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# One of the more reliable methods of determining regional

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One of the more reliable methods of determining regional [#permalink]

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01 Mar 2005, 23:21
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One of the more reliable methods of determining regional climatic conditions in prehistoric periods is to examine plant pollen trapped in glacial ice during ancient times. By comparing such pollen samples with spores taken from modern vegetation, scientists can figure out approximately what the weather was like at the time of pollen deposition. Furthermore, by submitting the prehistoric samples to radiocarbon dating techniques, we can also determine when certain climatic conditions were prevalent in that portion of the globe.
Which one of the following may be inferred from the information in the passage?
(A) The earth has undergone several glacial periods.
(B) Radiocarbon dating can be corroborated by glacial evidence.
(C) Similarities between prehistoric and contemporary climates do not exist.
(D) Pollen deposition is a fairly continuous process.
(E) Certain flora are reliably associated with particular climatic conditions

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02 Mar 2005, 00:09
(A) The earth has undergone several glacial periods.
- Cannot be inferred. We do not know if there is several glacial periods, we only know there MIGHT be climatic differences.

(B) Radiocarbon dating can be corroborated by glacial evidence.
- Out. Too narrow as it considers only the second argument.

(C) Similarities between prehistoric and contemporary climates do not exist.
- Out. By performing a comparison, there is suggestion climates are smiliar.

(D) Pollen deposition is a fairly continuous process.
- This is the answer. It assumes there are pollen deposition today and in the prehistoric times.

(E) Certain flora are reliably associated with particular climatic conditions
- Concerned with pollen, not flora

(D) for me.
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Re: CR - Glacial Ice [#permalink]

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02 Mar 2005, 00:30
nocilis wrote:
One of the more reliable methods of determining regional climatic conditions in prehistoric periods is to examine plant pollen trapped in glacial ice during ancient times. By comparing such pollen samples with spores taken from modern vegetation, scientists can figure out approximately what the weather was like at the time of pollen deposition. Furthermore, by submitting the prehistoric samples to radiocarbon dating techniques, we can also determine when certain climatic conditions were prevalent in that portion of the globe.
Which one of the following may be inferred from the information in the passage?
(A) The earth has undergone several glacial periods.
(B) Radiocarbon dating can be corroborated by glacial evidence.
(C) Similarities between prehistoric and contemporary climates do not exist.
(D) Pollen deposition is a fairly continuous process.
(E) Certain flora are reliably associated with particular climatic conditions

(E) for me.
(A) out , several glacial periods, who knows?
(B) out, radiocarbon dating techniques can determine certain climatic conditions, but doesn't necessarily need glacial evidene to corroborate.
(C) out, we don't know the whether similarity exists or not.
(D) out, we don't know whether continuity exists or not.

From the passage, "One of the more reliable methods of determining regional climatic conditions in prehistoric periods is to examine plant pollen......," i.e., flora are reliably associated with particular climatic conditions. Or we cannot determine the certain climatic condition.

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02 Mar 2005, 00:52
the passage is about the associatation b/w plant pollen.flora and climatic conditions. E.
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02 Mar 2005, 08:28
I will say (E).

If climatic conditions are not associated with certain types of flora then the whole methodology does not make sense.

(A) The earth has undergone several glacial periods.
Who knows may be just one glacial period.

(B) Radiocarbon dating can be corroborated by glacial evidence.
This cannot be infered from the argument because it is neither stated not any clues are given which makes us believe it is so. Only thing we can know is carbon dating probably yields reliable results.

(C) Similarities between prehistoric and contemporary climates do not exist.
They may exist or may not exist. Both the conditions can help scientists conclude something.

(D) Pollen deposition is a fairly continuous process.
We dont know this for sure.

(E) Certain flora are reliably associated with particular climatic conditions
This has to be true. This is almost like an assumption.
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02 Mar 2005, 08:49
I also struggle between D and E. E says certain plants are reliably associated with particular climatic conditions. The passage says by examining pollens of plants we can know weather conditions. Is it because different pollens of different plants would be found for different weather conditions? Or is it because something else about the pollens? I feel that the passage didn't tell us enough information for us to determine it is the former. On the other hand, D says Pollen deposition is a fairly continuous process. The passage says scientists study climate conditions using pollens. It seems to me that pollen deposition has to be fairly continuous for it to be useful to exam climate conditions overtime. If there was no pollen deposition at some of the times, and there was pollen deposition at some other times, then you can't really talk about the change or non change in climate conditions, for you don't have complete information from pollens.

