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QOTD: Due to the highly sensitive nature

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QOTD: Due to the highly sensitive nature [#permalink]

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Verbal Question of The Day: Day 18: Sentence Correction


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Due to the highly sensitive nature of their work, all State Department staff members were instructed to store their files on secure servers.

(A) Due to the highly sensitive nature of their work, all State Department staff members were instructed to store their files on secure servers.

(B) Because diplomatic work was highly sensitive, the State Department’s staff had been instructed to store all files on secure servers.

(C) Whereas diplomatic work was highly sensitive, the State Department’s staff was instructed to store their files on secure servers.

(D) Because of the highly sensitive nature of their work, all State Department staff members were instructed to store their files on secure servers.

(E) The State Department’s staff had been instructed to store their files on secure servers, since their work was highly sensitive.

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Re: QOTD: Due to the highly sensitive nature [#permalink]

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This looks like a nice, clear, straightforward, mechanical question, with lots of nice pronoun and verb tense and modifier issues. I like it.

Quote:
(A) Due to the highly sensitive nature of their work, all State Department staff members were instructed to store their files on secure servers.

Whenever you see "due to", you'll want to ask: what does the phrase "due to _______" modify? In this sentence, "due to the highly sensitive nature of their work" is trying to describe "were instructed" -- but that doesn't work, since "due to _____" can only modify a noun. And it definitely doesn't make sense to say that "all State Department staff members... were due to the highly sensitive nature of their work." Eliminate (A).

Quote:
(B) Because diplomatic work was highly sensitive, the State Department’s staff had been instructed to store all files on secure servers.

The verb tenses don't make any sense in (B). Whenever you see "had + verb" (past perfect tense, if you like jargon), the action has to occur before some other time marker in the past (usually, another action in simple past tense). In this case, the sentence seems to be saying that the staff had been instructed to use secure servers first, and then the diplomatic work became highly sensitive later. That doesn't make sense, so we can get rid of (B).

Quote:
(C) Whereas diplomatic work was highly sensitive, the State Department’s staff was instructed to store their files on secure servers.

"Staff" is singular, but "their" is plural, so (C) can be eliminated easily enough.

Quote:
(D) Because of the highly sensitive nature of their work, all State Department staff members were instructed to store their files on secure servers.

This looks fine to me. Pronoun agreement is fine, and we don't have any issues with "due to" or verb tenses. We'll keep this one.

Quote:
(E) The State Department’s staff had been instructed to store their files on secure servers, since their work was highly sensitive.

(E) gives us nicer-sounding versions of the errors in (B) and (C). (D) is the winner.
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Re: QOTD: Due to the highly sensitive nature [#permalink]

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New post 24 May 2017, 23:33
I chose D. The following is my reasoning:

Due to the highly sensitive nature of their work, all State Department staff members were instructed to store their files on secure servers.

(A) Due to the highly sensitive nature of their work, all State Department staff members were instructed to store their files on secure servers.
=> Wrong. "highly sensitive nature of their work" explains why "all State Department staff members were instructed..." But when we use "due to", it turns out that "highly sensitive nature of their work" explains "all State Department staff members". Illogical meaning!
(B) Because diplomatic work was highly sensitive, the State Department’s staff had been instructed to store all files on secure servers.
=> Wrong. Usage of past perfect "had been" is wrong. Past perfect is used only when an action happened before another action occurring in the past. In this question, the action "be instructed" does not happen before any other past action. That "diplomatic work was highly sensitive" must happen before or during the main action.
(C) Whereas diplomatic work was highly sensitive, the State Department’s staff was instructed to store their files on secure servers.
=> Wrong. Intended meaning expresses a causal relationship (Because of A, B happened). But in this option, as indicated by "whereas", A is contrasted by B. Intended meaning is changed!
(D) Because of the highly sensitive nature of their work, all State Department staff members were instructed to store their files on secure servers.
=> CORRECT!
(E) The State Department’s staff had been instructed to store their files on secure servers, since their work was highly sensitive.
=> Wrong. This option is eliminated for the same reason as in option (B)

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Re: QOTD: Due to the highly sensitive nature [#permalink]

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New post 25 May 2017, 00:14
Due to the highly sensitive nature of their work, all State Department staff members were instructed to store their files on secure servers.

