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Digging in sediments in northern China, evidence has been gathered by

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Re: Digging in sediments in northern China, evidence has been gathered by [#permalink]

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New post 04 Mar 2017, 08:45
mikemcgarry wrote:
bagdbmba wrote:
Digging in sediments in northern China, evidence has been gathered by scientists suggesting that complex life-forms emerged much earlier than they had previously thought.

(A) evidence has been gathered by scientists suggesting that complex life-forms emerged much earlier than they had
(B) evidence gathered by scientists suggests a much earlier emergence of complex life-forms than had been
(C) scientists have gathered evidence suggesting that complex life-forms emerged much earlier than
(D) scientists have gathered evidence that suggests a much earlier emergence of complex life-forms than that which was
(E) scientists have gathered evidence which suggests a much earlier emergence of complex life-forms than that

I'm not able to understand why C is preferred over E?
IMO, in option E -emergence of complex life-forms actually (per the evidence) is compared to that previously thought. It seems more clear to me where as option C sounds better but misses 'that' I guess.

Please explain.

krakgmat wrote:
Mike, Can you please clarify the question below. Especially, why choice D is not correct? Thank you for your help. Thanks

Dear bagdbmba & krakgmat,
I'm happy to respond. :-) You are asking about (E) & (D) respectively, so I will ignore (A) & (B), which are clearly wrong.

First of all, look at the split "evidence that" vs. "evidence which" ---- which of these two is correct? See these two posts:
http://magoosh.com/gmat/2012/that-vs-which-on-the-gmat/
http://magoosh.com/gmat/2012/gmat-gramm ... modifiers/
The fact that there is no comma following the word "evidence" means that the modifier following it is a vital noun modifier, a.k.a. a restrictive modifier. The GMAT always uses "that" for restrictive/vital modifiers, and always uses "which" for non-restrictive/non-vital modifiers. Thus, the "which" is wrong here: that's one problem with (E).

Here's the larger issue. Think about it this way. Let's state the sentence without dropping any of the repeated words in parallel. Let's pretend we can't omit anything and have to state everything explicitly. Then, we would have:

Digging in sediments in northern China, scientists have gathered evidence suggesting that complex life-forms emerged much earlier than when complex life-forms were previously thought to emerge.

Clearly, that's very awkward and much too long. We are allowed to drop everything among those orange words that are a repeat or are obvious form context. The only piece that is truly different from the part before the word "than" is "previously thought", so that's all we need.

(C) ..... than previously thought. Clear, concise, unambiguous, and grammatically correct.
(D) ..... than that which was previously thought --- very wordy, and it's unclear to what the word "that" refers
(E) ..... than that previously thought -- it's unclear to what the word "that" refers.
Think about "that previously thought" --- to what does the "that" refer? What exactly is "previously thought"? What did the scientist think at an earlier time? This really refers to the verb, to the action of the verb "emerged" --- previously, scientists thought that these critters emerged later, and now the evidence suggest that they emerged earlier. The entire comparison revolves around the verb --- when did they emerge. We cannot use the pronoun "that" to refer to the action of a verb. If we want to use "that" correctly, we would have to change around the whole sentence -----

..... gathered evidence suggesting that complex life-forms had an emergence that was much earlier than that previously thought.

Now, that version is an abominable trainwreck. Even in this version, that word "that" is entirely optional --- the phrase "than previously thought" is still 100% correct by itself, but at least in this sentence, the "that" isn't absolutely wrong when it's included, because there's a clear noun antecedent. In choices (D) & (E), the word "that" is 100% wrong, because it is trying to refer to the action of a verb, which is not allowed.

This is why (C) is not only the best answer but the only possible answer.

Does all this make sense?
Mike :-)



Hi Mike,

(C) scientists have gathered evidence suggesting that complex life-forms emerged much earlier than

In this option than previously thought needs a subject...who previously thought ?
like in A) atleast this part is covered and it says that the scientists had previously thought

(A) evidence has been gathered by scientists suggesting that complex life-forms emerged much earlier than they had

I understand A) is wrong due to other reasons,but I feel C) is correct if it was
scientists have gathered evidence suggesting that complex life-forms emerged much earlier than they had

Please correct me me if I am wrong .

