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# In 1981 children in the United States spent an average of slightly les

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Re: In 1981 children in the United States spent an average of slightly les [#permalink]

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02 Sep 2016, 08:40
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geek_mnnit wrote:
Hi egmat,
Can you please explain why is A wrong?

The intended meaning is:
In 1981 the children spent X hours a week for some work.
In 1997 the children spent Y hours a week for some work.

For option A, first exclude the part "per week" - option A then would imply that when the year 1997 came, children had already spent certain number of hours working. (compare with this sentence: By 3 pm I had already completed 3 hours of exercise - meaning: I had been exercising from 12 noon to 3 pm). This meaning itself is wrong (it is not meant that the children had already completed certain number of hours by 1997). However addition of "per week" makes the sentence senseless altogether. (compare with: By 3 pm I had already completed 3 hours of exercise per day.)

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Re: In 1981 children in the United States spent an average of slightly les [#permalink]

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02 Sep 2016, 09:08
sayantanc2k wrote:
geek_mnnit wrote:
Hi egmat,
Can you please explain why is A wrong?

The intended meaning is:
In 1981 the children spent X hours a week for some work.
In 1997 the children spent Y hours a week for some work.

For option A, first exclude the part "per week" - option A then would imply that when the year 1997 came, children had already spent certain number of hours working. (compare with this sentence: By 3 pm I had already completed 3 hours of exercise - meaning: I had been exercising from 12 noon to 3 pm). This meaning itself is wrong (it is not meant that the children had already completed certain number of hours by 1997). However addition of "per week" makes the sentence senseless altogether. (compare with: By 3 pm I had already completed 3 hours of exercise per day.)

Can you please help me understand why 'had' used for a later event makes B a correct answer choice? I am not clear. I rejected B at the first go because of the usage of 'had' , and then out of the remaining I chose D as the BEST answer.

But its strange B is correct. Kindly help.
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Re: In 1981 children in the United States spent an average of slightly les [#permalink]

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03 Sep 2016, 05:10
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abhimahna wrote:
sayantanc2k wrote:
geek_mnnit wrote:
Hi egmat,
Can you please explain why is A wrong?

The intended meaning is:
In 1981 the children spent X hours a week for some work.
In 1997 the children spent Y hours a week for some work.

For option A, first exclude the part "per week" - option A then would imply that when the year 1997 came, children had already spent certain number of hours working. (compare with this sentence: By 3 pm I had already completed 3 hours of exercise - meaning: I had been exercising from 12 noon to 3 pm). This meaning itself is wrong (it is not meant that the children had already completed certain number of hours by 1997). However addition of "per week" makes the sentence senseless altogether. (compare with: By 3 pm I had already completed 3 hours of exercise per day.)

Can you please help me understand why 'had' used for a later event makes B a correct answer choice? I am not clear. I rejected B at the first go because of the usage of 'had' , and then out of the remaining I chose D as the BEST answer.

But its strange B is correct. Kindly help.

This structure is a special one and worths remembering - it is easy to get trapped by this one. Following is an excerpt from Manhattan SC guide, in which this concept has been very nicely explained:

Also note that the later past event does not need to be expressed with a Simple Past tense verb. You could just use a date or another time reference.
Right: Bv 1945. the United States HAD BEEN at war for several years.
Using this construction, you can even make a tricky sentence in which the first clause expresses an early action in Simple Past. Then, a second clause expresses a later action in Past Perfect to indicate continued effect (by a still later past time).
Right: The band U2 WAS just one of many new groups on the rock music scene in the early 1980's, but less than ten years later, U2 HAD fully ECLIPSED its early rivals in the pantheon of popular music.

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Re: In 1981 children in the United States spent an average of slightly les [#permalink]

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03 Sep 2016, 05:22
sayantanc2k wrote:
abhimahna wrote:
sayantanc2k wrote:
The intended meaning is:
In 1981 the children spent X hours a week for some work.
In 1997 the children spent Y hours a week for some work.

For option A, first exclude the part "per week" - option A then would imply that when the year 1997 came, children had already spent certain number of hours working. (compare with this sentence: By 3 pm I had already completed 3 hours of exercise - meaning: I had been exercising from 12 noon to 3 pm). This meaning itself is wrong (it is not meant that the children had already completed certain number of hours by 1997). However addition of "per week" makes the sentence senseless altogether. (compare with: By 3 pm I had already completed 3 hours of exercise per day.)

Can you please help me understand why 'had' used for a later event makes B a correct answer choice? I am not clear. I rejected B at the first go because of the usage of 'had' , and then out of the remaining I chose D as the BEST answer.

But its strange B is correct. Kindly help.

