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# Jon Clark’s study of the effect of the modernization of a telephone ex

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GMAT 1: 630 Q44 V32
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Re: Jon Clark’s study of the effect of the modernization of a telephone ex  [#permalink]

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08 Jun 2017, 20:24
1
AshwinChopra wrote:
11min 46 seconds
5/8
I think I have done really well, as it was a really tough one !

Isn't it worthless to do a passage with these many questions? In my view, we read a passage with a short term memory, which in my view is good enough to answer only 3-4 questions. Hence worthless to do a passage with 7-8 questions. In my trend of trying to solve passages with many questions, I invariably get the first 3-4 right, then I start to get them wrong as the memory of the passage begins to fade away. Any one comment on this?

Also, what would be the time strategy for such a passage? Do we spent close to 2 mins per question?

I believe exactly the opposite of what you have mentioned. I think, a passage with more number of questions is more beneficial for the test-taker than one with less number of questions. I assume you wanted to talk about the 'length' of the passage and not the number of questions. IMO, the best case would be to have a smaller passage with more questions.

Look at it this way, even if the passage is big (worst case), you just have to invest your time once and understand it nicely. Once you understand the jist and become confident about a particular passage, you can answer most of the questions correctly with minimal (or no) re-readings. And therefore, having more questions from something you now have grip on makes more sense. Moreover, if its a 700 level (tough RC) with more number of questions- Even Better! You may give a couple of mins more than what you usually do, to tackle this. But, once you get a hold of it, you will shoot your score with the next set of questions.

In effect, having more number of questions in a RC (that u understand) saves you from facing daunting questions from CR/SC towards the end of the test. Compare facing a tough RC with 8-10 questions with 8-10 tough CR/SC's in a row. Be it time, complexity, score boost, anything, the former is always safe

Against the popular belief, i always believe that RC is a safe score booster and time saver for us. All the info you need to answer the question is in front of us and you dont have to look at your timer- give yourself time, understand and hit 90% accuracy in the questions to follow.

I recommend practicing as many RC passages from OGs as one can to get a hold on the (very few) patterns that GMAC have in their arsenal. Its becomes way easier than perceived
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Re: Jon Clark’s study of the effect of the modernization of a telephone ex  [#permalink]

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28 Sep 2017, 08:05
2
mojorising800 wrote:
Jon Clark’s study of the effect of the modernization of a telephone exchange on exchange maintenance work and workers is a solid contribution to a debate that encompasses two lively issues in the history and sociology of technology: technological determinism and social constructivism.

Clark makes the point that the characteristics of a technology have a decisive influence on job skills and work organization. Put more strongly, technology can be a primary determinant of social and managerial organization. Clark believes this possibility has been obscured by the recent sociological fashion, exemplified by Braverman’s analysis, that emphasizes the way machinery reflects social choices. For Braverman, the shape of a technological system is subordinate to the manager’s desire to wrest control of the labor process from the workers. Technological change is construed as the outcome of negotiations among interested parties who seek to incorporate their own interests into the design and configuration of the machinery. This position represents the new mainstream called social constructivism.

The constructivists gain acceptance by misrepresenting technological determinism: technological determinists are supposed to believe, for example, that machinery imposes appropriate forms of order on society. The alternative to constructivism, in other words, is to view technology as existing outside society, capable of directly influencing skills and work organization.

Clark refutes the extremes of the constructivists by both theoretical and empirical arguments. Theoretically he defines “technology” in terms of relationships between social and technical variables. Attempts to reduce the meaning of technology to cold, hard metal are bound to fail, for machinery is just scrap unless it is organized functionally and supported by appropriate systems of operation and maintenance. At the empirical level Clark shows how a change at the telephone exchange from maintenance-intensive electromechanical switches to semielectronic switching systems altered work tasks, skills, training opportunities, administration, and organization of workers. Some changes Clark attributes to the particular way management and labor unions negotiated the introduction of the technology, whereas others are seen as arising from the capabilities and nature of the technology itself. Thus Clark helps answer the question: “When is social choice decisive and when are the concrete characteristics of technology more important?”
120. The primary purpose of the passage is to

(A) advocate a more positive attitude toward technological change
(B) discuss the implications for employees of the modernization of a telephone exchange
(C) consider a successful challenge to the constructivist view of technological change
(D) challenge the position of advocates of technological determinism
(E) suggest that the social causes of technological change should be studied in real situations

Passage: Technological Change

Question: Primary Purpose

The Simple Story

Two distinct views exist regarding technological change. Technological determinism suggests that the features of the technology determine organizational structure. Social constructivism holds that technology reflects social choices. Constructionists misrepresent determinist theory to make it seem implausible. Clark challenges constructionist views, showing examples of both theories in his analysis of the modernization of the telephone industry. The final sentence indicates that Clark does not agree with either theory entirely; rather, both theories can be valid, depending on the details of the specific circumstance at hand.

Sample Passage Map

Here is one way to map this passage. (Note: abbreviate as desired!)

1) Clark on TD vs SC

2) TD: tech → org

SC: power → tech

3) SC misrepresent TD

4) Clark: eg both in telephone

Note: eg is an abbreviation for for example.

Step 1: Identify the Question

The words primary purpose in the question stem indicate that this is a Primary Purpose question.

Step 2: Find the Support

On main idea questions, your passage map and your general understanding of the passage will provide the information you need to answer the question. Briefly reiterate the simple story to yourself: There are two competing theories about technological change. Clark shows that the ideas are not mutually exclusive, as suggested by constructivists.

The correct answer should focus on the major themes of the passage. Clark challenges the view that constructivism is mutually exclusive with determinism.

Step 4: Eliminate and Find a Match

(A) The passage discusses the process of technological change, but does not encourage a more positive attitude.

(B) Some changes for telephone employees are mentioned in the fourth paragraph, but these changes are not the main idea of the passage. This answer ignores the theories of technological change.

