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# According to findings derived from functional magnetic resonance

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Re: According to findings derived from functional magnetic resonance [#permalink]
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Dear Friends,

Here is a detailed explanation to this question-
gmatter0913
According to findings derived from functional magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), the area of the brain in which a second or third language is stored depends on the age of the language learner; whereas each language occupies a distinct area of the brain in an adult learner, language areas overlap in a young child.

(A) whereas each language occupies a distinct area of the brain in an adult learner,

(B) whereas for adults each language occupies a distinct area of the brain and

(C) each language occupies a distinct area of the brain when they are learned by an adult, while

(D) each language in adults occupied a distinct area of the brain, while

(E) each language occupying a distinct area of the brain for an adult learner, and

Meaning is crucial to solving this problem:
Understanding the intended meaning is key to solving this question; the intended meaning of the crucial part of this sentence is that each language occupies a distinct area of the brain in an adult learner, but language areas overlap in a young child.

Concepts tested here: Meaning + Grammatical Construction + Tenses

• Semicolons and the “comma + conjunction” construction are used to link two independent clauses; commas are used to link an independent clause with a dependent one; comma cannot be used to join two independent clauses.
• "when" is used to refer to a point in time.
• "while" is used to convey a sense of concurrence.
• Statements of universal fact are best conveyed through the simple present tense.
• The simple past tense is used to refer to actions that concluded in the past.

A: Correct. The sentence formed by this answer choice uses the clauses "whereas each language occupies a distinct area of the brain in an adult learner" and "language areas overlap in a young child"; the use of "whereas" correctly conveys the intended meaning of the sentence - that each language, permanently, occupies a distinct area of the brain in an adult learner, but by contrast language areas overlap in a young child. Further, Option A correctly uses the simple present tense verb "occupies" to refer to a statement of universal fact. Additionally, Option A correctly uses a comma to join the dependent clause "whereas each language occupies a distinct area of the brain in an adult learner" to the independent clause "language areas overlap in a young child".

B: The sentence formed by this answer choice alters the meaning of the sentence through the clause "and language areas overlap in a young child"; the use of "and" fails to convey the needed sense of contrast, incorrectly implying that each language occupies a distinct area of the brain in an adult learner, and also each language occupies a distinct area of the brain in an adult learner; the intended meaning is that each language occupies a distinct area of the brain in an adult learner, but by contrast each language occupies a distinct area of the brain in an adult learner. Further, Option B incorrectly uses conjunction ("and" in this sentence) to join the dependent clause "whereas for adults each language occupies a distinct area of the brain" to the independent clause "language areas overlap in a young child"; remember, semicolons and the “comma + conjunction” construction are used to link two independent clauses; commas are used to link an independent clause with a dependent one; comma cannot be used to join two independent clauses.

C: The sentence formed by this answer choice alters the meaning of the sentence through the phrases "when they are learned by an adult" and "while language areas overlap in a young child"; the uses of "when" and "while" incorrectly imply that each language occupies a distinct area of the brain at the specific point in time when they are learned by an adult, and simultaneously language areas overlap in a young child; the intended meaning is that each language, permanently, occupies a distinct area of the brain in an adult learner, but by contrast language areas overlap in a young child; remember, "when" is used to refer to a point in time, and "while" is used to convey a sense of concurrence.

D: The sentence formed by this answer choice alters the meaning of the sentence through the phrase "while language areas overlap in a young child"; the use of "while" incorrectly implies that each language occupies a distinct area of the brain in an adult learner, and simultaneously language areas overlap in a young child; the intended meaning is that each language occupies a distinct area of the brain in an adult learner,but by contrast language areas overlap in a young child; remember, "while" is used to convey a sense of concurrence. Further, Option D incorrectly uses the simple past tense verb "occupied" to refer to a statement of universal fact; remember, statements of universal fact are best conveyed through the simple present tense, and the simple past tense is used to refer to actions that concluded in the past.

E: The sentence formed by this answer choice alters the meaning of the sentence through the clause "and language areas overlap in a young child"; the use of "and" fails to convey the needed sense of contrast, incorrectly implying that each language occupies a distinct area of the brain in an adult learner, and also each language occupies a distinct area of the brain in an adult learner; the intended meaning is that each language occupies a distinct area of the brain in an adult learner, but by contrast each language occupies a distinct area of the brain in an adult learner. Further, Option E incorrectly uses the present participle ("verb+ing" - "occupying" in this sentence) to refer to a statement of universal fact; remember, statements of universal fact are best conveyed through the simple present tense. Additionally, Option E incorrectly uses the "comma + conjunction ("and" in this sentence) construction to join the dependent clause "each language occupying a distinct area of the brain for an adult learner" to the independent clause "language areas overlap in a young child"; remember, semicolons and the “comma + conjunction” construction are used to link two independent clauses; commas are used to link an independent clause with a dependent one; comma cannot be used to join two independent clauses.

Hence, A is the best answer choice.

