Newspaper editorial: In an attempt to reduce the crime : GMAT Critical Reasoning (CR)
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# Newspaper editorial: In an attempt to reduce the crime

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Manager
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Newspaper editorial: In an attempt to reduce the crime [#permalink]

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07 Sep 2004, 10:22
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Newspaper editorial:

In an attempt to reduce the crime rate, the governor is getting tough on criminals and making prison conditions harsher. Part of this effort has been to deny inmates the access they formerly had to college-level courses. However, this action is clearly counter to the governorâ€™s ultimate goal, since after being released form prison, inmates who had taken such courses committed far fewer crimes overall than other inmates.

Which of the following is an assumption on which the argument depends?

A. Not being able to take college-level courses while in prison is unlikely to deter anyone from a crime that he or she might otherwise have committed.
B. Former inmates are no more likely to commit crimes than are members of the general population.
C. The group of inmates who chose to take college-level courses were not already less likely than other inmates to commit crimes after being released.
D. Taking high school level courses in prison has less effect on an inmateâ€™s subsequent behavior than taking college-level courses does.
E. The governorâ€™s ultimate goal actually is to gain popularity by convincing people that something effective is being done about crime.

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Manager
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07 Sep 2004, 10:54
A.

The argument says the governor's action is clearly counter to the governor's ultimate goal of reducing the crime rate. Premises -- Governor is making prison conditions harsher. Only A comes closer.
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07 Sep 2004, 11:10
C appears to be the best answer.

The argument's trump card is the fact that inmates who took college-level courses in the prison went on to commit fewer crimes.

An inherent assumption, then, is that if those inmates hadn't taken the courses, they would have committed more crimes. C covers that by wondering what if those inmates were already "willing to contribute to the society and be good citizens" and that's WHY they took courses. In other words, taking courses would become an effect rather than a cause.

In yet some other words, since taking courses is a voluntary measure, you would sign up for them mainly if you didn't want to commit crimes again.
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07 Sep 2004, 18:55
Newspaper editorial:

Premise - In an attempt to reduce the crime rate, the governor is getting tough on criminals and making prison conditions harsher. Part of this effort has been to deny inmates the access they formerly had to college-level courses.

Conclusion - However, this action is clearly counter to the governorâ€™s ultimate goal, since after being released form prison, inmates who had taken such courses committed far fewer crimes overall than other inmates.

Which of the following is an assumption on which the argument depends?

Summarizing the argument - If one attends the courses, then he does not commit crime after release. (this is the assumption)

A. Not being able to take college-level courses while in prison is unlikely to deter anyone from a crime that he or she might otherwise have committed. - the correct one.

B. Former inmates are no more likely to commit crimes than are members of the general population. - Out

C. The group of inmates who chose to take college-level courses were not already less likely than other inmates to commit crimes after being released. - Pretty close, but not as good as as choice A.

D. Taking high school level courses in prison has less effect on an inmateâ€™s subsequent behavior than taking college-level courses does. - this one supports and not an assumption

E. The governorâ€™s ultimate goal actually is to gain popularity by convincing people that something effective is being done about crime. - Out of scope.
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Manager
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07 Sep 2004, 19:15
carsen wrote:
A. Not being able to take college-level courses while in prison is unlikely to deter anyone from a crime that he or she might otherwise have committed. - the correct one.

A is not an assumption. It's just a supplementary conclusion from a given fact.

You should rephrase A to really see what it is saying:

"If you couldn't take courses in prison, you'd go ahead and commit the crimes of your dreams."

...which is the same/complementary statement as/to the following:

"If you took courses in prison, you wouldn't commit any further crimes."

...which forms part of the conclusion.

However, in saying that, you're assuming that you heart already hadn't changed when you decided to take those courses...which is C.
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07 Sep 2004, 19:28
the answer to this question shd be C.
A sound slike a rephrasing of the premises and not an assumption.
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07 Sep 2004, 19:45
agree with intre(3)pid. "A" is a supplemetary conclusion. C should be the answer.
07 Sep 2004, 19:45
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