The popular notion that a tree's age can be determined by : GMAT Critical Reasoning (CR)
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# The popular notion that a tree's age can be determined by

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The popular notion that a tree's age can be determined by [#permalink]

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13 Oct 2009, 05:54
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The popular notion that a tree's age can be determined by counting the number of internal rings in its trunk is generally true. However, to help regulate the internal temperature of the tree, the outermost layers of wood of the Brazilian ash often peel away when the temperature exceeds 95 degrees Fahrenheit, leaving the tree with fewer rings than it would otherwise have. So only if the temperature in the Brazilian ash's environment never exceeds 95 degrees Fahrenheit will its rings be a reliable measure of the tree's age.

Which of the following is an assumption on which the argument above depends?

A. The growth of new rings in a tree is not a function of levels of precipitation.
B. Only the Brazilian ash loses rings because of excessive heat.
C. Only one day of temperatures above 95 degrees Fahrenheit is needed to cause the Brazilian ash to lose a ring.
D. The internal rings of all trees are of uniform thickness.
E. The number of rings that will be lost when the temperature exceeds 95 degrees Fahrenheit is not predictable

OA to come
[Reveal] Spoiler: OA

Last edited by Skywalker18 on 27 Nov 2016, 11:18, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: The popular notion that a tree's age can be determined by [#permalink]

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20 Sep 2011, 21:20
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IMO E

hogann wrote:
The popular notion that a tree's age can be determined by counting the number of internal rings in its trunk is generally true. However, to help regulate the internal temperature of the tree, the outermost layers of wood of the Brazilian ash often peel away when the temperature exceeds 95 degrees Fahrenheit, leaving the tree with fewer rings than it would otherwise have. So only if the temperature in the Brazilian ash's environment never exceeds 95 degrees Fahrenheit will its rings be a reliable measure of the tree's age.

Which of the following is an assumption on which the argument above depends?

A. The growth of new rings in a tree is not a function of levels of precipitation. - out of scope to some extent as we are not given any information on precipitation. INCORRECT
B. Only the Brazilian ash loses rings because of excessive heat. - So what?? Anyways we are supposed to talk about brazilian ash tree only. INCORRECT
C. Only one day of temperatures above 95 degrees Fahrenheit is needed to cause the Brazilian ash to lose a ring.- again I would ask the same question - so what?? We are not concerned about for how much time certain temperature must remain rather we are concerned about the relationship between the temperature and the loss of rings. INCORRECT
D. The internal rings of all trees are of uniform thickness. - again out of scope. INCORRECT
E. The number of rings that will be lost when the temperature exceeds 95 degrees Fahrenheit is not predictable - An assumption is something which makes an argument complete. If the assumption were absent, the argument will fall apart. Here the conclusion is that only if temperature never exceeds 95 degrees, the age of tree will be predictable. What if the temperature also increases and still we are able to predict the age. The conclusion will not hold true in that case. Hence CORRECT

OA to come

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Re: The popular notion that a tree's age can be determined by [#permalink]

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13 Oct 2009, 07:47
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Expert's post
AGREE ON E
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Re: The popular notion that a tree's age can be determined by [#permalink]

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23 May 2012, 06:49
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The central point of the passage is to determine the age of the Brazilian ash trees.

Taking Option E - The number of rings that will be lost when the temperature exceeds 95 degrees Fahrenheit is not predictable

If we negate the above statement, we can rephrase it as follows:

The number of rings that will be lost when the temperature exceeds 95 degrees Fahrenheit is predictable.

Now if in a year, the temperature has exceeded 95 degrees, then we would know the number of rings the tree would lose before hand. If we would like to determine the age of the tree, then all we need to do is add the number of rings lost to the existing rings.

I hope my explanation makes sense. Would love to hear a different version which would help understand the problem in depth.
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Re: The popular notion that a tree's age can be determined by [#permalink]

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13 Oct 2009, 06:44
I will choose "A"

Going with PoE

Round 1
A - This can be right
B - This is being clearly stated in the argument and is therefore not an assumption
C - This can be right
D - This is not at al relevant to the premise or the conclusion
E - This has also been stated in the argument and should therefore not be an assumption

Round 2
We are left with A and C.
"A" - "A" is more appropriate because it affects the conclusion directly, if this is the assumption only then conclusion can be true.
"C" - for how long the temprature should stay at 95 for the ring to shed is no where being mentioned either in the premise or in conclusion..it therefore seems un-related.
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Re: The popular notion that a tree's age can be determined by [#permalink]

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13 Oct 2009, 06:51
IMO its E ...If there is no way only then can the age of the tree be not determined accurately...Paul please explain where does this come as stated in the argument.

