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# An investigative reporter for the New York Times found that

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Intern
Joined: 17 Jun 2011
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An investigative reporter for the New York Times found that [#permalink]

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07 Nov 2013, 11:10
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35% (medium)

Question Stats:

60% (00:53) correct 40% (01:03) wrong based on 243 sessions

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An investigative reporter for the New York Times found that minority applicants for spaces in exclusive co-op apartment buildings had a significantly greater chance of rejection than did white applicants with similar profiles

(A) a significantly greater chance of rejection than did

(B) a significantly greater chance of rejection in comparison with

(C) a great likelihood of a rejection more significant than did

(D) a significantly better likelihood of rejection as compared to

(E) a significantly greater chance of rejection than those
[Reveal] Spoiler: OA

Kudos [?]: 63 [1], given: 14

Magoosh GMAT Instructor
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Re: An investigative reporter for the New York Times found that [#permalink]

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07 Nov 2013, 12:35
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wastedyouth wrote:
An investigative reporter for the New York Times found that minority applicants for spaces in exclusive co-op apartment buildings had a significantly greater chance of rejection than did white applicants with similar profiles

(A) a significantly greater chance of rejection than did
(B) a significantly greater chance of rejection in comparison with
(C) a great likelihood of a rejection more significant than did
(D) a significantly better likelihood of rejection as compared to
(E) a significantly greater chance of rejection than those

Dear Wasted Youth,
I'm happy to help with this.

Split #1: here, "significantly" is used in the sense of statistical significance. See:
http://magoosh.com/gmat/2012/statistica ... -the-gmat/
"Significantly greater chance" is idiomatically correct. The phrase "significantly better likelihood" is a little colloquial, and it sounds particularly out of place with something negative, as it is here --- choice (D) is suspect. Choice (C) changes the meaning to something that doesn't make sense --- a more significant rejection; (C) has to be wrong.

Split #2: "than" vs. "in comparison with" vs. "as compared to". For an ordinary comparison, with a comparative adjective (here "greater"), the GMAT prefers "than", and doesn't like longer substitutes for "than". Both (B) & (D) are incorrect.

Split #3: verb after "than". The verb after "than" is not strictly necessary, but it adds clarity. This makes (A) preferable.

Split #4: the demonstrative pronoun "those".
Consider the difference
(i) .... than white applicants with similar profiles
(ii) ... than those white applicants with similar profiles
The word "those" is extraneous. It doesn't add anything at all. The sentence means exactly the same thing with or without it. This makes (E) less preferable.

Understand, (E) is not grammatically incorrect, but it lacks the verb after "than" that adds clarity, and instead it tosses in a word that doesn't add bupkis to the sentence. These points make (A) meaningfully better than (E), and therefore (A) is the best answer.

Does all this make sense?
Mike
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Mike McGarry
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Re: An investigative reporter for the New York Times found that [#permalink]

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08 Nov 2013, 07:26
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minority applicants had a significantly greater chance of rejection than did white applicants with similar profiles.

Hi, I am not much familiar with the way did or do is used in second half of the comparison, presence of did sounds awkward to my non native ears, could you please help me to understand in general what this "did" is expressing in second part of the comparison.

Thanks
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Piyush K
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Re: An investigative reporter for the New York Times found that [#permalink]

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08 Nov 2013, 08:01
I couldn't understand the role of 'did' in the OA; please explain...

Kudos [?]: 15 [0], given: 3

Magoosh GMAT Instructor
Joined: 28 Dec 2011
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Kudos [?]: 8447 [1], given: 102

Re: An investigative reporter for the New York Times found that [#permalink]

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08 Nov 2013, 11:29
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Expert's post
PiyushK wrote:
minority applicants had a significantly greater chance of rejection than did white applicants with similar profiles.

Hi, I am not much familiar with the way did or do is used in second half of the comparison, presence of did sounds awkward to my non native ears, could you please help me to understand in general what this "did" is expressing in second part of the comparison.
Thanks

neoB wrote:
I couldn't understand the role of 'did' in the OA; please explain...

Dear PiyushK & neoB,

I'm happy to help.

First of all, I am going to chastise both of you. If this grammatical form sounds unnatural to you, that means you are not reading enough. The only way all the sophisticated grammatical forms on the GMAT will sound natural to you is if you are reading, every day, at least half an hour a day over and above any GMAT prep. Here are some suggestions about what you should be reading:
The more your read, the more natural all of this will sound.

As you probably know, in comparisons and in parallelism in general, it is not necessary to repeat all the words --- words that would be repeated are omitted. That's very easy for things such as nouns & prepositional phrases & so forth, but what if the verb would be repeated? The verb "to do" is the universal "substitute" verb that can fill in as a replacement for the repetition of any other verb. More than than, if the verb is followed by a long phrase (direct object, verb modifiers, etc.), then that entire verb phrase can be abbreviated by the words "do so". See:
http://magoosh.com/gmat/2013/repeating- ... -the-gmat/

I bought a new car before my friend could do so.
She plays piano better than I do.

