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Guidebook writer: I have visited hotels throughout the country and hav

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Guidebook writer: I have visited hotels throughout the country and have noticed that in those built before 1930 the quality of the original carpentry work is generally superior to that in hotels build afterwards. [This is a factual observation.] Clearly carpenters working on hotels before 1930 typically worked with more skill, car, and effort than carpenters who have worked on hotels build subsequently. [This is a conclusion that would explain the factual observation.]

We are asked to weaken the argument. This means, we have to find another explanation for the factual observation (pre-1930 have good carpentry) that would support it even when the conclusion (pre-1930 carpenters were better than carpenters since) is false. In other words, even if pre-1930 carpenters are no better than later carpenters, why would the critic still observes much higher proportions of good carpentry in pre-1930 hotels?

Notice, some logical reflection has clarified our task for us, but there’s really no glaringly obvious alternate explanation for the higher proportions of good carpentry in pre-1930 hotels. We will have to look for relevant perspectives among the answer choices.

A. The quality of original carpentry in hotels is general far superior to the quality of carpentry in other structures, such as houses and stores.
True, but not helpful. Pre-1930 hotels had better carpentry than pre-1930 houses and stores. Post-1930 hotels have better carpentry than post-1930 houses and stores. This fact does not explain why any difference would not be apparent between pre-1930 hotels and post-1930 hotels.

B. Hotels build since 1930 can generally accommodate more guests than those built before 1930.
How many guests a hotel can accommodate has virtually no bearing on the quality of the carpentry. If the observations about differences in quality of carpentry were made from some kind of survey of hundreds of hotel guests, perhaps we could deduce that more had stayed in pre-1930 hotels simply because those hotels can accommodate more guests. But, the observation was in fact made by a single guidebook writer, a single person, who presumably stayed in a very large number of hotels. That persons conclusions presumably would have absolutely nothing to do with how many other people are staying in the hotel. This fact may well be true, but it’s irrelevant to this argument.

C. The materials available to carpenters working before 1930 were not significantly different in quality from the materials available to carpenters working after 1930.
Same materials in both time periods would not provide an alternative explanation for the difference in quality between pre-1930 and post-1930 hotels. In fact, arguably, this fact would strengthen the argument, not weaken it.

D. The better the quality of original carpentry in a building, the less likely that building is to fall into disuse and be demolished.
This is fascinating. Old buildings with fine carpentry are more likely to be around still. Old buildings with mediocre carpentry are more likely to be no longer with us. Remember, the guidebook writer was implicitly speaking of proportions. The factual observation was, essentially: if we look at the proportion of pre-1930 hotel that have fine carpentry, and the proportion of post-1930 hotel that have fine carpentry, then the first proportion is greater than the second proportion. The guidebook writer argued that differences in the quality of the carpenters caused this difference in proportions.

This new fact provides an alternative explanation. Suppose carpenters now are just as good, just as skillful and careful, as carpenters from before 1930. For simplicity, suppose, on average, 3% of hotels built have fine carpentry, and the other 97% have mediocre/substandard carpentry, and assume that was just as true before 1930 as it is now. For hotels build before 1930, essentially all of those hotels with poor carpentry would have been knocked down, and the only ones still standing would be the 3% that had fine carpentry. Thus, when the guidebook writer goes to pre-1930 hotels still standing, still in service, the carpentry in almost all of them is of high quality. By contrast, hotels build in the past decade are all still standing, regardless of the quality of the carpentry. When the guidebook writer goes to these, only 3% have fine carpentry, and the rest do not. Thus, the guidebook writer could experience vast differences in the proportion of hotels with fine carpentry, and it would have nothing to do with the inherent quality of the respective carpenters. This is the correct answer.

E. The average length of apprenticeship for carpenters has declines significantly since 1930.
If anything, this would strengthen the argument. It would explain why pre-1930 carpenters would be more skillful. This does not weaken the argument.

