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Further evidence of a connection between brain physiology

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Further evidence of a connection between brain physiology [#permalink] New post 28 Feb 2012, 20:18
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Further evidence of a connection between brain physiology and psychological states has recently been uncovered in the form of a correlation between electrencephalograph patterns and characteristic moods. A study showed that participants who suffered from clinical depression exhibited less left frontal lobe activity than right, while, conversely, characteristically good-natured participants exhibited greater left lobe activity. Thus one's general disposition is a result of the activity of one's frontal lobe.

Each of the following, if true, weakens the argument, EXCEPT:

(a) Many drugs prescribed to combat clinical depression act by causing increased left lobe activity.
(b) Excessive sleep, a typical consequence of clinical depression, is known to suppress left lobe activity.
(c) Frontal lobe activity is not subject to variation the way general disposition is.
(d) Earlier studies indicated that frontal lobe activity and emotive states are both caused by activity in the brain's limbic system.
(e) Social interaction of the kind not engaged in by most clinically depressed people is known to stimulate left lobe activity.
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Re: Further evidence of a connection [#permalink] New post 29 Feb 2012, 11:03
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The question can be restated as "What Strengthen's the argument"

If drugs are stimulating the frontal left lobe and still the results show lower than normal activity there, this indicates clinically depressed patients even have lower frontal left lobe activity in the absence of the drugs.
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Re: Further evidence of a connection [#permalink] New post 29 Feb 2012, 15:05
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Looking at the question and answer choices, it does not appear to get finished within 1.3 minutes.
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Re: Further evidence of a connection [#permalink] New post 29 Feb 2012, 22:41
Initially, when I do not understand the problem, I cannot choose the right choice. However, even when I do not understand the whole meaning of sentence, I replace the cause & the result in the argument:
X = the activity of one's frontal lobe
Y = general disposition

Conclusion: X => Y

(a) Many drugs prescribed to combat clinical depression act by causing increased left lobe activity. => Drug (Z) affect X to combat Y

This choice strengthens the conclusion X => Y
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Re: Further evidence of a connection [#permalink] New post 01 Mar 2012, 16:50
+1 A

However, C is tempting too. It seems that choice C indicates that the causal relationship is NOT: disposition ----> lobe activity.

So, that would confirm the original conclusion that the causal relationship is: lobe activity ------> disposition. Therefore, this would not weak the argument.

What do you think?
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Re: Further evidence of a connection between brain physiology [#permalink] New post 14 Mar 2014, 07:23
Between A and E anyone want to elaborate a little bit further and get some kudos from me?

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Re: Further evidence of a connection between brain physiology [#permalink] New post 14 Mar 2014, 11:02
First of all I would say that the specifics are not very clear...I got confused between left lobe & left frontal lobe ..I am not sure if they convey the same meaning..But considering that they do..

Can somebody explain to me how did you choose between A & B..

Both say that the intended changes in the behavior were related to the lobe activities(I won't get into the front-back & left-right bullshit...) & vice versa..

1- Pill effects frontal lobe & it improves the mood
2- Excessive Sleep - A consequence of depression - suppresses lobe activity...this supports the argument '...depression exhibited less left frontal lobe activity...' & the conclusion that states of mood differ with activity of lobe or vice versa..
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Re: Further evidence of a connection between brain physiology [#permalink] New post 15 Mar 2014, 15:50
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Causal/Explanation Conclusion: control activity of one's frontal lobe -> control one's general disposition

(a) Many drugs prescribed to combat clinical depression act by causing increased left lobe activity.
Combating depression requires increasing left lobe activity. OR Increase (control) left lobe -> (control) combat clinical depression.

(b) Excessive sleep, a typical consequence of clinical depression, is known to suppress left lobe activity.
Clinical depression -> excessive sleep -> reduces left lobe activity. The argument is reversed (control depression to control lobe activity), thus weakening the argument.

JusTLucK04 wrote:
2- Excessive Sleep - A consequence of depression - suppresses lobe activity...this supports the argument '...depression exhibited less left frontal lobe activity...' & the conclusion that states of mood differ with activity of lobe or vice versa..

Interchanging the cause and effect is rarely valid in critical reasoning, especially with deductive arguments. Actually, for deductive arguments, interchanging invalidates the argument altogether. As for inductive arguments, if the cause and the effect are switched, then the conclusion is inherently weakened.
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Re: Further evidence of a connection between brain physiology [#permalink] New post 15 Mar 2014, 16:04
jlgdr wrote:
Between A and E anyone want to elaborate a little bit further and get some kudos from me?