(C) CORRECT. The passage challenges the constructivists’ view that determinism is implausible. The first sentence of the last paragraph, which states Clark refutes the extremes of constructivists, provides specific support.

(D) Though the constructivists do challenge the determinism theory, the overall message revolves around Clark’s study, which shows that technological determinism is a plausible explanation for particular changes.

(E) Clark does study changes in the telephone industry (a real situation), but the passage does not suggest that this method is how social causes should be studied in general.
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Re: Jon Clark’s study of the effect of the modernization of a telephone ex  [#permalink]

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05 Nov 2017, 18:36
Dear mikemcgarry,

I have doubt for question 121. Although, I am able to select answer C, i am not convinced with usage of went beyond maintenance routines. It seems to me extreme word.

I am able to select correct answer as a result of POE.

Could you help me to understand why C is 100% correct.

Thank You
Amm
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Joined: 28 Dec 2011
Posts: 4488
Re: Jon Clark’s study of the effect of the modernization of a telephone ex  [#permalink]

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06 Nov 2017, 12:33
ammuseeru wrote:
Dear mikemcgarry,

I have doubt for question 121. Although, I am able to select answer C, i am not convinced with usage of went beyond maintenance routines. It seems to me extreme word.

I am able to select correct answer as a result of POE.

Could you help me to understand why C is 100% correct.

Thank You
Amm

Dear ammuseeru,

I'm happy to respond.

Here is a sentence from near the end of the passage.
At the empirical level Clark shows how a change at the telephone exchange from maintenance-intensive electromechanical switches to semielectronic switching systems altered work tasks, skills, training opportunities, administration, and organization of workers.

So, before the change, the tasks were "maintenance-intensive," and they weren't after the change, so certainly one thing that changed was the ordinary everyday work around maintenance, what we might call "maintenance routines"---the routines associated with maintenance of the equipment. This was a big job before modernization, and a much much smaller concern after modernization.

At the same time, some of the jobs had radical changes. Now, there weren't as many jobs doing the ordinary day-by-day maintenance, but there were new jobs that involved new "tasks, skills, training opportunities, administration, and organization of workers." Employees were doing new things that no one had ever done before--before the technology changed, there had never been any thought of these new jobs.

Thus, there were a lot of changes, not just changes in "maintenance routines." There were many more changes that "went beyond maintenance routines."

Thus, we can reasonably say that: "The modernization had an impact that went significantly beyond maintenance routines."

Choice (C) is well-supported by that sentence.

Does all this make sense?
Mike
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Re: Jon Clark’s study of the effect of the modernization of a telephone ex  [#permalink]

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06 Nov 2017, 19:39
mikemcgarry wrote:
ammuseeru wrote:
Dear mikemcgarry,

I have doubt for question 121. Although, I am able to select answer C, i am not convinced with usage of went beyond maintenance routines. It seems to me extreme word.

I am able to select correct answer as a result of POE.

Could you help me to understand why C is 100% correct.

Thank You
Amm

Dear ammuseeru,

I'm happy to respond.

Here is a sentence from near the end of the passage.
At the empirical level Clark shows how a change at the telephone exchange from maintenance-intensive electromechanical switches to semielectronic switching systems altered work tasks, skills, training opportunities, administration, and organization of workers.

So, before the change, the tasks were "maintenance-intensive," and they weren't after the change, so certainly one thing that changed was the ordinary everyday work around maintenance, what we might call "maintenance routines"---the routines associated with maintenance of the equipment. This was a big job before modernization, and a much much smaller concern after modernization.

At the same time, some of the jobs had radical changes. Now, there weren't as many jobs doing the ordinary day-by-day maintenance, but there were new jobs that involved new "tasks, skills, training opportunities, administration, and organization of workers." Employees were doing new things that no one had ever done before--before the technology changed, there had never been any thought of these new jobs.

Thus, there were a lot of changes, not just changes in "maintenance routines." There were many more changes that "went beyond maintenance routines."

Thus, we can reasonably say that: "The modernization had an impact that went significantly beyond maintenance routines."

Choice (C) is well-supported by that sentence.

Does all this make sense?
Mike

Awesome Explanation was awesome. You made it easy to understand
Mike, Thank you very much
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Re: Jon Clark’s study of the effect of the modernization of a telephone ex  [#permalink]

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16 Nov 2017, 02:48
mojorising800 wrote:
Jon Clark’s study of the effect of the modernization of a telephone exchange on exchange maintenance work and workers is a solid contribution to a debate that encompasses two lively issues in the history and sociology of technology: technological determinism and social constructivism.

Clark makes the point that the characteristics of a technology have a decisive influence on job skills and work organization. Put more strongly, technology can be a primary determinant of social and managerial organization. Clark believes this possibility has been obscured by the recent sociological fashion, exemplified by Braverman’s analysis, that emphasizes the way machinery reflects social choices. For Braverman, the shape of a technological system is subordinate to the manager’s desire to wrest control of the labor process from the workers. Technological change is construed as the outcome of negotiations among interested parties who seek to incorporate their own interests into the design and configuration of the machinery. This position represents the new mainstream called social constructivism.

The constructivists gain acceptance by misrepresenting technological determinism: technological determinists are supposed to believe, for example, that machinery imposes appropriate forms of order on society. The alternative to constructivism, in other words, is to view technology as existing outside society, capable of directly influencing skills and work organization.

