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The Official Guide for GMAT Verbal Review 2018

Practice Question
Question No.: RC 95 ~ 101
Page: 54

Micro-wear patterns found on the teeth of long-extinct specimens of the primate species australopithecine may provide evidence about their diets. For example, on the basis of tooth micro-wear patterns, Walker dismisses Jolly’s hypothesis that australopithecines ate hard seeds. He also disputes Szalay’s suggestion that the heavy enamel of australopithecine teeth is an adaptation to bone crunching, since both seed cracking and bone crunching produce distinctive micro-wear characteristics on teeth. His conclusion that australopithecines were frugivores (fruit eaters) is based upon his observation that the tooth micro-wear characteristics of east African australopithecine specimens are indistinguishable from those of chimpanzees and orangutans, which are commonly assumed to be frugivorous primates.

However, research on the diets of contemporary primates suggests that micro-wear studies may have limited utility in determining the foods that are actually eaten. For example, insect eating, which can cause distinct micro-wear patterns, would not cause much tooth abrasion in modern baboons, who eat only soft-bodied insects rather than hard-bodied insects. In addition, the diets of current omnivorous primates vary considerably depending on the environments that different groups within a primate species inhabit; if australopithecines were omnivores too, we might expect to find considerable population variation in their tooth micro-wear patterns. Thus, Walker’s description of possible australopithecine diets may need to be expanded to include a much more diverse diet.


1. According to the passage, Walker and Szalay disagree on which of the following points?

(A) The structure and composition of australopithecine teeth
(B) The kinds of conclusions that can be drawn from the micro-wear patterns on australopithecine teeth
(C) The idea that fruit was a part of the australopithecine diet
(D) The extent to which seed cracking and bone crunching produce similar micro-wear patterns on teeth
(E) The function of the heavy enamel on australopithecine teeth



2. The passage suggests that Walker’s research indicated which of the following about australopithecine teeth?

(A) They had micro-wear characteristics indicating that fruit constituted only a small part of their diet.
(B) They lacked micro-wear characteristics associated with seed eating and bone crunching.
(C) They had micro-wear characteristics that differed in certain ways from the micro-wear patterns of chimpanzees and orangutans.
(D) They had micro-wear characteristics suggesting that the diet of australopithecines varied from one region to another.
(E) They lacked the micro-wear characteristics distinctive of modern frugivores.



3. The passage suggests that which of the following would be true of studies of tooth micro-wear patterns conducted on modern baboons?

(A) They would inaccurately suggest that some baboons eat more soft-bodied than hard-bodied insects.
(B) They would suggest that insects constitute the largest part of some baboons’ diets.
(C) They would reveal that there are no significant differences in tooth micro-wear patterns among baboon populations.
(D) They would inadequately reflect the extent to which some baboons consume certain types of insects.
(E) They would indicate that baboons in certain regions eat only soft-bodied insects, whereas baboons in other regions eat hard-bodied insects.



4. The passage suggests which of the following about the micro-wear patterns found on the teeth of omnivorous primates?

(A) The patterns provide information about what kinds of foods are not eaten by the particular species of primate, but not about the foods actually eaten.
(B) The patterns of various primate species living in the same environment resemble one another.
(C) The patterns may not provide information about the extent to which a particular species’ diet includes seeds.
(D) The patterns provide more information about these primates’ diet than do the tooth micro-wear patterns of primates who are frugivores.
(E) The patterns may differ among groups within a species depending on the environment within which a particular group lives.



5. It can be inferred from the passage that if studies of tooth micro-wear patterns were conducted on modern baboons, which of the following would most likely be true of the results obtained?

(A) There would be enough abrasion to allow a determination of whether baboons are frugivorous or insectivorous.
(B) The results would suggest that insects constitute the largest part of the baboons’ diet.
(C) The results would reveal that there are no significant differences in tooth micro-wear patterns from one regional baboon population to another.
(D) The results would provide an accurate indication of the absence of some kinds of insects from the baboons’ diet.
(E) The results would be unlikely to provide any indication of what inferences about the australopithecine diet can or cannot be drawn from micro-wear studies.



6. It can be inferred from the passage that Walker’s conclusion about the australopithecine diet would be called into question under which of the following circumstances?

(A) The tooth enamel of australopithecines is found to be much heavier than that of modern frugivorous primates.
(B) The micro-wear patterns of australopithecine teeth from regions other than east Africa are analyzed.
(C) Orangutans are found to have a much broader diet than is currently recognized.
(D) The environment of east Africa at the time australopithecines lived there is found to have been far more varied than is currently thought.
(E) The area in which the australopithecine specimens were found is discovered to have been very rich in soft-bodied insects during the period when australopithecines lived there.



