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According to U.S. agricultural statistics, the rate of honeybee colony

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According to U.S. agricultural statistics, the rate of honeybee colony  [#permalink]

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New post 28 May 2020, 18:19
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According to U.S. agricultural statistics, the rate of honeybee colony collapse has slowed over the last several years, the number of which will however continue to decrease unless something drastically changes.

A. years, the number of which will however

B. years; the number of colonies, however, will

C. years, however the amount of colonies will

D. years; the amount of which will, however,

E. years, when the amount of the colonies will, however,

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Re: According to U.S. agricultural statistics, the rate of honeybee colony  [#permalink]

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New post 28 May 2020, 18:23

Empowergmat Official Explanation:



This question deals with punctuation, sentence structure, and clear, concise meaning. When joining two independent clauses, a semicolon may be the best choice. However, it should not be paired with “number of which” because it’s unclear, and “when” should refer to a specific moment in time. Differences within the text are highlighted.

A. years, the number of which will however
This is incorrect. It is a run-on sentence with two independent clauses. “Number of which” is also incorrect and should be directly after the noun being modified.

B. years; the number of colonies, however, will
This is correct. The use of a semicolon to separate two independent clauses is the correct punctuation. This is also the sentence with the clearest meaning.

C. years, however the amount of colonies will
This is incorrect. It is a run-on sentence with no coordinating conjunction or appropriate punctuation (a period of semicolon) separating the two independent clauses.

D. years; the amount of which will, however,
This is incorrect. Using “amount of which” is incorrect and should be placed directly after the noun being modified.

E. years, when the amount of the colonies will, however,
This is incorrect. “When” should only be used to indicate a specific moment in time. It should not be used as a contrast to the word “however.”
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Re: According to U.S. agricultural statistics, the rate of honeybee colony  [#permalink]

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New post 28 May 2020, 18:50
IDC,IDC is not allowed.for 2 idc we can use FANBOYS or ';'
Hence B
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Re: According to U.S. agricultural statistics, the rate of honeybee colony  [#permalink]

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New post 28 May 2020, 20:24
C, D and E are out since amount can't be used for countable nouns
A is out because of "," and "which"
So my answer is B
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Re: According to U.S. agricultural statistics, the rate of honeybee colony  [#permalink]

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New post 28 May 2020, 20:25
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Option C, D,& E are incorrect because of the use of "amount" for colonies. Option A is incorrect because it uses a comma to separate two independent clauses. Hence, option B is the correct choice as it fixes all the errors.
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Re: According to U.S. agricultural statistics, the rate of honeybee colony  [#permalink]

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New post 28 May 2020, 20:39
Scanning the options, the major difference comes between "amount" vs "number". Since we are using countable noun (colonies), eliminate "amount". So eliminate C, D and E.
In A, "which" can refer to either "years" or "colony". So its dangling. B makes clear sense. In general, GMAT prefers noun over pronouns.
So ans is B.

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Re: According to U.S. agricultural statistics, the rate of honeybee colony  [#permalink]

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New post 28 May 2020, 20:57
According to U.S. agricultural statistics, the rate of honeybee colony collapse has slowed over the last several years, the number of which will however continue to decrease unless something drastically changes.

Analysis : "The number of ...." is an independent clause and should be separated using "Comma + FANBOYS" or "semicolon"
It should be "The number of colonies" and not "The amount of colonies"
When "However" is used as a synonym for "Nevertheless" , it should be placed within a pair of commas.


A. years, the number of which will however

B. years; the number of colonies, however, will - Correct

C. years, however the amount of colonies will

D. years; the amount of which will, however,

E. years, when the amount of the colonies will, however,
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Re: According to U.S. agricultural statistics, the rate of honeybee colony  [#permalink]

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New post 28 May 2020, 20:57
IMO B

A. Which will however! (What will?)(subject verb disagreement)

B. years; the number of colonies, however, will (seems correct) (Subject Verb agrees)

C. years, however the amount of colonies will (number should be used in place of amount as the colonies are already counted)

D. years; the amount of which will, however,(same as C)

E. years, when the amount of the colonies will, however,(again amount is used instead of number)

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Re: According to U.S. agricultural statistics, the rate of honeybee colony  [#permalink]

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New post 28 May 2020, 21:12
A. years, the number of which will however two independent clauses are joined with comma.wrong.