Clark refutes the extremes of the constructivists by both theoretical and empirical arguments. Theoretically he defines “technology” in terms of relationships between social and technical variables. Attempts to reduce the meaning of technology to cold, hard metal are bound to fail, for machinery is just scrap unless it is organized functionally and supported by appropriate systems of operation and maintenance. At the empirical level Clark shows how a change at the telephone exchange from maintenance-intensive electromechanical switches to semielectronic switching systems altered work tasks, skills, training opportunities, administration, and organization of workers. Some changes Clark attributes to the particular way management and labor unions negotiated the introduction of the technology, whereas others are seen as arising from the capabilities and nature of the technology itself. Thus Clark helps answer the question: “When is social choice decisive and when are the concrete characteristics of technology more important?”
120. The primary purpose of the passage is to

(A) advocate a more positive attitude toward technological change
(B) discuss the implications for employees of the modernization of a telephone exchange
(C) consider a successful challenge to the constructivist view of technological change
(D) challenge the position of advocates of technological determinism
(E) suggest that the social causes of technological change should be studied in real situations

121. Which of the following statements about the modernization of the telephone exchange is supported by information in the passage?
(A) The new technology reduced the role of managers in labor negotiations.
(B) The modernization was implemented without the consent of the employees directly affected by it.
(C) The modernization had an impact that went significantly beyond maintenance routines.
(D) Some of the maintenance workers felt victimized by the new technology.
(E) The modernization gave credence to the view of advocates of social constructivism.

122. Which of the following most accurately describes Clark’s opinion of Braverman’s position?
(A) He respects its wide-ranging popularity.
(B) He disapproves of its misplaced emphasis on the influence of managers.
(C) He admires the consideration it gives to the attitudes of the workers affected.
(D) He is concerned about its potential to impede the implementation of new technologies.
(E) He is sympathetic to its concern about the impact of modern technology on workers.

123. The information in the passage suggests that which of the following statements from hypothetical sociological studies of change in industry most clearly exemplifi es the social constructivists’ version of technological determinism?
(A) It is the available technology that determines workers’ skills, rather than workers’ skills influencing the application of technology.
(B) All progress in industrial technology grows out of a continuing negotiation between technological possibility and human need.
(C) Some organizational change is caused by people; some is caused by computer chips.
(D) Most major technological advances in industry have been generated through research and development.
(E) Some industrial technology eliminates jobs, but educated workers can create whole new skills areas by the adaptation of the technology.

124. The information in the passage suggests that Clark believes that which of the following would be true if social constructivism had not gained widespread acceptance?
(A) Businesses would be more likely to modernize without considering the social consequences of their actions.
(B) There would be greater understanding of the role played by technology in producing social change.
(C) Businesses would be less likely to understand the attitudes of employees affected by modernization.
(D) Modernization would have occurred at a slower rate.
(E) Technology would have played a greater part in determining the role of business in society.

125. According to the passage, constructivists employed which of the following to promote their argument?
(A) Empirical studies of business situations involving technological change
(B) Citation of managers supportive of their position
(C) Construction of hypothetical situations that support their view
(D) Contrasts of their view with a misstatement of an opposing view
(E) Descriptions of the breadth of impact of technological change

126. The author of the passage uses the expression “are supposed to” in line 27 primarily in order to
(A) suggest that a contention made by constructivists regarding determinists is inaccurate
(B) defi ne the generally accepted position of determinists regarding the implementation of technology
(C) engage in speculation about the motivation of determinists
(D) lend support to a comment critical of the position of determinists
(E) contrast the historical position of determinists with their position regarding the exchange modernization

127. Which of the following statements about Clark’s study of the telephone exchange can be inferred from information in the passage?
(A) Clark’s reason for undertaking the study was to undermine Braverman’s analysis of the function of technology.
(B) Clark’s study suggests that the implementation of technology should be discussed in the context of confl ict between labor and management.
(C) Clark examined the impact of changes in the technology of switching at the exchange in terms of overall operations and organization.
(D) Clark concluded that the implementation of new switching technology was equally benefi cial to management and labor.
(E) Clark’s analysis of the change in switching systems applies only narrowly to the situation at the particular exchange that he studied.

123. The information in the passage suggests that which of the following statements from hypothetical sociological studies of change in industry most clearly exemplifies the social constructivists’ version of technological determinism?
(A) It is the available technology that determines workers’ skills, rather than workers’ skills influencing the application of technology.
(B) All progress in industrial technology grows out of a continuing negotiation between technological possibility and human need.
(C) Some organizational change is caused by people; some is caused by computer chips.
(D) Most major technological advances in industry have been generated through research and development.
(E) Some industrial technology eliminates jobs, but educated workers can create whole new skills areas by the adaptation of the technology.

Hi mikemcgarry,

I have a doubt with respect to question number 123 (the one talking about the social constructivists' version of technological determinism). It says that A is the answer. Though I understand this can be evidenced from "The constructivists gain acceptance by misrepresenting technological determinism: technological determinists are supposed to believe, for example, that machinery imposes appropriate forms of order on society. The alternative to constructivism, in other words, is to view technology as existing outside society, capable of directly influencing skills and work organization." portion of the passage. They assume that this determinism believes that "technology determines worker's skill". But isn't this true ? Because a portion in the third para clearly states that "how a change at the telephone exchange from maintenance-intensive electromechanical switches to semi electronic switching systems altered work tasks, skills, training opportunities, administration, and organization of workers". This shows Clarke's view of determinism also says that technology affects skills. And he is said to be successfully challenging the constructivist view, i.e, refuting the same, then how can both of these present the same opinion ?

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Re: Jon Clark’s study of the effect of the modernization of a telephone ex  [#permalink]

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21 Nov 2017, 18:29
5
Poorvasha wrote:
123. The information in the passage suggests that which of the following statements from hypothetical sociological studies of change in industry most clearly exemplifies the social constructivists’ version of technological determinism?
(A) It is the available technology that determines workers’ skills, rather than workers’ skills influencing the application of technology.
(B) All progress in industrial technology grows out of a continuing negotiation between technological possibility and human need.
(C) Some organizational change is caused by people; some is caused by computer chips.
(D) Most major technological advances in industry have been generated through research and development.
(E) Some industrial technology eliminates jobs, but educated workers can create whole new skills areas by the adaptation of the technology.