To understand the concept of "Simple Tenses" on GMAT, you may want to watch the following video (~1 minute):

To understand the use of "Comma" on GMAT, you may want to watch the following video (~4 minutes):

All the best!
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Re: According to findings derived from functional magnetic resonance [#permalink]
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imhimanshu
Hello fameatop,

Can you please detail the correct usage of "When". Its been increasingly used in incorrect answer choices, so just want to make sure how "When" works.

Thanks
Himanshu
If you are asking about option C then apart from "when", there is another error --> use of plural pronoun "they" to refer to singular noun "each language".

You can find a very good explanation of the usage of "when" by e-gmat in their blog:
https://e-gmat.com/blogs/?p=169

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Re: According to findings derived from functional magnetic resonance [#permalink]
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A is best here: whereas each language occupies a distinct area of the brain in an adult learner

reason : note that u need a contrast here
faults:shown in bold

A. whereas each language occupies a distinct area of the brain in an adult learner,------>correct
B. whereas for adults each language occupies a distinct area of the brain and------------>"and" contradicts the required contrast
C. each language occupies a distinct area of the brain when they are learned by an adult, while
D. each language in adults occupied a distinct area of the brain, while
E. each language occupying a distinct area of the brain for an adult learner, and---->"and" contradicts the required contrast
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Re: According to findings derived from functional magnetic resonance [#permalink]
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Quote:
Not clear on why c is incorrect. Could any one please elucidate

C says: each language occupies a distinct area of the brain when they are learned by an adult, while

the construction of "when" is wrong in option C --->it seems to suggest that "these languages" occupy distinct area when they are learned by an adult and not at other times !!!, an interpretation which is wrong
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Re: According to findings derived from functional magnetic resonance [#permalink]
Quote:
mike wrote: The problem with (C) is the pronoun disagreement ----
... each language occupies a distinct area of the brain when they are learned by an adult ...

hi mike
i agree that i missed out on pronoun fault but i feel that had "it" been used instead of "they" then also this option would have been wrong for the reason that i have cited

new version of C: each language occupies a distinct area of the brain when it is learned by an adult, while ------>still wrong

thanks and regards
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Re: According to findings derived from functional magnetic resonance [#permalink]
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hi mike
i agree that i missed out on pronoun fault but i feel that had "it" been used instead of "they" then also this option would have been wrong for the reason that i have cited

new version of C: each language occupies a distinct area of the brain when it is learned by an adult, while ------>still wrong

thanks and regards
I'm happy to respond.

Here's version (C), minus the pronoun error:
each language occupies a distinct area of the brain when it is learned by an adult, while language areas overlap in a young child.

Well, hmm, this is not exactly as I would phrase it if I were speaking about this topic, but this is not clearly wrong. If right is white and wrong is black, this is light gray. Not perfect, to be sure, but sometimes the best answer on an official GMAT SC is not perfect, simply the best of the five. Sometimes they right questions of that sort, to punish students who are looking for "perfection."

There is no grammatical error in this version. There is nothing that is clearly and unambiguously wrong. The "while" structure doesn't imply rigid parallelism, and so we don't need to have "each language does X while each language does Y," although tighter parallelism might make the sentence slightly clearly or more persuasive. This is a funny thing about parallelism. Some structures (not only ... but also; both ... and; etc.) absolutely demand parallelism, but others, like this "while" structure, certainly could accommodate parallelism, but parallelism is not strictly necessary.

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Re: According to findings derived from functional magnetic resonance [#permalink]
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firstly thanks for putting up your thoughts

my concern was regarding the faulty usage of "when" in the following construction: each language occupies a distinct area of the brain when it is learned by an adult, while ----->according to me it gives a very weird interpretation that "these languages" occupy distinct area when they are learned by an adult and not at other times !!
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Quote:
firstly thanks for putting up your thoughts

my concern was regarding the faulty usage of "when" in the following construction: each language occupies a distinct area of the brain when it is learned by an adult, while ----->according to me it gives a very weird interpretation that "these languages" occupy distinct area when they are learned by an adult and not at other times !!
Hmmm. Now we are getting into some strange existential territory.

Let's think about a foreign language, say Russian. The Russian language objectively exists out in the world --- it has whatever grammar, verb tenses, etc. etc., all the features of a language. BUT, when does it "occupy a distinct area of the brain"? Only when an individual human is learning it, when an individual human is putting this language into that distinct region of the brain. It can't exist in regions of the brain apart from a real brain.

It's like the old question: when a tree falls in a forest and no one there, does it make a sound? The objective quality of the sound wave is there, irrespective of an observer, but the experience that we call "sound" depends on an observer to have the experience.

Now, super-technically, I guess we would say the Russian language exists in this distinct region of the brain both when someone is learning the language and when someone already knows it and is fully fluent. The brain regions presumably don't change when we reach fluency. Nevertheless, this is a level of philosophizing one never has to do to answer GMAT SC questions.

Remember that the word "when" is not exclusive. If I say, "I am happy when the New York Mets win," that doesn't imply that this is the only occasion in my entire life when I am happy. There may be hundreds of things that make me happy, and this particular occasion is merely one example.

The word "when" is perfectly fine here.

Does all this make sense?
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Re: According to findings derived from functional magnetic resonance [#permalink]
qwerty12321
In option (A) shouldn't there be a comma after 'whereas'?
Thanks.