B. years; the number of colonies, however, willcorrect

C. years, however the amount of colonies willcan not join two independent clauses with however

D. years; the amount of which will, however,what will which refer is not clear

E. years, when the amount of the colonies will, however,run on sentence
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Re: According to U.S. agricultural statistics, the rate of honeybee colony  [#permalink]

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New post 28 May 2020, 21:40
According to U.S. agricultural statistics, the rate of honeybee colony collapse has slowed over the last several years, the number of which will however continue to decrease unless something drastically changes.

A. years, the number of which will however
>> wrong placement on however( however should modify number of colonies )
e.g. I however , walk . means I walk instead of doing something .
>> 2 clauses connected with comma- bigger error

B. years; the number of colonies, however, will- CORRECT
>>however , modifies number seems OK

C. years, however the amount of colonies will
>>we are concerned about decrease in number of colonies that is countable noun; amount is wrong
>> 2 clauses connected with comma- bigger error

D. years; the amount of which will, however,
>>we are concerned about decrease in number of colonies that is countable noun; amount is wrong

E. years, when the amount of the colonies will, however,
>>we are concerned about decrease in number of colonies that is countable noun; amount is wrong
>> 2 clauses connecte with comma- bigger error
>> when is not needed ; illogical sense
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Re: According to U.S. agricultural statistics, the rate of honeybee colony  [#permalink]

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New post 28 May 2020, 22:27
According to U.S. agricultural statistics, the rate of honeybee colony collapse has slowed over the last several years, the number of which will however continue to decrease unless something drastically changes.

A. years, the number of which will however

B. years; the number of colonies, however, will

C. years, however the amount of colonies will

D. years; the amount of which will, however,

E. years, when the amount of the colonies will, however

A: Incorrect. It is not clear what 'which' refers to.

B: Correct. It is made clear that colonies will however continue to decrease unless something drastically changes.

C- amount is wrong usage. Amount is used for uncountable nouns.

D- same error as C

E- same error as C

B is the correct answer.

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Re: According to U.S. agricultural statistics, the rate of honeybee colony  [#permalink]

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New post 28 May 2020, 23:05
A: doesn't mention number of what.
B: correctly brings out the meaning of the sentence. correctly tells number of colonies.


c,d,e: Rejected due to use of amount instead of number.
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Re: According to U.S. agricultural statistics, the rate of honeybee colony  [#permalink]

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New post 28 May 2020, 23:07
According to U.S. agricultural statistics, the rate of honeybee colony collapse has slowed over the last several years, the number of which will however continue to decrease unless something drastically changes.

Since the honeybee colony is countable, therefore we have to use the number instead of the amount. This rules out C,D, and E.

Between A and B, in A there is ambiguity in use of which (which can refer to rate or colony). However in B it clarifies by using specifically noun "colony"
So answer is B


A. years, the number of which will however

B. years; the number of colonies, however, will

C. years, however the amount of colonies will

D. years; the amount of which will, however,

E. years, when the amount of the colonies will, however,
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Re: According to U.S. agricultural statistics, the rate of honeybee colony  [#permalink]

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New post 28 May 2020, 23:27
My answer is (B). It took me 1:01 to make the choice.

Generally speaking, we need comma around "however". For the following discussions, however, I won't use this fact to rule out any option.

(A) the number of ”the last several years“ will continue to decrease? Does not make sense.
(B) Totally fine. This is a coordinating sentence.
(C) Comma splice
(D) An independent clause is needed after ";". But "the amount of which ..." is a subordinate clause.
Use of amount is also wrong.
(E) "when" modifies "the last several years". It does not make sense to make prediction for colonies for "the last several years".
Use of amount is also wrong.
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Re: According to U.S. agricultural statistics, the rate of honeybee colony  [#permalink]

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New post 28 May 2020, 23:58
Key things to notice-

1. Usage of semi colon. We need a semi colon to join two independent clauses. Options joining independent clauses by using a comma will be incorrect.
2. Usage of "of which" in the underlined portion needs to have a clear antecedent for "which".
3. Usage of 'amount" vs "number". Amount is used for non-countable nouns whereas 'number" is used for countable nouns. We need to use "the number of colonies" here since colonies is a countable noun.