Hi mikemcgarry,

I have a doubt with respect to question number 123 (the one talking about the social constructivists' version of technological determinism). It says that A is the answer. Though I understand this can be evidenced from "The constructivists gain acceptance by misrepresenting technological determinism: technological determinists are supposed to believe, for example, that machinery imposes appropriate forms of order on society. The alternative to constructivism, in other words, is to view technology as existing outside society, capable of directly influencing skills and work organization." portion of the passage. They assume that this determinism believes that "technology determines worker's skill". But isn't this true ? Because a portion in the third para clearly states that "how a change at the telephone exchange from maintenance-intensive electromechanical switches to semi electronic switching systems altered work tasks, skills, training opportunities, administration, and organization of workers". This shows Clarke's view of determinism also says that technology affects skills. And he is said to be successfully challenging the constructivist view, i.e, refuting the same, then how can both of these present the same opinion ?

Dear Poorvasha,

I'm happy to respond.

The technological determinists (TD) look at the way the machines determine things about human behaviors and relationships.

The social constructivist (SC) think human choice is everything. They think humans influence machines, not vice versa. The SC folks misrepresent the TD position, saying:
the TD folks say that machines influence people, and people never influence machines.
This is an extreme position. It is something called in English a "paper tiger"-- an extreme and therefore weakened position that is easy to refute. This is a common technique in argument; create a weakened version of the opponent's argument and show how that's easy to refute.

Jon Clark is more sympathetic to the TD view, and he "refutes" the SC simplification of the TD position. Jon Clark says that the influence between people and machines goes both ways--this is closer to the true TD position, and against what the SC are trying to claim. The word "refute" is an exceptional powerful word: this is about as strong and as explicit as the GMAT RC gets!! It's very important to give full attention to such a powerful word.

Question #123 is only about the "social constructivists’ version of technological determinism," in other words, the extreme misrepresentation (the red statement above). Jon Clark is NOT a social constructivist. He does not share this simplified extreme view of the TD position. Instead, he refutes the SC simplification of the TD position. Jon Clark is not agreeing with the SC--in fact, he's refuting them--so what Jon Clark thinks is NOT part of what question #123 is asking. In fact, what Jon Clark thinks will directly contradict the SC position, precisely because he refutes it. Thus, Jon Clark's conclusions, in par. 3, is 100% outside what question 123 is asking.

Does this make sense?
Mike
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Re: Jon Clark’s study of the effect of the modernization of a telephone ex  [#permalink]

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27 Apr 2018, 11:19
123. The information in the passage suggests that which of the following statements from hypothetical sociological studies of change in industry most clearly exemplifies the social constructivists’ version of technological determinism?
(A) It is the available technology that determines workers’ skills, rather than workers’ skills influencing the application of technology.
(B) All progress in industrial technology grows out of a continuing negotiation between technological possibility and human need.
(C) Some organizational change is caused by people; some is caused by computer chips.
(D) Most major technological advances in industry have been generated through research and development.
(E) Some industrial technology eliminates jobs, but educated workers can create whole new skills areas by the adaptation of the technology.

Hi mikemcgarry,

I have a doubt with respect to question number 123 (the one talking about the social constructivists' version of technological determinism). It says that A is the answer. A refers to this part of the passage "The constructivists gain acceptance by misrepresenting technological determinism: technological determinists are supposed to believe, for example, that machinery imposes appropriate forms of order on society. The alternative to constructivism, in other words, is to view technology as existing outside society, capable of directly influencing skills and work organization." portion of the passage.

But the blue is referring to how social constructivists lie about technological determinists

The q is asking about what social constructivists think about technological deterministation which i believe is stated here "Technological change is construed as the outcome of negotiations among interested parties who seek to incorporate their own interests into the design and confi guration of the machinery. This position represents the new mainstream called social constructivism"

Hence - per the Red, should'nt (B) be the answer ?
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Re: Jon Clark’s study of the effect of the modernization of a telephone ex  [#permalink]

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11 Sep 2018, 11:58
took me 12 mins 10 seconds to do this.Got 3 wrong.
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Re: Jon Clark’s study of the effect of the modernization of a telephone ex  [#permalink]

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30 Sep 2018, 21:33
mojorising800 wrote:
Jon Clark’s study of the effect of the modernization of a telephone exchange on exchange maintenance work and workers is a solid contribution to a debate that encompasses two lively issues in the history and sociology of technology: technological determinism and social constructivism.

Clark makes the point that the characteristics of a technology have a decisive influence on job skills and work organization. Put more strongly, technology can be a primary determinant of social and managerial organization. Clark believes this possibility has been obscured by the recent sociological fashion, exemplified by Braverman’s analysis, that emphasizes the way machinery reflects social choices. For Braverman, the shape of a technological system is subordinate to the manager’s desire to wrest control of the labor process from the workers. Technological change is construed as the outcome of negotiations among interested parties who seek to incorporate their own interests into the design and configuration of the machinery. This position represents the new mainstream called social constructivism.

The constructivists gain acceptance by misrepresenting technological determinism: technological determinists are supposed to believe, for example, that machinery imposes appropriate forms of order on society. The alternative to constructivism, in other words, is to view technology as existing outside society, capable of directly influencing skills and work organization.

Clark refutes the extremes of the constructivists by both theoretical and empirical arguments. Theoretically he defines “technology” in terms of relationships between social and technical variables. Attempts to reduce the meaning of technology to cold, hard metal are bound to fail, for machinery is just scrap unless it is organized functionally and supported by appropriate systems of operation and maintenance. At the empirical level Clark shows how a change at the telephone exchange from maintenance-intensive electromechanical switches to semielectronic switching systems altered work tasks, skills, training opportunities, administration, and organization of workers. Some changes Clark attributes to the particular way management and labor unions negotiated the introduction of the technology, whereas others are seen as arising from the capabilities and nature of the technology itself. Thus Clark helps answer the question: “When is social choice decisive and when are the concrete characteristics of technology more important?”
RC00013-01. The primary purpose of the passage is to

(A) advocate a more positive attitude toward technological change
(B) discuss the implications for employees of the modernization of a telephone exchange
(C) consider a successful challenge to the constructivist view of technological change
(D) challenge the position of advocates of technological determinism
(E) suggest that the social causes of technological change should be studied in real situations

RC00013-02. Which of the following statements about the modernization of the telephone exchange is supported by information in the passage?
(A) The new technology reduced the role of managers in labor negotiations.
(B) The modernization was implemented without the consent of the employees directly affected by it.
(C) The modernization had an impact that went significantly beyond maintenance routines.
(D) Some of the maintenance workers felt victimized by the new technology.
(E) The modernization gave credence to the view of advocates of social constructivism.

