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Multiple Answer Questions - Inference
Welcome to the multiple answer inference question. It’s an important question type because the test writers like to put inference questions in the MAQs, the Multiple Answer Questions, often. So that’s why I gave it a separate video. Now this doesn’t look like our typical intro here with this massive text. The reason I put this here is just to re-familiarize yourself with the text if you’ve forgotten it.
Now if you’re fresh from the other lesson videos using this text, no need to worry, but if not, pause and read. Okay, let’s actually dive in to the intro here on Inference MAQ, or multiple answer questions. Now the inference question in general is pretty common on MAQs. But especially at the higher level, you’ll get a bunch of them and that’s because they’re tricky.
They’re hard and the test writers know this so in order to make a tough GRE verbal section with a reading comp passage throw in a couple of inference MAQs. And so, it’s good to keep a mind, especially if you are aiming for that harder verbal section. What’s also important here is that inferences haven’t changed from the inference videos.
It’s really the same things. Oh, what was that? Well, an inference question is something that is airtight. The answer can be defended, and it’s not a kind of wishy washy huh. Well I think I could infer that, sort of, kind of. When you hear that logic in your head, then you know that you’re probably dealing with something that’s most likely not the answer.
Again, going back to number one, an inference should be pretty airtight. So what I’ve done here is based on that passage I’ve come up with some inferences. Your rule here is to say is this a valid GRE inference or not valid. Let’s read the first one. Tutola never attempted to write a book that adhered to Western standards of novel form.
Now from the passage we might remember that. He wrote in this Nigerian folkloric tradition, something very specific, and so his works weren’t really novels. And so it seems like, oh yeah, he probably didn’t write many books that were your typical novels. But look at that word never.
Look how extreme that is. When you have an extreme answer in a inference answer choice, it makes it difficult to back up, because remember it has to be air tight. But when you’re making something so extreme, so black and white, it’s hard to say yes that is definitely the case. So this not a valid inference, because maybe Tutola did write a book.
He did attempt to write a book that was along the Western standards, or in line with the Western standards. But, in this passage we just happen to be talking about the books that he wrote that were in a different style than the Western novel form. Okay, next up. Tutola is one of the more well-known writers operating in the Nigerian folkloric tradition.
So take a second. Again, valid or not valid for the GRE? Okay, this one is not valid. Why is it not valid? Well, he might be. They’re talking about him, right, so he’s probably pretty popular.
He’s probably one of the more well known. How many times did I use probably just now? Well, a few, and I could have used might or probably. I used probably, obviously. But some other word that shows that I’m not a 100%. Sure, and therefore this is not a valid inference.
Okay, let’s look at this one. All tales told in the Nigerian folkloric tradition end with the author addressing his/her audience in an omniscient voice. Now the text says that Tutola ends his tales in, or by using an omniscient voice, as part of the Nigerian folklore tradition. But can we make that jump, again, to the extreme, the all.
And that’s where things get a little dicey. Maybe there’s this other guy who works in Nigerian folklore tradition but doesn’t necessarily end in an omniscient voice. Maybe that’s okay to do. You see, we’re getting to that maybe gray area. And that’s not a valid inference.
So, what does a valid inference look like on the GRE multiple answer question types? Well one, that is at least one of these, must be the answer. So one of these is a valid inference. Maybe two are. Maybe all three are. It’s up for you to decide.
But of course, we don’t have photographic memories. So what I’m gonna do is I’m gonna let you look here, read the question, look at answer choice There is no overlap in the devices found in the Nigerian folkloric tradition and those found in the traditional novel. I’m gonna give it to you, there’s the passage. So pause it.
Okay, so you’ve paused it, you’ve found that relevant part to help you answer A, now I’m going to do the same for B, but before I move onto B, whether or not A is the answer, you should tell me if it’s not the answer, why it’s not the answer and the same for B. So, read B. I assume you’ve done that and now, now you should pause it.
Okay, assuming you’ve paused it, let’s do the final one for C. Situating a traditional Nigerian tale. So, I assume you’ve read that. And now, we can go to the passage. Okay, I assume you’ve paused it and found the information for C. So, we’re all done with the slide.
We’re gonna jump over the passage and start with A. There is no overlap in the devices found in the Nigerian folkloric tradition and those found in the traditional novel. Again, we’re in extreme territory. No overlap. It doesn’t seem like there’s much overlap, and maybe there is no overlap, but to be able to infer that based on what is said, is simply not the case.
A is too extreme, A is out. A characteristic of tales in Nigerian folkloric tradition is that they conclude with an instructive moral. I’ve excerpt in the relevant text. It says here, Indeed, Tutola is highly aware of the tradition in which he is working and would be loath or reluctant to describe his work as adhering to the novel form, and they give an example of the tradition in which he is working.
He closes out each tale by assuming and omniscient voice and didactic tone. Didactic means instructive, good to know vocabulary. So we can see aha! We can infer that cuz the text is right there and it says he’s working in this tradition and an example is he does or closes out the novel with an instructive moral, therefore that must be a characteristic.
Notice that doesn’t say characteristic of every single tale or all tales. That’s when we start to get into the extreme land. But it’s a characteristic of tales and therefore you can infer that. Let’s take a look at C. Situating a traditional Nigerian tale in a modern setting would not violate the constraints of the Nigerian folkloric tradition.
Let’s look at the text. Tell me, and you might wanna pause the video again. Can you infer this, or not infer this? Well, we have here that in general the Nigerian folklore tale, or folktale teller uses, and is expected to use inventive embellishments to impart a unique voice, as long as they’re working within those well-known constraints.
And so, they give an example. What does Tutola do here? He sprinkles snippets of his native Yoruba and Nigerian-inflected English, that’s some of his unique voice, and then he also casts many of his tales in a modern setting. That follows in the inventive embellishments.
Therefore, situating or placing, setting a traditional Nigerian tale in a modern setting would not violate the constraints of Nigerian folkloric tradition. That’s part of the constraints he’s operating under. Putting something in a modern setting. It says right there of course, and we can match this up pretty well with C. And there’s our answer.
So remember, be careful of the oh, maybe, could kind of work. These extreme answer choices. Make sure that you back up your answer with information in the text.
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