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# Researchers, investigating the link between daily coffee consumption

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Manager
Joined: 08 Jan 2018
Posts: 208
Location: United States (ID)
GPA: 3.33
WE: Accounting (Accounting)

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Updated on: 06 Oct 2019, 22:40
4
Question 1
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based on 190 sessions

52% (02:59) correct 48% (03:04) wrong

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Question 2
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based on 179 sessions

89% (01:03) correct 11% (01:28) wrong

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Question 3
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based on 184 sessions

53% (01:58) correct 47% (01:55) wrong

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Researchers, investigating the link between daily coffee consumption and learning, claim that subjects who consumed one cup of coffee a day for one week (the equivalent of 50 mg per day) exhibited improvements in declarative memory. Furthermore, the study revealed that such improvements were longer-lasting than those witnessed in a control group served decaffeinated coffee (decaffeinated contains negligible amounts of caffeine). After a week of learning a list of facts, the subjects who consumed one cup of coffee were able to recall these facts with significantly more accuracy.

While daily coffee consumption may aid in the process of forming a greater number of short-term memories, and increase the likelihood that these memories will be stored in long-term memory, the study glosses over an important fact. Many exhibit sensitivities to caffeine, including headaches (both migraine and non-migraine), sleeplessness, heightened anxiety and any number of factors that, when working either alone or in tandem, may actually lead to a decrease in the observed link between caffeine and learning. Nonetheless, despite the fact that the study represents a random sampling—and thus any number of subjects can exhibit any number of reactions to caffeine—if enough subjects continue to display signs of improvements in learning, then this result would not be inconsistent with the study’s findings.

Still, until the researchers either release more details of this study, or subsequent studies are conducted, the extent to which those with caffeine sensitivity influenced the observed link between coffee consumption and memory will not be fully known.

1. Based on information in the passage, if a follow-up study had been conducted in which those with caffeine sensitivities were removed, such a study would most likely

A. be so inconclusive as to require scientists to conduct follow-up studies
B. uncover a connection between improvements in declarative memory and caffeine consumption
C. provide scientists little insight into the extent in which those with caffeine sensitivities affected the original study
D. show a more pronounced relationship between caffeine consumption and an improvement in declarative memory
E. need to determine if those without caffeine sensitivities have similar increases in long-term memory retention as they do in short-term memory retention

2. In describing the range of negative reactions of subjects with caffeine sensitivities, the author implies that

A. such subjects do not experience more than one caffeine-related side effect at the same time
B. that those who suffer migraines usually do not experience insomnia
C. none of these subjects, after consuming 50 mg worth of caffeine, will show improvements in memory
D. the negative effects some subjects experience after drinking caffeine are transient and unlikely to affect their performance on memory-related tests
E. the presence of any such reactions can negate the observed link between caffeine consumption and learning

3. According to the passage, the observed results of the study are not inconsistent with the fact that any number of subjects could exhibit caffeine sensitivities because

A. the findings from the study tend to be tentative and will only gain more credibility if scientists are able to replicate findings
B. even subjects who experience migraines after drinking coffee will exhibit improvements in memory
C. any such subjects would have no longer participated in the study, thereby skewing the results in favor of those without caffeine sensitivities
D. the same effect in improvements in declarative memory would be observed regardless of the number of subjects who displayed sensitivities to caffeine
E. as long as a majority of subjects display improved declarative memory, such improvements will likely negate the adverse effects exhibited by those with caffeine sensitivities

Originally posted by aaba on 03 Feb 2018, 10:39.
Last edited by SajjadAhmad on 06 Oct 2019, 22:40, edited 4 times in total.
Updated - Complete topic (832).
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05 Sep 2018, 17:50

Official Explanation for Q1

The passage mentions that even if the study had subjects who displayed caffeine sensitivities and a decrease in learning, the positive learning effects from those without caffeine sensitivities would cancel out the decrease in learning from those with caffeine sensitivities. Therefore, if a follow-up study were conducted, in which those with caffeine sensitivities were removed, an even more pronounced effect in caffeine consumption and learning would be evident. This leads us to (D).

(A) is misleading. It almost sounds as though it is referring to the original study. A follow-up study would be more conclusive, at least from the standpoint of showing how pronounced the effect of caffeine on learning is in those without caffeine sensitivities.

(B) is the opposite. A follow-up study would hope to remove any nebulosity or uncertainty from the first study.

(C), like (A) and (B) does the opposite of the follow-up study proposed in the question: it says it would be unhelpful , when in actuality the follow-up study would make the relationship between caffeine and learning clearer.

(E) is tempting because it mentions those without caffeine sensitivities. However, the focus is on the observed effect of caffeine on this group and their ability to learn. Differences in long-term memory and short-term memory is a little too specific. It is the fact that the link between overall memory boost and caffeine consumption will become more pronounced if only those without caffeine sensitivities remain in the study.
_________________
Simple strategy:
“Once you’ve eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.”

