Frobisher, a sixteenth-century English explorer, had soil : GMAT Critical Reasoning (CR)
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# Frobisher, a sixteenth-century English explorer, had soil

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Manager
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19 Nov 2007, 11:52
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Frobisher, a sixteenth-century English explorer, had soil samples from Canada’s Kodlunarn Island examined for gold content. Because high gold content was reported, Elizabeth I funded two mining expeditions. Neither expedition found any gold there. Modern analysis of the island’s soil indicates a very low gold content. Thus the methods used to determine the gold content of Frobisher’s samples must have been inaccurate.

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

A. The gold content of the soil on Kodlunarn Island is much lower today than it was in the sixteenth century.
B. The two mining expeditions funded by Elizabeth I did not mine the same part of Kodlunarn Island.
C. The methods used to assess gold content of the soil samples provided by Frobisher were different from those generally used in the sixteenth century.
D. Frobisher did not have soil samples from any other Canadian island examined for gold content.
E. Gold was not added to the soil samples collected by Frobisher before the samples were examined.
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Re: CR - Gold mining [#permalink]

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19 Nov 2007, 12:31
gregspirited wrote:
Frobisher, a sixteenth-century English explorer, had soil samples from Canada’s Kodlunarn Island examined for gold content. Because high gold content was reported, Elizabeth I funded two mining expeditions. Neither expedition found any gold there. Modern analysis of the island’s soil indicates a very low gold content. Thus the methods used to determine the gold content of Frobisher’s samples must have been inaccurate.

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

A. The gold content of the soil on Kodlunarn Island is much lower today than it was in the sixteenth century.
-- this would weaken the argument.
B. The two mining expeditions funded by Elizabeth I did not mine the same part of Kodlunarn Island.
--again weakens
C. The methods used to assess gold content of the soil samples provided by Frobisher were different from those generally used in the sixteenth century.
--does not effect the argument
D. Frobisher did not have soil samples from any other Canadian island examined for gold content.
--using assumption negation does not weaken the argument
E. Gold was not added to the soil samples collected by Frobisher before the samples were examined.
--yes, this is an assumption.

(E).
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19 Nov 2007, 12:39
I am not convinced with E. It can be C since Forbish's method showed that there was lot of Gold whereas Elizabeth's showed the opposite. There ways could be different. I agree that E is a possibility but is not the best answer.
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19 Nov 2007, 12:42
The OA is E. But I went with C initially since that is also an assumption.
How do we weed out these close calls ?
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19 Nov 2007, 12:55
gregspirited wrote:
The OA is E. But I went with C initially since that is also an assumption.
How do we weed out these close calls ?

C doesn't fit. "The methods used to assess gold content of the soil samples provided by Frobisher were different from those generally used in the sixteenth century". The conclusion does not depend on this. It is far more likely that it does depend on E
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Re: CR - Gold mining [#permalink]

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19 Nov 2007, 13:40
gregspirited wrote:
Frobisher, a sixteenth-century English explorer, had soil samples from Canada’s Kodlunarn Island examined for gold content. Because high gold content was reported, Elizabeth I funded two mining expeditions. Neither expedition found any gold there. Modern analysis of the island’s soil indicates a very low gold content. Thus the methods used to determine the gold content of Frobisher’s samples must have been inaccurate.

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

A. The gold content of the soil on Kodlunarn Island is much lower today than it was in the sixteenth century.
B. The two mining expeditions funded by Elizabeth I did not mine the same part of Kodlunarn Island.
C. The methods used to assess gold content of the soil samples provided by Frobisher were different from those generally used in the sixteenth century.
D. Frobisher did not have soil samples from any other Canadian island examined for gold content.
E. Gold was not added to the soil samples collected by Frobisher before the samples were examined.

Another for E.

E is def better tahn C. E proposes an alternative explanation. We need to elimate that for the the conclusion to be more true.
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19 Nov 2007, 16:39
alrussell wrote:
gregspirited wrote:
The OA is E. But I went with C initially since that is also an assumption.
How do we weed out these close calls ?

C doesn't fit. "The methods used to assess gold content of the soil samples provided by Frobisher were different from those generally used in the sixteenth century". The conclusion does not depend on this. It is far more likely that it does depend on E

I agree that E fits better. But I initially went with C because the underlying assumption was that the methods used to test Frobisher's sample was the same as that used for Elizabeth's expeditions. This question could have some of us choosing C if we are not careful!!!
19 Nov 2007, 16:39
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