Readers are often required to understand text that claims and suggests ideas without stating them directly. An inference is a piece of information that is implied but not written outright by the author. For instance, consider the following sentence: Mark made more money that week than he had in the previous year. From this sentence, the reader can infer that Mark either has not made much money in the previous year or made a great deal of money that week. Often, a reader can use information he or she already knows to make inferences. Take as an example the sentence “When his coffee arrived, he looked around the table for the silver cup.” Many people know that cream is typically served in a silver cup, so using their own base of knowledge they can infer that the subject of this sentence takes his coffee with cream. Making inferences requires concentration, attention, and practice.
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Last updated: 12/18/2017
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