RC00013-03. Which of the following most accurately describes Clark’s opinion of Braverman’s position?
(A) He respects its wide-ranging popularity.
(B) He disapproves of its misplaced emphasis on the influence of managers.
(C) He admires the consideration it gives to the attitudes of the workers affected.
(D) He is concerned about its potential to impede the implementation of new technologies.
(E) He is sympathetic to its concern about the impact of modern technology on workers.

RC00013-04. The information in the passage suggests that which of the following statements from hypothetical sociological studies of change in industry most clearly exemplifi es the social constructivists’ version of technological determinism?
(A) It is the available technology that determines workers’ skills, rather than workers’ skills influencing the application of technology.
(B) All progress in industrial technology grows out of a continuing negotiation between technological possibility and human need.
(C) Some organizational change is caused by people; some is caused by computer chips.
(D) Most major technological advances in industry have been generated through research and development.
(E) Some industrial technology eliminates jobs, but educated workers can create whole new skills areas by the adaptation of the technology.

RC00013-07. The information in the passage suggests that Clark believes that which of the following would be true if social constructivism had not gained widespread acceptance?
(A) Businesses would be more likely to modernize without considering the social consequences of their actions.
(B) There would be greater understanding of the role played by technology in producing social change.
(C) Businesses would be less likely to understand the attitudes of employees affected by modernization.
(D) Modernization would have occurred at a slower rate.
(E) Technology would have played a greater part in determining the role of business in society.

RC00013-05. According to the passage, constructivists employed which of the following to promote their argument?
(A) Empirical studies of business situations involving technological change
(B) Citation of managers supportive of their position
(C) Construction of hypothetical situations that support their view
(D) Contrasts of their view with a misstatement of an opposing view
(E) Descriptions of the breadth of impact of technological change

RC00013-08. The author of the passage uses the expression “are supposed to” in line 27 primarily in order to
(A) suggest that a contention made by constructivists regarding determinists is inaccurate
(B) defi ne the generally accepted position of determinists regarding the implementation of technology
(C) engage in speculation about the motivation of determinists
(D) lend support to a comment critical of the position of determinists
(E) contrast the historical position of determinists with their position regarding the exchange modernization

RC00013-09. Which of the following statements about Clark’s study of the telephone exchange can be inferred from information in the passage?
(A) Clark’s reason for undertaking the study was to undermine Braverman’s analysis of the function of technology.
(B) Clark’s study suggests that the implementation of technology should be discussed in the context of confl ict between labor and management.
(C) Clark examined the impact of changes in the technology of switching at the exchange in terms of overall operations and organization.
(D) Clark concluded that the implementation of new switching technology was equally benefi cial to management and labor.
(E) Clark’s analysis of the change in switching systems applies only narrowly to the situation at the particular exchange that he studied.

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05 Oct 2018, 01:49
it took me 12:30 min and got 6/8 correct
Can someone explain 2 qn why B is incorrect
and in 4 qn why E is incorrect.
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06 Oct 2018, 11:18

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19 Oct 2018, 07:44
Got 7/8 correct in 16:30 min including 5 min to read the passage!

Passage Map:
1) Study
2) 2 Opposing views
3) Misrepresentation of one view
4) Evidence to support one view
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27 Oct 2018, 05:27
2

1. The primary purpose of the passage is to
A. advocate a more positive attitude toward technological change
B. discuss the implications for employees of the modernization of a telephone exchange
C. consider a successful challenge to the constructivist view of technological change
D. challenge the position of advocates of technological determinism
E. suggest that the social causes of technological change should be studied in real situations
Main idea
This question asks for an assessment of what the passage as a whole is doing. The passage introduces Clark’s study as a solid contribution (line 3) to the debate between technological determinists and social constructivists. In the second paragraph, Braverman is introduced as holding a position of social constructivism, a position that Clark takes issue with. In the final paragraph, the passage holds that Clark refutes the extremes of the constructivists (line 31), and Clark’s arguments challenging social constructivism are then described.
A. The passage takes no position on the merits of technological change but is concerned only with the role of such change in society.
B. The passage mentions telephone exchange workers as an example that helps illustrate the more central debate between determinists and constructivists.
C. Correct. The passage is mainly concerned with portraying Clark’s view as a successful challenge to constructivism.
D. The passage describes Clark’s view as a successful challenge to social constructivism, not technological determinism.
E. The passage is concerned with describing a challenge to social constructivism and not with suggesting the context in which technological change ought to be studied.

2. Which of the following statements about the modernization of the telephone exchange is supported by information in the passage?
A. The new technology reduced the role of managers in labor negotiations.
B. The modernization was implemented without the consent of the employees directly affected by it.
C. The modernization had an impact that went significantly beyond maintenance routines.
D. Some of the maintenance workers felt victimized by the new technology.
E. The modernization gave credence to the view of advocates of social constructivism.
Supporting ideas
This question requires recognizing information contained in the passage. The passage states in the first paragraph that Clark’s study focused on the modernization of a telephone exchange and the effect this had on maintenance work and workers. After describing Braverman’s analysis in the second paragraph as being at odds with Clark’s views, the passage discusses Clark’s views in more detail in the final paragraph. As part of this discussion, the passage notes that Clark shows how a change from maintenance-intensive electromechanical switches to semielectronic switching systems at the telephone exchange altered work tasks, skills, training opportunities, administration, and organization of workers (lines 42–44). Thus, the passage shows that the modernization of the telephone exchange affected much more than maintenance routines.
A. The passage does not discuss whether new technology reduces the role of managers in labor negotiations.
B. The passage does not discuss the role of employee consent in the modernization of the telephone exchange.
C. Correct. The passage states that the modernization of the telephone exchange affected tasks, skills, training, administration, and the organization of workers.
D. The passage does not suggest that maintenance workers felt victimized by the modernization of the telephone exchange.
E. The passage describes modernization as a fact viewable from a perspective of social constructivism or technological determinism, but that does not in itself support either view.

