Exposure to certain chemicals commonly used in elementary : GMAT Critical Reasoning (CR)
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# Exposure to certain chemicals commonly used in elementary

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Exposure to certain chemicals commonly used in elementary [#permalink]

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03 Nov 2008, 11:02
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Exposure to certain chemicals commonly used in elementary schools as cleaners or pesticides causes allergic reactions in some children. Elementary school nurses in Renston report that the proportion of schoolchildren sent to them for treatment of allergic reactions to those chemicals has increased significantly over the past ten years. Therefore, either Renston’s schoolchildren have been exposed to greater quantities of the chemicals, or they are more sensitive to them than schoolchildren were ten years ago.

Which of the following is an assumption on which the argument depends?

A. The number of school nurses employed by Renston’s elementary schools has not decreased over the past ten years.
B. Children who are allergic to the chemicals are no more likely than other children to have allergies to other substances.
C. Children who have allergic reactions to the chemicals are not more likely to be sent to a school nurse now than they were ten years ago.
D. The chemicals are not commonly used as cleaners or pesticides in houses and apartment buildings in Renston.
E. Children attending elementary school do not make up a larger proportion of Renston’s population now than they did ten years ago.
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03 Nov 2008, 11:17
D. This eliminates alternative cause of the same effect (allergy).
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03 Nov 2008, 11:18
My guess is C

It is assumed that "children are not more likely to be sent to a school nurse"

IF they are, that would refute the argument
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03 Nov 2008, 11:42
E ?
The author assumes that the qty of chemicals has increased .... But if actually the number of children have increased, then the argument falls apart ..
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03 Nov 2008, 12:03
C

if less children were sent to the nurses 10 years ago then the nurses would have reported less cases
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03 Nov 2008, 12:06
What about A? If the number of nurses has decreased over the past 10 years, then because of the shortage of the nurses, they report more cases of allergic cases while in fact it is not necessarily the case. This will give another reason to consider for the allergy rather than the 2 reasons cited by the argument.
Should it be the correct assumption here?
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04 Nov 2008, 00:22
IMO C.

Which of the following is an assumption on which the argument depends?

A. The number of school nurses employed by Renston’s elementary schools has not decreased over the past ten years.
This piece shouldn't matter because the records would still allow one to determine how many total people would be affected.
B. Children who are allergic to the chemicals are no more likely than other children to have allergies to other substances.
Out of scope. We're not comparing the frequency of allergic reactions to other substances.
C. Children who have allergic reactions to the chemicals are not more likely to be sent to a school nurse now than they were ten years ago.
We must ensure that the criterion used matches so that we can compare apples to apples. If a different criterion were used, we would be comparing apples to oranges.
D. The chemicals are not commonly used as cleaners or pesticides in houses and apartment buildings in Renston.
Has no bearing on the argument. The chemicals do not need to be commonly used nor do the usage on houses & apartments matter. Perhaps they are being affected only at school.
E. Children attending elementary school do not make up a larger proportion of Renston’s population now than they did ten years ago.
We're now comparing proportions. The number of children could still be the same now as it was then even though the proportion has increased. For example, we have 10 kids who are affected. There are a total of 20 people in the population 10 years ago. Today there are a total of 15 people in the population. In the past the proportion for the population was 50%, whereas the proportion is now 66%.
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04 Nov 2008, 01:31
Go for C
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04 Nov 2008, 07:11
somerandomguy wrote:
IMO C.

Which of the following is an assumption on which the argument depends?

A. The number of school nurses employed by Renston’s elementary schools has not decreased over the past ten years.
This piece shouldn't matter because the records would still allow one to determine how many total people would be affected.
B. Children who are allergic to the chemicals are no more likely than other children to have allergies to other substances.
Out of scope. We're not comparing the frequency of allergic reactions to other substances.
C. Children who have allergic reactions to the chemicals are not more likely to be sent to a school nurse now than they were ten years ago.
We must ensure that the criterion used matches so that we can compare apples to apples. If a different criterion were used, we would be comparing apples to oranges.
D. The chemicals are not commonly used as cleaners or pesticides in houses and apartment buildings in Renston.
Has no bearing on the argument. The chemicals do not need to be commonly used nor do the usage on houses & apartments matter. Perhaps they are being affected only at school.
E. Children attending elementary school do not make up a larger proportion of Renston’s population now than they did ten years ago.
We're now comparing proportions. The number of children could still be the same now as it was then even though the proportion has increased. For example, we have 10 kids who are affected. There are a total of 20 people in the population 10 years ago. Today there are a total of 15 people in the population. In the past the proportion for the population was 50%, whereas the proportion is now 66%.

OA is C . I think for assumptions one should stick to the framework given in the paragraph.
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04 Nov 2008, 08:40
Nihit wrote:
OA is C . I think for assumptions one should stick to the framework given in the paragraph.

On a second look at the question (of course after seeing the OA), the conclusion gives a comparative information "...are more sensitive to them than schoolchildren were ten years ago" and thus, C makes complete sense.

However, for assumption questions, one should not stick to the scope of stimulus only.
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04 Nov 2008, 15:18
scthakur wrote:
Nihit wrote:
OA is C . I think for assumptions one should stick to the framework given in the paragraph.

On a second look at the question (of course after seeing the OA), the conclusion gives a comparative information "...are more sensitive to them than schoolchildren were ten years ago" and thus, C makes complete sense.

However, for assumption questions, one should not stick to the scope of stimulus only.

By that I meant linking the two end points not replacing the end point/s
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04 Nov 2008, 15:54
A. The number of school nurses employed by Renston’s elementary schools has not decreased over the past ten years. [ Nurses employment is not assumed]
B. Children who are allergic to the chemicals are no more likely than other children to have allergies to other substances. [comparison to other substances is not assumed]
C. Children who have allergic reactions to the chemicals are not more likely to be sent to a school nurse now than they were ten years ago. - Hold
D. The chemicals are not commonly used as cleaners or pesticides in houses and apartment buildings in Renston. [Hold]
E. Children attending elementary school do not make up a larger proportion of Renston’s population now than they did ten years ago. [Population proportion is not assumed]

Between C and D: D has nothing to do with the conclusion

C!
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04 Nov 2008, 21:23
Nihit wrote:
By that I meant linking the two end points not replacing the end point/s

Nihit, I am in complete agreement here.
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05 Nov 2008, 12:50
Wow! Tough ONE!!

Initially I was tricked into A. How ever A is wrong because the conclusion is

Renston’s schoolchildren have been exposed to greater quantities of the chemicals, or they are more sensitive to them than schoolchildren were ten years ago.

Number of school children increased in past 10 years is NOT the conclusion.

Look at B and negate it.

Children who are allergic to the chemicals are more likely than other children to have allergies to other substances.

If they are more likely, that means they are more sensitive, does not make the conclusion void and also the argument is about children now and 10 years ago.

Look at C and negate it.

Children who have allergic reactions to the chemicals are more likely to be sent to a school nurse now than they were ten years ago.

If they are sending more children now to the hospital and less in the past, then the conclusion falls apart. its neither greater amount of chemicals nor increased sensitivity. Its just that children in the past were not sent as much the children are now.
Re: CR allergies   [#permalink] 05 Nov 2008, 12:50
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