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Therapist: Cognitive psychotherapy focuses on changing a

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Therapist: Cognitive psychotherapy focuses on changing a [#permalink]

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New post 18 Sep 2017, 20:25
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Therapist: Cognitive psychotherapy focuses on changing a patient’s conscious beliefs. Thus, cognitive psychotherapy is likely to be more effective at helping patients overcome psychological problems than are forms of psychotherapy that focus on changing unconscious beliefs and desires, since only conscious beliefs are under the patient’s direct conscious control.

Which one of the following, if true, would most strengthen the therapist’s argument?

(A) Psychological problems are frequently caused by unconscious beliefs that could be changed with the aid of psychotherapy.

(B) It is difficult for any form of psychotherapy to be effective without focusing on mental states that are under the patient’s direct conscious control.

(C) Cognitive psychotherapy is the only form of psychotherapy that focuses primarily on changing the patient’s conscious beliefs.

(D) No form of psychotherapy that focuses on changing the patient’s unconscious beliefs and desires can be effective unless it also helps change beliefs that are under the patient’s direct conscious control.

(E) All of a patient’s conscious beliefs are under the patient’s conscious control, but other psychological states cannot be controlled effectively without the aid of psychotherapy.

Source: LSAT
[Reveal] Spoiler: OA

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Re: Therapist: Cognitive psychotherapy focuses on changing a [#permalink]

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New post 19 Sep 2017, 10:41
broall wrote:
Therapist: Cognitive psychotherapy focuses on changing a patient’s conscious beliefs. Thus, cognitive psychotherapy is likely to be more effective at helping patients overcome psychological problems than are forms of psychotherapy that focus on changing unconscious beliefs and desires, since only conscious beliefs are under the patient’s direct conscious control.

Which one of the following, if true, would most strengthen the therapist’s argument?

(A) Psychological problems are frequently caused by unconscious beliefs that could be changed with the aid of psychotherapy.

(B) It is difficult for any form of psychotherapy to be effective without focusing on mental states that are under the patient’s direct conscious control.

(C) Cognitive psychotherapy is the only form of psychotherapy that focuses primarily on changing the patient’s conscious beliefs.

(D) No form of psychotherapy that focuses on changing the patient’s unconscious beliefs and desires can be effective unless it also helps change beliefs that are under the patient’s direct conscious control.

(E) All of a patient’s conscious beliefs are under the patient’s conscious control, but other psychological states cannot be controlled effectively without the aid of psychotherapy.

Source: LSAT


Will go with B .
Argument tells that psychotherapy that change the patient’s conscious beliefs is effective.

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Re: Therapist: Cognitive psychotherapy focuses on changing a [#permalink]

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New post 03 Oct 2017, 05:58
OE from MGMAT:

What’s the assumption? The author assumes that in order to be effective, a treatment must address mental processes that are under the control of the patient. This is easy to miss, but it’s an important assumption that is critical to the argument. We can strengthen the argument by making this assumption explicit. Answer (B) does this.

(A) weakens the argument.
(C) is irrelevant. It doesn’t matter if it’s the only form of therapy that focuses on conscious beliefs. The argument deals only with cognitive psychotherapy vs. other forms of psychotherapy that do NOT focus on conscious beliefs.
(D) strengthens the argument by providing an additional piece of supporting evidence, but it does not strengthen as much as answer (B). An answer that fills a gap in the argument will generally strengthen the most (since the argument is weak with the gap).
(E) fails to provide any information comparing the two types of therapy.
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Therapist: Cognitive psychotherapy focuses on changing a [#permalink]

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New post 03 Oct 2017, 07:24
Let's first BOIL down the argument.

1. Cognitive psychotherapy's focus is conscious beliefs.
2. Patients can ONLY directly control conscious beliefs. => Cognitive psychotherapy (aka focusing on Conscious) beliefs are more EFFECTIVE than other forms of psychotherapy

What's the gap here? It's pretty clear from the 2nd point that we have an assumption: PATIENT's DIRECT CONTROL = MORE EFFECTIVE.
Let's scan through the answer choices to find something that is related to the gap.

(A) Psychological problems are frequently caused by unconscious beliefs that could be changed with the aid of psychotherapy.
-Out of scope, we are trying to argue why Cognitive psychotherapy is EFFECTIVE.

(B) It is difficult for any form of psychotherapy to be effective without focusing on mental states that are under the patient’s direct conscious control.
-In other words, TO BE an effective form of psychotherapy, IT MUST FOCUS on mental states (or conscious) that are DIRECTLY UNDER PATIENTS CONTROL. This is basically stating our gap and assumption!!

(C) Cognitive psychotherapy is the only form of psychotherapy that focuses primarily on changing the patient’s conscious beliefs.
-Just because it is the only one..doesn't mean it is EFFECTIVE. This doesn't help our argument.

(D) No form of psychotherapy that focuses on changing the patient’s unconscious beliefs and desires can be effective unless it also helps change beliefs that are under the patient’s direct conscious control.
-In other words, TO be EFFECTIVE on changing patient's unconscious beliefs we ALSO NEED to change conscious beliefs. This is tricky..let's rewind a bit and look at what exactly are we trying to prove. What we do mean when we say Cognitive psychotherapy are more effective. Reading the stem again, we get "cognitive psychotherapy is likely to be more effective at helping patients overcome psychological problems than...". Looks like we are looking at EFFECTIVE in "overcome psychological problems" NOT "changing unconscious beliefs". Therefore this is OUT of scope!

(E) All of a patient’s conscious beliefs are under the patient’s conscious control, but other psychological states cannot be controlled effectively without the aid of psychotherapy.
-Obvious out of scope. We don't care what the patient can control. We are trying to prove IF Cognitive psychotherapy is more effective than other types of psychotherapy

B is the winner here.
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Therapist: Cognitive psychotherapy focuses on changing a [#permalink]

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New post 08 Oct 2017, 17:58
Thanks for the explanations!

Please post your explanations or use the request verbal experts' reply button to post specific questions.
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Therapist: Cognitive psychotherapy focuses on changing a   [#permalink] 08 Oct 2017, 17:58
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