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(e) Social interaction of the kind not engaged in by most clinically depressed people is known to stimulate left lobe activity.

If the conclusion is:
control activity of one's frontal lobe -> control one's general disposition
Statement E is:
No social interactions for depressed ppl -> no stimulation of left lobe activity in depressed ppl
Then,
Perhaps, left lobe activity controls disposition.

However,
If the conclusion is:
control activity of one's frontal lobe -> control one's general disposition
And, opposite statement of E is:
Social interactions for depressed ppl -> stimulates left lobe activity in depressed ppl
Then,
Do we know for sure that depressed people will no longer be depressed after stimulating the left lobe? What if after left lobe stimulation they are still depressed?
Since we're still not sure and I don't think this result can be inferred, thus, E is neutral.

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Re: Further evidence of a connection between brain physiology [#permalink] New post 15 Mar 2014, 19:13
u0422811 wrote:
Further evidence of a connection between brain physiology and psychological states has recently been uncovered in the form of a correlation between electrencephalograph patterns and characteristic moods. A study showed that participants who suffered from clinical depression exhibited less left frontal lobe activity than right, while, conversely, characteristically good-natured participants exhibited greater left lobe activity. Thus one's general disposition is a result of the activity of one's frontal lobe.

Each of the following, if true, weakens the argument, EXCEPT:

(a) Many drugs prescribed to combat clinical depression act by causing increased left lobe activity.
(b) Excessive sleep, a typical consequence of clinical depression, is known to suppress left lobe activity.
(c) Frontal lobe activity is not subject to variation the way general disposition is.
(d) Earlier studies indicated that frontal lobe activity and emotive states are both caused by activity in the brain's limbic system.
(e) Social interaction of the kind not engaged in by most clinically depressed people is known to stimulate left lobe activity.


This is a pretty good question. It's a classic causality question, where the conclusion attributes one of the events as the cause and the other as the effect. Each of the 4 incorrect answer choices uses one of the 5 methods that the Critical Reasoning Bible states as the proper ways to attack a Weaken causality question.

b) Shows that the relationship is reversed. The depression is causing the left lobe activity to react.
c) Shows that when the effect occurs, the cause does not necessarily occur. General disposition seems to vary, but frontal lobe activity does not move in tandem with it, meaning the cause does not occur all the time when the effect occurs.
d) Shows that there is an alternate cause for both events, that cause being the limbic system.
e) Similar to b, where the cause is in fact the effect here. The behaviors from the depression is what causes the left lobe activity to react.

That leaves A as the last choice that does not match any of the CR Bible's methods. "A" reinforces that doing something to the left lobe activity will cause the general disposition to react.
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Re: Further evidence of a connection between brain physiology [#permalink] New post 18 Mar 2014, 05:19
mejia401 wrote:
Causal/Explanation Conclusion: control activity of one's frontal lobe -> control one's general disposition

(a) Many drugs prescribed to combat clinical depression act by causing increased left lobe activity.
Combating depression requires increasing left lobe activity. OR Increase (control) left lobe -> (control) combat clinical depression.

(b) Excessive sleep, a typical consequence of clinical depression, is known to suppress left lobe activity.
Clinical depression -> excessive sleep -> reduces left lobe activity. The argument is reversed (control depression to control lobe activity), thus weakening the argument.

JusTLucK04 wrote:
2- Excessive Sleep - A consequence of depression - suppresses lobe activity...this supports the argument '...depression exhibited less left frontal lobe activity...' & the conclusion that states of mood differ with activity of lobe or vice versa..

Interchanging the cause and effect is rarely valid in critical reasoning, especially with deductive arguments. Actually, for deductive arguments, interchanging invalidates the argument altogether. As for inductive arguments, if the cause and the effect are switched, then the conclusion is inherently weakened.


Lets go through the arguments again: Further evidence of a connection between brain physiology and psychological states has recently been uncovered in the form of a correlation between electrencephalograph patterns and characteristic moods. A study showed that participants who suffered from clinical depression exhibited less left frontal lobe activity than right, while, conversely, characteristically good-natured participants exhibited greater left lobe activity. Thus one's general disposition is a result of the activity of one's frontal lobe.

