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Please rate my AWA

This topic has 0 member replies
Thestral Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts
27 Aug 2016
1 messages

Please rate my AWA

Post Sat Aug 27, 2016 8:24 pm
Elapsed Time: 00:00
    The following appeared in a memorandum issued by a large city’s council on the arts:
    “In a recent citywide poll, 15 percent more residents said that they watch television programs about the visual arts than was the case in a poll conducted five years ago. During these past five years, the number of people visiting our city’s art museums has increased by a similar percentage. Since the corporate funding that supports public television, where most of the visual arts programs appear, is now being threatened with severe cuts, we can expect that attendance at our city’s art museums will also start to decrease. Thus some of the city’s funds for supporting the arts should be reallocated to public television.”

    Discuss how well reasoned you find this argument. In your discussion be sure to analyze the line of reasoning and the use of evidence in the argument. For example, you may need to consider what questionable assumptions
    underlie the thinking and what alternative explanations or counterexamples might weaken the conclusion. You can also discuss what sort of evidence would strengthen or refute the argument, what changes in the argument would make it more logically sound, and what, if anything, would help you better evaluate its conclusion.


    The argument states that because of the possibility that Public television is threatened by severe cuts, the attendance to the city museum is very likely to decrease. The arguments arrives at this conclusion without considering any alternate explanations and making a flawed assumption that correlation between the two events is equal to causation. The argument makes an overstatement that reallocating art funds to Public television will solve this problem.

    The arguments states that the number of people visiting the museum increased by the same percent by which the number of people watching television shows on Visual arts increased. The argument fails to consider that the similarity in the two statistics could simply be a coincidence. The increase in the number of people could be due to an increase in the number of tourists in the city, tourists who have never watched the mentioned television programs.

    If it is indeed true that the two are related, there is no enough evidence to state that increase in museum attendance is due to television shows. There is a possibility that visits to the museum is what led the citizens to watch the television shows. Moreover, the television programs are considered the sole reason for the increase in the number of people who visit the museum. The argument fails to consider other possible causes such as display of new authentic artifacts, good advertising by the museum authorities, or a reduction in ticket prices.

    The argument also illogical assumes that the same trend will continue in the future. If majority of the citizens have already visited the museum, and considering that the population will not significantly increase, no amount of television programs would possibly give them a reason to visit the same museum again. If this is true, the attendance to the museums is very likely to decrease even if the television programs continue to air.

    Considering the primary flaws mentioned above, it would be very useful to determine whether during the last five years, the people who started watching television shows on visual arts are the same people who visited the museum for the first time. It would also be useful to determine the extent to which these television programs influence peoples' decision to visit the museum, and how likely this will continue into the future.
    Answering the above questions could validate the argument to some extent, but in its current state, the argument is flawed in many aspects.

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