7. The author of the passage mentions the diets of baboons and other living primates most likely in order to

(A) provide evidence that refutes Walker’s conclusions about the foods making up the diets of australopithecines
(B) suggest that studies of tooth micro-wear patterns are primarily useful for determining the diets of living primates
(C) suggest that australopithecines were probably omnivores rather than frugivores
(D) illustrate some of the limitations of using tooth micro-wear patterns to draw definitive conclusions about a group’s diet
(E) suggest that tooth micro-wear patterns are caused by persistent, as opposed to occasional, consumption of particular foods


Originally posted by nalinnair on 04 Jun 2016, 06:00.
Last edited by SajjadAhmad on 11 Aug 2019, 04:14, edited 1 time in total.
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New post 29 Jun 2017, 12:13
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mynamegoeson wrote:
Question #1 why not D?
Question #3 How to chose D over C
Question #5 why C is incorrect


Quote:
(Book Question: 95)
According to the passage, Walker and Szalay disagree on which of the following points?
A. The structure and composition of australopithecine teeth
B. The kinds of conclusions that can be drawn from the micro-wear patterns on australopithecine teeth
C. The idea that fruit was a part of the australopithecine diet
D. The extent to which seed cracking and bone crunching produce similar micro-wear patterns on teeth
E. The function of the heavy enamel on australopithecine teeth

The key to this question can be found in the following sentence: "He also disputes Szalay’s suggestion that the heavy enamel of australopithecine teeth is an adaptation to bone crunching, since both seed cracking and bone crunching produce distinctive micro-wear characteristics on teeth."

In other words, according to Walker, if those primates had in fact used their teeth for bone crunching, then the teeth should show distinctive micro-wear characteristics. We can infer that such micro-wear characteristics are NOT present on the teeth, so Walker disputes the theory that primates developed hard enamel as an adaptation to bone crunching.

Walker says that both seed cracking and bone crunching produce distinctive micro-wear characteristics, but he does NOT say that those characteristics are necessarily the same for both. Also, the passage tells us nothing about Szalay's opinion on the similarities between the patterns produced by seed cracking and those produced by bone crunching, so we have no idea whether the two agree or disagree. Thus, we can rule out (D)

Szalay apparently did not take the micro-wear evidence into account when developing his/her theory. Walker, on the other hand, does consider the micro-wear evidence and, as a result, disagrees with Szalay's theory regarding the function of the heavy enamel on the teeth.

(E) is the best answer.

Quote:
(Book Question: 97)
The passage suggests that which of the following would be true of studies of tooth micro-wear patterns conducted on modern baboons?
A. They would inaccurately suggest that some baboons eat more soft-bodied than hard-bodied insects.
B. They would suggest that insects constitute the largest part of some baboons’ diets.
C. They would reveal that there are no significant differences in tooth micro-wear patterns among baboon populations.
D. They would inadequately reflect the extent to which some baboons consume certain types of insects.
E. They would indicate that baboons in certain regions eat only soft-bodied insects, whereas baboons in other regions eat hard-bodied insects.


We are told that " the diets of current omnivorous primates vary considerably depending on the environments that different groups within a primate species inhabit." If modern baboons are omnivorous, then their diets would vary considerably from group to group depending on environment. Thus, the groups would have different micro-wear patterns. The passage doesn't tell us whether baboons are omnivorous, but it does not give us information to conclude whether the micro-wear patterns of different baboon populations would be similar or varying. (C) can be eliminated.

We are also told that, "insect eating, which can cause distinct micro-wear patterns, would not cause much tooth abrasion in modern baboons, who eat only soft-bodied insects rather than hard-bodied insects." In other words, even eating tons and tons of soft-bodied insects would not cause any abrasion or micro-wear patterns on the teeth of modern baboons. Thus, based on the micro-wear patterns alone, we would not know whether those baboons ate tons of soft-bodied insects or ate no insects at all. The micro-wear patterns would not adequately reflect the extent to which the baboons consumed soft-bodied insects, so choice (D) is the best answer.

Quote:
(Book Question: 99)
It can be inferred from the passage that if studies of tooth micro-wear patterns were conducted on modern baboons, which of the following would most likely be true of the results obtained?
A. There would be enough abrasion to allow a determination of whether baboons are frugivorous or insectivorous.
B. The results would suggest that insects constitute the largest part of the baboons’ diet.
C. The results would reveal that there are no significant differences in tooth micro-wear patterns from one regional baboon population to another.
D. The results would provide an accurate indication of the absence of some kinds of insects from the baboons’ diet.
E. The results would be unlikely to provide any indication of what inferences about the australopithecine diet can or cannot be drawn from micro-wear studies.

As explained for the previous question, we do not know whether the micro-wear patterns of different baboon populations would be similar or varying, so (C) can be eliminated.

We do know that those baboons eat only soft-bodied insects and not hard-bodied insects. Their teeth would NOT show micro-wear patterns that would result from eating hard-bodied insects. Thus, the LACK of such micro-wear patterns would be an "accurate indication of the absence of some kind of insects (hard-bodied insects) from the baboons' diet." (D) is the best answer.

I hope this helps!
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New post 21 Jul 2016, 06:21
Hi Can someone pls explain why answer to Q 104 is C?
Thanks
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New post 22 Aug 2016, 19:03
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dsheth7 wrote:
Hi Can someone pls explain why answer to Q 104 is C?
Thanks


Walker's theory is that "a" (australopithecine) were fruit eaters because they had "indistinguishable" tooth micro-wear characteristics from orangutans, who "are commonly assumed to be [fruit eaters]."

His theory would be called into question if this correlation was somehow inaccurate or not conclusive. Hence the word "assumed to be" because they are not entirely certain that this is accurate.