Notice that we were asked to weaken the argument, and a couple of the answers did the opposite: provided information to strengthen the argument. That’s a typical GMAT CR pattern. Similarly, when you are asked to strengthen an argument, expect to see a couple answer choices that weaken the argument.

Notice, also, in all five answer choices, our reasoning was deeply bound to the context itself. We had to think through the details of the context to separate what was relevant from what was not relevant. That is quite different from the exercises of formal logic, which tends toward abstraction. GMAT CR logic is all about getting our hand dirty in the rough and tumble of real-world issues. That what the GMAT asks you to do because, once you’re a manager with your MBA and you’re out in the business world making decisions, that’s precisely what you are going to be doing all day every day in your job.

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Re: Guidebook writer: I have visited hotels throughout the country and hav [#permalink]

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New post 06 Apr 2015, 09:35
Guidebook writer: I have visited hotels throughout the country and have noticed that in those built before 1930 the quality of the original carpentry work is generally superior to that in hotels built afterward. Clearly carpenters working on hotels before 1930 typically worked with more skill, care, and effort than carpenters who have worked on hotels built subsequently.

Which of the following, if true, most seriously weakens the guidebook writer’s argument?

(A) The quality of original carpentry in hotels is generally far superior to the quality of original carpentry in other structures, such as houses and stores.

(B) Hotels built since 1930 can generally accommodate more guests than those built before 1930.

(C) The materials available to carpenters working before 1930 were not significantly different in quality from the materials available to carpenters working after 1930.

(D) The better the quality of original carpentry in a building, the less likely that building is to fall into disuse and be demolished.

(E) The average length of apprenticeship for carpenters has declined significantly since 1930.

In the question above, the correct choice is D, but I can not see any reason that hotels built before 1930 are more prone to demolish. How can we infer that hotels built before 1930 are more likely to demolish?

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I see the confusion people are having here.

Option E actually weakly strengthens the conclusion. Conclusion is carpenters before 1930 were more skilled and after 1930 less. If average length of apprenticeship has reduced it says they are less experienced and skilled than their counterparts before.
D is correct. The representative sample taken by the author of before 1930 hotels is not a correct sample. Hence weakens.

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Re: Guidebook writer: I have visited hotels throughout the country and hav [#permalink]

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New post 09 Jul 2015, 19:30
This is Pattern in GMAT CRs where Comparison is made in premise and Conclusion is made on that comparison.

Say for Example :
Premise : A is Compared to B based on it's Price.
Conclusion : A should be consumed more by developing country population, since it is cheaper than B in price

(Something like above)

Correct Weakener : Option which says, Comparison is invalid or inappropriate or disproportionate. Comparison is biased.
Correct Strengthener : Option Which says Comparison is valid and hold true, removes the scope of parity or bias in comparison.

Option D is only option which says, Comparison itself is bias.

Hence Option D is potential Weakener.


P.S bumping if some one find it useful

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Re: Guidebook writer: I have visited hotels throughout the country and hav [#permalink]

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New post 13 Jul 2015, 08:58
Guidebook writer: I have visited hotels throughout the
country and have noticed that in those built before
1930 the quality of the original carpentry work is
generally superior to that in hotels built afterward.
Clearly carpenters working on hotels before 1930
typically worked with more skill, care, and effort than
carpenters who have worked on hotels built
subsequently.

Which of the following, if true, most seriously weakens
the guidebook writer’s argument?

(A) The quality of original carpentry in hotels is
generally far superior to the quality of original
carpentry in other structures, such as houses
and stores.out of scope
(B) Hotels built since 1930 can generally
accommodate more guests than those built
before 1930.out of scope
(C) The materials available to carpenters working
before 1930 were not significantly different in
quality from the materials available to
carpenters working after 1930. out of scope, since the argument addresses the skill of the carpenter and not the materials used
(D) The better the quality of original carpentry in a
building, the less likely that building is to fall into
disuse and be demolished.There could have been many less skilled carpenters who made buildings that were so poorly made that they fell into disuse and were demolished.
(E) The average length of apprenticeship for
carpenters has declined significantly since 1930. could strengthen the argument

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New post 26 Sep 2015, 13:50
The answer is very clearly D. The conclusion is based upon the pre-1930s hotels seen TODAY. However, there could be many hotels with poor carpentry that have not survived to the present day, so the author has a skewed perception of pre-1930s hotel carpentry. D very clearly addressed this.