3. Which of the following most accurately describes Clark’s opinion of Braverman’s position?
A. He respects its wide-ranging popularity.
B. He disapproves of its misplaced emphasis on the influence of managers.
C. He admires the consideration it gives to the attitudes of the workers affected.
D. He is concerned about its potential to impede the implementation of new technologies.
E. He is sympathetic to its concern about the impact of modern technology on workers.
Inference
Answering this question requires inferring what the passage’s author likely believes. The passage describes Braverman’s position as one of mainstream social constructivism (lines 23–24), a position that Clark takes issue with. Although it describes Braverman’s position, the rest of the passage is devoted to showing how Clark’s position takes issue with Braverman’s. In the second paragraph, the passage describes Clark as holding that technology can be a primary determinant of social and managerial organization (lines 9– 11), which suggests that managers are sometimes subordinate to technological change. In lines 15–17, however, Braverman is described as holding that the shape of a technological system is subordinate to the manager’s desire to wrest control of the labor process from the workers, which shows that Clark and Braverman are at odds on this point.
A. Since the passage says that Clark believes an important insight has been obscured by the recent sociological fashion that Braverman’s views exemplify (lines 11–14), one cannot infer that Clark respects the popularity of Braverman’s views.
B. Correct. The passage shows that Clark believes managers to have less influence over how
technology affects an organization than Braverman claims that they have.
C. The passage does not indicate that Clark admires any aspect of Braverman’s position.
D. The passage does not indicate that Clark considers impediments to modernization.
E. The passage does not indicate that Clark is sympathetic to any concerns attributed to Braverman.The correct answer is B.

4. The information in the passage suggests that which of the following statements from hypothetical sociological studies of change in industry most clearly exemplifies the social constructivists’ version of technological determinism?
A. It is the available technology that determines workers’ skills, rather than workers’ skills influencing the application of technology.
B. All progress in industrial technology grows out of a continuing negotiation between technological possibility and human need.
C. Some organizational change is caused by people; some is caused by computer chips.
D. Most major technological advances in industry have been generated through research and development.
E. Some industrial technology eliminates jobs, but educated workers can create whole new skills areas by the adaptation of the technology.
Application
This question requires understanding different points of view discussed in the passage. In the first paragraph, the passage mentions the debate involving technological determinism and social constructivism. In the second and third paragraphs, the passage uses Braverman’s analysis to illustrate the social constructivists’ position and in the third paragraph suggests that the constructivists are misrepresenting technological determinism (line 24). In lines 29–30, the constructivists are reported to hold that technological determinism views technology as existing outside society, capable of directly influencing skills and work organization.
A. Correct. This statement is consistent with the constructivists’ view that technological determinism sees technology as outside of society, influencing workers’ skills.
B. The passage states that the constructivists hold that technological determinists are supposed to believe . . . that machinery imposes appropriate forms of order on society (lines 25–27), suggesting
that no negotiation is present.
C. According to the description of them in the passage, constructivists portray technological determinists as believing that technology, not people, drives organizational change.
D. The passage does not portray either constructivists or determinists as being concerned with technological research and development.
E. The passage does not portray either constructivists or determinists as being concerned with
technology-driven job elimination or creation.

5. The information in the passage suggests that Clark believes that which of the following would be true if social constructivism had not gained widespread acceptance?
A. Businesses would be more likely to modernize without considering the social consequences of their actions.
B. There would be greater understanding of the role played by technology in producing social change.
C. Businesses would be less likely to understand the attitudes of employees affected by modernization.
D. Modernization would have occurred at a slower rate.
E. Technology would have played a greater part in determining the role of business in society.
Inference
Answering this question involves understanding a point of view as it is described in the passage. The passage aligns Clark’s study closely with the technological determinists, summarizing his view in lines 9– 11: technology can be a primary determinant of social and managerial organization. In the followingsentence, the passage states that Clark believes that this possibility is obscured by the recent sociological fashion, exemplified by Braverman’s analysis (lines 11–13). After illustrating Braverman’s analysis, the passage then states that it represents social constructivism.
A. According to the passage, Clark holds that constructivists obscure how modernization might have social consequences.
B. Correct. According to the passage, Clark sees constructivism as obscuring the possibility that technology plays a primary role in social change.
C. The passage does not discuss how the attitudes of employees are perceived by their employers.
D. The passage describes a debate about the history and sociology of technology; it does not suggest that sociological analyses affect the pace of modernization.
E. The passage describes a debate about the history and sociology of technology; it does not suggest that sociological analyses affect the role that technology plays in business.

6. According to the passage, constructivists employed which of the following to promote their argument?
A. Empirical studies of business situations involving technological change
B. Citation of managers supportive of their position
C. Construction of hypothetical situations that support their view
D. Contrasts of their view with a misstatement of an opposing view
E. Descriptions of the breadth of impact of technological change
Supporting ideas
Answering this question involves recognizing information given in the passage. The passage indicates that a debate exists between technological determinists and social constructivists, suggesting that these views are in opposition. The passage goes on to state that constructivists gain acceptance by misrepresenting technological determinism (lines 23–24). This misrepresentation is presented as the alternative to constructivism (lines 27–28), suggesting that constructivists promoted their own view by contrasting it with a misrepresentation of determinists’ views.
A. The passage mentions empirical studies in relation to Clark’s study but not Braverman’s analysis.
B. The passage does not mention that managers were supportive of any particular point of view within the sociology of technology.
C. The passage does not mention any hypothetical situations as being used by the constructivists in support of their view.
D. Correct. The passage indicates that the constructivists have come into fashion by contrasting their own views with a misrepresentation of the views of technological determinists.
E. The passage does not describe the constructivists as making determinations regarding the degree of impact that technological change has on social or managerial organization.

