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In archaeology, as in the physical sciences, new discoveries

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Senior Manager
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Kudos [?]: 38 [0], given: 33

Re: In archaeology, as in the physical sciences, new discoveries [#permalink] New post 14 Jun 2013, 07:43
I am surprised I got all right! Took exactly 8 minutes. My reasoning for the answers:

1. c - the first line of the essay presents a contention and follows it with an example.
2. D- obvious choice as author quotes an authority to give credence to the find.
3. C - Everything other that C,D are cited directly in the line starting " her completeness.." further D is eliminated as the species is spoken of all through the essay.
4. D - here is where CR is tested. Inference is something that is directly stated or can be obtained by putting two statements together. A is an unsupported assumption. B - Not enough reason to conclude this. C- Assumption at best not an inference. E- MOST IMPORTANT - cannot be concluded.
5.D -because it presents a story line where new information pertaining to the past is discovered which challenges the currently held theories about the past event ( absolutely parallel to the given essay)
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Kudos [?]: 174 [0], given: 9

Re: In archaeology, as in the physical sciences, new discoveries [#permalink] New post 15 Jun 2013, 01:25
Looks like a substandard passage.

Consider question 1:

1. The Organization of the passage could best be described as :

(A) Discussing a controversial scientific discovery
(B) Contrasting previous theories of development with current findings
(C) Illustrating a contention with a specific example
(D) Arguing for the importance of a particular field of study
(E) Refuting a popular misconception

The OA is C. But choice C doesn't say, "A contention followed by an illustration" but instead "illustrating a contention with a specific example". One can indeed understand what the sentence means but a quality question needs to have greater clarity.

Also, except for choice C, the other choices sound more like asking the main idea of the passage rather than the organization of the passage

Choice B in fact sounds a better choice because, in the passage, the new findings are contrasted with existing theories. In both the paragraphs, the author indeed does say that the current findings are totally different from all the existing theories.

Now consider question 4:

4. It can be inferred from the passage's description of the discovered fossil hyoid bone that

(A) Australopithecus afarensis were capable of speech
(B) the discovered hyoid bone is less primitive than the hyoid bone of apes
(C) the hyoid bone is necessary for speech
(D) the discovery of the hyoid bone necessitated the reexamination of prior theories
(E) The hyoid bone was the most important fossil found at the site

This is an inference question. So we expect some reasoning to be done. But the OA is D which is more of a paraphrase of ,"hyoid bone, a rarely preserved bone in the larynx that supports muscles of the throat, has had a tremendous impact on the theories about the origins of speech."

Choice B in my opinion is better because the passage says that the hyoid bone is more similar to that of apes than that of humans. This means the hyoid bone of the species is less primitive than that of the apes.

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Re: In archaeology, as in the physical sciences, new discoveries [#permalink] New post 19 Jun 2013, 13:39
hi all,
I have few doubts regarding the answers.

Q1. How the passage presents a contention.??
an idea is given and then that idea is presented with examples.
author has not mentioned a theory which he has refuted.he has presented a theory which in deed refutes some conception.
so how ans. is ' Illustrating a contention with a specific example'.


Q4. I feel that re-examination of prior theory..... is mentioned in regard of preceding sentence.( it had been thought ......... swing through trees.)
not for ' hyoid bone'. the word 'Also' in sentence "Also, the presence of a hyoid bone",shows that there are 2 observations 1 is 'arboreal habitat of their ape
cousins' and other is ' hyoid bone'.



pls comment.....

BR//SuryaV
Re: In archaeology, as in the physical sciences, new discoveries   [#permalink] 19 Jun 2013, 13:39
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