Musical composers have generally made their most significant contributions to the musical canon before they reached the age of thirty. It is commonly believed that this is the case because aging brings about a loss of cognitive ability and creative capacity. However, a study pointed out that a disproportionately large number of those composers who made their most significant contributions to the canon after the age of thirty became musicians at an older age than is generally the case. Since by the age of thirty many composers have been engaged as musicians for a decade or more, these findings suggest that the real reason why musicians over thirty rarely make significant contributions to the musical canon is not that they have aged but rather that they have spent too much time as musicians.
In the argument above, the two portions in boldface play which of the following roles?
(A) The first is an explanation that is challenged by the argument; the second is a finding used to support that explanation.
(B) The first is an explanation that the argument opposes; the second is an objection raised against the alternative explanation advocated by the argument.
(C) The first is a claim advanced in support of a position; the second is a finding that clarifies that position.
(D) The first is an explanation advocated by the argument; the second is a finding used to challenge that explanation.
(E) The first is an explanation that the argument challenges; the second is a finding on which that challenge is based.
Please explain your answers.
I first picked D which is the wrong answer. I picked the wrong conclusion, thus arriving at the total opposite answer. For example, I thought the conclusion is: Composers make most contributions before age 30. In this case D would be the correct answer. Upon re-reading the passage, the conclusion is infact "musicians over 30 spend too muc time playing music instead of composing." Thus E is the answer choice.
My point is: to do well on CR questions, we need to find the correct conclusion in the passage or sometimes in the question itself, before attempting to answer the question.