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# Musical composers have generally made their most significant

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Director
Joined: 11 Jun 2007
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19 Nov 2007, 09:22
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Musical composers have generally made their most significant contributions to the musical canon before they reached the age of thirty. It is commonly believed that this is the case because aging brings about a loss of cognitive ability and creative capacity. However, a study pointed out that a disproportionately large number of those composers who made their most significant contributions to the canon after the age of thirty became musicians at an older age than is generally the case. Since by the age of thirty many composers have been engaged as musicians for a decade or more, these findings suggest that the real reason why musicians over thirty rarely make significant contributions to the musical canon is not that they have aged but rather that they have spent too much time as musicians.

In the argument above, the two portions in boldface play which of the following roles?

(A) The first is an explanation that is challenged by the argument; the second is a finding used to support that explanation.
(B) The first is an explanation that the argument opposes; the second is an objection raised against the alternative explanation advocated by the argument.
(C) The first is a claim advanced in support of a position; the second is a finding that clarifies that position.
(D) The first is an explanation advocated by the argument; the second is a finding used to challenge that explanation.
(E) The first is an explanation that the argument challenges; the second is a finding on which that challenge is based.

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Manager
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19 Nov 2007, 10:36
E for me....the first bold face is an explanation that argument challenges. The first line of the argument is a general observation ..the second line is a explanation given for the observation(that musicians are not productive after the age of 30).. ....
the second bold face ...is a finding that helps the argument negate the first explanation(the first bold face) given in the argument.
hope this is clear ....

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CEO
Joined: 29 Mar 2007
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19 Nov 2007, 11:09
eyunni wrote:
Musical composers have generally made their most significant contributions to the musical canon before they reached the age of thirty. It is commonly believed that this is the case because aging brings about a loss of cognitive ability and creative capacity. However, a study pointed out that a disproportionately large number of those composers who made their most significant contributions to the canon after the age of thirty became musicians at an older age than is generally the case. Since by the age of thirty many composers have been engaged as musicians for a decade or more, these findings suggest that the real reason why musicians over thirty rarely make significant contributions to the musical canon is not that they have aged but rather that they have spent too much time as musicians.

In the argument above, the two portions in boldface play which of the following roles?

(A) The first is an explanation that is challenged by the argument; the second is a finding used to support that explanation.
(B) The first is an explanation that the argument opposes; the second is an objection raised against the alternative explanation advocated by the argument.
(C) The first is a claim advanced in support of a position; the second is a finding that clarifies that position.
(D) The first is an explanation advocated by the argument; the second is a finding used to challenge that explanation.
(E) The first is an explanation that the argument challenges; the second is a finding on which that challenge is based.

Only serious ones to consider are ABE. b/c the first parts "The first is an explanation that the argument challenges" are correct.

A: is incorrect b/c the second is not apart of the explanation that is challenged.
B: Second part is just wrong.

E: The second is indeed a finding which the challenge is based.

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SVP
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19 Nov 2007, 21:21
said E here

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Director
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20 Nov 2007, 10:05
Yes. E is the OA.

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Manager
Joined: 04 Nov 2007
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20 Nov 2007, 21:51
1
KUDOS
eyunni wrote:
Musical composers have generally made their most significant contributions to the musical canon before they reached the age of thirty. It is commonly believed that this is the case because aging brings about a loss of cognitive ability and creative capacity. However, a study pointed out that a disproportionately large number of those composers who made their most significant contributions to the canon after the age of thirty became musicians at an older age than is generally the case. Since by the age of thirty many composers have been engaged as musicians for a decade or more, these findings suggest that the real reason why musicians over thirty rarely make significant contributions to the musical canon is not that they have aged but rather that they have spent too much time as musicians.

In the argument above, the two portions in boldface play which of the following roles?

(A) The first is an explanation that is challenged by the argument; the second is a finding used to support that explanation.
(B) The first is an explanation that the argument opposes; the second is an objection raised against the alternative explanation advocated by the argument.
(C) The first is a claim advanced in support of a position; the second is a finding that clarifies that position.
(D) The first is an explanation advocated by the argument; the second is a finding used to challenge that explanation.
(E) The first is an explanation that the argument challenges; the second is a finding on which that challenge is based.

I first picked D which is the wrong answer. I picked the wrong conclusion, thus arriving at the total opposite answer. For example, I thought the conclusion is: Composers make most contributions before age 30. In this case D would be the correct answer. Upon re-reading the passage, the conclusion is infact "musicians over 30 spend too muc time playing music instead of composing." Thus E is the answer choice.

My point is: to do well on CR questions, we need to find the correct conclusion in the passage or sometimes in the question itself, before attempting to answer the question.

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Director
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21 Nov 2007, 06:55
Could not agree more...

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GMAT Club Legend
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03 Nov 2016, 10:36
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Director
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Location: United States
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18 Apr 2017, 23:07
This question is an Analyze the Argument Structure question; the best approach
is to identify the conclusion, and then check each boldface portion of the question
for how it relates to the conclusion, and eliminate incorrect answer choices on
that basis. Here, the conclusion of the argument appears in the last sentence,
that “these findings suggest that the real reason why musicians over thirty rarely
make significant contributions to the musical canon is not that they have aged but
rather that they have spent too much time as musicians.” This conclusion is
drawn in contrast to the conventional explanation that age erodes creative ability,
which appears in the first boldface. The second boldface is a description of the
findings that are used to support the argument’s conclusion.

(E) CORRECT. The first boldface does present an explanation that the argument
challenges. The second is a finding that provides the basis for the challenge to
the conventional explanation.

The second part in bold is challenging the first part in bold. An easy way to see this is the use of the word HOWEVER right after the first bold part.

Now lets look at the rest of this CR.

Since by the age of thirty many composers have been engaged as musicians for a decade or more, these findings suggest that the real reason why musicians over thirty rarely make significant contributions to the musical canon is not that they have aged but rather that they have spent too much time as musicians.

The bold part here is the argument.

If you read carefully you can see that the argument is challenging the first bold statement and that the "findings" are actually from the study that was talked about in the 2nd bold statement.

So we are looking for some type of answer that 1) the argument opposes the first statement and 2) the 2nd bold statement is what the argument stems from.

Looking at the answer choices E is the only 1 that fits.
_________________

Thanks & Regards,
Anaira Mitch

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Re: Musical composers have generally made their most significant   [#permalink] 18 Apr 2017, 23:07
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