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A survey of alumni of the class of 1960

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A survey of alumni of the class of 1960 [#permalink]

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A survey of alumni of the class of 1960 at Aurora University yielded puzzling results. When asked to indicate their academic rank, half of the respondents reported that they were in the top quarter of the graduating class in 1960.

Which one of the following most helps account for the apparent contradiction above?

(A) A disproportionately large number of high-ranking alumni responded to the survey.

(B) Few, if any, respondents were mistaken about their class rank.

(C) Not all the alumni who were actually in the top quarter responded to the survey.

(D) Almost all of the alumni who graduated in 1960 responded to the survey.

(E) Academic rank at Aurora University was based on a number of considerations in addition to average grades.
[Reveal] Spoiler: OA

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Re: A survey of alumni of the class of 1960 [#permalink]

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souvik101990 wrote:
A survey of alumni of the class of 1960 at Aurora University yielded puzzling results. When asked to indicate their academic rank, half of the respondents reported that they were in the top quarter of the graduating class in 1960.

Which one of the following most helps account for the apparent contradiction above?

(A) A disproportionately large number of high-ranking alumni responded to the survey.

(B) Few, if any, respondents were mistaken about their class rank.

(C) Not all the alumni who were actually in the top quarter responded to the survey.

(D) Almost all of the alumni who graduated in 1960 responded to the survey.

(E) Academic rank at Aurora University was based on a number of considerations in addition to average grades.


The main flaw in argument is absence of information about which percent of class was surveyed. For example in class were 100 students. Survey ask 50 students about their ranks and 25 people say that they was in top 25%. So there is no contradiction if we will find information about which percent was surveyed
(also possible variant about wrong technic of survey or lying alumni, but usually than we see some proportions in argument than among premises should be some tricks with ratio and percents)

A) from this premise we see that survey was wrong because not all alumni was surveyed and group was mainly from high-ranking alumni. Correct
B) This premise give us information in survey was correct and this change nothing, we still have a paradox. Incorrect
C) This variant actually worsen situation because if it's true than we will have even more high-ranking alumni. Incorrect
D) This variant doesn't resolve paradox, because for now we know that we ask all alumni so paradox not in proportion of people but in something another (maybe lying of alumni). Incorrect
E) From this variant we know some additional detail about way of ranking but it is change nothing because in any ranking should be only 25% of top alumni. Incorrect
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Re: A survey of alumni of the class of 1960 [#permalink]

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souvik101990 wrote:
A survey of alumni of the class of 1960 at Aurora University yielded puzzling results. When asked to indicate their academic rank, half of the respondents reported that they were in the top quarter of the graduating class in 1960.

Which one of the following most helps account for the apparent contradiction above?

(A) A disproportionately large number of high-ranking alumni responded to the survey.

(B) Few, if any, respondents were mistaken about their class rank.

(C) Not all the alumni who were actually in the top quarter responded to the survey.

(D) Almost all of the alumni who graduated in 1960 responded to the survey.

(E) Academic rank at Aurora University was based on a number of considerations in addition to average grades.



total students = 100

top quarter = 25

survey was responded by 26 alumni (say) out of which 25 were in top quarter and 1 was in the bottom 3/4
so A is the best answer choice
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Re: A survey of alumni of the class of 1960 [#permalink]

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New post 11 Sep 2017, 07:40
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Re: A survey of alumni of the class of 1960 [#permalink]

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New post 11 Sep 2017, 07:41
boiled down to A and E.
A is more direct with the passage. The key word is "high ranking alumni"

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Re: A survey of alumni of the class of 1960 [#permalink]

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New post 24 Oct 2017, 05:02
A survey of alumni of the class of 1960 at Aurora University yielded puzzling results. When asked to indicate their academic rank, half of the respondents reported that they were in the top quarter of the graduating class in 1960.

This is a resolve the paradox type of question. Both the statements provided in the stimulus are background information. The argument states that half of the respondents reported being in the top quarter of the graduating class, i.e, If there are 100 students then half of the respondents of the survey claimed that they were among the top 25. Now, this could be possible if say the respondents consisted a majority of those people only who were actually among the high ranked ones. So, this half proportion from the high ranked base could constitute a quarter of the total base (including non respondents). Suppose 50 was the respondent base and 25 of these were high ranked ones, making the proportion half. These 25 also constitute a quarter of the total 100. This is exactly provided to us by option, hence, that is the answer.

Other options aren't relevant. Option B states that few respondents were mistaken about their rank. However, it will still not justify how half claimed to be in top quarter.

For questions dealing with sample size, proportions, percentages, counts, it is always preferable to target the base.

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Re: A survey of alumni of the class of 1960   [#permalink] 24 Oct 2017, 05:02
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A survey of alumni of the class of 1960

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