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BMAT Section 1 Problem solving: Logic puzzles

Updated: Oct 17, 2022

Logic puzzles can be confusing to anyone, but in the BMAT all the information you need is there, you just have to find and apply it. They shouldn’t be as tricky as the ones you see in newspapers or books. You may need to draw a diagram to help yourself find the information you need, but the information is there.

BMAT logic puzzle strategy

Read the question - This is a good habit for every question in the BMAT, don’t read any text or explanations until you know what you need to do.

Underline important information in the text - This will stop you wasting time re-reading information and keep your mind on what is important to answer the question.

Exclude answers - With these questions it is much faster, and often necessary, to eliminate answers to get to the correct one.

How to answer BMAT logical puzzle: Worked examples

BMAT word puzzles example 1.

This is a word puzzle where you need to work out the correct combination of names from the information in the text. Read the information in the image below and then th working underneath.

Using the strategy above the important pieces of information are:

“No two names with the same starting letter are allowed”

“The first and third names are wrong”

We can remove B, C and D, because they all have two names with the same starting letter.

As the first and third names Jeremy tried are wrong C is eliminated (Again) because it has Betty at the beginning. A can be eliminated because Oscar is in third position and this was incorrect when Jeremy tried it. This only leaves option E.

It’s really useful to exclude answers as you go and to visually represent to yourself what you are doing. By highlighting the names with the same letter, we can see the reason we eliminated that answer. Strategically following the clues and eliminating answers is a great time saver, you spend less time thinking and are less likely to get confused.

BMAT logic puzzles example 2.

This one is slightly harder, or more time consuming. Here you need to match the surnames to first names. Underlined is the important information and the first names are written out next to the surnames, so it is easier to see the method.

The next step is to add a number next to each surname and first name, as we know they will have a different number of letters. We can’t find Ian’s surname directly, we have to exclude the others first.

Next, write by each first name possible surnames, until you see those that can be excluded because they contain the same letters as the forename. This helps whittle down which surnames belong to which people.

Simon has 5 letters in his name, he can only be matched with a 4 letter surname Rush or Hyde. As Rush has an S, it must be Hyde. We can exclude that from the answers. Liam must be matched with a 5 letter surname, Doyle and Floyd both have an “L” so it must be shore. Ignore Ian for now, we won't find his name until the end. Dylan needs to be matched with a four letter name and the only one available is Hyde. Finally Eric could needs a surname with 5 letters, Doyle and Floyd are left, as Doyle has an “E” it must be Floyd. This leaves Doyle which must be the answer.

Because each step is done in a logical order, following the rules given, and written, you don’t have to spend time thinking, because at a glance you can see. Storing information in your head usually leads to questions taking longer and getting confused, or doubting yourself. Use this method to help you find the correct answer and to save time.

If it seems daunting at first, don't panic, don't worry about time, just extract the information and work through it. Practice this technique with past papers, you will master it in no time.

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