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# Exposure to certain chemicals commonly used in elementary schools

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

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17 May 2011, 04:45
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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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Re: Exposure to certain chemicals commonly used in elementary schools [#permalink]

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17 May 2011, 08:05
This is a causal arg. Hence the defender will avoid the alternate cause.

Since the number of childern being sent for treatment is on the rise the counterargument can be - more children are being sent for treatment to nurse hence more are being reported sick. The defender will avoid such a controversy and prevent the arg from getting weakened. Hence C

subhashghosh wrote:
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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Re: Exposure to certain chemicals commonly used in elementary schools [#permalink]

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17 May 2011, 08:17
Why it can't be (B)?

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

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17 May 2011, 08:22
@ulm, please negate choice B and see the result.
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Re: Exposure to certain chemicals commonly used in elementary schools [#permalink]

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17 May 2011, 11:01
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close call between A and C here.

Negating A means that as the number of nurses has decreased,even though the number of children sent remains the same,children seen/nurse has increased.

Negating C means it is more likely that children will be sent to the nurses now than earlier.

C seems closer to the conclusion here. The number of nurses hasn't been discussed in the stem.

Hence C preferred.
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Re: Exposure to certain chemicals commonly used in elementary schools [#permalink]

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17 May 2011, 19:15
C

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

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20 Jun 2011, 23:31
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
option C is contradicting the information given in the arguement..

i think C is wrong

i think option D is correct because if there is no usage of chemicals in the home then chemicals are only used in the schools & hence children got affected by that chemical

please explain if i am wrong

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

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21 Jun 2011, 00:26
C

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

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21 Jun 2011, 05:51
Please can somebody explain it more clearly.I donot understand the logic behind both B and C.
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Re: Exposure to certain chemicals commonly used in elementary schools [#permalink]

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21 Jun 2011, 05:55
Well indeed it says that the number of children going to nurses now has increased. The next sentence says: Therefore, EITHER, its due to more exposure or the kids just became more sensitive THAN 10 years ago..

In that way C does fit best..

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

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14 Sep 2012, 23:21
@Antik
If B is assumed, It is likely that children go to nurses for a different sort of allergic reaction. However, the passage specified the type of allergy, allergy to chemicals. So, b is beyond the scope of the passage.

If the increase is due to a higher tendency to go to nurses now than 10 years a go, we rule out or question such causes as more sensitivity or exposure. Thus the argument does not hold with out assuming what is mentioned in C. C is correct.

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

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30 Sep 2012, 03:37
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Question Stem
Which of the following is an assumption on which the argument depends?
Assumption Question- Ask the question - what is required so that the conclusion is true. Also use the negation test on last 2 option choices.

Argument
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 school children 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.

Pre-thinking
More children became aware of the symptoms and reported the same. So they were sent to the nurses.

A. The number of school nurses employed by Renston’s elementary schools has not decreased over the past ten years.
INCORRECT ANSWER - This answer could have been correct if the argument did not mention "PROPORTION". Even if the nurses reduced, the proportion calculation would still remain the same -
$$\frac{No of students sent}{Total no of students}$$

B. Children who are allergic to the chemicals are no more likely than other children to have allergies to other substances.
INCORRECT ANSWER - "other substances" is outside the scope of the argument

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.
CORRECT ANSWER - If the chance that children are sent to the nurse is same, then the conclusion is true.

Negation Test - 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 - So this statement rules out both the options in the conclusion. So this is the CORRECT ANSWER.

D. The chemicals are not commonly used as cleaners or pesticides in houses and apartment buildings in Renston.
INCORRECT ANSWER - If not used commonly then the chemical may not be a reason. It weakens the conclusion.

E. Children attending elementary school do not make up a larger proportion of Renston’s population now than they did ten years ago.
INCORRECT ANSWER - "larger proportion of Renston’s population" - this does not matter. The argument is not talking about this but the proportion of students sent to nurses.
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Re: Exposure to certain chemicals commonly used in elementary schools [#permalink]

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17 Apr 2013, 05:15
subhashghosh wrote:
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.