This structure is a special one and worths remembering - it is easy to get trapped by this one. Following is an excerpt from Manhattan SC guide, in which this concept has been very nicely explained:

Also note that the later past event does not need to be expressed with a Simple Past tense verb. You could just use a date or another time reference.
Right: Bv 1945. the United States HAD BEEN at war for several years.
Using this construction, you can even make a tricky sentence in which the first clause expresses an early action in Simple Past. Then, a second clause expresses a later action in Past Perfect to indicate continued effect (by a still later past time).
Right: The band U2 WAS just one of many new groups on the rock music scene in the early 1980's, but less than ten years later, U2 HAD fully ECLIPSED its early rivals in the pantheon of popular music.

Its like cramming something you feel strange. Anyways, we NEVER know what could help you out on GMAT.

So, I will just remember this rule and will see if I could recollect such thing on the actual Exam.

Anyways, thanks bro for the help.
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Re: In 1981 children in the United States spent an average of slightly les [#permalink]

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10 Oct 2016, 09:47
[quote="juniorsbc"]In 1981 children in the United States spent an average of slightly less than two and a half hours a week doing household chores; by 1997 they had spent nearly six hours a week.
A. chores; by 1997 they had spent nearly six hours a week
B. chores; by 1997 that figure had grown to nearly six hours a week
C. chores, whereas nearly six hours a week were spent in 1997
D. chores, compared with a figure of nearly six hours a week in 1997
E. chores, that figure growing to nearly six hours a week in 1997

Can anyone please explain. I really did not understand the verb tense in the OA.

in-1981-children-in-the-united-states-spent-an-average-of-80472.html#p1730339

in-1981-children-in-the-united-states-spent-an-average-of-80472.html#p1730514

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Re: In 1981 children in the United States spent an average of slightly les [#permalink]

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24 Mar 2017, 03:10
ssandeepan wrote:
Nice explanation spriya. +1 to you.
So, what I understand is if we have 2 clauses, separated by a semicolon, they need not be dependent on each others verb, tense or even structure ( for || lism ) . Please confirm.

please someone shed some light on this. Is this true ?

It would be great if you can tell us more what is your doubt. From what I can understand - when you have two clauses joined [ I would rather used the word "joined" than "separated'] by a semi colon, the two clauses are different and can exist in their own - but both the clause need to be related to each other. Hence, the two clauses have different verb and need not maintain parallel structure.
We use parallelism because :
1. two similar ideas need to have same linguistic preferences.
2. hence, the need for parallelism.
Neither, of the above need to be true when we are using semi colon.
Since, we are talking about two related clause, the tenses are very much dependent.

Please post back for any follow up questions, because I cannot completely understand what you are asking.
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Re: In 1981 children in the United States spent an average of slightly les [#permalink]

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15 May 2017, 08:05
[quote="vaivish1723"]In 1981 children in the United States spent an average of slightly less than two and a half hours a week doing household chores; by 1997 they had spent nearly six hours a week.

A. chores; by 1997 they had spent nearly six hours a week

B. chores; by 1997 that figure had grown to nearly six hours a week

C. chores, whereas nearly six hours a week were spent in 1997

D. chores, compared with a figure of nearly six hours a week in 1997

E. chores, that figure growing to nearly six hours a week in 1997

very hard.
in choice E, "a figure" is wrong. it should be "the figure" because the figure is definite already. difference between "a" and "the" is hard.
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Re: In 1981 children in the United States spent an average of slightly les [#permalink]

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15 May 2017, 09:15
abhimahna wrote:
Its like cramming something you feel strange. Anyways, we NEVER know what could help you out on GMAT.

Hi abhimahna, there's no cramming required here, since this concept is not really a variation / exception to the usage of Past perfect tense.

Let's take an example. We would say:

By 1947, British had ruled India for 150 years.

Basically, past perfect implies that two events should have happened in the past. In this case, the two events are:

i) The year 1947
ii) The 150 year rule of the British

Hence, the earlier of the two events (the 150 year rule of the British) is appropriately expressed as past perfect.

p.s. Our book EducationAisle Sentence Correction Nirvana discusses an example based on this very sentence elaborately. Have attached the corresponding section of the book, for your reference.
Attachments

Example - Past Perfect.pdf [11.35 KiB]

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Re: In 1981 children in the United States spent an average of slightly les [#permalink]

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11 Jun 2017, 05:50
Hi EducationAisle,

Can you please elaborate on why A is incorrect here? Option A is similar to your example - "By 1947, British had ruled India for 150 years."

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Re: In 1981 children in the United States spent an average of slightly les [#permalink]

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12 Jun 2017, 23:25
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Vyshak wrote:
Hi EducationAisle,

Can you please elaborate on why A is incorrect here? Option A is similar to your example - "By 1947, British had ruled India for 150 years."

