perfectstranger wrote:

Choi: All other factors being equal, children whose parents earned doctorates are more likely to earn a doctorate than children whose parents did not earn doctorates.

Hart: But consider this: Over 70 percent of all doctorate holders do not have a parent that also holds a doctorate.

Which of the following is the most accurate evaluation of Hart's reply?

(A) It establishes that Choi's claim is an exaggeration.

(B) If true, it effectively demonstrates that Choi's claim cannot be accurate.

(C) It is consistent with Choi's claim.

(D) It provides alternative reasons for accepting Choi's claim.

(E) It mistakes what is necessary for an event with what is sufficient to determine that the event will occur.

KAPLAN OFFICIAL EXPLANATION:

Hart's 70 percent figure pretty much tells us that numbers and statistics is the name of the game here. We're asked to evaluate Hart's response to Choi, so let's see what Choi has in mind. Choi's statement is a comparison among individuals: If my parents have earned doctorates and yours didn't, then Choi says that the odds are better that I will earn a doctorate than you will. Choi's claim goes no further. He doesn't claim that children of doctors are guaranteed to earn doctorates, and he doesn't even claim that they are likely to earn doctorates. He merely claims that these children are more likely to earn doctorates than their counterparts who do not have a parent that earned a doctorate. So even if only 5 percent of doctors' children earn doctorates themselves, Choi's claim is still correct as long as fewer than 5 percent of children whose parents didn't earn a doctorate went on to earn a doctorate themselves.

Thus the irrelevancy of Hart's 70 percent figure, which gives us information on a different group—those who already earned their doctoral degree. Because she has shifted the scope, the data Hart presents can be true and still have no bearing on Choi's claim. An example: Suppose that there are 10 people in the world with doctorates. Choi merely claims that children of these people are more likely to get doctorates than children of other people. Hart comes along and says that of the 10 people, say, 8 of them (over 70%) come from doctorateless parents. Does that alter Choi's claim in any way? No. All other factors being equal, the children of those doctors could still be more likely to earn doctorates, even if most doctorate holders don't have that particular heritage. Because of this, Hart's consideration doesn't contradict Choi's claim in any way, and we can therefore say that Hart's statement is consistent with it.

(C) is the answer.An 800 test taker spots inconsistencies, but also recognizes statements that are consistent; that is, that do NOT contradict one another.

(A), (B), and (D) are all off the mark in that they require a connection between Hart and Choi that simply isn't there. Because the speakers' target groups are different, no positive or negative connection can be made between the two claims, and so we therefore cannot say that one shows the other to be exaggerated (A) or false (B), or that one helps the other (D).

(E) The concept of necessity versus sufficiency cannot be invoked against Hart because Hart's statement is merely the presentation of a statistic. As such, in this case there is no "event" to which this type of mistake could apply.

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