A) There's no mention of the heaviness or density of the tooth. Out of Scoop
B) It would be interesting to see if other areas had the same results. If they did, then it would support his claim but if they didn't, then it wouldn't. It's not definite enough to answer this question.
C) If orangutans were found to be eating other things besides fruits, such as seeds or insects, then Walker's theory of "a" being only fruit eaters would be incorrect. Correct
D) A varied environment could or could not change the theory so like B, it's not definite enough to weaken his claim.
E) Even if there were soft-bodied bugs, it does not mean they ate it or maybe it does. Again, like B and C, it can go both ways so it's incorrect.
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New post 23 Oct 2017, 01:29
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Hi @Gmatninja, Experts,

Could you please explain why option E is incorrect for Question 5 ( Book Q# 99)

Option E says: The results would be unlikely to provide any indication of what inferences about the australopithecine diet can or cannot be drawn from micro-wear studies.

If we can not infer anything concrete from the studies of tooth micro wear patterns, THEN, WHY is it incorrect to INFER that results would be unlikely to provide any indication of what inferences about the austraXYZ diet can or cannot be drawn.

IS there ANY ASSUMPTION or LEAP which i have taken to think that OPtion E is correct ?

Thanks
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New post 25 Oct 2017, 18:05
4
Quote:
(Book Question: 99)
It can be inferred from the passage that if studies of tooth micro-wear patterns were conducted on modern baboons, which of the following would most likely be true of the results obtained?
A. There would be enough abrasion to allow a determination of whether baboons are frugivorous or insectivorous.
B. The results would suggest that insects constitute the largest part of the baboons’ diet.
C. The results would reveal that there are no significant differences in tooth micro-wear patterns from one regional baboon population to another.
D. The results would provide an accurate indication of the absence of some kinds of insects from the baboons’ diet.
E. The results would be unlikely to provide any indication of what inferences about the australopithecine diet can or cannot be drawn from micro-wear studies.

kunal1608 wrote:
Hi GMATNinja, Experts,

Could you please explain why option E is incorrect for Question 5 ( Book Q# 99)

Option E says: The results would be unlikely to provide any indication of what inferences about the australopithecine diet can or cannot be drawn from micro-wear studies.

If we can not infer anything concrete from the studies of tooth micro wear patterns, THEN, WHY is it incorrect to INFER that results would be unlikely to provide any indication of what inferences about the austraXYZ diet can or cannot be drawn.

IS there ANY ASSUMPTION or LEAP which i have taken to think that OPtion E is correct ?

Thanks

Modern baboons eat insects (only soft-bodied). But if we study micro-wear patterns on their teeth, we would NOT find evidence that they eat insects (micro-wear studies would only provide evidence of eating insects if the baboons ate HARD-bodied insects). So, from a micro-wear study, we CANNOT conclude whether an animal eats insects.

Thus, the baboon micro-wear study would LIKELY provide evidence that information about insect consumption cannot be determined from micro-wear studies. In other words, the study would LIKELY provide an indication that you CANNOT draw insect-consumption inferences from micro-wear studies.

If choice (E) said "likely" instead of "unlikely", it would be correct. But, as is, (E) is incorrect (tricky!).

(D) is the best answer.
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New post 26 Oct 2017, 12:37
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GMATNinja wrote:
Quote:
(Book Question: 99)
It can be inferred from the passage that if studies of tooth micro-wear patterns were conducted on modern baboons, which of the following would most likely be true of the results obtained?
A. There would be enough abrasion to allow a determination of whether baboons are frugivorous or insectivorous.
B. The results would suggest that insects constitute the largest part of the baboons’ diet.
C. The results would reveal that there are no significant differences in tooth micro-wear patterns from one regional baboon population to another.
D. The results would provide an accurate indication of the absence of some kinds of insects from the baboons’ diet.
E. The results would be unlikely to provide any indication of what inferences about the australopithecine diet can or cannot be drawn from micro-wear studies.

kunal1608 wrote:
Hi GMATNinja, Experts,

Could you please explain why option E is incorrect for Question 5 ( Book Q# 99)

Option E says: The results would be unlikely to provide any indication of what inferences about the australopithecine diet can or cannot be drawn from micro-wear studies.

If we can not infer anything concrete from the studies of tooth micro wear patterns, THEN, WHY is it incorrect to INFER that results would be unlikely to provide any indication of what inferences about the austraXYZ diet can or cannot be drawn.

IS there ANY ASSUMPTION or LEAP which i have taken to think that OPtion E is correct ?

Thanks

Modern baboons eat insects (only soft-bodied). But if we study micro-wear patterns on their teeth, we would NOT find evidence that they eat insects (micro-wear studies would only provide evidence of eating insects if the baboons ate HARD-bodied insects). So, from a micro-wear study, we CANNOT conclude whether an animal eats insects.

Thus, the baboon micro-wear study would LIKELY provide evidence that information about insect consumption cannot be determined from micro-wear studies. In other words, the study would LIKELY provide an indication that you CANNOT draw insect-consumption inferences from micro-wear studies.

If choice (E) said "likely" instead of "unlikely", it would be correct. But, as is, (E) is incorrect (tricky!).

(D) is the best answer.


Thanks a lot for the explanation

Its still quite hard to understand :( , Could you please help me break down Statement E further .

I understand this part :"we CANNOT conclude whether an animal eats insects."

