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# The Dean claimed that, as a result of continued cutbacks in

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The Dean claimed that, as a result of continued cutbacks in [#permalink]

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09 Nov 2012, 12:37
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The Dean claimed that, as a result of continued cutbacks in the budget for pure science research, fewer students are choosing a career in physics, and therefore the number of postgraduate students studying physics is likely to decline.

Which of the following, if true, casts most doubt on the Dean’s conclusion?

A. The number of students majoring in physics at the undergraduate level has been increasing steadily over the years, a trend that is expected to continue.
B. The number of students studying chemistry declined even before cutbacks in research funding were noted.
C. Most postgraduate students of physics move to careers in computer science and engineering.
D. The Dean’s own university has recently increased the number of staff members teaching physics.
E. The budget cutbacks are less severe for the pure sciences than for applied sciences.
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Re: The Dean claimed that, as a result of continued cutbacks in [#permalink]

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09 Nov 2012, 13:43
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Hi,

Here is my thought process spelled out as I would go through this question:

The Dean claimed that, as a result of continued cutbacks in the budget for pure science research, fewer students are choosing a career in physics, and therefore the number of postgraduate students studying physics is likely to decline.

So conclusion is number of postgrad physicists is likely to decline. Based on argument that there are cutbacks in the research budget for pure science

Which of the following, if true, casts most doubt on the Dean’s conclusion?

So which goes against what is said above. Which suggests that the number will not decline (n.b. doesn't necessarily mean the number will rise)

A. The number of students majoring in physics at the undergraduate level has been increasing steadily over the years, a trend that is expected to continue.This is irrelevant, the question is about postgrad. So doesn't help or hinder the conclusion
B. The number of students studying chemistry declined even before cutbacks in research funding were noted.This talks about chemists. No discussion at all about physicists. A watch out here to not draw your own conclusions, it may seem logical that chemists and physicists share similar traits, but we don't know that!
C. Most postgraduate students of physics move to careers in computer science and engineering. This looks good to me. The reason given for the drop in postgrad physicists was that they would no longer have academic jobs. If there are lots of other jobs this undermines that conclusion
D. The Dean’s own university has recently increased the number of staff members teaching physics.Not relevant. These could be undergrad teachers.
E. The budget cutbacks are less severe for the pure sciences than for applied sciences Again not relevant. We need some evidence for whether the budget cuts will affect physicists
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Re: The Dean claimed that, as a result of continued cutbacks in [#permalink]

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10 Nov 2012, 13:22
plumber250 wrote:
Hi,

Here is my thought process spelled out as I would go through this question:

The Dean claimed that, as a result of continued cutbacks in the budget for pure science research, fewer students are choosing a career in physics, and therefore the number of postgraduate students studying physics is likely to decline.

So conclusion is number of postgrad physicists is likely to decline. Based on argument that there are cutbacks in the research budget for pure science

Which of the following, if true, casts most doubt on the Dean’s conclusion?

So which goes against what is said above. Which suggests that the number will not decline (n.b. doesn't necessarily mean the number will rise)

A. The number of students majoring in physics at the undergraduate level has been increasing steadily over the years, a trend that is expected to continue.This is irrelevant, the question is about postgrad. So doesn't help or hinder the conclusion
B. The number of students studying chemistry declined even before cutbacks in research funding were noted.This talks about chemists. No discussion at all about physicists. A watch out here to not draw your own conclusions, it may seem logical that chemists and physicists share similar traits, but we don't know that!
C. Most postgraduate students of physics move to careers in computer science and engineering. This looks good to me. The reason given for the drop in postgrad physicists was that they would no longer have academic jobs. If there are lots of other jobs this undermines that conclusion
D. The Dean’s own university has recently increased the number of staff members teaching physics.Not relevant. These could be undergrad teachers.
E. The budget cutbacks are less severe for the pure sciences than for applied sciences Again not relevant. We need some evidence for whether the budget cuts will affect physicists

"fewer students are choosing a career in physics" The quoted is a part of premise, hence if we pick C we are just going to strengthen the argument.
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Re: The Dean claimed that, as a result of continued cutbacks in [#permalink]

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14 Nov 2012, 20:03
C is strengthening! Someone kindly provide a better explanation.
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Re: The Dean claimed that, as a result of continued cutbacks in [#permalink]

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14 Nov 2012, 21:02
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suryanshg wrote:
C is strengthening! Someone kindly provide a better explanation.

Archit143 wrote:
"fewer students are choosing a career in physics" The quoted is a part of premise, hence if we pick C we are just going to strengthen the argument.

C is not strengthening.
Basically the conclusion is just " the number of postgraduate students studying physics is likely to decline."
reason given for this is: "as a result of continued cutbacks in the budget for pure science research, fewer students are choosing a career in physics"

However, option C shows us that most of the physics post grads have no interest in careers in physics and they opt for computer sceince etc related careers. Thus even if the pure science research budget is cutback it is unlikely that number of students would decline.