Now,

who suffered from clinical depression exhibited less left frontal lobe activity than right-->

Break It Down to: 1. Had clinical depression
2. Exhibited less lobe activity

characteristically good-natured participants exhibited greater left lobe activity
Break It Down: 1. Had Good Nature
2. Exhibited greater lobe activity

No where in each of these two premises has it been explicitly stated that which is the cause & which is the effect

Now we look at the options-
Each of the following, if true, weakens the argument, EXCEPT:

(a) Many drugs prescribed to combat clinical depression act by causing increased left lobe activity.
(b) Excessive sleep, a typical consequence of clinical depression, is known to suppress left lobe activity.

As we don't know which is the cause & which the effect, both can be considered to be correct
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Re: Further evidence of a connection between brain physiology [#permalink] New post 19 Mar 2014, 05:15
u0422811 wrote:
Further evidence of a connection between brain physiology and psychological states has recently been uncovered in the form of a correlation between electrencephalograph patterns and characteristic moods. A study showed that participants who suffered from clinical depression exhibited less left frontal lobe activity than right, while, conversely, characteristically good-natured participants exhibited greater left lobe activity. Thus one's general disposition is a result of the activity of one's frontal lobe.

Each of the following, if true, weakens the argument, EXCEPT:

(a) Many drugs prescribed to combat clinical depression act by causing increased left lobe activity.
(b) Excessive sleep, a typical consequence of clinical depression, is known to suppress left lobe activity.
(c) Frontal lobe activity is not subject to variation the way general disposition is.
(d) Earlier studies indicated that frontal lobe activity and emotive states are both caused by activity in the brain's limbic system.
(e) Social interaction of the kind not engaged in by most clinically depressed people is known to stimulate left lobe activity.


Information provided in first clause is not of any use.
Further evidence of a connection between brain physiology and psychological states has recently been uncovered in the form of a correlation between electrencephalograph patterns and characteristic moods.

Remaining information make some sense to solve this question.
Premise 1 :
A study showed that participants who suffered from clinical depression exhibited less left frontal lobe activity than right, (left frontal lobe vs right frontal lobe)
Premise 2:
conversely, characteristically good-natured participants exhibited greater left lobe activity. (left lobe vs right lobe)
Conclusion:
Thus one's general disposition is a result of the activity of one's frontal lobe. Conclusion is based on overall frontal lobe activity.

lobes are super-set > left frontal lobe and right frontal lobe or frontal lobes are sub-set.
Lets try to find relationship between all these lobes:

This question is bit difficult because relation between Premise 1 and 2 is not concrete it is just based on one of the many assumptions.
Thus we should use negation to validate our assumption.
In a good nurtured person author says overall left lobe activity is higher than right lobe. Thus, I can assume left frontal lobe is highly active in good natured person compared to his right frontal lobe. If I negate it and I say left frontal lobe is not highly active than Premise 1 fails. With this assumption we can relate Premise 1 and Premise 2 and set a relation between them.

Prethinking: Anything which says by improving the activity of left frontal lobe a person can become good nature-rd.

I used POE to get the answer because this question is not that straightforward to allow above mentioned analysis in less than 2 min.


(a) Many drugs prescribed to combat clinical depression act by causing increased left lobe activity. (Suspect)
(b) Excessive sleep, a typical consequence of clinical depression, is known to suppress left lobe activity. ( this option is not a strengthener, it is just describing one symptom and not telling how it affects one's disposition)
(c) Frontal lobe activity is not subject to variation the way general disposition is. ( Weakener : rejecting the relationship between disposition and Frontal lobe activity )
(d) Earlier studies indicated that frontal lobe activity and emotive states are both caused by activity in the brain's limbic system. (Out of context, Only a neurologist can help us to understand how limbic system and disposition are related)
(e) Social interaction of the kind not engaged in by most clinically depressed people is known to stimulate left lobe activity. ( In depressed people something is responsible to stimulate left lobe activity, we do not know whether it decrease or increase the activity or how disposition is related)


After 3 min of brain exercise:
(a) Many drugs prescribed to combat clinical depression act by causing increased left lobe activity. (Suspect)
Why a doctor prescribes drugs to a clinically depressed patient ? Ans : to help him or her out to improve his or her mental condition or I can say to improve his or her disposition. Thus, by improving one's left lobe activity a doctor can improve one's disposition.
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Re: Further evidence of a connection between brain physiology   [#permalink] 19 Mar 2014, 05:15
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