In those sentences, the green words at the end are "substitutes" that take the place of the verb or verb phrase that would have been repeated.

Does this make sense?
Mike
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Mike McGarry
Magoosh Test Prep

Kudos [?]: 8447 [1], given: 102

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Re: An investigative reporter for the New York Times found that [#permalink]

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08 Nov 2013, 13:26
Thanks for the explanation...
But, I wanted to mean that I think there should be 'had' instead of 'did'.
I mean wouldn't "An investigative reporter xxxxx that minority applicants xxxxx had a significantly greater chance of rejection than had white applicants with similar profiles" sound better?

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Magoosh GMAT Instructor
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Re: An investigative reporter for the New York Times found that [#permalink]

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08 Nov 2013, 15:00
Santi1 wrote:
Thanks for the explanation...
But, I wanted to mean that I think there should be 'had' instead of 'did'.
I mean wouldn't "An investigative reporter xxxxx that minority applicants xxxxx had a significantly greater chance of rejection than had white applicants with similar profiles" sound better?

Dear Santi1,
Believe it or not, that is not correct, and in fact, sounds awkward. This is one of these examples of the rules of language not following logic. Logically, it certainly seems that "had" would be the better choice, but that's not how English works, and not what the GMAT expects.
Does this make sense?
Mike
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Mike McGarry
Magoosh Test Prep

Kudos [?]: 8447 [0], given: 102

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Re: An investigative reporter for the New York Times found that [#permalink]

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09 Nov 2013, 00:18
Thanks Mike,

In your examples do is representing some action like "bought a new car" or "plays piano", which I can relate with first half of the sentence without any problem, but in this sentence "minority applicants had a significantly greater chance of rejection than did white applicants with similar profiles." I am not able to identify the action replaced by did and who is the do'er of that action, bcz minority applicants are also not doing any action, we are just stating that "had greater chance of rejection", overall we are comparing here (statements) chances of rejection of minority applicant and white applicant, and it looks like that did is replacing a statement, not any action in the second half of the comparison.

"minority applicants had a significantly greater chance of rejection than did white applicants with similar profiles."

Thanks
_________________

Piyush K
-----------------------
Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is to try just one more time. ― Thomas A. Edison
Don't forget to press--> Kudos
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Kudos [?]: 1847 [0], given: 229

Magoosh GMAT Instructor
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Kudos [?]: 8447 [1], given: 102

Re: An investigative reporter for the New York Times found that [#permalink]

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09 Nov 2013, 17:59
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PiyushK wrote:
Thanks Mike,

In your examples do is representing some action like "bought a new car" or "plays piano", which I can relate with first half of the sentence without any problem, but in this sentence "minority applicants had a significantly greater chance of rejection than did white applicants with similar profiles." I am not able to identify the action replaced by did and who is the do'er of that action, bcz minority applicants are also not doing any action, we are just stating that "had greater chance of rejection", overall we are comparing here (statements) chances of rejection of minority applicant and white applicant, and it looks like that did is replacing a statement, not any action in the second half of the comparison.

"minority applicants had a significantly greater chance of rejection than did white applicants with similar profiles."

Thanks

Dear PiyushK,

Minority applicants had a high chance of rejection.
In that sentence "minority applicants" are the "actor", but it's not really much of an action. The action "to have a high chance of rejection" is funny because, even though the verb "have" is active, the sense of the entire phrase is passive. If I "have a high chance of rejection", then the paradox is --- logically & contextually, I am much more on the "receiving" end of things, not the "doing" end, but the verb "have" is grammatically an active verb.
Minority applicants had a high chance of rejection.
White applicants with similar profiles had a high chance of rejection.

That's two facts, side by side, with no comparison. Now, toss in comparative words:
Minority applicants had a significantly greater chance of rejection.
White applicants with similar profiles had a significantly lower chance of rejection.

Now, combine those two into one sentence:
Minority applicants had a significantly greater chance of rejection than the chance of rejection that white applicants with similar profiles had.
That sentence is a distended disaster that should be take out back and shot. Let's shorten that by dropping repeated words and the logical connectors these repeated words imply --- everything underlined.
Minority applicants had a significantly greater chance of rejection than did white applicants with similar profiles.
The repeated verb "had" is replaced by the generic substitute "did".

Does all this make sense?
Mike
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Magoosh Test Prep

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Re: An investigative reporter for the New York Times found that [#permalink]

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10 Nov 2013, 10:56
Thanks Mike, now I can digest it.
_________________

Piyush K
-----------------------
Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is to try just one more time. ― Thomas A. Edison
Don't forget to press--> Kudos
My Articles: 1. WOULD: when to use? | 2. All GMATPrep RCs (New)
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Re: An investigative reporter for the New York Times found that [#permalink]

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