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interpretation
Exercise 6 - Towards academic reading
Numbers don't have points of view or preferences - but the people who interpret numbers do.
This is why people with different points of view can interpret the same facts and figures differently.

Smart readers always ask themselves:

Is this a fact - or an interpretation of a fact?
Can this fact be interpreted differently?
Read the paragraph and answer the question below.
New data show that sales tax went up from 8% to 10% this year.

Supporters of the government's policy said that the rate of sales tax went up by only 2% this year
(from 8% to 10% = 2%).

People who did not agree with the government's policy said that sales tax increased by 25% this year
(10% - 8% = 2% but 2:8 = 1:4 = 25%).
Which answers below explain why the same figures can be interpreted differently?
Click on the 3 correct answers.
The difference between facts and interpretations of facts

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