7. The author of the passage uses the expression “are supposed to” in line 25 primarily in order to
A. suggest that a contention made by constructivists regarding determinists is inaccurate
B. define the generally accepted position of determinists regarding the implementation of technology
C. engage in speculation about the motivation of determinists
D. lend support to a comment critical of the position of determinists
E. contrast the historical position of determinists with their position regarding the exchange modernizationEvaluation
This question requires understanding how a particular phrase functions in the passage as a whole. In the third paragraph the passage states that constructivists gain acceptance by misrepresenting technological determinism (lines 23–24) and follows this claim with an example of this misrepresentation, stating that technological determinists are supposed to believe, for example (lines 25–26). This line implies that the constructivist view of the determinists is inaccurate.
A. Correct. The passage uses the expression in part to provide an example of the constructivists’ misrepresentation of the determinists.
B. The passage indicates that the view attributed to the determinists is a misrepresentation, not one that is generally accepted by determinists.
C. The expression in the passage is part of a discussion about the motivation of constructivists, not determinists.
D. The expression in the passage is part of a discussion that is critical of the constructivists, not the determinists.
E. The passage does not describe either the historical position of determinists or their position on the
exchange modernization.

8. Which of the following statements about Clark’s study of the telephone exchange can be inferred from information in the passage?
A. Clark’s reason for undertaking the study was to undermine Braverman’s analysis of the function of technology.
B. Clark’s study suggests that the implementation of technology should be discussed in the context of conflict between labor and management.
C. Clark examined the impact of changes in the technology of switching at the exchange in terms of overall operations and organization.
D. Clark concluded that the implementation of new switching technology was equally beneficial to management and labor.
E. Clark’s analysis of the change in switching systems applies only narrowly to the situation at the particular exchange that he studied.
Inference
This question requires understanding what the passage implies in its discussion of a point of view. The details of Clark’s views are discussed primarily in the final paragraph. The passage states that on an empirical level, Clark demonstrates that technological change regarding switches at the telephone exchange altered work tasks, skills, training opportunities, administration, and organization of workers (lines 42–44). The passage goes on to state Clark’s contention that these changes even influenced negotiations between management and labor unions.
A. The passage indicates that Clark’s study addressed the extremes of both technological determinism and social constructivism. It cites Braverman as a proponent of social constructivism but provides no evidence that Clark’s motivation in beginning his study was specifically to target an analysis offered by Braverman.
B. The passage indicates that Clark attributed some organizational change to the way labor and management negotiated the introduction of technology but does not mention conflict between them.
C. Correct. According to the passage, Clark concludes that changes to the technology of switches had an influence on several aspects of the overall operations and organization of the telephone exchange.
D. The passage does not indicate that Clark assesses the benefits of technological change to either labor or management.E. The passage indicates that Clark believes the change in switching technology influenced many aspects of the overall operations of the telephone exchange.
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Re: Jon Clark’s study of the effect of the modernization of a telephone ex  [#permalink]

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05 Nov 2018, 17:46
mojorising800 wrote:
Jon Clark’s study of the effect of the modernization of a telephone exchange on exchange maintenance work and workers is a solid contribution to a debate that encompasses two lively issues in the history and sociology of technology: technological determinism and social constructivism.

Clark makes the point that the characteristics of a technology have a decisive influence on job skills and work organization. Put more strongly, technology can be a primary determinant of social and managerial organization. Clark believes this possibility has been obscured by the recent sociological fashion, exemplified by Braverman’s analysis, that emphasizes the way machinery reflects social choices. For Braverman, the shape of a technological system is subordinate to the manager’s desire to wrest control of the labor process from the workers. Technological change is construed as the outcome of negotiations among interested parties who seek to incorporate their own interests into the design and configuration of the machinery. This position represents the new mainstream called social constructivism.

The constructivists gain acceptance by misrepresenting technological determinism: technological determinists are supposed to believe, for example, that machinery imposes appropriate forms of order on society. The alternative to constructivism, in other words, is to view technology as existing outside society, capable of directly influencing skills and work organization.

Clark refutes the extremes of the constructivists by both theoretical and empirical arguments. Theoretically he defines “technology” in terms of relationships between social and technical variables. Attempts to reduce the meaning of technology to cold, hard metal are bound to fail, for machinery is just scrap unless it is organized functionally and supported by appropriate systems of operation and maintenance. At the empirical level Clark shows how a change at the telephone exchange from maintenance-intensive electromechanical switches to semielectronic switching systems altered work tasks, skills, training opportunities, administration, and organization of workers. Some changes Clark attributes to the particular way management and labor unions negotiated the introduction of the technology, whereas others are seen as arising from the capabilities and nature of the technology itself. Thus Clark helps answer the question: “When is social choice decisive and when are the concrete characteristics of technology more important?”
RC00013-01. The primary purpose of the passage is to

(A) advocate a more positive attitude toward technological change
(B) discuss the implications for employees of the modernization of a telephone exchange
(C) consider a successful challenge to the constructivist view of technological change
(D) challenge the position of advocates of technological determinism
(E) suggest that the social causes of technological change should be studied in real situations

RC00013-02. Which of the following statements about the modernization of the telephone exchange is supported by information in the passage?
(A) The new technology reduced the role of managers in labor negotiations.
(B) The modernization was implemented without the consent of the employees directly affected by it.
(C) The modernization had an impact that went significantly beyond maintenance routines.
(D) Some of the maintenance workers felt victimized by the new technology.
(E) The modernization gave credence to the view of advocates of social constructivism.