Is What you mean to say that if option E was drafted as : "The results would be likely to provide SOME indication of what inferences about the australopithecine diet can or cannot be drawn from micro-wear studies" . THEN It would be correct ?

Please Explain !

Thanks
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New post 14 Jul 2018, 04:30
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Quote:
2. The passage suggests that Walker’s research indicated which of the following about australopithecine teeth?

(A) They had micro-wear characteristics indicating that fruit constituted only a small part of their diet.
(B) They lacked micro-wear characteristics associated with seed eating and bone crunching.
(C) They had micro-wear characteristics that differed in certain ways from the micro-wear patterns of chimpanzees and orangutans.
(D) They had micro-wear characteristics suggesting that the diet of australopithecines varied from one region to another.
(E) They lacked the micro-wear characteristics distinctive of modern frugivores.


Hi mikemcgarry, GMATNinjaTwo, GMATNinja, MagooshExpert Carolyn,
sayantanc2
VeritasPrepKarishma

I am curious about E,
Does "lack distinctive" mean indistinctive or similar?
That's why i picked up E,

Please clarify.

Thanks in advance
Have a lovely day.
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New post 10 Aug 2018, 20:03
KGump wrote:
Quote:
(Book Question: 99)
It can be inferred from the passage that if studies of tooth micro-wear patterns were conducted on modern baboons, which of the following would most likely be true of the results obtained?
A. There would be enough abrasion to allow a determination of whether baboons are frugivorous or insectivorous.
B. The results would suggest that insects constitute the largest part of the baboons’ diet.
C. The results would reveal that there are no significant differences in tooth micro-wear patterns from one regional baboon population to another.
D. The results would provide an accurate indication of the absence of some kinds of insects from the baboons’ diet.
E. The results would be unlikely to provide any indication of what inferences about the australopithecine diet can or cannot be drawn from micro-wear studies.

GMATNinja wrote:
Modern baboons eat insects (only soft-bodied). But if we study micro-wear patterns on their teeth, we would NOT find evidence that they eat insects (micro-wear studies would only provide evidence of eating insects if the baboons ate HARD-bodied insects). So, from a micro-wear study, we CANNOT conclude whether an animal eats insects.

Thus, the baboon micro-wear study would LIKELY provide evidence that information about insect consumption cannot be determined from micro-wear studies. In other words, the study would LIKELY provide an indication that you CANNOT draw insect-consumption inferences from micro-wear studies.

If choice (E) said "likely" instead of "unlikely", it would be correct. But, as is, (E) is incorrect (tricky!).

(D) is the best answer.

Thanks a lot for the explanation

Its still quite hard to understand :( , Could you please help me break down Statement E further .

I understand this part :"we CANNOT conclude whether an animal eats insects."

Is What you mean to say that if option E was drafted as : "The results would be likely to provide SOME indication of what inferences about the australopithecine diet can or cannot be drawn from micro-wear studies" . THEN It would be correct ?

Please Explain !

Thanks

You're on the right track, and we don't need to change the wording that much. The following change would be sufficient to make (E) an attractive choice:

    The results would be likely to provide any indication of what inferences about the australopithecine diet can or cannot be drawn from micro-wear studies.

As it stands, (E) claims that a baboon micro-wear study is unlikely to identify anything that can be inferred or cannot be inferred about australopithecine diet. This is incorrect because we know that modern baboons' consumption of (soft-bodied) insects cannot be inferred from a micro-wear study.

Therefore, a modern baboon micro-wear study on baboons actually is likely to identify anything (at least one thing) that cannot be inferred from a micro-wear study: whether or not australopithecines ate insects.

And yeah, it's a painfully constructed answer choice. :)

zoezhuyan wrote:
Quote:
2. The passage suggests that Walker’s research indicated which of the following about australopithecine teeth?

(A) They had micro-wear characteristics indicating that fruit constituted only a small part of their diet.
(B) They lacked micro-wear characteristics associated with seed eating and bone crunching.
(C) They had micro-wear characteristics that differed in certain ways from the micro-wear patterns of chimpanzees and orangutans.
(D) They had micro-wear characteristics suggesting that the diet of australopithecines varied from one region to another.
(E) They lacked the micro-wear characteristics distinctive of modern frugivores.

I am curious about E,
Does "lack distinctive" mean indistinctive or similar?
That's why i picked up E,

Please clarify.

"Distinctive of" is the same as "characteristic of" or "belonging to." (E) says that australopithecine teeth lacked the micro-wear characteristics characteristic of modern frugivores. In other words, australopithecine teeth didn't have the same micro-wear characteristics that the modern frugivore teeth have.

Walker said no such thing. In fact, Walker concluded that australopithecines were frugivores because he had observed that the tooth micro-wear characteristics of east African australopithecine specimens are indistinguishable from those of the primates that are commonly assumed to be frugivores. That's why we eliminate (E).
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New post 30 Sep 2018, 17:04
1
P1 - a theory; disputed 2 claims; evidence given.
P2 - evidence that theory may not be correct.
Main point - a theory is given but disputed later one with evidence.

