Let the Royal Baby Help You with Short Verbal
In honor of the birth of William and Kate’s royal baby, today we decided to do a monarchy-themed problem dissection. The as-of-yet unnamed prince will someday have many books written about him, and hopefully his biographer will have an easier time than the subject of this sentence equivalence:
The blank in this sentence is describing stories about the king, and we can tell right away that the royal biographer has some type of problem – he’s unable to reconcile things he’s heard about the king. He can’t reconcile stories he’s heard with “authentic, verified facts”.
Since we know that the biographer cannot reconcile the stories with facts, then we know that these stories must not be true. That’s enough for us to predict – we need two answer choices that mean “false”.
As you scan the answer choices, look for two things: 1) choices that match your prediction, and 2) choices that definitely do not match your prediction. It seems simple to say, but many people forget to do part 2), and then panic when they can’t find the two correct answers. Here’s the beautiful thing about combining a strong GRE vocabulary with honed elimination skills, though: If you can identify one correct answer and eliminate four choices that don’t match, then that will get you as many points as if you knew the definition of each choice – the test-makers don’t care how you arrive at a correct answer; they just want to see that you can find it.
As you look at the answer choices for this set, which ones can you eliminate because they don’t mean “false”? Certainly choices (A) and (B) – that’s two answers out right away. Choices (E) and (F) are tempting, since they’re synonyms and both adjectives that you wouldn’t want to use to describe the king (they both mean “lustful”), but that’s not the same thing as “false”. We’re left with choices (C) and (D), “spurious” and “apocryphal”.
If you focus on eliminating choices that don’t match your prediction while you’re hunting for the correct answer(s) to short verbal questions, then you’ll move through the choices efficiently and increase your accuracy. That’s something that even the royal baby can appreciate!