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Human mortality statistics on natural deaths suggest the possibility..

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Human mortality statistics on natural deaths suggest the possibility.. [#permalink]

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New post 19 May 2016, 17:36
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Human mortality statistics on natural deaths suggest the possibility that the normal human life span comprises an even number of days.

A. that the normal human life span comprises an even number of days

B. that an even number of days may be comprising the normal human life span

C. of the normal human life span to be comprised of an even number of days

D. of an even number of days that may comprise the normal human life span

E. of an even number of days to comprise the normal human life span


My question
As a native speaker, this looks like complete gibberish to me (even though it's an official question). Firstly, is "possibility" generally followed by "that" and not "of"? Or it depends on context? Or is there a hard and fast rule that always applies? Secondly, my brain hurts from reading these answers as it feels very wrong to not have an "of" after "comprises". To me, the ideal answer would be "A" but instead say "is comprised of an even number of days". Am I playing this too much by ear?

I'm not sure what tags this would be so please let me know if there is a specific tag I should add/remove.

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Re: Human mortality statistics on natural deaths suggest the possibility.. [#permalink]

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New post 19 May 2016, 19:31
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redfield wrote:
Human mortality statistics on natural deaths suggest the possibility that the normal human life span comprises an even number of days.

A. that the normal human life span comprises an even number of days

B. that an even number of days may be comprising the normal human life span

C. of the normal human life span to be comprised of an even number of days

D. of an even number of days that may comprise the normal human life span

E. of an even number of days to comprise the normal human life span


My question
As a native speaker, this looks like complete gibberish to me (even though it's an official question). Firstly, is "possibility" generally followed by "that" and not "of"? Or it depends on context? Or is there a hard and fast rule that always applies? Secondly, my brain hurts from reading these answers as it feels very wrong to not have an "of" after "comprises". To me, the ideal answer would be "A" but instead say "is comprised of an even number of days". Am I playing this too much by ear?

I'm not sure what tags this would be so please let me know if there is a specific tag I should add/remove.


Hi,
the two points raised -
1) possiblity that or possiblity of- Both are correct and depend on the context they are used
Possiblity of should be followed by a noun-
there is a high possiblity of rain today...
possiblity that should be followed by a clause
there is a high possiblity that the rains will bring respite to drought hit areas..

2) comprises vs comprise of-
comprises is almost always used without 'of'- comprise itself means 'consist of'
of used in "comprised of"

these two points are followed ONLY in A
A
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Re: Human mortality statistics on natural deaths suggest the possibility.. [#permalink]

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New post 02 Jun 2016, 23:41
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Hi Experts / chetan2u,

I opted for correct option, but can you please check my approach.

The meaning of the sentence suggest that the natural deaths suggest the possibility that... Blah Blah Blah...!!

1) This sentence states the STATISTICS suggest something. So, there should not be any DOUBT in it.
Therefore, the usage of CONDITIONAL word like MAY can be eliminated.
This eliminates B and D.
2) E shows intention TO COMPRISE but there is no intention. This eliminates Option E.

1) A uses---> comprises ( uses present tense to stte a fact which is correct)
2) C uses--> to be comprised (which is PAST tense)

To state a general phenomena we use present tense. This eliminates option C
Hence A is correct.

Thanks and Regards,
Prakhar
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Re: Human mortality statistics on natural deaths suggest the possibility.. [#permalink]

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New post 02 Jun 2016, 23:53
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PrakharGMAT wrote:
Hi Experts / chetan2u,

I opted for correct option, but can you please check my approach.

The meaning of the sentence suggest that the natural deaths suggest the possibility that... Blah Blah Blah...!!

1) This sentence states the STATISTICS suggest something. So, there should not be any DOUBT in it.
Therefore, the usage of CONDITIONAL word like MAY can be eliminated.
This eliminates B and D.
2) E shows intention TO COMPRISE but there is no intention. This eliminates Option E.

1) A uses---> comprises ( uses present tense to stte a fact which is correct)
2) C uses--> to be comprised (which is PAST tense)

To state a general phenomena we use present tense. This eliminates option C
Hence A is correct.

Thanks and Regards,
Prakhar


Hi,

the points you have worked on are generally correct..

But the reason for eliminating choices containing MAY should be the use of possiblity and not 'statistics'......
the stats if used to talk of result of a future event is a possiblity and not a sure shot confirmation..

example -
India has won all matches against Pakistan at Eden gardens as per the stats. So India may win this time too....
Or I can write " It is a possiblity that India will win this match as per the statistics available..
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Re: Human mortality statistics on natural deaths suggest the possibility.. [#permalink]

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New post 02 Jun 2016, 23:57
chetan2u
Thanks for your response.