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Re: The popular notion that a tree's age can be determined by [#permalink]

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13 Oct 2009, 07:02
IMO, OA is E
Quote:
The number of rings that will be lost when the temperature exceeds 95 degrees Fahrenheit is not predictable

As we cannot predict how many rings were lost because of the temperature fluctuations,we cannot predict the age of the tree. - I would go for this choice.

Quote:
A. The growth of new rings in a tree is not a function of levels of precipitation. - Irrelevant
B. Only the Brazilian ash loses rings because of excessive heat. - Out of Scope
C. Only one day of temperatures above 95 degrees Fahrenheit is needed to cause the Brazilian ash to lose a ring. - Out of Scope
D. The internal rings of all trees are of uniform thickness. - Irrelevant

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Re: The popular notion that a tree's age can be determined by [#permalink]

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13 Oct 2009, 07:09
I will go for E.

"The number of rings that will be lost when the temperature exceeds 95 degrees Fahrenheit is not predictable" . Negating this statement. The conclusion becomes invalid.
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Re: The popular notion that a tree's age can be determined by [#permalink]

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13 Oct 2009, 07:19
and excerpt from the argument is

...leaving the tree with fewer rings than it would otherwise have. ...

does "fewer" not directly mean that how many will shed is not predictable ?

I therefore think that "E" is already available in the argument and therefore after that "A" is the only possible answer.
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Re: The popular notion that a tree's age can be determined by [#permalink]

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13 Oct 2009, 07:55
An assumption can be a parapharse of the premise given in the argument. You can still consider it a valid assumption eventhough it is a repeat.
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Re: The popular notion that a tree's age can be determined by [#permalink]

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13 Oct 2009, 08:14
agree with vannu's reasoning
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Re: The popular notion that a tree's age can be determined by [#permalink]

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13 Oct 2009, 11:17
IEsailor wrote:
agree with vannu's reasoning

I do too! Especially since the OA is E
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Re: The popular notion that a tree's age can be determined by [#permalink]

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13 Oct 2009, 19:05
E is correct.

Try to negate A. The negation will strengthen or make the argument valid. Only if there was precipitation every year the age of tree can be determined. If this was not true then there was some other reason for the formation of new rings, and then the entire reasoning of the argument is destroyed.
A was correct if 'not' was omitted from A.
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Re: The popular notion that a tree's age can be determined by [#permalink]

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19 Oct 2009, 06:03
assumption must be
1, in context of evidence
2, support conclusion
3,pass negation tess

the answer meet 2,and 3, but is out of context is attractive but wrong. A is a sample of this. E is correct.
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Re: The popular notion that a tree's age can be determined by [#permalink]

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20 Oct 2009, 02:36
I first chose C, because I thought that the central point was to determine the age of the tree regardless the number of times the temperature goes above 95.

But paraphrasing the argument, we could say: "Only when the temperature does not go above 95, we can determine the age of the Brazilian tree". Thus, the answer E is the best.
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Re: The popular notion that a tree's age can be determined by [#permalink]

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13 May 2011, 03:19
clean E.
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Re: The popular notion that a tree's age can be determined by [#permalink]

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13 May 2011, 21:09
so simple E . but took 1:21 min , and this is a relatively small stimulus, so the timing is the issue.
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Re: The popular notion that a tree's age can be determined by [#permalink]

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16 Sep 2011, 05:37
E it is... Not really a 700 level question..
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Re: The popular notion that a tree's age can be determined by [#permalink]

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16 Sep 2011, 08:31
vannu wrote:
An assumption can be a parapharse of the premise given in the argument. You can still consider it a valid assumption eventhough it is a repeat.

Is that correct..Can it be a paraphrase?Shoudn't it be something which is unstated in the passage(not out of scope, but unstated).

Here E is the clear winner though..
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Re: The popular notion that a tree's age can be determined by [#permalink]

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16 Sep 2011, 13:06
I picked E...I think is the most logical one.
Re: The popular notion that a tree's age can be determined by   [#permalink] 16 Sep 2011, 13:06

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