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I am currently practising some critical reasoning questions

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I am currently practising some critical reasoning questions [#permalink] New post 04 Feb 2008, 07:18
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I am currently practising some critical reasoning questions and I found one for which I answered wrongly and couldn't understand the answer at all. Hope someone else here has better luck!

Here it is:

As a promotional experiment, Omega Company distributes four million catalogs. In one of the two versions of the catalog, the description of each item for sale mentioned a "Made by Hand" label. The number of purchases from consumers receiving that catalog was twenty percent greater than the number of purchases from consumers receiving a catalog that did not mention the label. Thus, the mention of the label stimulated sales.

Which of the following, if true, could best be used to challenge the conclusion drawn above?

(A) Consumers receiving the catalog mentioning the label had previously purchased items from Omega Company by mail but consumers receiving the other catalog had not.

(B) Surveys showed that consumers returned purchased items to Omega Company during the promotional campaign at the same rate regardless of which catalog they received.

(C) The number of purchases from Omega Company declined substantially after the promotional campaign was completed.

(D) Omega Company mailed three times as many catalogs that did not mention the "Made by Hand" label as catalogs that did mention the label.

(E) Omega Company sold twenty percent fewer items during the year of the promotional campaign than it had during the previous year.
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Re: CR "Made by Hand" label [#permalink] New post 04 Feb 2008, 07:42
A
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Re: CR "Made by Hand" label [#permalink] New post 04 Feb 2008, 07:44
What is your reasoning behind choosing "A" ? :)
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Re: CR "Made by Hand" label [#permalink] New post 04 Feb 2008, 07:48
(A) Consumers receiving the catalog mentioning the label had previously purchased items from Omega Company by mail but consumers receiving the other catalog had not - they might have bought because of previous favorable experience with the Omega products and not because of hand label
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Re: CR "Made by Hand" label [#permalink] New post 04 Feb 2008, 08:04
Hmm. Thanks. This was really too close to call for me...I choose E because it said that the company sold 20% fewer items...I guess I was misled there.
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Re: CR "Made by Hand" label [#permalink] New post 04 Feb 2008, 08:15
Expert's post
A

As a promotional experiment, Omega Company distributes four million catalogs. In one of the two versions of the catalog, the description of each item for sale mentioned a "Made by Hand" label. The number of purchases from consumers receiving that catalog was twenty percent greater than the number of purchases from consumers receiving a catalog that did not mention the label. Thus, the mention of the label stimulated sales.

the first assumption: the number of catalogs with "Made by Hand" labels is the same or fever than the number of catalogs without "Made by Hand" labels.

the second assumption: The group of consumers that received catalogs with "Made by Hand" labels is not differ from the group of consumers that received catalogs without "Made by Hand" labels.


Which of the following, if true, could best be used to challenge the conclusion drawn above?

(A) Consumers receiving the catalog mentioning the label had previously purchased items from Omega Company by mail but consumers receiving the other catalog had not. - the second assumption.

(B) Surveys showed that consumers returned purchased items to Omega Company during the promotional campaign at the same rate regardless of which catalog they received. - there is no difference between catalogs.

(C) The number of purchases from Omega Company declined substantially after the promotional campaign was completed. - there is no difference between catalogs.

(D) Omega Company mailed three times as many catalogs that did not mention the "Made by Hand" label as catalogs that did mention the label. - it strengthens the argument.

(E) Omega Company sold twenty percent fewer items during the year of the promotional campaign than it had during the previous year. - there is no difference between catalogs.
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Re: CR "Made by Hand" label [#permalink] New post 04 Feb 2008, 17:30
i would say A, as already mentioned.

if the customers receiving the made by hand catalog were already more likely to purchase items due to their history, then we cannot say for sure that the increased occurance of sales was due to the label only.
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Re: CR "Made by Hand" label [#permalink] New post 06 Feb 2008, 01:09
The answer is indeed A. Thanks all for contributing! I finally understand :-D

To VP, in your second assumption, when you say that "The group of consumers that received catalogs with "Made by Hand" labels is not differ from the group of consumers that received catalogs without "Made by Hand" labels.", could you clarify what you mean by "not differ"?

At first, I took the phrase "not differ" to mean that both groups are the same i.e. the group that received the catalogs with labels also received the catalogs without labels. But now I realise you actually probably meant that the two groups had the same opinion of the items for sale. And (A) shows that the group that received the catalog with the label may actually NOT have the same opinion i.e. they were influenced by their past purchases. Therefore (A) challenges the conclusion.

Hope I did not get my reasoning wrong. Please feel free to correct me if I've totally gone off tangent!
Re: CR "Made by Hand" label   [#permalink] 06 Feb 2008, 01:09
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