No, whereas wouldn't require a comma. The nice thing is that the GMAT wouldn't test you on comma placement like that.

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Re: According to findings derived from functional magnetic resonance [#permalink]
qwerty12321
Hi Kyle,

In MGMAT SC guide Page 198 commas are used after whereas, when it is used after a semicolon.

Thanks.

Sounds interesting...can you post an example sentence?

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Re: According to findings derived from functional magnetic resonance [#permalink]
qwerty12321
KyleWiddison
qwerty12321
Hi Kyle,

In MGMAT SC guide Page 198 commas are used after whereas, when it is used after a semicolon.

Thanks.

Sounds interesting...can you post an example sentence?

KW

Hi Kyle,

Andrew and Lisa are inseparable; therefore, we never see them apart.

Is that the example you were citing from the Strategy Guide? "Therefore" in that usage does use a comma after the semicolon (as would however, moreover, therefore, consequently, otherwise, nevertheless, thus). I'm interested to see an example with whereas. I just have the digital edition of the strategy guide with me but maybe the pages don't line up because there isn't anything with "whereas" around page 198 for me...

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Re: According to findings derived from functional magnetic resonance [#permalink]
qwerty12321
Hi Kyle

You are right. There is no example with 'whereas'.

Why is this so?

Are you asking why whereas doesn't use a comma here or why there aren't examples of whereas in the strategy guide?
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jorgearredondoc
I do believe that A is the best option overall. My only concern would be the lack of parallelism:

...of the language learner; whereas EACH LANGUAGE occupies a distinct area of the brain in an adult learner, LANGUAGE AREAS overlap in a young child.

Does someone have feedback regarding the use of whereas and parallelism?

I would term this a comparison problem (the close relative to parallelism) because you are comparing two different things: whereas X, Y. It seems like the comparison elements would be just as you outlined: whereas each language..., language areas. Those two things don't seem to be logically comparable, but whereas is used to compare clauses (it's a variation of "as", which compares clauses). So we are really comparing both ENTIRE clauses: whereas X) each language occupies a distinct area of the brain in adults, Y) language areas overlap in children. This is grammatically correct. We might prefer more similarities in the subjects of these clauses, but the GMAT doesn't give us that option so we eliminate our way to this choice as our correct answer.

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2013gmat
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Hello,

Can you please assist with this:

According to findings derived from functional magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), the area of the brain in which a second or third language is stored depends on the age of the language learner; whereas each language occupies a distinct area of the brain in an adult learner, language areas overlap in a young child.

A. whereas each language occupies a distinct area of the brain in an adult learner,
B. whereas for adults each language occupies a distinct area of the brain and
C. each language occupies a distinct area of the brain when they are learned by an adult, while
D. each language in adults occupied a distinct area of the brain, while
E. each language occupying a distinct area of the brain for an adult learner, and

Thanks a lot for your help.

Best Regards,
Sri

mikemcgarry, what's wrong with D ?
Dear 2013gmat,
That's a great question, and I am happy to help. This is a high quality question, as the official questions always are. Choice (A) is definitely the best. What's wrong with (D)?

The problems with (D) are subtle.
1) Choice (A) says "in the brain of an adult learner" --- very precise, very sophisticated. The brain is definitely physically inside the learner. Choice (D) says "each language in adults" --- in exactly what sense is a language "in" somebody? This is metaphorical, a bit casual, a bit sloppy. This would totally pass as correct in colloquial English, but it's not quite as sophisticated.
2) We need a strong contrast construction after the semicolon. In (A), the word "whereas" is a strong contrast word, and it highlights the contrast as the focus. In (D), the word "while" is not as strong as a contrast word, and it gives the impressive that the first part is really the focus, and the second part is a contrasting afterthought.
3) The tense of the verb in (D) is wrong --- it's past, but the tense after the underlined part is present.
All of these make (D) less than ideal, so it is not nearly as good as (A).

Does all this make sense?
Mike
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Re: According to findings derived from functional magnetic resonance [#permalink]
Quote:
According to findings derived from functional magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), the area of the brain in which a second or third language is stored depends on the age of the language learner; whereas each language occupies a distinct area of the brain in an adult learner, language areas overlap in a young child.

A. whereas each language occupies a distinct area of the brain in an adult learner,
B. whereas for adults each language occupies a distinct area of the brain and
C. each language occupies a distinct area of the brain when they are learned by an adult, while
D. each language in adults occupied a distinct area of the brain, while
E. each language occupying a distinct area of the brain for an adult learner, and

In here, I agree with all the expert explanations given.

In Choice D , I had eliminated it because "in adult" seemed to be misplaced - did I eliminate for the right reason ?
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Re: According to findings derived from functional magnetic resonance [#permalink]
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asgopala
Yes, you're right about that. "Each language in adults" doesn't make much sense. Notice that D also shifts tense from past to present.
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Re: According to findings derived from functional magnetic resonance [#permalink]
Can we eliminate B and D for a simple reason that both the options are comparing "adults" (plural) with "a young child" (singular)?
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