Analytical reasoning questions may seem impossible to answer until you learn how to apply a strategic approach. With practice, determining the game type, developing a game board, and evaluating the various conditions will become almost second nature. You may eventually find these questions to be almost easy!

  • Stay calm and focused — remember, you can do these!

  • Work one problem at a time; work the whole problem, and then move on to the next one.

  • Read the facts carefully. Determine whether you’re working an ordering game or a grouping game.

  • Create a game board with a list of game pieces, box chart, and record of the rules in shorthand.

  • Expand the game board by making connections between the rules and creating possible orders or assignments.

  • Almost always, the first question in the set simply involves an application of the rules. So if you’re having trouble expanding your game board, tackle the first question to help you focus.

  • Read the questions carefully. Note whether your answer could be true, must be true, could be false, or must be false.

  • Check all answers and rely on the process of elimination.

    • For answers that must be true, eliminate answer choices that either must be false or could be false.

    • For answers that must be false, eliminate answer choices that either must be true or could be true.

    • For answers that are possible or true, eliminate answers that must be false.

    • For answers that are possible or false, eliminate answers that must be true.

  • If a question seems difficult at first, try another in the same section. Solving some questions in the set may help you answer others in the set.

  • When you finish one problem, forget it, and clear your brain for the next one.

About This Article

This article is from the book:

About the book authors:

Lisa Zimmer Hatch, MA, and Scott A. Hatch, JD, have been preparing individuals to excel on standardized tests, gain admission to college, and secure careers since 1987. For nearly 30 years, they have provided their award-winning standardized test preparation throughout the world. Amy Hackney Blackwell, JD, PhD is a writer and former attorney. She holds a JD from the University of Virginia School of Law, an MA in history from Vanderbilt University, an AB from Duke University and a PhD from Clemson University.

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