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# *700* Columnist: George Orwell’s book 1984 has exercised

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Intern
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Re: *700* Columnist: George Orwell’s book 1984 has exercised [#permalink]

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02 Sep 2016, 03:25
VeritasPrepKarishma wrote:
souvik101990 wrote:
Columnist: George Orwell’s book 1984 has exercised much influence on a great number of this newspaper’s readers. One thousand readers were surveyed and asked to name the one book that had the most influence on their lives. The book chosen most often was the Bible; 1984 was second.

The answer to which one of the following questions would most help in evaluating the columnist’s argument?

A. How many of those surveyed had actually read the books they chose?

B. How many books had each person surveyed read?

C. How many people read the columnist’s newspaper?

D. How many books by George Orwell other than 1984 were chosen?

E. How many people chose 1984?

Premises:
1000 readers were surveyed and asked to name the one book that had the most influence on their lives.
The book chosen most often was the Bible; 1984 was second.

Conclusion: George Orwell’s book 1984 has exercised much influence on a great numberof this newspaper’s readers.

A. How many of those surveyed had actually read the books they chose?
The readers claim that the book influenced their lives. Whether the book cover was profound or the preface took their breath away or they actually read the book, we don't know. They claim that the book influenced their lives and that's that. Whether they actually read the book is irrelevant.

B. How many books had each person surveyed read?
Again, doesn't matter. Even if they read just one book, if it influenced their lives, it did have the most influence on their lives. Just because one person read 1000 books, his claim is not more justifiable than the person who read only 10 books.

C. How many people read the columnist’s newspaper?
Doesn't matter. The columnist is talking about the readers of the newspaper. That is the super set. How many are there in the super set is immaterial. We need to find what percentage of this super set claims that this book most influenced their lives.

D. How many books by George Orwell other than 1984 were chosen?
Doesn't matter. We only care about 1984. All other George Orwell books are out of scope.

E. How many people chose 1984?
If out of 1000, 990 chose the Bible and 10 chose 1984, we CANNOT say that 1984 influenced a great number of readers.
If out of 1000, 501 chose the Bible and 499 chose 1984, we CAN say that 1984 influenced a great number of readers.
So the answer to this question is important in evaluating the columnist's argument.

But the OA says B. Can you please explain why.

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Re: *700* Columnist: George Orwell’s book 1984 has exercised [#permalink]

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12 Sep 2016, 00:44
Hello from the GMAT Club VerbalBot!

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Re: *700* Columnist: George Orwell’s book 1984 has exercised [#permalink]

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13 Oct 2016, 05:15
$$[fraction][/fraction]$$E should be correct.

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Re: *700* Columnist: George Orwell’s book 1984 has exercised [#permalink]

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26 Dec 2016, 01:06
shriramvelamuri wrote:
IMO C. say 999 people said bible and 1 person said '1984'; Then the conclusion breaks.

Lets say 501 people like bible and 499 like '1984'; Conclusion gains.

B, C, and D are clearly out of scope. A is tough call.

souvik101990 wrote:
Columnist: George Orwell’s book 1984 has exercised much influence on a great number of this newspaper’s readers. One thousand readers were surveyed and asked to name the one book that had the most influence on their lives. The book chosen most often was the Bible; 1984 was second.

The answer to which one of the following questions would most help in evaluating the columnist’s argument?

A. How many of those surveyed had actually read the books they chose?

B. How many books had each person surveyed read?

C. How many people read the columnist’s newspaper?

D. How many books by George Orwell other than 1984 were chosen?

E. How many people chose 1984?

Yes. This is exactly what I was thinking. Good explanation.

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Re: *700* Columnist: George Orwell’s book 1984 has exercised [#permalink]

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06 Apr 2017, 11:44
1
KUDOS
George Orwell???s book 1984 has exercised much influence on a
great number of this newspaper???s readers: Conclusion

Premise: survey of 1000 readers suggests that 1984 was the second most often chosen book in terms of influence

If number of readers of newspaper is 1000000000 then the survey of 1000 people can t be used to conclude that a great number of newspaper readers are influenced by 1984.

if number of readers of newspaper is 1010 then survey is right to conclude that great number of newspaper readers are influenced by 1984.