Yes, tour are correct. elimination of "May" should be because of "possibility".
Thanks
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Re: Human mortality statistics on natural deaths suggest the possibility.. [#permalink]

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New post 03 Jun 2016, 01:11
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Hi Experts / chetan2u,

I have reached to the final answer A just by looking for the right meaning from the 5 answer options.

While, option A and C, says, normal human life span comprises an even number of days, the remaining choices options B, D and E, says, an even number of days that may comprise the normal human life span.

According to me the meaning that is extracted from the options B, D and E is not appropriate, as, it should be, human life comprises an even number of days and not the vice versa.

Down to options A and C, suggest + 'that' is only present in option A. So, I picked option A.

Is my reasoning correct? Any suggestions?
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Re: Human mortality statistics on natural deaths suggest the possibility.. [#permalink]

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New post 03 Jun 2016, 01:23
vnigam21 wrote:
Hi Experts / chetan2u,

I have reached to the final answer A just by looking for the right meaning from the 5 answer options.

While, option A and C, says, normal human life span comprises an even number of days, the remaining choices options B, D and E, says, an even number of days that may comprise the normal human life span.

According to me the meaning that is extracted from the options B, D and E is not appropriate, as, it should be, human life comprises an even number of days and not the vice versa.

Down to options A and C, suggest + 'that' is only present in option A. So, I picked option A.

Is my reasoning correct? Any suggestions?


Hi,

Not in all choices the meaning may be different ..
there could be voice difference - active or passive ..

Most of the Qs are based on grammatical sense, which should not have some illogical meaning...
At times the ORIGINAl meaning may be very awkward and then, we have to look for the best possible choice available..

So whenever you are doing these SC ..
1) see Grammatically what all is correct..
2) If there are more than one correct grammatically, look for meaning issue....
If the original meaning is logical, choose the answer which follows the original meaning
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Re: Human mortality statistics on natural deaths suggest the possibility.. [#permalink]

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New post 24 Jul 2016, 07:10
Hi all,

I got this question in mock and marked "D", here are my reasons

in this sentence word used was "suggest", I got this question is about subjunctive and must follow the structure:

Suggest + That + "pural verb"

This was followed only in D and E

In E, because of word "To", I rejected this option.

Can anyone tell me why I got this one wrong :-(
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Re: Human mortality statistics on natural deaths suggest the possibility.. [#permalink]

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New post 04 Aug 2016, 18:55
prakhar39 wrote:
Hi all,

I got this question in mock and marked "D", here are my reasons

in this sentence word used was "suggest", I got this question is about subjunctive and must follow the structure:

Suggest + That + "pural verb"

This was followed only in D and E

In E, because of word "To", I rejected this option.

Can anyone tell me why I got this one wrong :-(


Yup - meaning.

Let's break down D and E:
D. of an even number of days that may comprise the normal human life span
This means that number of days consist of the life span. Can days consist of the life span? They can't.
E. of an even number of days to comprise the normal human life span
Same as D - the sentence doesn't make sense.

A little tip - pay close attention to the meaning of the sentences. GMAT is including meaning traps in more SC problems than they did in the past.

Hope this helped :)
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Re: Human mortality statistics on natural deaths suggest the possibility.. [#permalink]

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New post 17 Aug 2016, 12:30
Hi all,

Could you help me with the difference between suggest + that-clase (subjunctive mood) and the one used here?

I ended up eliminating option A because I thought that what follows "suggest" on this question should be used with subjunctive mood. Is the reasoning that the statistics are not "suggesting" that human life span "do" something? Actually they are suggesting "a possibility that"...?

For ex:
I suggest that he study.
vs.
Statistics suggest the possilibity that..?

Thanks.
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Re: Human mortality statistics on natural deaths suggest the possibility.. [#permalink]

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New post 26 Oct 2016, 20:51
redfield wrote:
Human mortality statistics on natural deaths suggest the possibility that the normal human life span comprises an even number of days.