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New post 30 Oct 2015, 12:27
HI Experts,
daagh ,reto , WaterFlowsUp

WHy is QA D

It states carpentry was of good quality that's why hotels still exits , isn't this the same thing what author states .

B is better choice as it shows due to more number of guests the quality of the things must be degraded otherwise they also would have been the same quality.

Please explain the ambiguity

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New post 30 Oct 2015, 14:04
Guidebook Writer: I have visited hotels throughout the country and have noticed that in those built before 1930 the quality of the original carpentry work is generally superior to that in hotels built afterward. Clearly carpenters working on hotels before 1930 typically worked with more skill, care, and effort than carpenters who have worked on hotels built subsequently.

Which of the following, if true, most seriously weakens the guidebook writer’s argument?

A. The quality of original carpentry in hotels is generally far superior to the quality of original carpentry in other structures, such as houses and stores.
Irrelevant. Writer is talking about hotels, not houses and stores.

B. Hotels built since 1930 can generally accommodate more guests than those built before 1930.
Nothing to do with the argument. This is out of scope.

C. The materials available to carpenters working before 1930 were not significantly different in quality from the materials available to carpenters working after 1930.
This strengthens the author's argument.

D. The better the quality of original carpentry in a building, the less likely that building is to fall into disuse and be demolished.
Correct. I was able to eliminate 100% of the other answers leaving this one.

E. The average length of apprenticeship for carpenters has declined significantly since 1930.
This doesn't do anything to the author's argument

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Guidebook Writer: I have visited hotels throughout the country and have noticed that in those built before 1930 the quality of the original carpentry work is generally superior to that in hotels built afterward. Clearly carpenters working on hotels before 1930 typically worked with more skill, care, and effort than carpenters who have worked on hotels built subsequently.

Which of the following, if true, most seriously weakens the guidebook writer’s argument?

So, Quality of furniture in hotels built before 1930 > Quality of furniture in hotels built after1930
Hence -> Quality of skill, care and effort is better for carpenters before 1930 > Quality of skill, care and effort is better for carpenters after1930

We need to weaken it. If we see it is A -> B -> so this is an causal argument
Some of the strategies we can use:
1) The data is biased.
2) B -> A
3) There is some other reason C, such that C -> B and A is just present there.

Lets check the options now:


A. The quality of original carpentry in hotels is generally far superior to the quality of original carpentry in other structures, such as houses and stores.
As soon as you see "Other", most probably, it is out of scope as we are comparing furniture in hotel built before 1930 and furniture in hotel built after 1930 -> hence Wrong

B. Hotels built since 1930 can generally accommodate more guests than those built before 1930.
Guests don't have an impact on the furniture. Out of scope.

C. The materials available to carpenters working before 1930 were not significantly different in quality from the materials available to carpenters working after 1930.
So, the materials are of equal quality, so this option should support the conclusion instead of weaken the argument -> Hence wrong

D. The better the quality of original carpentry in a building, the less likely that building is to fall into disuse and be demolished.
Now, this option talks that data provided is distorted.

For example: lets say out of 100 hotel built before 1930, 10% of the hotel have good furniture
so 10 hotels with a good quality.
Now, out of 100, 50 hotels are demolished, so if we observe the quality now, we can see 10/50 = 20% so we have a false impression that we have there are more hotels with good furniture.

lets hotel built after 1930, 15% of the hotels have good furniture. Even though 15% > 10% but as hotels were demolished, we have a wrong set to compare.
Hence the data provided is wrong or biased -> Hence the option weakens the argument.

