When it comes to Reading questions on the SAT and ACT, nothing induces fear — or at least groans — like inference questions. Some of this reaction is undoubtedly due to the fact that they often seem so fuzzy. Part of the problem, I suspect, stems from the fact that when people talk about inferences, they’re not always talking about the same thing.
One type of inference is more based on formal logic — that is, it involves the types of conclusions that can be drawn from various premises, and whether those conclusions can be considered valid. (more…)