A. that the normal human life span comprises an even number of days

B. that an even number of days may be comprising the normal human life span

C. of the normal human life span to be comprised of an even number of days

D. of an even number of days that may comprise the normal human life span

E. of an even number of days to comprise the normal human life span


My question
As a native speaker, this looks like complete gibberish to me (even though it's an official question). Firstly, is "possibility" generally followed by "that" and not "of"? Or it depends on context? Or is there a hard and fast rule that always applies? Secondly, my brain hurts from reading these answers as it feels very wrong to not have an "of" after "comprises". To me, the ideal answer would be "A" but instead say "is comprised of an even number of days". Am I playing this too much by ear?

I'm not sure what tags this would be so please let me know if there is a specific tag I should add/remove.



Original question tells us that statistic suggest the possibility and show that possibility:
Human mortality statistics on natural deaths suggest the possibility
that the normal human life span comprises an even number of days.
To the original question, that clause modifies possibility .
Choice B and D change the meaning of original question, it means that stastistics show possibility to comprise… in other words, to be comprise in choice c and to comprise in choi e modify suggest, show the purpose of suggestion. This is not intended meaning. :
Human mortality statistics on natural deaths suggest the possibility of the normal human life span to be comprised of an even number of days
Choice d, that modifies days=>eliminate.
Choice b: awkward and change meaning.
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Re: Human mortality statistics on natural deaths suggest the possibility.. [#permalink]

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New post 17 Apr 2017, 13:15
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IMO, there are two decision points in terms of logical prediction/Idiom: I) reporting verb II) redundancy

1) to suggest is a reporting verb in this context, that requires a + THAT construction (check out substantive clauses). Additionally, there is no need for subjunctive, because its function is not to demand something but rather to report something; therefore the use of indicative is justified.
Another reason why it is logical to claim the need of " THAT " is because the sentence needs a descriptive phrase. In other words " The study suggests WHAT? ". If a modifier is used in a form of a prepositional sentence ( " OF ... " ) the sentence does not convey the message. Compare the following:

The study suggests the possibility that it rains tomorrow. -> descriptive phrase describes what will actually happen
The study suggests the possibility of rain tomorrow. -> modifier describes a certain type of possibility

II) Redundancy: possibilty itself describes a hypothetical scenario, therefore a " hypothetical verb" is redundant.

Compare this:

The study suggests the possibility that it rains tomorrow -> describes hypothetical scenario
The study suggests that it may rain tomorrow -> describes hypothetical scenario

Redundant: The study suggests the possibility that it may rain tomorrow

A) correct
B) redundant; also even days comprise a human life span vs. a human life span compromises even days (only the second is logical)
C) reporting verb; to be compromised suggests "required action "
D) reporting verb; redundant; logic (similar to B)
E) reporting verb; to comprise suggests purpose (not logical)
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Re: Human mortality statistics on natural deaths suggest the possibility.. [#permalink]

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New post 23 Jun 2017, 02:07
Human mortality statistics on natural deaths suggest the possibility that the normal human life span comprises an even number of days.

A. that the normal human life span comprises an even number of days

B. that an even number of days may be comprising the normal human life span (possibility)

C. of the normal human life span to be comprised of an even number of days

D. of an even number of days that may comprise the normal human life span (possibility)

E. of an even number of days to comprise the normal human life span
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Re: Human mortality statistics on natural deaths suggest the possibility.. [#permalink]

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New post 14 Oct 2017, 10:49
Below was my POE. Please advice is this is right

A. that the normal human life span comprises an even number of days

B. that an even number of days may be comprising the normal human life spanfirstly, maybe comprising is wrong. Secondly, it is passive voice

C. of the normal human life span to be comprised of an even number of daysto be comprised

D. of an even number of days that may comprise the normal human life spanmay comprise, and passive voice

E. of an even number of days to comprise the normal human life spanagain passive voice

IMO, the original sentence means X comprises Y

Options B, D and E states Y comprises X which changes the meaning of the sentence slightly.

Is my logic correct ?
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Re: Human mortality statistics on natural deaths suggest the possibility.. [#permalink]

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New post 18 Dec 2017, 09:20
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redfield wrote:
Human mortality statistics on natural deaths suggest the possibility that the normal human life span comprises an even number of days.

A. that the normal human life span comprises an even number of days

B. that an even number of days may be comprising the normal human life span

C. of the normal human life span to be comprised of an even number of days

D. of an even number of days that may comprise the normal human life span

E. of an even number of days to comprise the normal human life span




Dear expert, GMATNinja, sayantanc2k, mikemcgarry, anyone..

I chose A for this question. But I realize something : "SUGGEST" is a subjunctive verb, isn't it?