Infact, a question, with a very similar logic, has been explained in Kaplan's breaking 700 video posted on forum as part of 1M post celebration.
breaking-700-what-it-takes-kaplan-lecture-142370.html
Check it out, I think its worth.
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Re: The Dean claimed that, as a result of continued cutbacks in [#permalink]

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01 Jul 2013, 04:30
the answer is C because if the number of prostgraduate that move to computer science and engineering is increasing the number of postgraduates will increase or at least remain. It means that computer science and engineering are careers that appeal students after graduating from physics so the number of students will remain or increase and it weakens the conclusion
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Re: The Dean claimed that, as a result of continued cutbacks in [#permalink]

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01 Jul 2013, 20:34
gibranscr wrote:
the answer is C because if the number of prostgraduate that move to computer science and engineering is increasing the number of postgraduates will increase or at least remain. It means that computer science and engineering are careers that appeal students after graduating from physics so the number of students will remain or increase and it weakens the conclusion

I went about doing this question like this -

Premise - There are cutbacks in research in Pure Sciences
Premise - Fewer students are choosing careers in Pure science

Conclusion - Fewer students would choose to study Physics in their postgrad.

Now for something to cast a doubt on the conclusion it has to undermine one of the premises leading to the conclusion -

A. The number of students majoring in physics at the undergraduate level has been increasing steadily over the years, a trend that is expected to continue.
Here it does mention that the number of students are increasing in undergraduate, it doesnt necessarily imply an increasing trend for post graduates! Irrelevant

B. The number of students studying chemistry declined even before cutbacks in research funding were noted.
Number of students in chemistry may not have any impact on those in Physics. Irrelevant.

C. Most postgraduate students of physics move to careers in computer science and engineering.
Yes!! Now we are talking. If the students dont really care about career in pure sciences, nothing would impact their pursuing Physics in postgraduation.

D. The Dean’s own university has recently increased the number of staff members teaching physics.
Increase in staff?? Whatever!

E. The budget cutbacks are less severe for the pure sciences than for applied sciences.
So what??

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04 Jul 2013, 03:37
This question is actually very tricky. I got the question wrong because I did not pay close attention to the wording of the correct answer choice. If you do not read it properly, C might seem completely irrelevant.

C might seem that students, after obtaining degree in postgraduate physics, student move on the other careers. Actually, C tells that DURING the postgraduate studies, physics students go an do something else (switch careers).

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04 Jul 2013, 04:29
I think here, one has to not think in terms of real world logic but GMAT logic. In real world, if after doing a post graduation in physics i would have to change field to computer science, i would rather not graduate in physics but directly go for a degree in computers. Using that logic i ended up choosing A ,but if one were to use the info only in the qn , one wld choose C.
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04 Jul 2013, 06:09
vs129 wrote:
I think here, one has to not think in terms of real world logic but GMAT logic. In real world, if after doing a post graduation in physics i would have to change field to computer science, i would rather not graduate in physics but directly go for a degree in computers. Using that logic i ended up choosing A ,but if one were to use the info only in the qn , one wld choose C.

the argument says that most post graduate students move to engineering or computer science so that it means those careers attract students that are postgraduated in physics so that maybe to study physics is a requirement to continue studying more in the future about science computer or engineering. This way, It shows that the number of students will remain and the conclusion is weaken
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24 Nov 2013, 01:30
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You have to realise that option C is attacking the root of the argument (premise) ant not the head (conclusion) as is usually the case with most weaken question.

Either way, the argument that budget cuts in pure sciences is causing fewer students choose a career in physics is weaken. This is done by C - by showing that another factor (choosing computer science) is causing the said career pattern and not as claimed by the argument.
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12 May 2015, 04:49
avaneeshvyas wrote:
The Dean claimed that, as a result of continued cutbacks in the budget for pure science research, fewer students are choosing a career in physics, and therefore the number of postgraduate students studying physics is likely to decline.

Which of the following, if true, casts most doubt on the Dean’s conclusion?

A. The number of students majoring in physics at the undergraduate level has been increasing steadily over the years, a trend that is expected to continue.
B. The number of students studying chemistry declined even before cutbacks in research funding were noted.
C. Most postgraduate students of physics move to careers in computer science and engineering.
D. The Dean’s own university has recently increased the number of staff members teaching physics.
E. The budget cutbacks are less severe for the pure sciences than for applied sciences.

its C.c says that students choose career in physics(budget not responsible),afterwards they drop out.
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10 Aug 2015, 01:36
avaneeshvyas wrote:
The Dean claimed that, as a result of continued cutbacks in the budget for pure science research, fewer students are choosing a career in physics, and therefore the number of postgraduate students studying physics is likely to decline.