Saksham.
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Re: Digging in sediments in northern China, evidence has been gathered by [#permalink]

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New post 01 Jul 2017, 08:57
I am still confused why the use of past perfect tense "had previously thought" is correct.

If we present the action on a time line this is what we will get
EVENT 1 (emerged), EVENT 2 (previous thought), EVENT 3 (digging), EVENT 4 (gathered evidence)

We can eliminate (emerged) since it is not related to "digging, thought, gathering".
So, " previous thought" is the first action so we can use "past perfect" to denote the sequencing.

HOWEVER, we don't have another past action. The only remaining action is "has gathered" which is in present perfect. There will be no confusion of the sequencing events. Hence, the use of past perfect is incorrect.

Please advise on my thoughts above.
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Re: Digging in sediments in northern China, evidence has been gathered by [#permalink]

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New post 10 Sep 2017, 10:13
Digging in sediments in northern China, evidence has been gathered by scientists suggesting that complex life-forms emerged much earlier than they had previously thought.

(A) evidence has been gathered by scientists suggesting that complex life-forms emerged much earlier than they had

(B) evidence gathered by scientists suggests a much earlier emergence of complex life-forms than had been

(C) scientists have gathered evidence suggesting that complex life-forms emerged much earlier than

(D) scientists have gathered evidence that suggests a much earlier emergence of complex life-forms than that which was

(E) scientists have gathered evidence which suggests a much earlier emergence of complex life-forms than that
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Re: Digging in sediments in northern China, evidence has been gathered by [#permalink]

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New post 11 Oct 2017, 19:29
not sure why this is the case but i just took a custom quiz via the OG's software, and, even though i selected answer choice "C" with "evidence suggesting", i was marked incorrect. the online answer says "D" is correct. please help
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Re: Digging in sediments in northern China, evidence has been gathered by [#permalink]

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New post 12 Oct 2017, 09:51
LakerFan24 wrote:
not sure why this is the case but i just took a custom quiz via the OG's software, and, even though i selected answer choice "C" with "evidence suggesting", i was marked incorrect. the online answer says "D" is correct. please help

Dear LakerFan24,

I'm happy to respond. :-)

This question is SC #65 in OG13 and SC #726 in both OG2017 and OG2018. I checked all three versions of the OG--(C) is the OA consistently in all three printed books.

It's possible that there's a flaw in the OG software. Is it possible to take a screen shot of that particular question? If the software is telling you that the train wreck (D) is the answer, then that's a flaw that we need to send to GMAC.

Mike :-)
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Re: Digging in sediments in northern China, evidence has been gathered by [#permalink]

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New post 04 Dec 2017, 10:49
https://gmatclub.com/forum/digging-in-s ... 36456.html

Please tell me how is C correct. i dont see apple to apple comparison. am expecting 'emerged much earlier than <time> but option c says previously thought... how is this a proper comparison
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Re: Digging in sediments in northern China, evidence has been gathered by [#permalink]

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New post 05 Dec 2017, 08:42
akadmin wrote:
https://gmatclub.com/forum/digging-in-sediments-in-northern-china-evidence-has-been-136456.html

Please tell me how is C correct. i dont see apple to apple comparison. am expecting 'emerged much earlier than <time> but option c says previously thought... how is this a proper comparison


Consider this usage a special type of comparison, in which the second element is a combination of an omitted noun and a phrase or a clause modifiying the omitted noun - the phrase or the clause represents or defines the omitted noun.

He can run faster than I imagined... here the clause "I imagined" represents someone (ficitituous) who runs fast: "someone" is the omitted noun here.

Similarly,
Life-forms emerged earlier than previously thought... here the phrase "previously thought" represents a time in past ( which was thought to be the time when life-form emerged): the omitted noun here is "time".
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Re: Digging in sediments in northern China, evidence has been gathered by [#permalink]

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New post 02 Jan 2018, 12:48
ChrisLele wrote:
With this question we can quickly home in on the 2:3 split. Notice the participial phrase beginning 'digging...'. The word that comes directly after the comma must describe who is doing the digging. Clearly it is the archaeologists, not the evidence, that is digging. Thus we can eliminate (A), (B).