RC00013-03. Which of the following most accurately describes Clark’s opinion of Braverman’s position?
(A) He respects its wide-ranging popularity.
(B) He disapproves of its misplaced emphasis on the influence of managers.
(C) He admires the consideration it gives to the attitudes of the workers affected.
(D) He is concerned about its potential to impede the implementation of new technologies.
(E) He is sympathetic to its concern about the impact of modern technology on workers.

RC00013-04. The information in the passage suggests that which of the following statements from hypothetical sociological studies of change in industry most clearly exemplifi es the social constructivists’ version of technological determinism?
(A) It is the available technology that determines workers’ skills, rather than workers’ skills influencing the application of technology.
(B) All progress in industrial technology grows out of a continuing negotiation between technological possibility and human need.
(C) Some organizational change is caused by people; some is caused by computer chips.
(D) Most major technological advances in industry have been generated through research and development.
(E) Some industrial technology eliminates jobs, but educated workers can create whole new skills areas by the adaptation of the technology.

RC00013-07. The information in the passage suggests that Clark believes that which of the following would be true if social constructivism had not gained widespread acceptance?
(A) Businesses would be more likely to modernize without considering the social consequences of their actions.
(B) There would be greater understanding of the role played by technology in producing social change.
(C) Businesses would be less likely to understand the attitudes of employees affected by modernization.
(D) Modernization would have occurred at a slower rate.
(E) Technology would have played a greater part in determining the role of business in society.

RC00013-05. According to the passage, constructivists employed which of the following to promote their argument?
(A) Empirical studies of business situations involving technological change
(B) Citation of managers supportive of their position
(C) Construction of hypothetical situations that support their view
(D) Contrasts of their view with a misstatement of an opposing view
(E) Descriptions of the breadth of impact of technological change

RC00013-08. The author of the passage uses the expression “are supposed to” in line 27 primarily in order to
(A) suggest that a contention made by constructivists regarding determinists is inaccurate
(B) defi ne the generally accepted position of determinists regarding the implementation of technology
(C) engage in speculation about the motivation of determinists
(D) lend support to a comment critical of the position of determinists
(E) contrast the historical position of determinists with their position regarding the exchange modernization

RC00013-09. Which of the following statements about Clark’s study of the telephone exchange can be inferred from information in the passage?
(A) Clark’s reason for undertaking the study was to undermine Braverman’s analysis of the function of technology.
(B) Clark’s study suggests that the implementation of technology should be discussed in the context of confl ict between labor and management.
(C) Clark examined the impact of changes in the technology of switching at the exchange in terms of overall operations and organization.
(D) Clark concluded that the implementation of new switching technology was equally benefi cial to management and labor.
(E) Clark’s analysis of the change in switching systems applies only narrowly to the situation at the particular exchange that he studied.

One of the worst passages I have ever seen!
2 correct only out of 8!

workout please please post the OE and how to solve such condense passages in so little time?
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05 Nov 2018, 23:15
1
honneeey wrote:

One of the worst passages I have ever seen!
2 correct only out of 8!

workout please please post the OE and how to solve such condense passages in so little time?

honneeey

I guess this is one of The toughest OG passage. So, I wouldn't worry too much about getting only 2 question correct. OE has been provided here https://gmatclub.com/forum/jon-clark-s- ... l#p2160339
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11 Nov 2018, 01:02
how to interpret a complex passage like this?
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13 Nov 2018, 05:46
The constructivists gain acceptance by misrepresenting technological determinism: technological determinists are supposed to believe, for example, that machinery imposes appropriate forms of order on society. The alternative to constructivism, in other words, is to view technology as existing outside society, capable of directly influencing skills and work organization.

So SC are supposed to believe blablabla is the real interpretation of TD
The alternative blablabla is the what TD's "misunderstanding ' about SC?
Then, could someone help me out of this question?
The information in the passage suggests that which of the following statements from hypothetical sociological studies of change in industry most clearly exemplifies the social constructivists` version of technological determinism?
A It is the available technology that determines workers` skills, rather than workers` skills influencing the application of technology.
B All progress in industrial technology grows out of a continuing negotiation between technological possibility and human need.
C Some organizational change is caused by people; some is caused by computer chips.
D Most major technological advances in industry have been generated through research and development.
E Some industrial technology eliminates jobs, but educated workers can create whole new skills areas by the adaptation of the technology.

I can understand the A's first part: tech determines people, but how about people can not influence tech?
Also, I believe that BC is the real TD's opinion, DE is out of scope. Correct me if I'm wrong.
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09 Dec 2018, 18:29
I got 3 incorrect on this one, so I'll talk in terms of these and if anyone can provide feedback that would be appreciated.

Q521 from OG19 - RC00013-07. The information in the passage suggests that Clark believes that which of the following would be true if social constructivism had not gained widespread acceptance?
(A) Businesses would be more likely to modernize without considering the social consequences of their actions.
(B) There would be greater understanding of the role played by technology in producing social change.
(C) Businesses would be less likely to understand the attitudes of employees affected by modernization.
(D) Modernization would have occurred at a slower rate.
(E) Technology would have played a greater part in determining the role of business in society.

Question type: Specific - Inference
Relevant section of the passage to refer to: "Clark believes this possibility has been obscured..." and surrounding sentences.
A - No, Clark holds that Constructivists obscure how technology presents their social choices
B - I initially eliminated this as I couldn't find support for it, but I realise this is a more general statement and the most appropriate AC as it summarises Clark's views
C - False - this can't be supported
D - Can't be supported
E - I thought this was the correct answer initially as Clark's view is that Tech determines roles etc. and so without constructivism, Tech would have played a broader role.
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23 Apr 2019, 19:28
6/8

Correct --> 1) 04:53 2) 01: 17 3) 01:57 5) 01:14 6) 01:12 8) 00:56

Incorrect --> 4) 01:16 7) 02:03

Total : 14:48
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