Hi Vyshak, past perfect is typically used when there are two events that happened in the past. In such a scenario, the latter event is expressed as simple past.

The example I gave in my last post was to illustrate that this later event can also be a time (such as 1947 in the example that I quoted).

In option B, the usage of the phrase had grown to does justice to the intended meaning that the earlier figure (of 2.5 hours a week) had progressively increased to 6 hours a week by 1997.

On the other hand, had spent 6 hours a week (option A) gives the connotation of a discrete activity that was completed by 1997.
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Re: In 1981 children in the United States spent an average of slightly les [#permalink]

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18 Jun 2017, 01:58
In 1981 children in the United States spent an average of slightly less than two and a half hours a week doing household chores; by 1997 they had spent nearly six hours a week.

(A) chores; by 1997 they had spent nearly six hours a week
(B) chores; by 1997 that figure had grown to nearly six hours a week
(C) chores, whereas nearly six hours a week were spent in 1997
(D) chores, compared with a figure of nearly six hours a week in 1997
(E) chores, that figure growing to nearly six hours a week in 1997
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Re: In 1981 children in the United States spent an average of slightly les [#permalink]

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04 Jul 2017, 05:20
In 1981 children in the United States spent an average of slightly less than two and a half hours a week doing household chores, compared with a figure of nearly six hours a week in 1997

A. chores; by 1997 they had spent nearly six hours a week
B. chores; by 1997 that figure had grown to nearly six hours a week
C. chores, whereas nearly six hours a week were spent in 1997
D. chores, compared with a figure of nearly six hours a week in 1997
E. chores, that figure growing to nearly six hours a week in 1997

Can someone help me ?

for me the answer D correctly compares
The avg hours of chores 1981 with the avg hours of chores in 1997

D. chores, compared with a figure of nearly six hours a week in 1997

Is it just because we are using an Verb-ED? and can in no way be correctly referring to the avg hours?

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In 1981 children in the United States spent an average of slightly les [#permalink]

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20 Jul 2017, 23:36
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Quote:
In 1981 children in the United States spent an average of slightly less than two and a half hours a week doing household chores; by 1997 they had spent nearly six hours a week.

(A) chores; by 1997 they had spent nearly six hours a week
(B) chores; by 1997 that figure had grown to nearly six hours a week
(C) chores, whereas nearly six hours a week were spent in 1997
(D) chores, compared with a figure of nearly six hours a week in 1997
(E) chores, that figure growing to nearly six hours a week in 1997

A quick-fix to this topic in the hall would be:

In 1997 is a wrong expression, implying that the figure shot up nearly three times in just that particular year, on the contrary, we all know that it must have been a progressive phenomenon. C, D, and E are out.
By using the pronoun they, this choice wrongly implies that the same children of 1981, nearly 16 years later in 1997 (were they even children in 1997?) spent six hours. Kick A out.
This leaves us with B. It is also known that using the past perfect for the later past event is a ploy by GMAT these days. Vote B
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In 1981 children in the United States spent an average of slightly les [#permalink]

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27 Aug 2017, 22:36
In 1981 children in the United States spent an average of slightly less than two and a half hours a week doing household chores; by 1997 they had spent nearly six hours a week.

(A) chores; by 1997 they had spent nearly six hours a week
(B) chores; by 1997 that figure had grown to nearly six hours a week
(C) chores, whereas nearly six hours a week were spent in 1997:-

comparing CHILDREN with FIGURE.

(D) chores, compared with a figure of nearly six hours a week in 1997
(E) chores, that figure growing to nearly six hours a week in 1997

Ron:-

in this case, 1981 is actually, irritatingly enough, irrelevant. the only relevant places on the proverbial timeline are (a) when the number of hours started growing (this is the 'earlier event' or FIRST time marker), and (b) 1997 (the SECOND past time marker). because 1997 is in the past, and the 'arrow of relevance' points to / stops at 1997, you use the past perfect.
if we were talking about a modern statistic instead ("as of today, the number has grown to..."), then we'd use the present perfect.

at the start of the 1991 track season, the world record in the men's long jump had stood for 23 years.
same deal here. the start of the '91 season is the second time marker, the first being the time at which the record was set. (the 'arrow of relevance' on the timeline would be 23 years long, pointing to 1991, so the past perfect is appropriate again.)

why C wrong:-

1: it's awkward and somewhat unclear. the use of the passive voice ("6 hours were spent") not only is completely unnecessary, but also obscures the point that the children were doing the work (read this again: you could read it as meaning that someone else was doing the work).

2: it's not parallel. if you're not going to mention an external word that improves concision and clarity, such as "the figure", then you should keep the 2 parts as grammatically parallel as possible.
a shift from the active voice, with a clear subject (children), to the passive voice, with an ambiguous subject, is definitely not parallelism in action.

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