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Top college graduates are having more difficulty

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Top college graduates are having more difficulty [#permalink] New post 11 Jul 2012, 22:56
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13. Top college graduates are having more difficulty demonstrating their superiority to prospective employers than did the top students of twenty years ago when an honors degree was distinction enough. Today’s employers are less impressed with the honors degree. Twenty years ago no more than 10 percent of a given class graduated with honors. Today, however, because of grade inflation, the honors degree goes to more than 50 percent of a graduating class, Therefore, to restore confidence in the degrees they award, colleges must take steps to control grade inflation.
Which one of the following is an assumption that, if true, would support the conclusion in the passage?
(A) Today’s students are not higher achievers than the students of twenty years ago.
(B) Awarding too many honors degrees causes colleges to inflate grades.
(C) Today’s employers rely on honors ranking in making their hiring decisions.
(D) It is not easy for students with low grades to obtain jobs.
(E) Colleges must make employers aware of the criteria used to determine who receives an honors degree.

the answer is A
I think it's irrelevant because I don't think whether or not "Today’s students are not higher achievers than the students of twenty years ago" is relevant with get honors degrees and the article do not say anything about the two things. However, all the other are all irrelevant. please help me.
[Reveal] Spoiler: OA
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Re: please help me. I don't know why the answer is relevant [#permalink] New post 12 Jul 2012, 00:58
"Top college graduates are having more difficulty demonstrating their superiority to prospective employers than did the top students of twenty years ago when an honors degree was distinction enough."

Employers assume that getting an honor (or higher grade) shows either easier grading system(if we talk about a specific college or university ) or less competitive students.

" Today’s employers are less impressed with the honors degree" ...because they think ...(assume)

(A)Today’s students are not higher achievers than the students of twenty years ago.

IMO (A)
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Re: please help me. I don't know why the answer is relevant [#permalink] New post 12 Jul 2012, 05:29
thevenus wrote:
"Top college graduates are having more difficulty demonstrating their superiority to prospective employers than did the top students of twenty years ago when an honors degree was distinction enough."

Employers assume that getting an honor (or higher grade) shows either easier grading system(if we talk about a specific college or university ) or less competitive students.

" Today’s employers are less impressed with the honors degree" ...because they think ...(assume)

(A)Today’s students are not higher achievers than the students of twenty years ago.

IMO (A)


Thank you
But I still do not understand why? The article tells you nothing about the relation of honors degree and higher achievers.
If I can use "they assume", then I think others are the right answer.
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Re: please help me. I don't know why the answer is relevant [#permalink] New post 12 Jul 2012, 11:15
Expert's post
hehelovehaha wrote:
thevenus wrote:
"Top college graduates are having more difficulty demonstrating their superiority to prospective employers than did the top students of twenty years ago when an honors degree was distinction enough."

Employers assume that getting an honor (or higher grade) shows either easier grading system(if we talk about a specific college or university ) or less competitive students.

" Today’s employers are less impressed with the honors degree" ...because they think ...(assume)

(A)Today’s students are not higher achievers than the students of twenty years ago.

IMO (A)


Thank you
But I still do not understand why? The article tells you nothing about the relation of honors degree and higher achievers.
If I can use "they assume", then I think others are the right answer.
Hi hehelovehaha,

You seem a little confused because the assumption isn't mentioned by the text. But that shouldn't be confusing--the assumption is by definition not included in the text!

Essentially, an assumption is an unstated fact or set of facts that is required for the argument to hold.

So, "We must restrict the sales of Chem. X, because all poisons should be restricted" is a classic type of GMAT argument with a conclusion (Restrict X) based on evidence (No poison allowed!). But it's not a complete argument, and on the GMAT it almost never will be. Because I never told you that Chem. X was a poison! I'm leaving that unstated, or "assuming" it.

Back to your example. The conclusion is that schools need to fix grade inflation. Why? Because the author says that 10% of students were honors students once upon a time, but now it's as high as 50%. When the question asks for the assumption, it's asking what is unstated, but necessary, for the argument to make sense. And since he hasn't provided any evidence but his own inferences that grade inflation is a problem, we can predict his assumption as something like: "he assumes that grade inflation is the best and only explanation for the number of honors students today"

Once we know his assumption, we look for an answer that matches the prediction. And (A), though phrased slightly different, means the exact same thing.

I hope this helps!
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Re: please help me. I don't know why the answer is relevant [#permalink] New post 12 Jul 2012, 14:20
KapTeacherEli wrote:
hehelovehaha wrote:
thevenus wrote:
"Top college graduates are having more difficulty demonstrating their superiority to prospective employers than did the top students of twenty years ago when an honors degree was distinction enough."

