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Metal rings recently excavated form seventh-century

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Re: Metal rings recently excavated form seventh-century [#permalink]

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New post 16 Apr 2017, 19:56
kimmyg wrote:
Metal rings recently excavated form seventh-century settlements in the western part of Mexico were made using the same metallurgical techniques as those used by Ecuadorian artisans before and during that period. These techniques are sufficiently complex to make their independent development in both areas unlikely. Since the people of these two areas were in cultural contact, archaeologists hypothesize that the metallurgical techniques used to make the rings found in Mexico were learned by Mexican artisans from Ecuadorian counterparts.

Which of the following would it be most useful to establish in order to evaluate the archaeologists' hypothesis?

(A) Whether metal objects were traded from Ecuador to western Mexico during the seventh century
(B) Whether travel between western Mexico and Ecuador in the seventh century would have been primarily by land or by sea
(C) Whether artisans from western Mexico could have learned complex metallurgical techniques from their Ecuadorian counterparts without actually leaving western Mexico.
(D) Whether metal tools were used in the seventh-century settlements in western Mexico
(E) Whether any of the techniques used in the manufacture of the metal rings found in western Mexico are still practiced among artisans in Ecuador today

OG2017 Diagnostic V69 P34


Metal Rings
 
Step 1: Identify the Question

The words useful to establish in order to evaluate in the question stem indicate that this is an Evaluate the Argument question.

Step 2: Deconstruct the Argument

Metal rings: 7c W. Mex same tech as Ec 7c + b4
Tech complex; prob not dev ind
Hyp: E dev first, M learn

Abbreviate heavily. You’ll only be on this problem for a couple of minutes; your short-term memory can retain the idea that “prob not dev ind” means “probably not developed independently.”

The archaeologists mentioned in the argument hypothesize that the Es developed this technology first because the technique was used in E earlier than the period in which the recently-found metal rings were made in M.

Step 3: Pause and State the Goal

On Evaluate questions, the goal is to find an answer choice that could “swing” the argument in two directions, either strengthening the argument or weakening it. A choice that can either strengthen or weaken the argument gives you a good way to evaluate whether the argument is valid.

Step 4: Work from Wrong to Right

(A) CORRECT. If metal objects were traded from E to M in the relevant timeframe, then it is at least somewhat more likely that the Es also passed along information regarding how to manufacture these objects. That would strengthen the argument. On the other hand, if such objects were not traded, then it is somewhat less likely that the Es taught the Ms how to manufacture the metal—if they weren’t trading at all, or if the Ms didn’t find the metal rings interesting enough to trade for, then it’s less likely that the Es would have an opportunity to teach the Ms how to make these rings. This would weaken the argument. Since this choice could either strengthen or weaken, it is correct.
(B) How people from the two cultures may have traveled does not impact whether the Es might have taught the Ms this particular technique. What matters is that they did interact with one another in some way, not by what method they traveled.
(C) The Ms could have learned the techniques from Es traveling to M. The Ms also could have learned the techniques by traveling to E. Either way, this choice does not provide additional information to help determine whether the initial hypothesis (that Es taught Ms this process) is valid.
(D) The argument doesn’t depend upon whether the metal rings were created from metal tools or tools made of other materials. Nor does it specify whether the metal rings were intended as tools or were for some other purpose, such as jewelry. The question of tools is irrelevant to whether the Es taught the Ms the technique in question.
(E) The argument does not hinge upon the future use of the techniques in question. It claims only that the Es taught the Ms these techniques at some point in or prior to the seventh century.
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Re: Metal rings recently excavated form seventh-century [#permalink]

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New post 16 Jun 2017, 04:12
Metal rings recently excavated form seventh-century settlements in the western part of Mexico were made using the same metallurgical techniques as those used by Ecuadorian artisans before and during that period. These techniques are sufficiently complex to make their independent development in both areas unlikely. Since the people of these two areas were in cultural contact, archaeologists hypothesize that the metallurgical techniques used to make the rings found in Mexico were learned by Mexican artisans from Ecuadorian counterparts.

Which of the following would it be most useful to establish in order to evaluate the archaeologists' hypothesis?

The argument says that a certain metallurgical technique was prevalent in both Mexico and Ecuador in 7th Century and this MT is quite complicated hence its independent development at both places is unlikely. Hence, Mexicans must have learned this MT from their Ecuadorian counterparts since, there was some cultural contact between the two areas...


(A) Whether metal objects were traded from Ecuador to western Mexico during the seventh century
Seems a valid point. What if no metal trade was done in that cultural contact between the two places ? Conclusion will fall apart...
If metal trade was done, then there is a possibility that this MT may have been shared between the two...


(B) Whether travel between western Mexico and Ecuador in the seventh century would have been primarily by land or by sea
Whether they traveled by sea or land (or flight !!) it does NOT make any difference on whether they could have traded this MT...

(C) Whether artisans from western Mexico could have learned complex metallurgical techniques from their Ecuadorian counterparts without actually leaving western Mexico.
The argument never said that its learned at one place (mexico or ecuador) ...whichever place it may be ..we need proof that the MT was exchanged...
This option does not help us in doing that .


(D) Whether metal tools were used in the seventh-century settlements in western Mexico
Lets say yes its used...so what ???
and lets say No..then what ???
Does not touch our conclusion at all


(E) Whether any of the techniques used in the manufacture of the metal rings found in western Mexico are still practiced among artisans in Ecuador today
Again...it does not make any difference whether they use this technique now or not ...
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Re: Metal rings recently excavated form seventh-century [#permalink]

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New post 17 Oct 2017, 23:51
Why is the answer A? Metal rings can be found in Mexico even if no trade between the two countries exist. The cultural contact would have enabled Mexicans to learn how to make the rings without ever necessitating trade between Mexico and Ecuador. Trade isn't the only form through which knowledge can be transfered.

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Re: Metal rings recently excavated form seventh-century [#permalink]

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New post 01 Nov 2017, 12:47
this is a common pattern in gmat. That is, in CR section, the question will be either an assumption or strengthen with the argument as follows: one discovery about technique in the past in one place shares features with the technique in another place before and during the period of time.

wrong answers can be made up in different ways. The right answer is normally something like A.
C is apparently wrong b/c C concerns primarily with "whether learned without leaving outside Mexico"

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Re: Metal rings recently excavated form seventh-century   [#permalink] 01 Nov 2017, 12:47

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