Which of the following, if true, casts most doubt on the Dean’s conclusion?

A. The number of students majoring in physics at the undergraduate level has been increasing steadily over the years, a trend that is expected to continue.
B. The number of students studying chemistry declined even before cutbacks in research funding were noted.
C. Most postgraduate students of physics move to careers in computer science and engineering.
D. The Dean’s own university has recently increased the number of staff members teaching physics.
E. The budget cutbacks are less severe for the pure sciences than for applied sciences.

C says that when it comes to career, PG student of physics work in eng and computer science. it is saying nothing about fewer students are choosing a career in physics or not.
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18 May 2016, 09:49
Took a long time but got it .....C it is , use causal reasoning for alternate cause.
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20 Jul 2016, 23:30
Is this question attacking premise?

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The Dean claimed that, as a result of continued cutbacks in [#permalink]

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21 Jul 2016, 02:01
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smartguy595 wrote:
Is this question attacking premise?

Hello, smartguy595

Yes, answer C weaken the premise.
(IMHO this is not a conclusion but weaken type of question)

Conclusion: "the number of postgraduate students studying physics is likely to decline" -> because ->
Premise: "fewer students are choosing a career in physics, as a result of continued cutbacks in the budget for pure science research"

in other words:
The number of physics students will be lessen because students don't want to make physics career.

This is not true because "most students choose career in computer science"
so students already didn't choose the career in physics
so cutting of science physics budget has no big influence on the number of physics students.
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Re: The Dean claimed that, as a result of continued cutbacks in [#permalink]

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21 Jul 2016, 02:08
Harley1980 wrote:
smartguy595 wrote:
Is this question attacking premise?

Hello, smartguy595

Yes, answer C weaken the premise.
(IMHO this is not a conclusion but weaken type of question)

Conclusion: "the number of postgraduate students studying physics is likely to decline" -> because ->
Premise: "fewer students are choosing a career in physics, as a result of continued cutbacks in the budget for pure science research"

in other words:
The number of physics students will be lessen because students don't want to make physics career.

This is not true because "most students choose career in computer science"
so students already didn't choose the career in physics
so cutting of science physics budget has no big influence on the number of physics students.

Hi Harley1980,

But we need to accept premises as true and need to attack the conclusion right?
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21 Jul 2016, 02:24
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smartguy595 wrote:
Harley1980 wrote:
smartguy595 wrote:
Is this question attacking premise?

Hello, smartguy595

Yes, answer C weaken the premise.
(IMHO this is not a conclusion but weaken type of question)

Conclusion: "the number of postgraduate students studying physics is likely to decline" -> because ->
Premise: "fewer students are choosing a career in physics, as a result of continued cutbacks in the budget for pure science research"

in other words:
The number of physics students will be lessen because students don't want to make physics career.

This is not true because "most students choose career in computer science"
so students already didn't choose the career in physics
so cutting of science physics budget has no big influence on the number of physics students.

Hi Harley1980,

But we need to accept premises as true and need to attack the conclusion right?

We can attack premises in weaken questions.

We have premise that starts from words "The Dean claimed that"
So this is the opinion of the Dean and we can weaken it.

Dean thinks that students do not choose physic's career because of poor physic's budget and we have information that students just want to go to computer area.

Here is the good article from Magoosh, exactly about this type of weaken questions in which we can attack premise:

http://magoosh.com/gmat/2012/how-to-wea ... reasoning/

"Other ways of attacking an argument include:
a) questioning the evidence cited, and/or questioning the starting point"

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21 Jul 2016, 02:53
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smartguy595 wrote:
Is this question attacking premise?

This question asked us to make the Deans claim(premise-fewer students are choosing a career in physics) less likely to happen( Conclusion-the number of postgraduate students studying physics is likely to decline.)

The Dean claimed that, as a result of continued cutbacks in the budget for pure science research, fewer students are choosing a career in physics, and therefore the number of postgraduate students studying physics is likely to decline.

Which of the following, if true, casts most doubt on the Dean’s conclusion?

A. The number of students majoring in physics at the undergraduate level has been increasing steadily over the years, a trend that is expected to continue. .........>outside the scope of the argument
B. The number of students studying chemistry declined even before cutbacks in research funding were noted. ......>Irrelevant to this argument,this information may have not effect to the argument.
C. Most postgraduate students of physics move to careers in computer science and engineering. .........>Correct.This statement showed that despite fewer students are choosing a career in physics,their employ-ability didn't reduce as Most of them move to careers in computer science and engineering(weakened the dean's claim)
D. The Dean’s own university has recently increased the number of staff members teaching physics. .........>Irrelevant information.This information has no effect on the argument presented above.
E. The budget cutbacks are less severe for the pure sciences than for applied sciences. ..........>outside the scope of the argument
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