LNAT Success Series: How to Answer the LNAT Questions
Published: 02/11/17 Author: Alicia Gibson
Section A of the LNAT presents you with 12 argumentative passages with 3 multiple choice questions (MCQs) based on the content of the passage. These LNAT questions are not uniform and the answers are rarely obvious. The questions can take on different styles and forms and test different general skills. You must ensure you have your brain switched on for this section as the purpose of the Multiple-Choice section of the admissions test to assess whether you have the requisite skills of analysis, judgement and critical thinking to study Law.
Throughout this article, I will highlight my general advice on how to approach the MCQs in the LNAT. As well as this, I will specifically introduce the main question styles most often used with examples of possible questions and a good strategy for answering them correctly.
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Advice for All LNAT Questions
Whilst there is no set question style in the LNAT, there are general steps you should be taking to ensure you answer whichever question you are faced with correctly:
Step 1: Read the question and highlight anything important. For example, the question may be,
“All of the following are suggested as reasons for the main argument except…?”
The part which requires highlighting in this question is the final word – except. Many students will find themselves picking the answer which they think is the main reason for the main argument of the passage because in their haste to answer they haven’t read the question properly. Don’t lose marks by getting caught out this way.
Step 2: Identify relevant parts of the text. A question won’t always be about the complete passage therefore if the question in front of you pin points a certain section go back to the passage and reread it to correctly decipher which parts of the passage are going to help you find the correct answer to the question.
Step 3: The answer is always in the passage. There is no exceptions to this. Whilst your personal knowledge of a topic may help your understanding of a complex passage it will never provide you with the answer. The passages are designed to have the answers within them to ensure that if the candidate has the skills to find the answer in the passage they won’t be disadvantaged if they don’t know anything about the topic it presents.
Did you miss the first of the LNAT Success Series? Fear not – you can read about LNAT Essay planning through the link below:
LNAT Success Series: How to Ace Your LNAT Essay Plan
Argument and Analysis Style LNAT Questions
Argument and analysis style questions are questions which go straight to the overarching argument of the passage you have been given. For example, you may be asked to ascertain “the main reason” the author gave for their argument. This implies there was more than one reason given and you must accurately decipher which one was the most significant. Another way these questions could be asked is by asking which of five propositions is correct? The important thing to remember when answering these questions is that often all five given answers are correct, that is, all five could be a reason for the authors argument or propositions from the text. In these cases, you must use your skills of judgement, induction and deduction to conclude which proposition or reason is most correct in the context of the passage. Often one of the best strategies for these questions is to use a process of elimination, this will allow you to swiftly eliminate the wrong answers and progress to the right one. Closely reading the passage will help you do this as the right answer will always stem from there.
Literary Style LNAT Questions
Literary style LNAT questions are questions which ask about the words used in the passage, how to interpret their meanings and often the best synonyms for them. Example questions would be “What is the closest definition to the word ‘x’?” or “What is the most appropriate synonym to replace the word ‘x’ in this context?” The best way to answer these questions is to again, use the text. It is more important than anything else when faced with these questions to put your own knowledge to the side as how you think something is defined may not be the meaning expressed in the passage or the synonym you think best to replace the word may not be the most appropriate in the context. Again, it is a good idea to employ a process of elimination here to ensure you pick the answer which is most correct in the context given.