Employers assume that getting an honor (or higher grade) shows either easier grading system(if we talk about a specific college or university ) or less competitive students.

" Today’s employers are less impressed with the honors degree" ...because they think ...(assume)

(A)Today’s students are not higher achievers than the students of twenty years ago.

IMO (A)


Thank you
But I still do not understand why? The article tells you nothing about the relation of honors degree and higher achievers.
If I can use "they assume", then I think others are the right answer.
Hi hehelovehaha,

You seem a little confused because the assumption isn't mentioned by the text. But that shouldn't be confusing--the assumption is by definition not included in the text!

Essentially, an assumption is an unstated fact or set of facts that is required for the argument to hold.

So, "We must restrict the sales of Chem. X, because all poisons should be restricted" is a classic type of GMAT argument with a conclusion (Restrict X) based on evidence (No poison allowed!). But it's not a complete argument, and on the GMAT it almost never will be. Because I never told you that Chem. X was a poison! I'm leaving that unstated, or "assuming" it.

Back to your example. The conclusion is that schools need to fix grade inflation. Why? Because the author says that 10% of students were honors students once upon a time, but now it's as high as 50%. When the question asks for the assumption, it's asking what is unstated, but necessary, for the argument to make sense. And since he hasn't provided any evidence but his own inferences that grade inflation is a problem, we can predict his assumption as something like: "he assumes that grade inflation is the best and only explanation for the number of honors students today"

Once we know his assumption, we look for an answer that matches the prediction. And (A), though phrased slightly different, means the exact same thing.

I hope this helps!


First of all, thank you. I think I know what you mean.
However, let me ask you a question about GMAT.
Branched would be broken off by snow in winter and, therefore, the cars would break down because of those branches. However, the number of those cars broken down in autumn is higher than those in winter.
what can explain it?
A. in autumn, the gust will break off branches which will break down the cars.
B. in winter, people know that the branches will be broken off by snow so that they never park their cars under the trees.

the answer is A, because in B the article does not tell us that only those cars which are parked under the trees will be break down by snow. So I think the answer of the question of LSAT is irrelevant. Can you give me a hand?
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Re: please help me. I don't know why the answer is relevant [#permalink] New post 12 Jul 2012, 15:57
Expert's post
hehelovehaha wrote:
KapTeacherEli wrote:
hehelovehaha wrote:
Thank you
But I still do not understand why? The article tells you nothing about the relation of honors degree and higher achievers.
If I can use "they assume", then I think others are the right answer.
Hi hehelovehaha,

You seem a little confused because the assumption isn't mentioned by the text. But that shouldn't be confusing--the assumption is by definition not included in the text!

Essentially, an assumption is an unstated fact or set of facts that is required for the argument to hold.

So, "We must restrict the sales of Chem. X, because all poisons should be restricted" is a classic type of GMAT argument with a conclusion (Restrict X) based on evidence (No poison allowed!). But it's not a complete argument, and on the GMAT it almost never will be. Because I never told you that Chem. X was a poison! I'm leaving that unstated, or "assuming" it.

Back to your example. The conclusion is that schools need to fix grade inflation. Why? Because the author says that 10% of students were honors students once upon a time, but now it's as high as 50%. When the question asks for the assumption, it's asking what is unstated, but necessary, for the argument to make sense. And since he hasn't provided any evidence but his own inferences that grade inflation is a problem, we can predict his assumption as something like: "he assumes that grade inflation is the best and only explanation for the number of honors students today"

Once we know his assumption, we look for an answer that matches the prediction. And (A), though phrased slightly different, means the exact same thing.

I hope this helps!


First of all, thank you. I think I know what you mean.
However, let me ask you a question about GMAT.
Branched would be broken off by snow in winter and, therefore, the cars would break down because of those branches. However, the number of those cars broken down in autumn is higher than those in winter.
what can explain it?
A. in autumn, the gust will break off branches which will break down the cars.
B. in winter, people know that the branches will be broken off by snow so that they never park their cars under the trees.

the answer is A, because in B the article does not tell us that only those cars which are parked under the trees will be break down by snow. So I think the answer of the question of LSAT is irrelevant. Can you give me a hand?
Hi haha,

I think you're comflating completely different types of questions! "Logical reasoning" is a question format, but there are multiple quesiton types within it. The one you just provided is an "Explain" question, which uses completely different rules than an "assumption" questions.