What is the point I am missing here.
I often get CR questions wrong and dont even understand the correct answer explanation.
Where am I missing the point here and how do I improve ?

PS: already reading Powerscore CR and have gone through many OG questions and CR strategies.

Any help would be highly appreciated.

Kudos !!

Regards,
Saksham

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Re: *700* Columnist: George Orwell’s book 1984 has exercised [#permalink]

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09 Apr 2017, 18:34
Quote:
Columnist: George Orwell’s book 1984 has exercised much influence on a
great number of this newspaper’s readers. One thousand readers were
surveyed and asked to name the one book that had the most influence on
their lives. The book chosen most often was the Bible; 1984 was second. The
answer to which one of the following questions would most help in
evaluating the columnist’s argument?

A. How many books had each person surveyed read?
B. How many people chose books other than 1984?
C. How many people read the columnist’s newspaper?
D. How many books by George Orwell other than 1984 were chosen?
E. How many of those surveyed had actually read the books they chose?

Quote:
George Orwell???s book 1984 has exercised much influence on a
great number of this newspaper???s readers: Conclusion

Premise: survey of 1000 readers suggests that 1984 was the second most often chosen book in terms of influence

If number of readers of newspaper is 1000000000 then the survey of 1000 people can t be used to conclude that a great number of newspaper readers are influenced by 1984.

if number of readers of newspaper is 1010 then survey is right to conclude that great number of newspaper readers are influenced by 1984.

What is the point I am missing here.
I often get CR questions wrong and dont even understand the correct answer explanation.
Where am I missing the point here and how do I improve ?

PS: already reading Powerscore CR and have gone through many OG questions and CR strategies.

Any help would be highly appreciated.

Kudos !!

Regards,
Saksham

sakshamgmat, thanks for your question! You've already taken a great first step, which is, if possible, to identify the conclusion, "George Orwell’s book 1984 has exercised much influence on a great number of this newspaper’s readers." Now, make sure to pay close attention to what is being asked... we are looking for a question whose answer would most help in evaluating the columnist’s argument. Note that this does not mean that we need to prove whether the columnist's conclusion is true or false. With that in mind, consider choice B..

Quote:
B. How many people chose books other than 1984?

If we know how many people out of the 1000 chose books OTHER than 1984, then we know how many people chose 1984 (ie if 990 people chose books other than 1984, that means that only 10 chose 1984; if 600 people chose books other than 1984, then 400 chose 1984). If only 10 chose 1984, then we could easily criticize the columnist's argument because we have no idea if only 10 readers were influenced by 1984 or if a large number of those not surveyed were also influenced by 1984. The actual number of newspaper readers influenced by 1984 could be 10 or it could be 10,000; without more information, we cannot safely reach the columnist's conclusion, but we can indeed evaluate the columnist's conclusion and determine that it is insufficient. Now, what if 400 people chose 1984? If the survey is reasonably accurate, this data tells us that nearly half of the newspaper's readers were influenced by 1984. Sure, it is possible that the newspaper actually has 1,000,000 readers and that only 400 total were influenced by 1984, but it is far more likely that a larger portion were influenced by 1984. And even if only 400 people in total were influenced by 1984, one could still argue that this is a "great number" of readers (the columnist only argued that a great number of readers were influenced by 1984, not that a large percentage of readers were influenced by 1984). Thus, the columnist's argument is reasonable.

Knowing the number of people out of the 1000 surveyed helps us evaluate the columnist's argument better than the answers to the questions in the other choices would, so choice B is the best option. I hope that helps!
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Re: *700* Columnist: George Orwell’s book 1984 has exercised [#permalink]

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17 Jul 2017, 05:58
i got B for my answer but the top thread chose E. I think we missed up 2 different questions that have the same base.

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Re: *700* Columnist: George Orwell’s book 1984 has exercised [#permalink]

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17 Jul 2017, 09:05
I still cannot grasp why the number of newspaper's readers is irrelevant - the survey pertains to 1,000 readers - if the newspaper has 100,000 readers that's a 1% sample (more or less representative). However, if there are millions of readers all around the globe - it doesn't matter what the surveyed 1,000 readers say about "1984" - even if 499 of them said "1984" influenced their lives it wouldn't be correct to conclude that great number of readers feel the same (as 499 people is not a representative sample when it comes to millions of readers)

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Re: *700* Columnist: George Orwell’s book 1984 has exercised [#permalink]

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14 Oct 2017, 17:51
oagostinho wrote:
Hi, Everyone

thanks for your help! all of you!