1. According to the passage, Walker and Szalay disagree on which of the following points?
p1- He also disputes Szalay’s suggestion that the heavy enamel of australopithecine teeth is an adaptation to bone crunching,
(E) The function of the heavy enamel on australopithecine teeth

-------------------------------------------
2. The passage suggests that Walker’s research indicated which of the following about australopithecine teeth?
p1
(B) They lacked micro-wear characteristics associated with seed eating and bone crunching. - no doubt about it.

-------------------------------------------
3. The passage suggests that which of the following would be true of studies of tooth micro-wear patterns conducted on modern baboons?
p2 - would not cause much tooth abrasion in modern baboons, who eat only soft-bodied insects rather than hard-bodied insects.

(D) They would inadequately reflect the extent to which some baboons consume certain types of insects. -
------------------------------------------
4. The passage suggests which of the following about the micro-wear patterns found on the teeth of omnivorous primates?

the diets of current omnivorous primates vary considerably depending on the environments that different groups within a primate species inhabit; if australopithecines were omnivores too, we might expect to find considerable population variation in their tooth micro-wear patterns.

(E) The patterns may differ among groups within a species depending on the environment within which a particular group lives.

-------------------------------------------

5. It can be inferred from the passage that if studies of tooth micro-wear patterns were conducted on modern baboons, which of the following would most likely be true of the results obtained?

p2 - For example, insect eating, which can cause distinct micro-wear patterns, would not cause much tooth abrasion in modern baboons, who eat only soft-bodied insects rather than hard-bodied insects.
(D) The results would provide an accurate indication of the absence of some kinds of insects from the baboons’ diet.

-------------------------------------------

6. It can be inferred from the passage that Walker’s conclusion about the australopithecine diet would be called into question under which of the following circumstances?
P1 - His conclusion that australopithecines were frugivores (fruit eaters) is based upon his observation that the tooth micro-wear characteristics of east African australopithecine specimens are indistinguishable from those of chimpanzees and orangutans, which are commonly assumed to be frugivorous primates.

(C) Orangutans are found to have a much broader diet than is currently recognized. - if so, walker for sure wrong as both tooth tear are same then diet should also be same.

--------------------------------------------

7. The author of the passage mentions the diets of baboons and other living primates most likely in order to
p2 - mainly to describe the limitations of study in question.

(D) illustrate some of the limitations of using tooth micro-wear patterns to draw definitive conclusions about a group’s diet
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Re: Micro-wear patterns found on the teeth of long-extinct specimens o  [#permalink]

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New post 28 Oct 2018, 00:58
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Official Answers and Explanations


1. According to the passage, Walker and Szalay disagree on which of the following points?
A. The structure and composition of australopithecine teeth
B. The kinds of conclusions that can be drawn from the micro-wear patterns on australopithecine teeth
C. The idea that fruit was a part of the australopithecine diet
D. The extent to which seed cracking and bone crunching produce similar micro-wear patterns on teeth
E. The function of the heavy enamel on australopithecine teeth
Supporting idea
This question refers to the first paragraph, which states that Walker does not agree with Szalay’s idea that the heavy enamel of australopithecine teeth is an adaptation to bone crunching.
A. According to the passage, Walker and Szalay disagree about the function of heavy enamel on the teeth, not the structure and composition of the teeth.
B. The passage does not indicate that Szalay has anything to say about the micro-wear patterns on the teeth.
C. Walker does, according to the passage, believe that australopithecines ate fruit, but it gives no evidence about whether Szalay believes that they ate at least some fruit.
D. According to the passage, Walker believes that seed cracking and bone crunching produce distinctive micro-wear patterns on teeth, but he does not necessarily believe that they are similar. The passage does not indicate Szalay’s position on the difference between micro-wear patterns.
E. Correct. The function of the heavy enamel on the teeth is the only idea about which the passage clearly indicates that Walker and Szalay disagree.
The correct answer is E.

2. The passage suggests that Walker’s research indicated which of the following about australopithecine teeth?
A. They had micro-wear characteristics indicating that fruit constituted only asmall part of their diet.
B. They lacked micro-wear characteristics associated with seed eating and bone crunching.
C. They had micro-wear characteristics that differed in certain ways from the micro-wear patterns of chimpanzees and orangutans.
D. They had micro-wear characteristics suggesting that the diet of australopithecines varied from one region to another.
E. They lacked the micro-wear characteristics distinctive of modern frugivores.
Inference
According to the passage, Walker’s research focuses on micro-wear patterns on the teeth of australopithecines. He draws several conclusions on the basis of these patterns: first, that australopithecines did not eat hard seeds; next, that they did not crunch bones; and finally, that they ate fruit.
A. The passage indicates that Walker’s observation of micro-wear patterns led him to conclude that australopithecines ate mostly fruit, not that fruitconstituted only a small part of their diet.
B. Correct. The first paragraph explains that Walker concluded from microwear patterns that australopithecines did not eat hard seeds and did not crunch bones; thus, his research must have indicated that they lacked micro-wear characteristics associated with such activities.
C. According to the passage, the opposite is true: based on the observation that their micro-wear patterns were indistinguishable from those of chimpanzees and orangutans, Walker concluded that australopithecines ate fruit.
D. The second paragraph of the passage complicates Walker’s view by suggesting that australopithecines’ diet might have varied from one region to another, but the passage says nothing about Walker’s research from which to infer that it indicated such variation.
E. Chimpanzees and orangutans are assumed to be frugivores, according to the passage, and Walker’s research indicated that australopithecine teeth had micro-wear characteristics identical to theirs.
The correct answer is B.

