Syllogism uses the principle of deductive reasoning to come up with conclusions from multiple propositions. Scores of competitive exams like SBI PO, CAT, etc, have an essential section where you will be solving syllogism questions in a limited time. Even if you are a wordsmith, a syllogism can be a complex and perplexing section to comprehend. Practising consistently is the key to score well in this section. Not only will regular practice help you grasp the inherent concepts of syllogism but it will also enhance your speed and accuracy. In this, there are two core features: two or more statements with two or more conclusions. With the increasing level of difficulty in terms of statements, here is a list of syllogism questions and their answers which you can practice to ace a wide range of entrance exams!
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What is Syllogism?
Derived from the Greek word “Syllogimos”, the word “Syllogism” means inference or conclusion. Syllogism questions include logical arguments or statements and you have to utilise deductive reasoning to infer a certain conclusion. Aristotle is amongst the major figures known for their contributions to syllogisms and one of his popular syllogisms include,
“All men are mortal. Socrates is a man.” – Aristotle
Types of Syllogism Statements
There are three main types of statements given in syllogism questions:
- Major Premise
- Minor Premise
It is important that you find the common connection between the major premise and minor premise which will help you find the right conclusion.
How to Solve Syllogism Questions?
As explained above, syllogism problems comprise of different arguments and statements and then there are some options from which you have to choose the right inference. These statements are often supposed and illogical but are assumed.
In order to solve syllogism questions, you can use various methods and one of the effective ones include Venn Diagrams. On the given situation, you can find the right inference or conclusion by drawing all the possible venn diagrams and then the common answer that comes from all the venn diagrams is the right one. Also, you can use the following steps to solve syllogism questions easily:
- Underline the number of variables given in statements. These variables can be cat, dog, cups, man, colors like green, blue, pink, etc.
- For every variable, draw a venn diagram while also connecting them with each other the way it has been given in the statement.
- Deduce the right conclusion after reading the statements again and connecting the diagrams with each other.
- Find the option that matches the conclusion you have inferred.
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Solved Examples of Syllogism Questions
Minor Assumption: No Sweater is Pencil
Major Assumption: No pencil is cloth
Conclusion: All Sweaters are Cloth
Find out whether this conclusion is correct or not.
With the given assumptions, there are 3 possible outcomes:
Case 1: If no sweater is a pencil, it is clear that no sweater is no cloth as well.
Case 2: There are chances of some sweater being cloth, thus there is an overlap between them in the given diagram.
Case 3: There is a possibility to have all clothes as sweaters as there is no combination which contradicts this statement.
As Case 1 and Case 2 do not show any signs to support the conclusion – All Sweaters are Cloths, we will say that the conclusion is incorrect!
Minor Assumption: All Students are Engineers
Major Assumptions: All Engineers are Innovative
1. All innovative are students
2. All students are innovative
3. No innovative are students
4. No engineers are students
As per the 3 possible cases, only option 2 ie All Students are Innovative is correct!
Minor Assumption: All right handed people are Artisits
Major Assumption: All Actors are right haneded
Conclusion: Some Artists are Actors
Find out if the conclusion is correct or incorrect.
There are only 2 possible cases in this scenario explained in the diagram. Therefore, we can say that the given conclusion is incorrect!
Following are the claims:
No Hammer is Ring
All Stones are Hammers
All doors are windows
Some rings are doors
|Some hammers are stones
Some windows are rings
All the possible cases for this syllogism question, are explained in the diagram. As per the diagram only the statement – some windows are rings hold true!
Syllogism Questions & Answers
1. There are two statements in the following question after which there are two conclusions i.e. 1 and 2. You have to assume that the two statements are true and then choose the conclusion (s) that logically follows these statements, regardless of whether they are commonly known statements.
- Some birds are reptiles.
- Some insects are reptiles.
- All insects being reptiles is a possibility.
- Some reptiles are birds.
Choose the conclusion(s) that follows the above statements.
|A. Only Conclusion 1||B. Only Conclusion 2|
|C. Neither Conclusion 1 nor 2||D. Both 1 & 2|
Answer: D. Both 1 & 2
Explanation: The first statement explains that there are some birds that are also reptiles and the second one says that there are some insects that are reptiles. So, this leads us to the possibility of some birds also being reptiles and since some reptiles are birds it can also be inferred by reversing the Ist statement that there are some reptiles that are birds.
2. There are three statements in the following question after which there are three conclusions, i.e. 1, 2 and 3. You have to assume that the three statements are true regardless of whether they are commonly known statements or not and then choose the conclusion (s) that logically follows these statements.