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My Notes:
Reading comprehension | Critical Reasoning | Absolute Phrases | Subjunctive Mood
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05 Sep 2018, 17:51
1

Official Explanation for Q3

The passage mentions that “if enough subjects continued to show improvements…” it would negate any potential negative effects between learning and caffeine in those with caffeine sensitivities. Therefore, the positive link between caffeine and learning, as observed in the study, is not inconsistent with the fact that a few subjects did not exhibit any improvements in learning. The answer is therefore (E).

(A) seems to sum up one of the main ideas of the passage but does not directly answer the question.

(B) is not supported by the passage.

(C) is wrong because the passage says that those with caffeine sensitivities did take part in the study.

(D) goes against the main thrust of the passage, which is if those with caffeine sensitivities showed no positive effect, or indeed a negative effect, then that would affect the results of the study.

_________________
Simple strategy:
“Once you’ve eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.”

GMAT Ninja YouTube! Series 1| GMAT Ninja YouTube! Series 2 | How to Improve GMAT Quant from Q49 to a Perfect Q51 | Time management

My Notes:
Reading comprehension | Critical Reasoning | Absolute Phrases | Subjunctive Mood
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05 Sep 2018, 17:53

Official Explanation for Q2

The author states that some participants in the study may not show an increase in learning after caffeine intake. The reason? They can exhibit side effects (headaches, anxiety, etc.) that can affect their performance. Notice the correct answer, (E), also states that these reactions CAN affect performance, not that they definitely do.

(A) is wrong because the passage says that sensitivities in caffeine may happen alone (a headache) or in tandem (a headache and anxiety).

(B) is also wrong because it implies that side effects can’t happen in tandem, or together.

(C) is too extreme. The passage clearly states that learning MIGHT be disrupted in those with caffeine sensitivities.

(D) sounds commonsensical, but is nowhere supported in the passage. In other words, you have to be able to point at a specific part of the passage that says that the negative side effects don’t last a long time and therefore don’t affect learning.
_________________
Simple strategy:
“Once you’ve eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.”

GMAT Ninja YouTube! Series 1| GMAT Ninja YouTube! Series 2 | How to Improve GMAT Quant from Q49 to a Perfect Q51 | Time management

My Notes:
Reading comprehension | Critical Reasoning | Absolute Phrases | Subjunctive Mood
Director
Joined: 20 Sep 2016
Posts: 658
Location: India
Concentration: Strategy, Operations
GPA: 3.6
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08 Oct 2018, 03:06
passage - Still, until the researchers either release more details of this study, or subsequent studies are conducted, the extent to which those with caffeine sensitivity influenced the observed link between coffee consumption and memory will not be fully known.

as per Q 1 , even if we drop the sensitive ppl from the study , the study would still not be completely sound to provide a conclusion on the link as we are not considering the sensitive ppl and their effects on the link. Last paragrapgh clearly mentions accordingly..
please correct, should it be wrong,my reasoning.
Manager
Joined: 30 Sep 2017
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GMAT 1: 710 Q48 V38

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21 Oct 2018, 00:25
Hi

I understand that answer D is true, because elimination of such sensitive people would indeed provide a clearer link between coffee consumption and the observed effects. However, could anybody please explain why answer C is wrong in more detail?

1. Based on information in the passage, if a follow-up study had been conducted in which those with caffeine sensitivities were removed, such a study would most likely
C. provide scientists little insight into the extent in which those with caffeine sensitivities affected the original study

Relevant text: "Still, until the researchers either release more details of this study, or subsequent studies are conducted, the extent to which those with caffeine sensitivity influenced the observed link between coffee consumption and memory will not be fully known."

While we know that having sensitivities to coffee may reverse the observed effect, such a study, which eliminates the group in question, would provide little to none insight into what impact the sensitivities might have on the proposed link. So it's seems true as well.

Thank you
Manager
Joined: 30 Sep 2017
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21 Oct 2018, 00:39
Could someone please explain the reasons for eliminating answer choices in question 3? B and D are easier andI can understand why they can be crossed-off the list, but A, C, and E - not sure. Well E seems to basically repeat what is stated in the passage. But what about A and C?

Thank you for any help
Senior Manager
Joined: 31 Jan 2019
Posts: 393
Location: Switzerland
Concentration: General Management
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22 Aug 2019, 01:39
Hi everyone,
Took 7:30 minutes and got 3/3 correct. Took 2:50 minute to read, write down paragraphs' summaries and main point

P1: Present a study about coffee and learning
P2: Present a drawback of the study that seems not to impact the study too much
P3: More research advocated to evaluate the drawback of previous paragraph

MP: Discuss a study with its findings and a drawback

-----_________------------------------____---------------------------------------------------------------------------___________---------------

1. Based on information in the passage, if a follow-up study had been conducted in which those with caffeine sensitivities were removed, such a study would most likely

Pre-thinking:
The drawback introduced is about people who are sensitive to coffee. Those people may experience side effect that would decrease their learning. So taking out these people from the study set we should have better results on learning improvement.