E. The average length of apprenticeship for carpenters has declined significantly since 1930.
Average length of apprenticeship doesn't indicate the quality of furniture produced is low as we need to make another assumption that length of apprenticeship is directly proportional to quality of furniture manufactured -> Can be next best answer. -> but we have D) better answer

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Re: Guidebook writer: I have visited hotels throughout the country and hav [#permalink]

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New post 29 Jan 2016, 18:35
TehJay wrote:
vaivish1723 wrote:
I have visited hotels throughout the country and have noticed that in those built before 1930 the quality of the original carpentry work is generally superior to that in hotels built afterward. Clearly carpenters working on hotels before 1930 typically worked with more skill, care, and effort than carpenters who have worked on hotels built subsequently.

Which of the following, if true, most seriously weakens the guidebook writer’s argument?

We want to weaken the argument that carpenters before 1930 were better than carpenters after 1930.

A. The quality of original carpentry in hotels is generally far superior to the quality of original carpentry in other structures, such as houses and stores. The writer isn't comparing hotels to other buildings - irrelevant.

B. Hotels built since 1930 can generally accommodate more guests than those built before 1930. Irrelevant

C. The materials available to carpenters working before 1930 were not significantly different in quality from the materials available to carpenters working after 1930. STRENGTHENS the argument - if both sets of carpenters have the same quality tools, then the pre-1930's carpenters were probably doing better work with those tools

D. The better the quality of original carpentry in a building, the less likely that building is to fall into disuse and be demolished. Makes sense - it's not that every single hotel built before 1930 was better than the ones built after, but instead that the VERY BEST hotels are still around, while the lesser ones have long since been demolished. The proportion of badly built hotels before 1930 could have been much higher than it is now, but all of the bad ones have been demolished and replaced with modern buildings, so the writer is only seeing the best of the best that were built.

E. The average length of apprenticeship for carpenters has declined significantly since 1930. Would strengthen the argument - carpenters train less now than they used to.


I dont know the answer, Kindly explain along with the right answer


The statement - The better the quality of original carpentry in a building ("how the quality for original carpentry" says the quality of material used and not the carpenters skills?) Please explain.

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sagarsabnis wrote:
Guidebook writer: I have visited hotels throughout the country and have noticed that in those built before 1930
the quality of the original carpentry work is generally superior to that in hotels built afterward. Clearly carpenters
working on hotels before 1930 typically worked with more skill, care, and effort than carpenters who have
worked on hotels built subsequently.

Which of the following, if true, most seriously weakens the guidebook writer's argument?

(A) The quality of original carpentry in hotels is generally far superior to the quality of original carpentry in
other structures, such as houses and stores.
(8) Hotels built since 1930 can generally accommodate more guests than those built before 1930.
(C) The materials available to carpenters working before 1930 were not significantly different in quality from
the materials available to carpenters working after 1930.
(D) The better the quality of original carpentry in a building, the less likely that building is to fall into disuse and
be demolished.
(E) The average length of apprenticeship for carpenters has declined significantly since 1930.


to negate, we must prove that the skills of the carpenters did not get worse, or that the hotels which the writer visited were among the few of the ones built before 1930, which were built with high quality carpentry so that to last for a long time. it might be the case that carpets of some hotels from 1930 were not good, and thus, such hotels just simply did not last to live the writer's time...

A - other structures - irrelevant.
B - this might give alternative reason why the conditions of the carpets in hotels built after 1930 are worse. yet, it does not provide evidence that the quality is the same.
C - this actually strengthens the argument. same materials - but quality different. nowadays carpenters - bad.
D - ok, so the hotels built before 1930 are standing still, because they had better quality of carpentry. this means that there were hotels with lower quality, but which did not get to the writer's time... looks good. Now, the writer compares the hotels built before 1930, with exceptionally high quality, with hotels built after 1930, with "standard" quality. we can see that the comparison is not accurate.
E - this one strengthens the argument.

