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Please evaluate and let know how much you would score me?

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Intern
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Please evaluate and let know how much you would score me? [#permalink] New post 12 Feb 2010, 11:38
Q:
The following appeared in a trade publication for the insurance industry:

“Each generation of Americans has lived longer that the ones preceding it, as the national life expectancy has approached 80 years old in recent years. The progress of medical technology shows no sign of abating. Therefore, we can confidently predict that most children born in America in the next decade will live past the age of ninety.”

Discuss how well reasoned you find this argument. In your discussion be sure to analyze the line of reasoning and the use of evidence in the argument. For example, you may need to consider what questionable assumptions underlie the thinking and what alternative explanations or counterexamples might weaken the conclusion. You can also discuss what sort of evidence would strengthen or refute the argument, what changes in the argument would make it more logically sound, and what, if anything, would help you better evaluate its conclusion.

A:
Technological advancement in Medicine is no doubt a very important aspect to be considered in life expectancy, but it cannot be the only reason for the increase in life expectancy for the entire human population. While, it is true that the medical technology has been making remarkable advancement in today's world, it is always compensated with the cost and this raises the question of afford-ability. The fact that people have lived longer than the preceding ones tells us that there is something in the people's style of living that has made them live longer. A serious research over this could have presented various ways to improve the life expectancy of an individual. Simple things like Exercising, intake of healthy food items , early to bed , early to raise are some of the good habits that will inadvertently lead to longer life.

I remember reading that, Nostradamus, the well known prophet, lost all of his family members to a flu for which there was no cure at that time. And thousands of others who died because of lake of vaccination. Medical technology now is far advanced then early age. The very fact that medicines exist in the current world for most of the illness, itself convinces an individual to take steps which he/she would have feared long time back.
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Joined: 15 Jan 2010
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Location: United States
Concentration: Finance, Strategy
Schools: Chicago (Booth) - Class of 2014
GMAT 1: 760 Q51 V44
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Re: Please evaluate and let know how much you would score me? [#permalink] New post 21 Feb 2010, 01:56
On a scale of 0-6, I would give this essay a score of 2 or 3, which corresponds to an essay that is seriously limited and maybe somewhat flawed.

In order to score in the upper half of the scale (4-6), you need to have a solid structure down. To have a solid structure, you need an introduction that states (a) whether or not you think the argument is flawed, and (b) your explicit reasons for doing so. From the first paragraph in your essay, I am actually not entirely sure what stance you are taking, or why you are taking it. The next two or three paragraphs can be devoted to supporting your reasons for your side, and the last paragraph can conclude your essay.

You made a good point in identifying that improvements in medical technology need to be balanced by the costs. This is important to mention, but it's not the most serious flaw in the argument. Let's say costs weren't an issue - would the argument still be flawed? (Yes). The reason is that medical technology does other things than prolong life, and even if it were to continue, we would not know whether it would prolong life beyond 90 years; nothing tells us that it will do that.

A second flaw in this argument is that he says that "each generation of Americans" lives longer than the last, but in his conclusion he states that "most children born in America" will have longer life expectancies. He's referring to two different groups of people here. This is a pretty subtle one, but I'm certain you'd get bonus points for mentioning it. It could very well be that being born in Europe would give you a longer life expectancy, not necessarily due to medical technology, or something like that.

Think carefully about the flaws in the essay prompt - there are several. Before you even begin writing, list 3 flaws that you feel comfortable talking about, and devote a whole paragraph to each one.

Your last paragraph about Nostradamus, while interesting, does not really add to your argument. How does the evidence shown there help prove your point about life expectancy and medical technology? Ask yourself that every time you want to write something. If you can't, then your evidence doesn't belong in the essay.
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Re: Please evaluate and let know how much you would score me? [#permalink] New post 25 Feb 2010, 17:13
Thanks for your elaborate explanation.

That was my first attempt on AWA, when I hadn't done any study on the structure of the passage.

You explanation makes perfect sense. Thanks again.

Good luck!
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Re: Please evaluate and let know how much you would score me? [#permalink] New post 25 Feb 2010, 18:36
the only thing I ever did for the AWA was read chineseburned guide. I don't think I ever read it just skimmed and got a 5.5. Just write 5 paragraphs, include a lot of buzz words and try not to spell anything wrong. I think thats it.
Re: Please evaluate and let know how much you would score me?   [#permalink] 25 Feb 2010, 18:36
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