I picked d.Need every options explanation

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

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17 Apr 2013, 06:29
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Quote:
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.

Paraphrasing the main point: According to nurses, something has changed in the past 10 years to make schoolchildren more sensitive to chemicals.
Paraphrasing the conclusion: 1) more chemicals, or 2) more sensitivity to the chemicals

A. I saw this as irrelevant. The number of nurses doesn't matter to establishing a proportion. The main point and conclusion can still be valid even with less nurses.
B. Comparing chemical allergies to other allergies is not within the stated argument. Also irrelevant.
C. This is correct. It offers an alternative explanation of why nurses would see an increase in the number of students sent to them with chemical allergies even if there weren't more chemicals or if the sensitivities had not changed.
D. The location of the exposure to chemicals is not relevant to the argument or conclusion. If D were true and chemicals were commonly used elsewhere, that would actually strengthen argument 1) as a reason for increased exposure.
E. Irrelevant. Schoolchildren to overall population proportion has nothing to do with the passage.

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

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17 Apr 2013, 14:28
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mun23 wrote:
subhashghosh wrote:
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.

I picked d.Need every options explanation

Hi Mun23.
My pleasure to help.

Premise: exposure to chemical ==> allergic reactions
Premise: the proportion of schoolchildren sent to them for treatment of allergic reactions increase
Conclusion: more children exposed to greater quantities of the chemicals, or they are more sensitive

Assumption: proportion = children who got allergy and were brought to hospital / Total children.
KEY is "children actually were brought to hospital". If they got allergy and NOT went to hospital, they are not counted.

A. The number of school nurses employed by Renston’s elementary schools has not decreased over the past ten years.
Wrong. Out of scope.

B. Children who are allergic to the chemicals are no more likely than other children to have allergies to other substances.
Wrong. Out of scope

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.
Correct. This is the assumption above.

D. The chemicals are not commonly used as cleaners or pesticides in houses and apartment buildings in Renston.
Wrong. SHELL GAME. "are NOT used in houses & apartment" DOES NOT MEAN "are used in school". What if the chemical are not commonly used in both school & houses.==> We cannot conclude children exposed to greater quantities of the chemicals.

E. Children attending elementary school do not make up a larger proportion of Renston’s population now than they did ten years ago.
Wrong. We cannot conclude the number of children increased or decreased, because the proportion also depends on the total population that may increase or decrease.

Hope it helps a little bit.
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Re: Exposure to certain chemicals commonly used in elementary schools [#permalink]

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23 Aug 2013, 02:29
Hi e-GMAT(Chiranjeev),
Can you please come up with an explanation and analysis for this qs.

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

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25 Aug 2013, 09:55
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In these types of questions, the argument provides us with possible conclusions; what we must intend to find is that are any alternate reasons refuted or not ?

If C were not true, then the argument will fall apart, as it gives us an alternate reason for the increase in the number of students who are ill. Therefore, C has to be the assumption.
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Re: Exposure to certain chemicals commonly used in elementary schools [#permalink]

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25 Aug 2013, 12:47
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ramannanda9 wrote:
In these types of questions, the argument provides us with possible conclusions; what we must intend to find is that are any alternate reasons refuted or not ?

If C were not true, then the argument will fall apart, as it gives us an alternate reason for the increase in the number of students who are ill. Therefore, C has to be the assumption.

Finally, I understood.

Thanks.(+1)
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Re: Exposure to certain chemicals commonly used in elementary schools [#permalink]

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06 Nov 2013, 08:28
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Re: Exposure to certain chemicals commonly used in elementary schools [#permalink]

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06 Nov 2013, 11:44
nitindas wrote:
Option 'C' says that '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' -- If this were to be assumed then the statement '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' becomes false.

Can anybody explain plz.

C is the assumption because C option eliminates the alternative cause (more children tend to be sent to school now) to confirm the reasons mentioned in the conclusion (exposed to greater quantity of chemicals or children now are more sensitive to chemicals than ten years ago ).

Option D: weaken
Option E: strengthen

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Re: Exposure to certain chemicals commonly used in elementary schools   [#permalink] 06 Nov 2013, 11:44

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