What resources are you using to study? The sticky threads at the top of this forum, and books like Kaplan's GMAT Premier 2013, will answer all of your questions in more detail than I can on these forums!
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Re: Top college graduates are having more difficulty [#permalink] New post 22 Feb 2013, 21:11
Therefore, to restore confidence in the degrees they award, colleges must take steps to control grade inflation.
Which one of the following is an assumption that, if true, would support the conclusion in the passage?

(A) Today’s students are not higher achievers than the students of twenty years ago.
(B) Awarding too many honors degrees causes colleges to inflate grades.

Negating (A).

Today's students are higher achievers than the students of twenty years ago, So definitely they deserve honors degree.However, in the argument the achievers are not linked to getting honors degree.So,this choice seems dubious to me

Negating B

Premise talks about Honors degrees
Conclusion talks about controlling degree inflation.

Awarding too many honors degree DOESN'T cause colleges to inflate degrees.Breaks the link between premise and conclusion.So,the conclusion has no legs.Hence, weaken it.


Plz Advice !!!!
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Re: Top college graduates are having more difficulty [#permalink] New post 22 Feb 2013, 22:52
Expert's post
targetgmatchotu wrote:
Therefore, to restore confidence in the degrees they award, colleges must take steps to control grade inflation.
Which one of the following is an assumption that, if true, would support the conclusion in the passage?

(A) Today’s students are not higher achievers than the students of twenty years ago.
(B) Awarding too many honors degrees causes colleges to inflate grades.

Negating (A).

Today's students are higher achievers than the students of twenty years ago, So definitely they deserve honors degree.However, in the argument the achievers are not linked to getting honors degree.So,this choice seems dubious to me

Negating B

Premise talks about Honors degrees
Conclusion talks about controlling degree inflation.

Awarding too many honors degree DOESN'T cause colleges to inflate degrees.Breaks the link between premise and conclusion.So,the conclusion has no legs.Hence, weaken it.


Plz Advice !!!!


An assumption is a necessary premise that is missing from the stimulus. It strengthens the conclusion. If the assumption is negated, the conclusion breaks apart.

Conclusion here is: to restore confidence in the degrees they award, colleges must take steps to control grade inflation.

The author is assuming that grades are inflated. That today’s students are not higher achievers than the students of twenty years ago. If it is true, then his conclusion strengthens. Colleges must take steps to control grade inflation is they want to restore confidence in their degrees.

'Higher achievers' means 'one who deservedly achieves higher grades' as far as academics go so there is no disconnect here.
Let's negate the assumption (A) - Today’s students are not higher achievers than the students of twenty years ago.
If today's students are actually higher achievers and that is the reason why 50% of them get honors degrees, then author's conclusion - to restore confidence in the degrees they award, colleges must take steps to control grade inflation - has no merit. Then the grades are not inflated so the point of controlling grade inflation has no merit.

As for B - Awarding too many honors degrees causes colleges to inflate grades.
Actually it is the reverse. Inflated grades lead to too many honors degrees (and this is already mentioned in the stimulus).

For a detailed discussion on this question, check out: top-college-graduates-are-having-more-difficulty-67546-20.html?hilit=control%20grade%20inflation
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Re: Top college graduates are having more difficulty [#permalink] New post 13 Oct 2013, 02:46
hehelovehaha wrote:
13. Top college graduates are having more difficulty demonstrating their superiority to prospective employers than did the top students of twenty years ago when an honors degree was distinction enough. Today’s employers are less impressed with the honors degree. Twenty years ago no more than 10 percent of a given class graduated with honors. Today, however, because of grade inflation, the honors degree goes to more than 50 percent of a graduating class, Therefore, to restore confidence in the degrees they award, colleges must take steps to control grade inflation.
Which one of the following is an assumption that, if true, would support the conclusion in the passage?
(A) Today’s students are not higher achievers than the students of twenty years ago.
(B) Awarding too many honors degrees causes colleges to inflate grades.
(C) Today’s employers rely on honors ranking in making their hiring decisions.
(D) It is not easy for students with low grades to obtain jobs.
(E) Colleges must make employers aware of the criteria used to determine who receives an honors degree.

the answer is A
I think it's irrelevant because I don't think whether or not "Today’s students are not higher achievers than the students of twenty years ago" is relevant with get honors degrees and the article do not say anything about the two things. However, all the other are all irrelevant. please help me.


I am pretty sure that you would've got C, D, E out in a flash ..

In addition to negation explained above by TGC, there is one more way to eliminate B ..
In Argument its written - because of grade inflation, the honors degree goes to more than 50

Cause and Effect, GI >> H.D.
In option B, Too many H.D > GI .. both are opposite .. it cannot be an assumption .. only thing left is A
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Re: Top college graduates are having more difficulty   [#permalink] 13 Oct 2013, 02:46
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