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# Beginning in 1997, high school seniors in State Q have been

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Senior Manager
Joined: 12 Mar 2013
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Re: Beginning in 1997, high school seniors in State Q have been [#permalink]

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02 May 2017, 10:43
One of the toughest. Thanks for sharing.
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Re: Beginning in 1997, high school seniors in State Q have been [#permalink]

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22 Sep 2017, 12:28
this question looks impossible at the first glance.
Having a closer look, A,B, C and E use the same logic. In fact, A and B are same. E contradicts with the logic. => E is the answer.

test takers still easily check whether D is correct.
Intern
Joined: 29 Jul 2017
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Re: Beginning in 1997, high school seniors in State Q have been [#permalink]

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26 Sep 2017, 05:53
Dear souvik101990, GMATNinja, Other experts,

It took me about 4 minutes to answer this question correctly. My concern is that if a similar question,which involves calculation in every answer choice, comes in the real test should I go for it or make a guess and move on.
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Re: Beginning in 1997, high school seniors in State Q have been [#permalink]

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26 Sep 2017, 09:08
2
CaptainJackSparr0w wrote:
Dear souvik101990, GMATNinja, Other experts,

It took me about 4 minutes to answer this question correctly. My concern is that if a similar question,which involves calculation in every answer choice, comes in the real test should I go for it or make a guess and move on.

Don't worry, you will NEVER see a question quite like this on the actual GMAT. I still can't quite figure out if this is trying to be quant, CR, or IR; an actual CR question will never require actual calculation. And as DmitryFarber mentioned above, there are other problems with the question: https://gmatclub.com/forum/beginning-in ... l#p1651655.

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Re: Beginning in 1997, high school seniors in State Q have been [#permalink]

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30 May 2018, 06:50
such a difficult question. im not even able to understand the explanations given by my fellow users.
looks like i have a long road ahead to reach the gmat.
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Joined: 12 Sep 2012
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Re: Beginning in 1997, high school seniors in State Q have been [#permalink]

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06 Jun 2018, 06:49
anyone who don't understand B, it's very easy to understand why not B

lets suppose in 97 there are 0.8x who passed,0.2x who didn't . and in 98 there are 0.72 who passed and y who didn't.
so to satisfy A or B, 0.72x / (0.72x+y) < 0.8 => y> 0.18x in this case, y could be 0.19x that makes the total number < x . or y could be 0.5x , that makes the total senior student number > x ,which is the amount of 97.
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Re: Beginning in 1997, high school seniors in State Q have been [#permalink]

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19 Jun 2018, 07:58
Beginning in 1997, high school seniors in State Q have been required to pass a comprehensive proficiency exam before they are allowed to graduate. The exam requirement was intended to ensure that a minimum level of academic quality will be achieved by the students in the state. In 1997, 20 percent of the seniors did not pass the exam and were, therefore, not allowed to graduate. In 1998, the number of seniors who passed the exam decreased by 10% from the previous year.

The argument above, if true, LEAST supports which of the following statement.

A. If the percentage of high school seniors who passed the exam increased from 1997 to 1998 , the number of high schools seniors decreased during that time period.
B. If the percentage of high school seniors who passed the exam decreased from 1997 to 1998 , the number of high schools seniors increased during that time period.
C. Unless the number of high school seniors was lower in 1998 than in 1997, the number of seniors who passed the exam in 1998 was lower than 80 percent.
D. If the number of high school seniors who did not pass the exam decreased by more than 10 percent from 1997 to 1998, the percentage of high school seniors who passed the exam in 1998 was greater than 80 percent.
E. If the percentage of high school seniors who passed the exam in 1998 was less than 70 percent, the number of high school seniors in 1997 was higher than the number in 1998.

Please provide an explanation with actual numbers.

I wont say its difficult question, but it is a time taking question. Start the question by taking values. Then check all the options.
Options A,B,C,D are possible in some cases, but option E will never be possible. So answer is E.
P.S. You can take Value 100 for easiness.
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Re: Beginning in 1997, high school seniors in State Q have been [#permalink]

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19 Jun 2018, 08:01
renboan wrote:

Solution:
Define the following
X # of students in 1997
Y # of students in 1998

The question states that 20% of students did not pass the exam in 1997. Therefore, 80 percent did pass the exam.
And so 0.8X students passed the exam.
In 1998, the number of students who passed the exam was 10% lower in 1998 than in 1997.
Therefore, the number of students who passed the exam in 1998 was (0.9)(0.8)X = 0.72X

Now, (B) is ambiguous.
--> Assume the percentage of high school seniors who passed the exam decreased from 1997 to 1998
That is, (0.72X)/Y < (0.8X)/X
We can cancel X from both sides (permissible since X > 0)
And so, 0.72/Y < 0.8/X
0.72X < 0.8Y
Then Y > (72/80)X (= (9/10)X)
And so this tells us that Y is greater than 90% of X
Thus Y could also be greater than X or X could be greater than Y.

Now, we can disprove (E) (using the same variables)
--> Assume the percentage of high school seniors who passed the exam in 1998 was less than 70 percent.
Then (0.72X)/Y < 0.7
And so, 72X < 70Y
So, (72/70)X < Y
And X < (72/70)X < Y
Thus X < Y
This contradicts the statement given in (E)
Therefore (E) is NOT supported

I apologize for not using latex.
Also, if you're going to post your own questions, please make sure that they are concise, accurate, and unambiguous in order to avoid unnecessary confusion.
If the question were to to ask the reader to identify the answer choice posing the most ambiguity, then indeed (B) would be correct.
Someone please either correct this problem or correct the answer choice in part (E).

Yes correct answer is E only.
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Re: Beginning in 1997, high school seniors in State Q have been [#permalink]

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19 Jun 2018, 08:05
Recobita wrote:
The correct answer should be E. I am gonna show that E is not supported in any case and B is sometimes supported:

1997 People who failed 20 %, People who passed 80 % --> 80 (Let's suppose we are dealing with 100 students)
1998 People who failed ?? %, People who passed ?? % --> 72 (10 % fewer students)

B. If the percentage of high school seniors who passed the exam decreased from 1997 to 1998 , the number of high schools seniors increased during that time period.
Two cases: % of students who pass 75 % --> Total number of students 96 --> Not supported
% of students who pass 60 % --> Total number of students 120 --> Supported
As we can see B is not univocal.

E. If the percentage of high school seniors who passed the exam in 1998 was less than 70 percent, the number of high school seniors in 1997 was higher than the number in 1998.

Kudos if you liked it!!!

% of students who pass 70 % --> Total number of students 103 --> Not supported
% of students who pass 20 % --> Total number of students 360 --> Not supported

We can see that E is never supported and B is sometimes.

Why dont You explain other options also?
Re: Beginning in 1997, high school seniors in State Q have been   [#permalink] 19 Jun 2018, 08:05

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