Well, this is my opinion:

Conclusion:
George Orwell’s book 1984 has exercised much influence on a
great number of this newspaper’s readers
Facts:
One thousand readers were surveyed and asked to name the one book that had the most influence on
their lives. The book chosen most often was the Bible; 1984 was second
Assumptions?
Here, it's important to make some relationship between the readers of the newspaper and the Orwell's book......
And
The answer to which one of the following questions would most help in evaluating the columnist’s argument?

C. How many people read the columnist’s newspaper? For me, this one, make this RELATIONSHIP!

what do you think guys?

Cheers!

Well, the number of people who read the columnist's newspaper is frankly irrelevant. Whatever the number is, 10,000 or 1,000,000, the claim in the argument (read conclusion) is that a great number of those readers i.e. a great number of 10,000 or a great number of 1,000,000, have been influenced by the book 1984.

To test this answer choice another way; if the answer to the question how many people read the columnist's newspaper was 10, does that weaken or strengthen the argument? No; 8 people of those 10 (a relatively great number) could have been strongly influenced by the book. This would be the same if the answer was 10,000.

B is the correct answer; if the answer to the question posed by answer choice B, was 20, then 20 readers out of 1000 readers is not a great number of people. This weakens the conclusion. However, if the answer was 700, or so out of 1,000, then a great number would have been influenced. This strengthens the conclusion.
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Re: *700* Columnist: George Orwell’s book 1984 has exercised [#permalink]

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14 Oct 2017, 18:00
oagostinho wrote:
Hi, Everyone

thanks for your help! all of you!

Well, this is my opinion:

Conclusion:
George Orwell’s book 1984 has exercised much influence on a
great number of this newspaper’s readers
Facts:
One thousand readers were surveyed and asked to name the one book that had the most influence on
their lives. The book chosen most often was the Bible; 1984 was second
Assumptions?
Here, it's important to make some relationship between the readers of the newspaper and the Orwell's book......
And
The answer to which one of the following questions would most help in evaluating the columnist’s argument?

C. How many people read the columnist’s newspaper? For me, this one, make this RELATIONSHIP!

what do you think guys?

Cheers!

Well, the number of people who read the columnist's newspaper is frankly irrelevant. Whatever the number is, 10,000 or 1,000,000, the claim in the argument (read conclusion) is that a great number of thosereaders i.e. a great number of 10,000 or a great number of 1,000,000, have been influenced by the book1984.

To test this answer choice another way; if the answer to the question how many people read the columnist's newspaper was 10, does that weaken or strengthen at the argument? No; 8 people of those 10 (a relatively great number) could have been strongly influenced by the book. This would be the same if the answer was 10,000.

B is the correct answer; if the answer to the question posed by answer choice B, was 20, then 20 readers out of 1000 readers is not a great number of people. This weakens the conclusion. However, if the answer was 700, or so out of 1,000, then a great number would have been influenced. This strengthens the conclusion.
venstein wrote:
I still cannot grasp why the number of newspaper's readers is irrelevant - the survey pertains to 1,000 readers - if the newspaper has 100,000 readers that's a 1% sample (more or less representative). However, if there are millions of readers all around the globe - it doesn't matter what the surveyed 1,000 readers say about "1984" - even if 499 of them said "1984" influenced their lives it wouldn't be correct to conclude that great number of readers feel the same (as 499 people is not a representative sample when it comes to millions of readers)

You pose an interesting question. Your reasoning is correct for a slightly different type of question: Find the Flaw or Weaken the Argument; the author assumes that the sample survey is representative of all readers. You could attack that assumption.

In this case, that reasoning doesn't apply. The size of the sample is actually pretty standard and acceptable in Statistics.
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Re: *700* Columnist: George Orwell’s book 1984 has exercised   [#permalink] 14 Oct 2017, 18:00

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# *700* Columnist: George Orwell’s book 1984 has exercised

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