Question: Relay Teams

Comment on Relay Teams

Hey Brent, can you help me out with this question?

Marketing strategist: Agency A designed an advertising campaign that our company is about to test with a focus group. We are wondering whether a new ad campaign will increase our name recognition among consumers. As a contingency, we have decided that we might ask Agency B to design an alternate campaign. However, if we find that A’s campaign elicits positive responses from the focus group, we will not ask B for a campaign.

A statement that must be true if the marketing strategist’s statements are true: After the focus testing is complete, if the company ______, then it must also be the case that the company ______.

Select for 1 if and 2 then the two different options that create a statement that must be true if the marketing strategist’s statements are true. Make only two selections, one in each column.

15A 15B
1 if 2 then
A believes A’s campaign will increase the company’s name recognition
B believes A’s campaign will decrease the company’s name recognition
C asks B for a campaign
D asks A for an alternate campaign
E believes the focus group did not respond positively to A’s campaign

The official answer is: 15A C and 15B E
However I feel that the reverse E and C should also be true because in an earlier lesson we have learnt that If-then statements can be reversed without changing the meaning.
Where am I wrong?
gmat-admin's picture

I believe you might be confusing the CR concept in this question with a strategy I discuss in this Sentence Correction (SC) video: https://www.gmatprepnow.com/module/gmat-sentence-correction/video/1183

In the SC video, I say that we can reverse the order of IF-THEN sentences, BUT in those sentences, the antecedent and the consequent remain the same.

For example, in the sentence "If you touch Joe's feet, he will laugh" the antecedent is touching Joe's feet, and the consequent is Joe's laughing."

We can also rewrite the sentence as "Joe will laugh if your touch his feet." In this "reversed" sentence, the antecedent is still touching Joe's feet, and the consequent is still Joe's laughing."

In the above example, you are reversing the antecedent and the consequent. This does not always yield the same meaning.

For example: "If an animal is a pig, then that animal has ears." This statement is true. The antecedent is being a pig, and the consequent is having ears.

If we reverse the antecedent and consequent, we get: "If an animal has ears, then that animal is a pig." This statement is not true.

Does that help?

Thank you so much!

"If the company believes A’s campaign will decrease the company’s name recognition, then it must also be true that the company asks B for campaign."

Can someone please explain why is this not correct?
gmat-admin's picture

I have a feeling this isn't an official GMAT question, since it tests formal logic.

The formal logic is as follows:
If it's true that "If A then B," then it's also true that: If not B, then not A"

For example,
"If an animal is a pig, then that animal has ears." (this is true).
Given this, it must also be true that "If an animal does NOT have ears, then that animal is NOT a pig" (this is also true).
This is called the CONTRAPOSITIVE, and it's used in formal logic.

A lot of people mistake the above property with a different (INCORRECT) conclusion which goes like this:
If it's true that "If A then B," then it's also true that: If not A, then not B"
Here's an example that shows this is NOT a true property:
"If an animal is a pig, then that animal has ears." (this is true).
So, it must also be true that "If an animal is NOT a pig, then that animal does NOT have ears" (this false since dogs and cats are NOT pigs, yet they have ears).
The above (incorrect) reasoning is called the NEGATION FALLACY.

The question tells us: If we find that A’s campaign elicits positive responses from the focus group, we will NOT ask B for a campaign.

If we apply the CONTRAPOSITIVE, we get: If we ask B for a campaign, then we found that A’s campaign does NOT elicit positive responses from the focus group. (this contrapositive is also true, and it explains why the correct answer is C/E)

If we apply the NEGATION FALLACY, we get: If we find that A’s campaign does NOT elicit positive responses from the focus group, we WILL ask B for a campaign.

For this reason, your answer is incorrect.

Thanks admin!

This is indeed an OG Question.

Thanks for the clear and detailed explanation. I am not new to 'Conditional Reasoning' and have practiced sufficiently. However, the concept does not come naturally to me, specially since it was not a CR Question.

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