Verbal Reasoning: Cause and Effect questions

For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. So, for every cause, there is effect happening. But we shall not be discussing Newton’ laws here instead we shall be talking about one of the types of questions in verbal reasoning. It is called cause/effect.

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Let us define these two terms:
  • Cause: It is the condition under which an event occurs.
  • Effect: The consequence of an even occurred is the effect.

The main aim of such questions is to find a relationship between the two given statements. The relationship that needs to be tested is whether the statements are causally related to each other.

Some Rules for Cause/ Effect questions:
  • The cause will occur before the effect
  • A necessary condition for the event occurrence is a circumstance without which the event cannot occur.
  • Both the events express generalized results that may not be lacked by any specific cause but may influence certain other factors.
  • The effects in both statements may be caused by a third unknown event which may be the common cause of both events.

So in the questions, two statements are given and we have to find out the relation between them in terms of which ‘one is cause and which one is an effect’.

Let us understand this with the help of a few examples:
  • Rain and thunder showers bashed the city during the past three days.
  • Many people stayed indoor during the past three days.
Solution: The given statements represent a relationship between them. I is a cause and II is its effect as the statements show that because of rain and thunder, people stayed in-door.
  • There has been a considerable increase in the sale of fate free foods articles.
  • Now, people have become more conscious about their health conditions and food habits.
Solution: Here also, we can see that there is a relationship in between the statements. They say that because people have become health conscious, there is an increase in sale of fat free food items which shows that II is the cause and I is its effect.
  • In the past few years, job market has improved for the professionally qualified youth.
  • Many youth are not able to get the jobs as per their expectations.
Solution: In this case, there cannot be any cause-effect relationship as it says in I that market has improved and in II it says that people are not getting jobs which seems to be out of the context. So, both the statements can be either causes or effects of independent causes. Also, we need to see that both are not the effects of a common cause, so they can be independent causes.
  • The school authority has decided to increase the tuition fee by 30 percent from the next academic year.
  • The government has urged the local public to enroll all their children to schools in the area.
Solution: In this case also, there seems to be no connection in the statements. On one hand, school fee is increased and on the other hand, children have to be enrolled. But, here, both statements can be the effects as every statement is a consequence of some event.
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