3. The passage suggests that which of the following would be true of studies of tooth micro-wear patterns conducted on modern baboons?
A. They would inaccurately suggest that some baboons eat more soft-bodied than hard-bodied insects.
B. They would suggest that insects constitute the largest part of some baboons’diets.
C. They would reveal that there are no significant differences in tooth microwear patterns among baboon populations.
D. They would inadequately reflect the extent to which some baboons consume certain types of insects.
E. They would indicate that baboons in certain regions eat only soft-bodied insects, whereas baboons in other regions eat hard-bodied insects.
Inference
The second paragraph states that modern baboons eat only soft-bodied insects
and so would not exhibit tooth abrasion to indicate that they were insectivores.
Thus, it would be difficult to determine exactly which soft-bodied insects they ate.
A. The passage states that baboons eat only soft-bodied insects—so it is in fact accurate to suggest that all baboons eat more soft-bodied than hard-bodied insects.
B. The passage says that baboons eat only soft-bodied insects. It also suggests that soft-bodied insects do not leave significant enough abrasions on baboons’ teeth to provide evidence of this aspect of their diet. Therefore, the tooth-wear patterns would give little or no information regarding what proportion of the baboons’ overall diet consists of insects.
C. The passage does not provide grounds for inferring anything about the differences, or lack thereof, among baboon populations in terms of tooth micro-wear patterns.
D. Correct. Because soft-bodied insects cause little tooth abrasion, microwear patterns would most likely not reflect the extent to which baboons consume soft-bodied insects.
E. The passage states that baboons eat only soft-bodied insects. Nothing in the passage suggests that baboons in certain regions eat hard-bodied insects.
The correct answer is D.

4. The passage suggests which of the following about the micro-wear patterns found on the teeth of omnivorous primates?
A. The patterns provide information about what kinds of foods are not eaten by the particular species of primate, but not about the foods actually eaten.
B. The patterns of various primate species living in the same environment resemble one another.
C. The patterns may not provide information about the extent to which a particular species’ diet includes seeds.D. The patterns provide more information about these primates’ diet than do the tooth micro-wear patterns of primates who are frugivores.
E. The patterns may differ among groups within a species depending on the environment within which a particular group lives.
Inference
This question focuses mainly on the end of the second paragraph, which states that the diets of current omnivorous primates vary considerably depending on the environments in which they live. It goes on to conclude that australopithecines, if they were omnivores, would similarly consume varied diets, depending on environment, and exhibit varied tooth micro-wear patterns as well. Thus, it is reasonable to conclude that any omnivorous primates living in different environments and consuming different diets would exhibit varied microwear patterns.
A. The passage indicates that the absence of certain types of micro-wear patterns can provide evidence about what foods a species does not eat. It also says that among omnivorous primates, one might expect to find considerable population variation in their tooth micro-wear patterns. Wherever micro-wear patterns are present, they provide evidence about what kinds of foods are eaten.
B. The passage suggests that various primate species living in the same environment might consume a variety of different diets, so there is no
reason to conclude that their micro-wear patterns would resemble one another.
C. The passage indicates that seed-eating produces distinctive micro-wear patterns, so the patterns, or lack thereof, on the teeth of any species would most likely provide information about the extent to which the species’ diet includes seeds.
D. The end of the first paragraph suggests that frugivores’ micro-wear patterns are distinctive; the passage provides no reason to believe that omnivores’ diets provide more information.
E. Correct. According to the passage, omnivorous primates of a particular species may consume different diets depending on where they live. Thus, their micro-wear patterns may differ on this basis.
The correct answer is E.

5. It can be inferred from the passage that if studies of tooth micro-wear patterns were conducted on modern baboons, which of the following would most likely be true of the results obtained?
A. There would be enough abrasion to allow a determination of whetherbaboons are frugivorous or insectivorous.
B. The results would suggest that insects constitute the largest part of the baboons’ diet.
C. The results would reveal that there are no significant differences in tooth micro-wear patterns from one regional baboon population to another.
D. The results would provide an accurate indication of the absence of some kinds of insects from the baboons’ diet.
E. The results would be unlikely to provide any indication of what inferences about the australopithecine diet can or cannot be drawn from micro-wear studies.
Inference
The second paragraph states that modern baboons eat soft-bodied insects but not hard-bodied ones—and it is hard-bodied insects, the passage suggests, that would cause particular micro-wear patterns on teeth. So the patterns on modern baboons’ teeth most likely do not exhibit the patterns indicating hard-bodied insect consumption.
A. The passage states that baboons’ consumption of soft-bodied insects would not show up in the patterns on their teeth—so the abrasion would most likely not provide enough information for a determination of whether baboons are frugivorous or insectivorous.
B. Since soft-bodied insects do not abrade the teeth significantly, it would be difficult to determine, based on micro-wear patterns, the part such insects play in the baboons’ diet. Furthermore, the passage does not suggest that micro-wear patterns can indicate the quantity of food an animal might have eaten.
C. There could be differences in tooth micro-wear patterns from one regional baboon population to another if they consumed anything in addition to softbodied insects.
D. Correct. Studying tooth micro-wear patterns on baboons’ teeth would most likely show that their teeth do not exhibit patterns typical of creatures that consume hard-bodied insects.
E. The passage suggests that based on results from micro-wear patterns on modern baboons’ teeth, one cannot infer from micro-wear studies whether australopithecines ate soft-bodied insects.
The correct answer is D.