A. be so inconclusive as to require scientists to conduct follow-up studies
Not inconclusive. The study would still show a better learning curve compared to the group who drank the decaf. Hence incorrect

B. uncover a connection between improvements in declarative memory and caffeine consumption
The connection is already established by just comparing the two groups studied, id set coffee drinkers and non coffee drinkers. Hence incorrect

C. provide scientists little insight into the extent in which those with caffeine sensitivities affected the original study
I think the opposite. If the results are the same or completely different we can determine the extent in which that category affected the study. Hence incorrect

D. show a more pronounced relationship between caffeine consumption and an improvement in declarative memory
That's what we inferred during pre-thinking. Hence correct

E. need to determine if those without caffeine sensitivities have similar increases in long-term memory retention as they do in short-term memory retention
This comparison is outside of the scope of the passage. Hence incorrect

-----_________------------------------____---------------------------------------------------------------------------___________---------------

2. In describing the range of negative reactions of subjects with caffeine sensitivities, the author implies that

Pre-thinking:
The author implies that these factors can affect negatively the learning. Let's assume that one side effect is a stronger migraine. Do you think you can retain as much information having a strong migraine as having none?

A. such subjects do not experience more than one caffeine-related side effect at the same time
Look for the wording in the second paragraph to eliminate this answer. Especially focus on the word tandem which means more than one effect occurs simultaneously. Hence incorrect

B. that those who suffer migraines usually do not experience insomnia
Cannot be inferred by the information in the passage. Hence incorrect. Plus we could infer the contrary from the passage

C. none of these subjects, after consuming 50 mg worth of caffeine, will show improvements in memory
This can definitely not be inferred from the passage. Hence incorrect

D. the negative effects some subjects experience after drinking caffeine are transient and unlikely to affect their performance on memory-related tests
We are not given enough information to infer this. Hence incorrect

E. the presence of any such reactions can negate the observed link between caffeine consumption and learning
In line with pre-thinking. Although we don't know the exact extent (as last paragraph states) the author's hypothesis is that those side effects will affect negatively the learning. Hence correct

-----_________------------------------____---------------------------------------------------------------------------___________---------------

3. According to the passage, the observed results of the study are not inconsistent with the fact that any number of subjects could exhibit caffeine sensitivities because

Pre-thinking:
"if enough subjects continue to display signs of improvements in learning, then this result would not be inconsistent with the study’s findings."
This portion of P2 has the purpose to point out that those side effects might not influence that much the learning for those experiencing the side effects. Let's say that some candidates suffered from insomnia and some others not. If both studied the same information and both in long and short term retained the information in an more or less equal manner then this side effects are not inconsistent.

A. the findings from the study tend to be tentative and will only gain more credibility if scientists are able to replicate findings
Replicas are never mentioned as a meaningful way of assessing the study. Hence incorrect

B. even subjects who experience migraines after drinking coffee will exhibit improvements in memory
Not necessarily. Hence incorrect

C. any such subjects would have no longer participated in the study, thereby skewing the results in favor of those without caffeine sensitivities
This is non sensical. Hence incorrect

D. the same effect in improvements in declarative memory would be observed regardless of the number of subjects who displayed sensitivities to caffeine
The same seems too extreme. The passage talks about enough subjects. So the same improvements is not a requirement. Hence incorrect

E. as long as a majority of subjects display improved declarative memory, such improvements will likely negate the adverse effects exhibited by those with
caffeine sensitivities
In line with pre-thinking. Hence correct

It is a good day to be alive, cheers!
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24 Aug 2019, 10:06
aragonn wrote:

Official Explanation for Q1

The passage mentions that even if the study had subjects who displayed caffeine sensitivities and a decrease in learning, the positive learning effects from those without caffeine sensitivities would cancel out the decrease in learning from those with caffeine sensitivities. Therefore, if a follow-up study were conducted, in which those with caffeine sensitivities were removed, an even more pronounced effect in caffeine consumption and learning would be evident. This leads us to (D).

(A) is misleading. It almost sounds as though it is referring to the original study. A follow-up study would be more conclusive, at least from the standpoint of showing how pronounced the effect of caffeine on learning is in those without caffeine sensitivities.

(B) is the opposite. A follow-up study would hope to remove any nebulosity or uncertainty from the first study.

(C), like (A) and (B) does the opposite of the follow-up study proposed in the question: it says it would be unhelpful , when in actuality the follow-up study would make the relationship between caffeine and learning clearer.

(E) is tempting because it mentions those without caffeine sensitivities. However, the focus is on the observed effect of caffeine on this group and their ability to learn. Differences in long-term memory and short-term memory is a little too specific. It is the fact that the link between overall memory boost and caffeine consumption will become more pronounced if only those without caffeine sensitivities remain in the study.

aragonn
Can you please help explain which part of the passage states or hints towards the results of future studies will be in line with current studies . The last line of second paragraph only says that if more people show similar results then it would provide more support to the existing study. It does not give any direction to whether it would or it would not or am I missing something here?
Re: Researchers, investigating the link between daily coffee consumption   [#permalink] 24 Aug 2019, 10:06