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# A pre-thinking Challenge

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e-GMAT Representative
Joined: 02 Nov 2011
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17 Oct 2013, 21:12
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Hi Folks,

We have a free session on pre-thinking on Sunday conducted by Rajat Sadana, CEO of e-GMAT. This question is a pre-cursor to the session. Let's see how many correct assumptions we can come up with.

REWARD: Free e-GMAT CR course (\$69)
The person who comes up with the maximum number of correct assumptions for the argument below will get free access to the e-GMAT CR course. Please note that you lose points for incorrect assumptions. So, be precise

In case more than one person submit the same number of assumptions, the one who submitted earlier will get the reward.

Argument
A recently published paper concludes that tenured professors or those on their way to tenure don’t enhance student learning as much as full-time lecturers outside the tenure system. Clearly, the difference between professors in the tenure system and other full-time lecturers has to do with the reward system for the former. The criterion for rewarding tenured faculty typically places a greater emphasis on research than teaching.

Question
Find out the assumptions made by the author in the above argument.

If you want to learn how to prethink assumptions to answer 700+ level questions in less than 2 minutes, attend the session below.

Click on the image below to register for the session

Thanks,
Chiranjeev
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Last edited by egmat on 18 Oct 2013, 08:38, edited 1 time in total.

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18 Oct 2013, 08:01
1
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My assumptions are as below:

1. Research by Professors does not help in student learning as much as teaching does.
2. Professors tend to put it more efforts into activities that form that criteria for rewards.
3. There are no factors other than the reward system that could be a reason for the conclusion by the published paper.
4. The research paper's conclusion is valid.

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17 Oct 2013, 22:56
ASSUMPTIONS:

1. Most of the Professors or others who on their way to tenure are capable of doing research.

2. All the Professors in tenure will be paid high for doing research.

I was able to think only two. Hope atleast something is correct

Edit: Just got another assumptions. so adding it.

3. The Professors spend more time on the research, so they don't have time for teaching.
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Last edited by Gnpth on 17 Oct 2013, 23:30, edited 1 time in total.

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17 Oct 2013, 23:24
My Assumption is

There is no other reason other than increased time spent on research that makes Tenure professors ineffective. (Ex. Nothing to do with Qualification, experience etc)
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17 Oct 2013, 23:47
Assumtion : "Research enhances Students Learning" - Or nothing other than research helps in enhance students learning.

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18 Oct 2013, 01:49
The assumptions I can think of are :

1. The full time professors emphasize more on research than teaching.
2. Tenured professors does not have any other responsibility than Teaching or enhance student learning
3. Tenure system gives both the Tenured and full time employees equal time and equal resources to work with on which their teaching or research can be compared.

I hope at least one of them is true.

Regards,
Abhinav
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Abhinav

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18 Oct 2013, 04:31
egmat wrote:
Hi Folks,

We have a free session on pre-thinking on Sunday conducted by Rajat Sadana, CEO of e-GMAT. This question is a pre-cursor to the session. Let's see how many correct assumptions we can come up with.

REWARD: Free e-GMAT CR course (\$69)
The person who comes up with the maximum number of correct assumptions for the argument below will get free access to the e-GMAT CR course. Please note that you lose points for incorrect assumptions. So, be precise

In case more than one person submit the same number of assumptions, the one who submitted earlier will get the reward.

Argument
A recently published paper concludes that tenured professors or those on their way to tenure don’t enhance student learning as much as full-time lecturers outside the tenure system. Clearly, the difference between professors in the tenure system and other full-time lecturers has to do with the reward system for the former. The criterion for rewarding tenured faculty typically places a greater emphasis on research than teaching.

Question
Find out the assumptions made by the author in the above argument.

If you want to learn how to prethink assumptions to answer 700+ level questions in less than 2 minutes, attend the session below.

Click on the image below to register for the session

Thanks,
Chiranjeev

The assumptions made by author here are:-
1. There are some full time professors who are not into fully tenured system but are on the way to tenure.
2. The difference in the reward of two systems has the effect on teaching leading to enhancement of student’s learning.
3. There is no other factor or difference between professors in the tenure system and other full-time lecturers other than reward system.
4. Full time lecturers do not emphasis on research
5. The criterion for rewarding other full-time lecturers typically places a greater emphasis on teaching

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18 Oct 2013, 07:48
egmat wrote:
Argument
A recently published paper concludes that tenured professors or those on their way to tenure don’t enhance student learning as much as full-time lecturers outside the tenure system. Clearly, the difference between professors in the tenure system and other full-time lecturers has to do with the reward system for the former. The criterion for rewarding tenured faculty typically places a greater emphasis on research than teaching.

Question
Find out the assumptions made by the author in the above argument.