6. It can be inferred from the passage that Walker’s conclusion about the australopithecine diet would be called into question under which of the following circumstances?A. The tooth enamel of australopithecines is found to be much heavier than
that of modern frugivorous primates.
B. The micro-wear patterns of australopithecine teeth from regions other than east Africa are analyzed.
C. Orangutans are found to have a much broader diet than is currently recognized.
D. The environment of east Africa at the time australopithecines lived there is found to have been far more varied than is currently thought.
E. The area in which the australopithecine specimens were found is discovered to have been very rich in soft-bodied insects during the period when australopithecines lived there.
Inference
The passage explains that Walker bases his conclusion about the frugivorous nature of the australopithecine diet on the fact that the micro-wear patterns on australopithecine teeth are indistinguishable from those of chimpanzees and orangutans, both of which are presumed to have frugivorous diets.
A. The passage indicates that Walker took into account the fact that australopithecines had relatively heavy tooth enamel and that he rejected the view that this heaviness was evidence against the hypothesis that they were frugivorous. For all we can tell from the information in the passage, the australopithecines’ tooth enamel was already known to be much heavier than that of modern frugivorous primates.
B. It could be the case that analyzing the micro-wear patterns of australopithecine teeth from other regions would yield the same data as those from east Africa.
C. Correct. According to the passage, Walker bases the conclusion that australopithecines were frugivorous on the similarity between their microwear patterns and those of modern chimpanzees and orangutans. If orangutans were found to have a diet that included a greater range of nonfruit foods than is currently recognized, then the correspondence between their micro-wear patterns and australopithecines’ micro-wear patterns would be consistent with the hypothesis that australopithecines’ diet was broader as well.
D. Even if the environment of east Africa were more varied, that would not mean the australopithecines necessarily ate a more varied diet. Many species that live in very varied environments specialize narrowly on particular foods in those environments.
E. Just because many soft-bodied insects might have been available toaustralopithecines does not mean that australopithecines ate them.
The correct answer is C.

7. The author of the passage mentions the diets of baboons and other living primates most likely in order to
A. provide evidence that refutes Walker’s conclusions about the foods making up the diets of australopithecines
B. suggest that studies of tooth micro-wear patterns are primarily useful for determining the diets of living primates
C. suggest that australopithecines were probably omnivores rather than frugivores
D. illustrate some of the limitations of using tooth micro-wear patterns to draw definitive conclusions about a group’s diet
E. suggest that tooth micro-wear patterns are caused by persistent, as opposed to occasional, consumption of particular foods
Evaluation
The passage discusses the diets of baboons and other living primates mainly in the second paragraph, which is concerned with explaining the limited utility of micro-wear studies.
A. The author raises some doubts about Walker’s conclusions but does not go as far as to try to refute them outright. The author argues only that, as the final sentence of the passage states, they may need to be expanded.
B. The author discusses the diets of baboons and other living primates in relation to micro-wear research on extinct primates. Nothing in the discussion suggests that micro-wear studies would be more useful for determining the diets of living primates than for providing evidence regarding the diets of earlier primates or of other types of animals. Furthermore, the mention of baboon diets suggests that micro-wear studies may not be very useful for determining the diets of some living primates.
C. The author leaves open the question of whether australopithecines were omnivores or frugivores. The passage suggests that some australopithecines might have been omnivores, if australopithecines’ diets varied according to the environments they inhabited. Walker’s conclusion regarding east
African australopithecines’ being frugivores might still hold, however.
D. Correct. The author refers to baboons’ diets and those of current omnivorous primates in order to suggest that there might be limitations to Walker’s use of tooth micro-wear patterns to determine australopithecines’ diet
E. The passage does not make a distinction between persistent and occasional consumption of particular foods.
The correct answer is D.
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New post 14 Jan 2019, 01:29
Why is option b wrong in question 1?
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New post 23 Jan 2019, 11:14
aalakshaya wrote:
Why is option b wrong in question 1?

See this previous explanation of question #1, and then let's talk specifically about option (B):

GMATNinja wrote:
Quote:
(Book Question: 95)
According to the passage, Walker and Szalay disagree on which of the following points?
A. The structure and composition of australopithecine teeth
B. The kinds of conclusions that can be drawn from the micro-wear patterns on australopithecine teeth
C. The idea that fruit was a part of the australopithecine diet
D. The extent to which seed cracking and bone crunching produce similar micro-wear patterns on teeth
E. The function of the heavy enamel on australopithecine teeth


The key to this question can be found in the following sentence: "He also disputes Szalay’s suggestion that the heavy enamel of australopithecine teeth is an adaptation to bone crunching, since both seed cracking and bone crunching produce distinctive micro-wear characteristics on teeth."

In other words, according to Walker, if those primates had in fact used their teeth for bone crunching, then the teeth should show distinctive micro-wear characteristics. We can infer that such micro-wear characteristics are NOT present on the teeth, so Walker disputes the theory that primates developed hard enamel as an adaptation to bone crunching.