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New post 20 Feb 2016, 04:28
The guidebook writer states that carpentry work was superior in the old hotels than in the new ones. If the carpentry work was really superior it is implied that all those hotels should have endured the test of time. "D" implies that some of the buildings have already fallen into disuse and have been demolished which suggests that the carpentry work wasn't that superior.
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Re: Guidebook writer: I have visited hotels throughout the country and hav [#permalink]

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New post 15 Apr 2016, 20:26
Hi

I still dont understand why D is the correct answer?
Why are we assuming about demolition etc when it clearly says those hotels are still standing. Thats why he could visit them at first place.

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New post 25 Apr 2016, 05:47
Argument and original statement has no match at all. Then How D?

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New post 12 May 2016, 22:44
I Have attempted this Q atleast 3 different times, but everytime I choose "E" ,,, not sure what is so tempting with E for me. may be some prejudices in mind.

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Re: Guidebook writer: I have visited hotels throughout the country and hav [#permalink]

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New post 04 Jun 2016, 08:09
Guidebook Writer: I have visited hotels throughout the country and have noticed that in those built before 1930 the quality of the original carpentry work is generally superior to that in hotels built afterward. Clearly carpenters working on hotels before 1930 typically worked with more skill, care, and effort than carpenters who have worked on hotels built subsequently.

Which of the following, if true, most seriously weakens the guidebook writer’s argument?

A. The quality of original carpentry in hotels is generally far superior to the quality of original carpentry in other structures, such as houses and stores.
It is completely out of scope as we are not comparing with other structures.

B. Hotels built since 1930 can generally accommodate more guests than those built before 1930.
This option is also out of scope as accommodation of guests is irrelevant wrt topic in discussion.

C. The materials available to carpenters working before 1930 were not significantly different in quality from the materials available to carpenters working after 1930.
This option is actually a strengthener as it states that quality of materials has not deteriorated much

D. The better the quality of original carpentry in a building, the less likely that building is to fall into disuse and be demolished.
This is a weakener as it explains that if the quality of work was not good in 1930's,then the hotel would have been probably demolished.

E. The average length of apprenticeship for carpenters has declined significantly since 1930.
This option is actually a strengthener as it explains work done now by the carpenters is not as good as it was in 1930's

Correct Answer - D

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Re: Guidebook writer: I have visited hotels throughout the country and hav [#permalink]

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New post 04 Jun 2016, 08:12
Guidebook Writer: I have visited hotels throughout the country and have noticed that in those built before 1930 the quality of the original carpentry work is generally superior to that in hotels built afterward. Clearly carpenters working on hotels before 1930 typically worked with more skill, care, and effort than carpenters who have worked on hotels built subsequently.

Which of the following, if true, most seriously weakens the guidebook writer’s argument?

A. The quality of original carpentry in hotels is generally far superior to the quality of original carpentry in other structures, such as houses and stores.
It is completely out of scope as we are not comparing with other structures.

B. Hotels built since 1930 can generally accommodate more guests than those built before 1930.
This option is also out of scope as accommodation of guests is irrelevant wrt topic in discussion.

C. The materials available to carpenters working before 1930 were not significantly different in quality from the materials available to carpenters working after 1930.
This option is actually a strengthener as it states that quality of materials has not deteriorated much

D. The better the quality of original carpentry in a building, the less likely that building is to fall into disuse and be demolished.
This is a weakener as it explains that if the quality of work was not good in 1930's,then the hotel would have been probably demolished.

E. The average length of apprenticeship for carpenters has declined significantly since 1930.
This option is actually a strengthener as it explains work done now by the carpenters is not as good as it was in 1930's

Correct Answer - D

Kudos [?]: 40 [0], given: 231

Re: Guidebook writer: I have visited hotels throughout the country and hav   [#permalink] 04 Jun 2016, 08:12

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Guidebook writer: I have visited hotels throughout the country and hav

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