If so, then, the correct choice should be "suggest the possibility THAT the normal human life span COMPRISE (plural verb)".
As we can see, choice A use "COMPRISES" instead of "COMPRISE".

Another exception of rule (sorry for become to mechanical!) or do I miss something here?

Wdyt?
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Human mortality statistics on natural deaths suggest the possibility.. [#permalink]

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New post 18 Dec 2017, 11:24
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septwibowo wrote:
redfield wrote:
Human mortality statistics on natural deaths suggest the possibility that the normal human life span comprises an even number of days.

A. that the normal human life span comprises an even number of days

B. that an even number of days may be comprising the normal human life span

C. of the normal human life span to be comprised of an even number of days

D. of an even number of days that may comprise the normal human life span

E. of an even number of days to comprise the normal human life span




Dear expert, GMATNinja, sayantanc2k, mikemcgarry, anyone..

I chose A for this question. But I realize something : "SUGGEST" is a subjunctive verb, isn't it?

If so, then, the correct choice should be "suggest the possibility THAT the normal human life span COMPRISE (plural verb)".
As we can see, choice A use "COMPRISES" instead of "COMPRISE".

Another exception of rule (sorry for become to mechanical!) or do I miss something here?

Wdyt?

The verb 'suggest' would have taken its subjunctive form if it were directly followed by 'that'.
Statistics suggest that human life span comprise an even number of days.
Here, the statistics are suggesting a possibility (that human life span comprises). The subjunctive form is not used because the structure here is simply X suggests Y.
Hope it clears your doubt.
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Re: Human mortality statistics on natural deaths suggest the possibility.. [#permalink]

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New post 21 Dec 2017, 12:25
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septwibowo wrote:
redfield wrote:
Human mortality statistics on natural deaths suggest the possibility that the normal human life span comprises an even number of days.

A. that the normal human life span comprises an even number of days

B. that an even number of days may be comprising the normal human life span

C. of the normal human life span to be comprised of an even number of days

D. of an even number of days that may comprise the normal human life span

E. of an even number of days to comprise the normal human life span


Dear expert,

I chose A for this question. But I realize something : "SUGGEST" is a subjunctive verb, isn't it?

If so, then, the correct choice should be "suggest the possibility THAT the normal human life span COMPRISE (plural verb)".
As we can see, choice A use "COMPRISES" instead of "COMPRISE".

Another exception of rule (sorry for become to mechanical!) or do I miss something here?

Wdyt?

Dear septwibowo,

I'm happy to respond. :-)

Here's what I'll say. It is impossible to arrive at SC mastery by memorizing some chimerical "complete" list of grammar rules. Language is living. Rules attempt to dissect language, but as Wordsworth said, "We murder to dissect." There always will be a living quality of the language itself that transcends the rules. The only way a non-native speaker can access those aspects of the living language that defy any rules is by reading. See
How to Improve Your GMAT Verbal Score

Very specifically, I will say that it is incorrect to say that the verb "to suggest" always takes the subjunctive. It depends on context. In formal writing, the verb always takes "that," so this is not the distinguishing element. It depends on a very subtle difference of meaning.

Case I: one person of authority telling another person what to do or decreeing how a situation should proceed:
For this, the verb of the "that" clause is in the subjunctive mood.
The CEO suggested the marketing department explore online marketing possibilities in China and Japan.
The mayor suggested that the fine on littering be extended for another year.
This construction uses "to suggest" in the sense of a personal recommendation. The reason that the subjunctive is used here is that the suggestions are contrary-to-fact. It seems that the marketing department hasn't started exploring marketing possibilities in China and Japan, that currently, the littering fine is set to run out at the end of the year. What is being suggested is different from what is, and so the subjunctive is used to show that tension between what is now and what isn't yet.

Case II: the reporting of scientific findings
This insect's limited vision suggest that its primary method of sensing a predator is pheromonic.
Perturbations in the orbit of Uranus suggested to Le Verrier that an eighth planet was beyond Uranus.
In this construction, "to suggest" is used in a scientific sense, to indicate the data gives some support to an idea, but more would be required before a scientist could speak on the matter with confidence. The content of the "that" clauses here are factual, to the best of our knowledge. For this, we use the indicative mood for the verb, in other words, ordinary factual language. The subjunctive mood would be incorrect here.

In this SC question, we are talking about a tentative conclusion reached from data, not one person's opinion or recommendation. Here, the subjunctive mood would be wrong.

Does all this make sense?
Mike :-)
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