Therefore I would choose D.
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02 Mar 2005, 08:52
Now I dont see much difference between (C) and (E).

(E) is just another version of (C).

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02 Mar 2005, 09:07
I will go with 'E'
Pollen deposition need not be a continuous process - As Honghu wrote if there is pollen deposition during some period and none during some other period then the quality of the pollen already deposited would differ which would in turn suggest when the pollen was deposited.
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02 Mar 2005, 09:09
i wud go with E

as i got it down to D/ E D feels more like an assumption wht is the OA
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02 Mar 2005, 09:28
I like "D"....."E" talks abt "flora", emphasis of the passage is on pollen. If pollen deposition was not happening in ancient time vs modern times or vice versa, one couldn't do a valid comparison, therefore, D is best I think. Inference ques r not like a conclusion ques, here we r supposed to infer from one or more evidence given in the stem. I think "D" fits the bill.
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02 Mar 2005, 09:54
I will stick with my decision (E)
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02 Mar 2005, 10:18
True, we may not be sure if it's a continuos process. But between D and E, it is a better choice because we know for sure, pollen is not classified as flora (no doubts about it). The continuity could be referring to a it happening in ice age, and still happening now. It doesn't have to be all year round, every minute and every second.

I'll stick with D
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02 Mar 2005, 10:42
ywilfred wrote:
It doesn't have to be all year round, every minute and every second.

I agree. That's why it says "fairly" continous in the question.
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02 Mar 2005, 10:45
b/w D) and E) i choose D), because of the word "reliably" in E) and the sentence "One of the more reliable..." at the beginning of the argument.

IMO "reliably" is just too strong !
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02 Mar 2005, 10:56
Actually, the connection between "reliable" and "reliably" may just be a trap thrown in to lure you into wrong choices. Just my own opinion. In RC questins I've seen this a lot. When people read similar words they would think that they've seen it somewhere and "it sounds right", but it is often deliberately put into the wrong answer. Whether they do it in CR questions, I don't know.
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02 Mar 2005, 11:39
I will go with E

as in the test sais: plant pollen trapped in glacial ice

Plant pollen, is indicating Flora.

what is the OA?
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02 Mar 2005, 12:30
One more point, CR ques r supposed to be self sufficient i.e. no extra knowledge is reqd, r we supposed to know that pollen belongs to flora category or not ?
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02 Mar 2005, 13:12
D.

Stem doesnt make any distinction between the types of flora, it talks about pollen in general. E seems to indicate that certain flora can be reliably used, may be this is true but it cannot be infered from the stem with the details given. The stem seems to all varieties of pollen from all sources without qualification, so E can be negated if pushed.
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03 Mar 2005, 02:19

A - There is no mention on glacial periods
B - Pollen examination and carbon dating result in different outcomes. The former tells us about the climate and the latter tells us about the age.
C - Not implied anywhere in the stimulus
D - Close second.
E - Makes sense. It suggests that the type of plant pollen hints us of the climate.
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03 Mar 2005, 05:16
I'll go with (A)

Q) What's it that the scientists want to determine?
A) "regional climatic conditions in prehistoric periods"

Q) What do they do?
1A) "compare pollen samples with spores taken from modern vegetation"
2A) "submit the prehistoric samples to radiocarbon dating techniques"

Q) What questions do the above processes answer?
1B) "approximately what the weather was like at the time of pollen
deposition
"
2B) "when certain climatic conditions were prevalent in that portion of the
globe
"

So what can be inferred? Let us examine each option:

A) Unless Earth has undergone several glacial periods, we do not need to determine the "when" part (2A and 2B). That the scientists did verify the age of the pollen through C4 dating, it is obvious that they must've encountered pollen from more than one strata of the glacial deposit. This can only be true if the Earth has undergone more than one glacial period.

B) Well, the glacial evidence does not corroborate the C4 dating, it simply presents us with different samples for carrying out C4 dating.

C) No point discussing this

D) I actually do not understand what bearing this has, but I do not feel this can be inferred from the stem

E) There is a (very subtle) difference between climatic conditions and weather. IMO, this difference is brought about in this option. It is mentioned in the stem that: "By comparing such pollen samples with spores taken from modern vegetation, scientists can figure out approximately what the weather was like at the time of pollen deposition." This can in no way give us any indication that certain flora are reliably associated with particular climatic conditions. We're talking of two different parameters here.
03 Mar 2005, 05:16

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