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According to public health officials, in 1998 Massachusetts

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According to public health officials, in 1998 Massachusetts [#permalink] New post 29 Aug 2013, 12:26
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Question Stats:

53% (01:34) correct 46% (01:04) wrong based on 114 sessions
According to public health officials, in 1998 Massachusetts became the first state in which more babies were born to women over the age of thirty than under it.

1. than
2. than born
3. than they were
4. than they had been
5. than had been born

Explanation please !!
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Re: According to public health officials, in 1998 Massachusetts [#permalink] New post 29 Aug 2013, 14:18
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Note:
- see the word "it" at the end of the sentence. "it" refers to what? Clearly, "it" refers to "thirty" ==> The comparison should be "women over thirty" vs "women under thirty".
- When see a comparison, be aware of "middle man" - a noun/noun phrase between two people/things being compared.


According to public health officials, in 1998 Massachusetts became the first state in which more babies were born to women over the age of thirty than [to women] under it.

1. than
Correct. Comparison "women over thirty" vs "women under thirty" (under "it"); "over" vs "under.

2. than born
Wrong. ambiguous. Because of the "middle man" - women ==> the meaning may be changed to "more babies were born to women over thirty than (women) born under it

3. than they were
Wrong. "they" refers to who? babies or women?

4. than they had been
Wrong. Same problem as in (3). "they" is not clear.

5. than had been born
Wrong. Same as in (2). Because of the middle man - women, the intended meaning may be distorted.

Hope it's clear
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Re: According to public health officials, in 1998 Massachusetts [#permalink] New post 30 Aug 2013, 09:20
Expert's post
Dhairya275 wrote:
According to public health officials, in 1998 Massachusetts became the first state in which more babies were born to women over the age of thirty than under it.

1. than
2. than born
3. than they were
4. than they had been
5. than had been born

Explanation please !!


Yes, this is an apples vs oranges question.

"more babies were born to X than Y"

x = women over 30
y = women under 30

No need to mention the verb "born" in the answer choices - so the simplest one works.
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Re: According to public health officials, in 1998 Massachusetts [#permalink] New post 07 Sep 2013, 01:46
pqhai wrote:
Note:
- see the word "it" at the end of the sentence. "it" refers to what? Clearly, "it" refers to "thirty" ==> The comparison should be "women over thirty" vs "women under thirty".
- When see a comparison, be aware of "middle man" - a noun/noun phrase between two people/things being compared.


According to public health officials, in 1998 Massachusetts became the first state in which more babies were born to women over the age of thirty than [to women] under it.

1. than
Correct. Comparison "women over thirty" vs "women under thirty" (under "it"); "over" vs "under.

2. than born
Wrong. ambiguous. Because of the "middle man" - women ==> the meaning may be changed to "more babies were born to women over thirty than (women) born under it

3. than they were
Wrong. "they" refers to who? babies or women?

4. than they had been
Wrong. Same problem as in (3). "they" is not clear.

5. than had been born
Wrong. Same as in (2). Because of the middle man - women, the intended meaning may be distorted.

Hope it's clear


Hi pqhai,
Can you explain in more detail regarding usage of "more than".

What is the difference in usage of "more than" in the below sentences.

1. The number of students in school A is more than that of school B.
2. According to public health officials, in 1998 Massachusetts became the first state in which more babies were born to women over the age of thirty than under it.

In the first, "more than" is together.
In second, "more" and "than" are separated.

Can you explain this concept in detail.?

Thanks,
Jai
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Re: According to public health officials, in 1998 Massachusetts [#permalink] New post 24 Feb 2014, 07:11
Let us analyze the parallel structure maintained across the sentence.

Standard correct E.g :
The air quality of Vegas in 2007 was higher than that in 1997. that = The air quality of Las Vegas
The air quality of Vegas was higher in 2007 than in 1997.

Now take current question:

in which more babies were born to women over the age of 30 than to women under the age of 30.
in which more babies were born to women over the age of 30 than under it (the age of 30) (to women is in ellipse)

Q: Is following construction OK?

in which more babies to women over the age of 30 were born than that under it.

that=babies to women
it= the age of 30
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Re: According to public health officials, in 1998 Massachusetts [#permalink] New post 24 Feb 2014, 19:06
Dhairya275 wrote:
According to public health officials, in 1998 Massachusetts became the first state in which more babies were born to women over the age of thirty than under it.

1. than
2. than born
3. than they were
4. than they had been
5. than had been born

Explanation please !!


Clearly, any verb or helping verb in the comparison clause would change the comparison: from "women over the age of thirty" and "women under it" to "babies born over thirty" and "babies born under thirty." This is illogical and wrong. Thus, the correct answer is A.
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Re: According to public health officials, in 1998 Massachusetts   [#permalink] 24 Feb 2014, 19:06
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