right answer.

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