Thanks,
Chiranjeev

1) The lower emphasis on teaching affects the capability of tenured professors to enhance the student learning.
2) The report is properly concluded and is not biased towards any side
3) Reward is the factor that motivates tenured professors most to place greater emphasis on research.
4) Full time lecturers place greater emphasis on teaching which results in enhancing the student learning.
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18 Oct 2013, 08:40
Hi guys,

We have gotten some promising responses but there is still room for improvement. There is at least one, probably 2 assumptions that I can think of that no one has yet listed. So lets get those grey cells working..

We will announce the winner in the webinar on Sunday. Make sure you join!!

If you want to learn how to prethink assumptions to answer 700+ level questions in less than 2 minutes, attend the session below.

Click on the image below to register for the session

_________________

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18 Oct 2013, 09:20
egmat wrote:
Hi guys,

We have gotten some promising responses but there is still room for improvement. There is at least one, probably 2 assumptions that I can think of that no one has yet listed. So lets get those grey cells working..

We will announce the winner in the webinar on Sunday. Make sure you join!!

If you want to learn how to prethink assumptions to answer 700+ level questions in less than 2 minutes, attend the session below.

Click on the image below to register for the session

Thanks Chiranjeev for encouragement,

I want to further add two more assumptions to my earlier post:-

1. Enhancement of Student's learning depends only on teaching emphasis of either tenured professors or full-time lecturers.
2. Except Reward System, there is no other difference between professors in the tenure system and other full-time lecturers

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19 Oct 2013, 06:21
My Assumptions:

1) The activity of doing research by tenure faculty would not have any student involvement.

2) Teaching is the better way to enhance student learning than Research even if students involve in research.

3) Most of the tenured faculty are influenced by the reward system that has greater emphasis on research.

4) Fulltime faculty doesn't involve in as much research as the tenured faculty.

5) Fulltime faculty spends more time on teaching than tenured faculty.

6) Student learning is directly related to the amount of time spent by faculty on teaching.

Last edited by mirage123 on 19 Oct 2013, 06:26, edited 1 time in total.

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19 Oct 2013, 06:22
Assumptions :

1) Tenured Professors (or those on their way to tenure) are teaching the same subjects to students. There is no another factor such as difficulty level is playing any role.

2) Compare to full-time lecturers, rewards and monetary benefits play greater role in tenured professor opting for research.

3) There is difference is attributes between the students of tenured professors and full time lecturers. And those differences were not taken into consideration while doing the survey or deriving the conclusion.

4) Tenured Professors inclination towards the research is the only reason leading to lesser enhancement in student learning.
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19 Oct 2013, 09:10
1. All professors in the tenured system receive rewards for research.
2. There is no difference between types of classes taught between professors in either system (ie, introductory courses where student learning enhancement is more appropriate versus more advances courses)
3. A professor doing research necessarily means that the quality of his or her teaching or lectures is compromised.
4. No professor outside the tenured system focuses more heavily on research rather than teaching.
5. Professors outside the tenured systems do not receive rewards based on research.
6. The rewards gained by tenured professors for research is offset by any other reward based on other aspects of teaching or criterion.

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19 Oct 2013, 20:49
Hello Everyone,

Thank you for the participation. We'll be announcing the winner in the Pre-thinking session.

If you have not registered, kindly register at the link below. Two hours before the session, you will be sent an email on the link to the session.

Click on the image below to register for the session

Thanks,
Chiranjeev
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19 Oct 2013, 22:52
My assumptions are

1. Tenured professors or those on the way to tenure are more inclined to Research than Teaching because of the reward system.
2. The reduced emphasis on Teaching by the Tenure group decreases the students' interest in learning.
3. Full-time lecturers are more dedicated than Tenured professors when it comes to Teaching and Student learning aspects.
4. Full-time teachers are not involved in Research as much as Tenured professors.

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20 Oct 2013, 00:18
My assumption is :
1 Ehance student learning is done through research work.

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20 Oct 2013, 01:39
Argument
A recently published paper concludes that tenured professors or those on their way to tenure don’t enhance student learning as much as full-time lecturers outside the tenure system. Clearly, the difference between professors in the tenure system and other full-time lecturers has to do with the reward system for the former. The criterion for rewarding tenured faculty typically places a greater emphasis on research than teaching.