Walker says that both seed cracking and bone crunching produce distinctive micro-wear characteristics, but he does NOT say that those characteristics are necessarily the same for both. Also, the passage tells us nothing about Szalay's opinion on the similarities between the patterns produced by seed cracking and those produced by bone crunching, so we have no idea whether the two agree or disagree. Thus, we can rule out (D)

Szalay apparently did not take the micro-wear evidence into account when developing his/her theory. Walker, on the other hand, does consider the micro-wear evidence and, as a result, disagrees with Szalay's theory regarding the function of the heavy enamel on the teeth.
(E) is the best answer.


Answer choice (B) states that Walker and Szalay disagree on "the kinds of conclusions that can be drawn from the micro-wear patterns on australopithecine teeth." We don't know whether or not this is true because the passage never reveals what Szalay thinks about micro-wear patterns. Szalay developed a theory for why australopithecone teeth had heavy enamel, but s/he never weighed in on the evidence of micro-wear patterns on those teeth. Answer (B) is out.

I hope that helps!
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New post 12 May 2019, 06:49
For question 6/100, It can be inferred from the passage that Walker’s conclusion about the australopithecine diet would be called into question under which of the following circumstances? Why the option E) is wrong?

My thought is that, soft-bodied insects are not leaving any micro-wear pattern. So if there were a lot of such insects around, there was no way to tell whether australopithecine ate those insects or not. It can be they eat fruit like orangutans as well as soft-bodied insects.
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New post 27 May 2019, 01:54
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yunbao wrote:
For question 6/100, It can be inferred from the passage that Walker’s conclusion about the australopithecine diet would be called into question under which of the following circumstances? Why the option E) is wrong?

My thought is that, soft-bodied insects are not leaving any micro-wear pattern. So if there were a lot of such insects around, there was no way to tell whether australopithecine ate those insects or not. It can be they eat fruit like orangutans as well as soft-bodied insects.

Quote:
6. It can be inferred from the passage that Walker’s conclusion about the australopithecine diet would be called into question under which of the following circumstances?

(A) The tooth enamel of australopithecines is found to be much heavier than that of modern frugivorous primates.
(B) The micro-wear patterns of australopithecine teeth from regions other than east Africa are analyzed.
(C) Orangutans are found to have a much broader diet than is currently recognized.
(D) The environment of east Africa at the time australopithecines lived there is found to have been far more varied than is currently thought.
(E) The area in which the australopithecine specimens were found is discovered to have been very rich in soft-bodied insects during the period when australopithecines lived there.

First, let's discuss option (C). The passage specifically tells us that "[Walker's] conclusion that australopithecines were frugivores (fruit eaters) is based upon his observation that the tooth micro-wear characteristics of east African australopithecine specimens are indistinguishable from those of chimpanzees and orangutans, which are commonly assumed to be frugivorous primates."

Phew, that's a mouthful, but it breaks down Walker's logic:

  • East African australopithecine teeth have the same micro-wear patterns as chimp/orangutan teeth.
  • Chimps/orangutans are fruit eaters.
  • Therefore, australopithecines were also fruit eaters.

Choice (C) directly contradicts the second bullet. If orangutans ate much more than just fruit, then Walker's logic completely falls apart--the fact that australopithecine and orangutan teeth have similar patterns would NOT suggest that the australopithecines were fruit eaters. That makes (C) a solid answer.

Choice (E), on the other hand, while tempting, does not affect Walker's logic. Sure, there may have been a ton of soft-bodied insects around. There may have also been an abundance of seeds, wheat, small rodents, pizza trees (if only that were a real thing!), sushi bushes, etc., but that doesn't mean that the australopithecines actually ATE those things. Sure, if soft-bodied insects were NOT around, we would have solid evidence that the australopithecines did NOT eat them. However, the presence of soft-bodied insects, without any other evidence, does not call Walker's conclusion into question.

I hope that helps!
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New post 20 Sep 2019, 09:41
GMATNinja, aragonn

Why is option C of Qs 95 incorrect?
I understand that we can not deduce if there is regional variation in diets because we don't know if baboons are omnivores. However, even if there was regional variation, the diet must still be soft insects (but maybe different types) as it is mentioned diet consists of 'only' softbodied insects. We know that soft insects (any) don't produce much teeth abrasions.

Hence there should be no significant difference in tooth microwear patterns from region to region


Can you please help me understand where am I wrong in the analysis?
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New post 20 Sep 2019, 09:41
Why is option C of Qs 95 incorrect?
I understand that we can not deduce if there is regional variation in diets because we don't know if baboons are omnivores. However, even if there was regional variation, the diet must still be soft insects (but maybe different types) as it is mentioned diet consists of 'only' softbodied insects. We know that soft insects (any) don't produce much teeth abrasions.

Hence there should be no significant difference in tooth microwear patterns from region to region


Can you please help me understand where am I wrong in the analysis?
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New post 08 Oct 2019, 01:19
this is a type of passage we should know. the passage is easy to understand but the questions are hard. quesions are hard because they require high level of inference. we need to infer the information needed from the information in one or two sentences in the passage. this inference can be difficult , making a hard question even if the passage is easy .

so, two thing needed to be done. ability to understand the passage and ability to infer. both need practice.
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