Let’s take a look at each option and eliminate any problematic options:

A. years, the number of which will however
Incorrect. Usage of which is incorrect. No clear antecedent available. Which cannot refer to "the rate of honeybee colony collapse" since that would be illogical. Also, we need to use a semi colon to join two independent clauses.

B. years; the number of colonies, however, will
Correct. Proper usage of semi colon to separate the two independent clauses. Correctly uses "the number of colonies". Conveys the intended meaning.

C. years, however the amount of colonies will
Incorrect. Usage of "amount" is incorrect. "Number" should be used. Semi colon should be used to join two independent clauses.

D. years; the amount of which will, however,
Incorrect. Usage of which is incorrect. No clear antecedent available. Which cannot refer to "the rate of honeybee colony collapse" since that would be illogical. Usage of "amount" is incorrect. "Number" should be used.

E. years, when the amount of the colonies will, however,
Incorrect. Usage of "amount" is incorrect. "Number" should be used. Usage of "when" is incorrect.
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Re: According to U.S. agricultural statistics, the rate of honeybee colony  [#permalink]

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New post 29 May 2020, 00:27
B is correct here

According to U.S. agricultural statistics, the rate of honeybee colony collapse has slowed over the last several years, the number of which will however continue to decrease unless something drastically changes.

A. years, the number of which will however....... run on. Also the number of which is referring to rate.its illogical to say the number of rate will decrease instead the rate itself will decrease.

B. years; the number of colonies, however, will- Correct as the number and will agree is SV and no ambiguity.

C. years, however the amount of colonies will.............colonies are not amount. Also a run on sentence after years.

D. years; the amount of which will, however,....... The amount of rate will decrease as in C is illogical. wrong placement of however.

E. years, when the amount of the colonies will, however,...... When completely changes the meaning of the sentence and is absurd way of saying "The population decreases when the amount of colonies decrease" while it is the other way round
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Re: According to U.S. agricultural statistics, the rate of honeybee colony  [#permalink]

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New post 29 May 2020, 01:04
A. years, the number of which will however - The antecedent for which has to be colony but "the number of colony" is incorrect

B. years; the number of colonies, however, will - Seems alright. Let's keep it aside.

C. years, however the amount of colonies will - Amount is incorrect as colonies are a countable noun, hence number of colonies is correct.

D. years; the amount of which will, however, - Same error as in A and C

E. years, when the amount of the colonies will, however, - Same error as in C.
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Re: According to U.S. agricultural statistics, the rate of honeybee colony  [#permalink]

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New post 29 May 2020, 01:05
According to U.S. agricultural statistics, the rate of honeybee colony collapse has slowed over the last several [url]years, the number of which will however[/url] continue to decrease unless something drastically changes.

A. years, the number of which will however ; the number is singular here usage of which is ambiguos

B. years; the number of colonies, however, will ; the number is singular ; colonies is plural wrong

C. years, however the amount of colonies will ; the amount is uncountable ; correct option

D. years; the amount of which will, however, ; usage of which is wrong

E. years, when the amount of the colonies will, however, ; when the amount is wrong meaning error
OPTION C correct
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Re: According to U.S. agricultural statistics, the rate of honeybee colony  [#permalink]

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New post 29 May 2020, 02:38
A. years, the number of which will however -- what does which refer to?

B. years; the number of colonies, however, will -- Correct

C. years, however the amount of colonies will -- Colonies cannot be an amount

D. years; the amount of which will, however, -- awkward construction. what does which refer to?

E. years, when the amount of the colonies will, however, -- Colonies cannot be an amount

Answer is B
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Re: According to U.S. agricultural statistics, the rate of honeybee colony  [#permalink]

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New post 29 May 2020, 02:41
IMO B,


A. years, the number of which will however
There seems to be ambiguity of what 'which' refers to. Hence eliminate.

B. years; the number of colonies, however, will
Correct Answer

C. years, however the amount of colonies will
Colony is countable so 'amount' is incorrect. Hence eliminate.

D. years; the amount of which will, however,
Colony is countable so 'amount' is incorrect. Hence eliminate.

E. years, when the amount of the colonies will, however,
Colony is countable so 'amount' is incorrect. Hence eliminate.
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Re: According to U.S. agricultural statistics, the rate of honeybee colony   [#permalink] 29 May 2020, 02:41

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