1. A better paid professor will put less efforts in teaching;
2. More research professors do, more money they get;
3. The only difference between tenured professors and full-time lecturers is how much money they get;
4. Tenured professors always prefer doing research than teaching;
5. Full-time professors do not do any research activities;
6. The quality of teaching depends only on how much time professors spend on research activity and teaching activity (more time spent on research means less time for teaching);
7. If tenured professors are paid more for teaching activities than for research, their quality of teaching gets better;
8. Salaries never depend on quality of teaching

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20 Oct 2013, 04:40
P 1 - A recently published paper concludes that tenured professors or those on their way to tenure don’t enhance student learning as much as full-time lecturers outside the tenure system.
P 2 - The criterion for rewarding tenured faculty typically places a greater emphasis on research than teaching.
C - Clearly, the difference between professors in the tenure system and other full-time lecturers has to do with the reward system for the former.

Assumptions
Co-relation observed – causation assumed

NOTE
The assumptions below are ordered from the best to the not so good ones
by best i mean the assumptions that are pretty broad and the ones i will prethink on the exam
their advantage is that with these broad assumptions in mind, if some minor subset of them appears in choices, i can instantly spot it as the right answer
by not so good ones i mean that - they are a little complex.. not something i will usually prethink on the exam but will definitely spot if it appears in the choices!

this argument is a typical co-relation causation fallacy
A and B are observed to happen
conclusions is that A causes B

correct assumptions are including but not limited to
1. eliminating reverse causation that B causes A
2. eliminating other possible causes of B
3. Eliminating some third cause C that is causing both A and B..

The list of assumptions is as follows..

1. The reward system for tenured professors is not a RESULT of the fact that tenured professors CONCENTRATE more on research and lecturers CONCENTRATE more on enhancement of student skills.
(Causation reversed possibility is eliminated by this assumption).

2. The results are not because of other factors that are different for tenured professors and lecturers.
(eliminating other possible cause).

3. Despite additional responsibility of research, tenured professors get as much TIME and OTHER RESOURCES and OPPORTUNITIES to enhance student skills as full-time lecturers do.
(eliminating other possible cause).

4. Full-time lecturers feel as SECURE as tenured professors about their jobs and do not concentrate on enhancing student skills more as a way to keep their jobs secure.
(eliminating other possible cause).

5. Its not the case that with the security of tenure, the same professors concentrate more on research than on teaching because they LIKE RESEARCH more and don’t have to worry about losing their jobs – this gives them more freedom.

6. The reward system for non tenured lecturers does not place greater emphasis on “something else” than on teaching.
(Nothing is mentioned about the reward system for full-time lecturers
What if –
Reward system of tenured professors is 4 credits for teaching and 6 for research
While
Reward system for full-time lecturers is again 4 credits for teaching and 6 for developing courses, etc. (something other than student skills’ enhancement).
Despite this, if they are better at enhancing student skills, the reward system is not really a reason for the result).
(eliminating other possible causes).

7. The job descriptions of both tenured and non tenured professors require them to enhance student skills EQUAL LY.
(what if the tenured professors were required to concentrate on research more and full-time lecturers to concentrate more on teaching?)
(Eliminating a possible cause for the result).

8. Full time lecturers have roles other than enhancing student skills (just as tenured professors have an additional role of research) –
(so, the additional responsibility is not the reason for the tenured group to be not so good at enhancement of student skills as the full-time lecturers).
(Eliminating a possible cause that ROLES are a determining factor, not the reward system. The same full-time lecturers - even with the same reward system as now- might fall short on enhancing student skills if they have to do research or other work also).
(not a very strong assumption? I will keep this as my last resort).

9. More freedom is not given to tenured professors to choose between teaching and research unlike for full time lecturers who are bound to do only teaching.
(Alternative cause eliminated).

10. The reward system for lecturers places more emphasis (MORE AMOUNT) on teaching than tenured professors.
(Amount vs. Ratio)
(Eg. Ratio for tenured teaching:research =2:3
But what if number of total credits were the same for teaching for both the groups?)
(In the reward systems for both, though Research: teaching RATIO may change,
the TOTAL AMOUNT of “enhancement of student skills” expected of both the groups is NOT the same. (i.e. in the reward system, same NUMBER OF CREDITS are not assigned for enhancement of student skills to both the groups)
.. slightly weak assumption. I will keep this as a last resort, as even if the amounts are same, the higher research: teaching ratio may compel tenured group to concentrate more on research.

hope this is correct
Thanks and regards.
a big fan of egmat !

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20 Oct 2013, 09:12
Oh.. I could not attend the session so do not know who the winner is.
Congratulations to the winner.

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07 Jan 2014, 18:53

Assumption is : the performance of full-time lecturers, to enhance student learning, does not vary with the reward system.
Rationale " Clearly, the difference between professors in the tenure system and other full-time lecturers has to do with the reward system for the former" why the gap in performance between the two will not depend on the performance of full time lecturers.

thanks

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Re: A pre-thinking Challenge   [#permalink] 07 Jan 2014, 18:53
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