Continuous indoor fluorescent light benefits the health of hamsters with inherited heart disease. A group of them exposed to continuous fluorescent light survived twenty-five percent longer than a similar group exposed instead to equal periods of indoor fluorescent light and of darkness.
The method of the research described above is most likely to be applicable in addressing which of the following questions?
(A) Can industrial workers who need to see their work do so better by sunlight or by fluorescent light?
(B) Can hospital lighting be improved to promote the recovery of patients?
(C) How do deep-sea fish survive in total darkness?
(D) What are the inherited illnesses to which hamsters are subject?
(E) Are there plants that require specific periods of darkness in order to bloom?
Hi Mike, Can you kindly provide the explanation for this question. Waiting eagerly for your valuable inputs. Regards, Fame
So, the hamsters have an inherited disease, and 24 hr/day of fluorescent light helps them more than 1/2 fluorescent light and 1/2 darkness. Something about the light promotes healing more than the darkness. Is fluorescent light better than sunlight? We don't know, that's not addressed. We are exploring some connection between light (either time of light or kind of light) and healing. (A) Can industrial workers who need to see their work do so better by sunlight or by fluorescent light?
Total distractor. Nothing in the prompt is about comparing different kinds of light, or about perception instead of healing. (B) Can hospital lighting be improved to promote the recovery of patients?
The effect of light on healing --- this is a promising one. (C) How do deep-sea fish survive in total darkness?
Admittedly, this is somewhat paradoxical, given this prompt. This one, though, is not specifically about healing, about immune function. Also, these fish have evolved
to live in total darkness, so presumably their response to light would be quite different from that of an animal (such as a hamster or a human) that has evolved in ordinary circadian rhythms of light. It's not clear whether the hamster study would "shed any light" on how these fish survive. (D) What are the inherited illnesses to which hamsters are subject?
Another great distractor. This has nothing about light, which is clearly the central point of the prompt. Other inherited disease that hamsters could get ---that sounds like a huge topic, and presumable some of them would have nothing to do with exposure to light. It's not clear that the methods of research presented in this prompt would be helpful here. (E) Are there plants that require specific periods of darkness in order to bloom?
The prompt was looking at how light, and availability of light, promotes healing, that is to say, immune response. This is about plants, not animals --- a huge different biologically. This is about what might be helpful about darkness, not light. This concerns, not the immune system in particular, but the ordinary life-cycle of a plant. It's not well connected to the research about hamsters.
I will say, though, I think this is a flaw in the question. Technically, the question says, "The method of the research described above is most likely to be applicable in addressing which of the following questions?
" Well, apart from any context, any of the science concerning healing in hamsters, the bare-bones research method of 24hr light vs. (1/2 light, 1/2 dark) would probably be exactly what you would have to use to test the hypothesis about plants needing light to bloom. I can see whoever wrote the question did not intend for this to be the answer, but whoever wrote the question did not do a particularly good job with diction, especially in that final prompt question. Technically, "method of research" could be the specific design of this experiment, which would make (E)
a credible answer. (B)
is clearly the answer the question authored wanted, but because the prompt was not worded well, (E)
is also a credible answer. I have no idea what the source of this question is, but I would say --- this is a faulty CR question. In a well-written question, you would not have a "loophole" answer such as this.
That's my 2¢
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