- Some bottles are cups.
- All cups are glasses.
- All glasses are saucers.
- Some bottles are glasses.
- Some glasses are bottles.
- All cups are saucers.
Choose the conclusion(s) that follows the above statements.
|A. All||B. Only 1, 2|
|C. Only 2, 3||D. None of These|
3) There are four statements in the following question after which there are three conclusions, i.e. 1, 2, 3 and 4. You have to assume that the four statements are true regardless of whether they are commonly known statements or not and then choose the conclusion (s) that logically follows these statements.
- Some orange is yellow
- Some yellow are green
- All green is blue
- No blue is black
- No black is green.
- Some yellow is blue.
- Some black is orange.
- No black is orange.
Choose the conclusion(s) that following the statements.
|A. Only 1 and 2||B. Either 3 or 4|
|C. Only 1 & Either 3 or 4||D. None of the Above|
Answer: A [No black is green and some yellow are blue]
4) There are three statements in the following question after which there are four conclusions, i.e. 1, 2, 3, and 4. You have to assume that the statements are true regardless of whether they are commonly known statements or not and then choose the conclusion (s) that logically follows these statements.
1. Some Nests are Kites
2. All Kites are Pots
3. All Pots are Chips
4. Some Chips are Buses
1. Some Buses are Kites
2. Some Chips are Nests
3. No Bus is a KIte
4. Some Chips are Kites
|A. Only 2, 3, and 4||B. Only Either 1 or 3 and 2 and 4|
|C. Only Either 1 or 4 and 2 follow||D. Only 1, 2, and 4|
5) There are three statements in the following question after which there are four conclusions, i.e. 1, 2, 3, and 4. You have to assume that the statements are true regardless of whether they are commonly known statements or not and then choose the conclusion (s) that logically follows these statements.
1. All Bulbs are Bottles
2. No Bottle is Cable
3. Some Cables are Papers
1. Some Papers are Cables
2. Some Bottles are Bulbs
3. Some Pins are Bottles
4. Some Cables are Bulbs
|A. All of the Above||B. Only 3|
|C. Only 1 and 2||D. None of the Above|
Exploring Syllogism questions? Check out our guide on How to Prepare for Competitive Exams?
6) Choose the correct option for statements given.
1. No Lion is an Elephant
2. All Elephants are Kangaroos
3. All Kangaroos are Giraffes
1. All Kangaroos can’t be Lions
2. All Lions are Giraffes
|A. If Both Conclusion 1 and 2 follow||B. If Only 2 Follows|
|C. If Either 1 or 2 Follow||D. If Only Conclusion 1 Follows|
7) Choose the correct option for statements given.
1. All Pens are Pencils
2. Some Pencils are Erasers
1. No Eraser is a Pen
2. At least Some Erasers are Pencils
|A. If Only Conclusion 1 Follows||B. If Only Conclusion 2 Follows|
|C. Neither of the Above||D. If Either Conclusion 1 or 2 Follow|
Syllogism Questions: Helpful Tricks & Techniques
Syllogisms test your deductive reasoning and there are some tricks that will allow you to simplify statements and conclusions. The core technique lies in connecting one statement with another and verifying the statements mentioned in the conclusion. Listed below are some helpful tricks and techniques for solving syllogism questions for competitive exams:
- Create Venn diagrams to easily segregate one statement from another.
- Explore all the possibilities in statements that include ‘all’ and ‘no’. If there is a statement that says “All white is black. Some pink is white.” This statement is filled with possibilities that some pink can be black or some black can be white. In questions like these, you need to consider all these possibilities before coming to conclusions.
- Syllogism questions with “some” and “all” can be confusing. Try understanding the difference that if some A is B, it doesn’t mean that all A is B or all B is A. If all C is D, it doesn’t imply that all D is C.
- Remember to solve a syllogism problem in a sequential manner. If you directly assume the third statement after the first it will result in causing confusion because you missed out on the second statement which might be the connection between the first and the third statement.
- Find a common relationship between statements and conclusions. A major aspect of syllogism questions in competitive exams is that they always create a connection between one statement and another. Start with reading every statement carefully and then building a common relationship to locate the right conclusions.
Thus, facts don’t exist in the world of syllogism but deductive reasoning does. The faster you begin grasping the conclusive quality of these questions you will be nailing syllogism questions for competitive exams. Seeking admission in colleges abroad can seem daunting, you don’t need to take that stress by yourself. Let the experts at Leverage Edu help you in acing your exams and finding a place in the hallways of your dream college.