Both (D) and (E) are filled with unnecessary verbiage. (D) 'than that which..' and (E) '...than that.' We simply need a phrase that modifies 'emerge.' 'That' is used to describe comparisons between nouns. 'That' is a pronoun that is used to refers to a noun. Therefore (C) is best: 'emerged...than previously thought.'


Hi Chris,

'C' seems to say that scientists gathering the evidence is suggesting rather than evidence suggesting. What i mean is - it is gathering the evidence which is suggesting rather than the evidence itself. Isn't that the case? Am i reading it wrong?

I really liked your CR videos in Magoosh.

Thanks,
Anvesh
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Re: Digging in sediments in northern China, evidence has been gathered by [#permalink]

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New post 03 Jan 2018, 14:53
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Anvesh2608 wrote:
Hi Chris,

'C' seems to say that scientists gathering the evidence is suggesting rather than evidence suggesting. What i mean is - it is gathering the evidence which is suggesting rather than the evidence itself. Isn't that the case? Am i reading it wrong?

I really liked your CR videos in Magoosh.

Thanks,
Anvesh

Dear Anvesh2608,

I'm happy to respond in the place of my friend & colleague Chris. :-)

Here's the relevant text of (C):
. . . scientists have gathered evidence suggesting that . . .
The participle modifier "suggesting" is touching the noun "evidence": this juxtaposition makes it pretty clear that the participle modifies the noun "evidence." Choice (A) & (B) have more ambiguous modification patterns--that's one of the many reasons these are incorrect.

Does this make sense?
Mike :-)
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Re: Digging in sediments in northern China, evidence has been gathered by [#permalink]

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New post 22 Apr 2018, 11:14
Guys asking for a clarification.

In option D is the use of first that correct?

Also in option E is the use of which correct if we put a comma before it?

Thanks a lot and I appreciate the input.

Digging in sediments in northern China, evidence has been gathered by scientists suggesting that complex life-forms emerged much earlier than they had previously thought.

(A) evidence has been gathered by scientists suggesting that complex life-forms emerged much earlier than they had

(B) evidence gathered by scientists suggests a much earlier emergence of complex life-forms than had been

(C) scientists have gathered evidence suggesting that complex life-forms emerged much earlier than

(D) scientists have gathered evidence that suggests a much earlier emergence of complex life-forms than that which was ( can we use that to modify evidence? we can right? )

(E) scientists have gathered evidence which suggests a much earlier emergence of complex life-forms than that ( Can we use which to modify evidence provided we use common before which? It seems that we can? )
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Re: Digging in sediments in northern China, evidence has been gathered by [#permalink]

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New post 25 Jun 2018, 03:01
mikemcgarry wrote:
Anvesh2608 wrote:
Hi Chris,

'C' seems to say that scientists gathering the evidence is suggesting rather than evidence suggesting. What i mean is - it is gathering the evidence which is suggesting rather than the evidence itself. Isn't that the case? Am i reading it wrong?

I really liked your CR videos in Magoosh.

Thanks,
Anvesh

Dear Anvesh2608,

I'm happy to respond in the place of my friend & colleague Chris. :-)

Here's the relevant text of (C):
. . . scientists have gathered evidence suggesting that . . .
The participle modifier "suggesting" is touching the noun "evidence": this juxtaposition makes it pretty clear that the participle modifies the noun "evidence." Choice (A) & (B) have more ambiguous modification patterns--that's one of the many reasons these are incorrect.

Does this make sense?
Mike :-)



Hello Mike,
this still confuses me a little, C> scientists have gathered evidence suggesting that complex life-forms emerged much earlier than

are evidences doing the act of suggesting ?
Re: Digging in sediments in northern China, evidence has been gathered by   [#permalink] 25 Jun 2018, 03:01

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