(A) Due to the highly sensitive nature of their work, all State Department staff members were instructed to store their files on secure servers. - illogical - all state
department staff members are not due to the highly sensitive nature of their work
(B) Because diplomatic work was highly sensitive, the State Department’s staff had been instructed to store all files on secure servers. - Use of Past perfect tense is incorrect
(C) Whereas diplomatic work was highly sensitive, the State Department’s staff was instructed to store their files on secure servers. - Usage of whereas is incorrect as it fails to establish
the causal relationship
(D) Because of the highly sensitive nature of their work, all State Department staff members were instructed to store their files on secure servers.-Correct
(E) The State Department’s staff had been instructed to store their files on secure servers, since their work was highly sensitive.- Use of Past perfect tense is incorrect

Answer D
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Re: QOTD: Due to the highly sensitive nature [#permalink]

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New post 25 May 2017, 05:27
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As per our yesterday's Verbal Expert chat, answer must be D.

"highly sensitive nature of their work" is modifying why staff was instructed. So, it is modifying the action. Due to cannot be used to modify an action.

Hence, it MUST be "because of".
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Re: QOTD: Due to the highly sensitive nature [#permalink]

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New post 27 May 2017, 22:07
GMATNinja wrote:
This looks like a nice, clear, straightforward, mechanical question, with lots of nice pronoun and verb tense and modifier issues. I like it.

Quote:
(A) Due to the highly sensitive nature of their work, all State Department staff members were instructed to store their files on secure servers.

Whenever you see "due to", you'll want to ask: what does the phrase "due to _______" modify? In this sentence, "due to the highly sensitive nature of their work" is trying to describe "were instructed" -- but that doesn't work, since "due to _____" can only modify a noun. And it definitely doesn't make sense to say that "all State Department staff members... were due to the highly sensitive nature of their work." Eliminate (A).

Quote:
(B) Because diplomatic work was highly sensitive, the State Department’s staff had been instructed to store all files on secure servers.

The verb tenses don't make any sense in (B). Whenever you see "had + verb" (past perfect tense, if you like jargon), the action has to occur before some other time marker in the past (usually, another action in simple past tense). In this case, the sentence seems to be saying that the staff had been instructed to use secure servers first, and then the diplomatic work became highly sensitive later. That doesn't make sense, so we can get rid of (B).

Quote:
(C) Whereas diplomatic work was highly sensitive, the State Department’s staff was instructed to store their files on secure servers.

"Staff" is singular, but "their" is plural, so (C) can be eliminated easily enough.

Quote:
(D) Because of the highly sensitive nature of their work, all State Department staff members were instructed to store their files on secure servers.

This looks fine to me. Pronoun agreement is fine, and we don't have any issues with "due to" or verb tenses. We'll keep this one.

Quote:
(E) The State Department’s staff had been instructed to store their files on secure servers, since their work was highly sensitive.

(E) gives us nicer-sounding versions of the errors in (B) and (C). (D) is the winner.



=============================================

Very nice Explanation but I have 1 doubt.

In option D-) and also in most of the options, we have "nature of there work" in the 1st clause. but its antecedent is afterwords, Is it fine for Sentence structure???

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Re: QOTD: Due to the highly sensitive nature [#permalink]

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New post 28 May 2017, 12:46
kawaljeet wrote:
Very nice Explanation but I have 1 doubt.

In option D-) and also in most of the options, we have "nature of there work" in the 1st clause. but its antecedent is afterwords, Is it fine for Sentence structure???


Thank you, kawaljeet! And yes, it can be OK to have a pronoun come before its antecedent on the GMAT, as long as the two are close enough to each other to avoid ambiguity. So something like this is generally acceptable: "Because of their frustration with the president's policies, leftists protested in the streets for four years."

And here's an official example: https://gmatclub.com/forum/the-first-de ... 77464.html
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Re: QOTD: Due to the highly sensitive nature [#permalink]

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New post 02 Jun 2017, 04:12
GMATNinja wrote:
This looks like a nice, clear, straightforward, mechanical question, with lots of nice pronoun and verb tense and modifier issues. I like it.

Quote:
(A) Due to the highly sensitive nature of their work, all State Department staff members were instructed to store their files on secure servers.

Whenever you see "due to", you'll want to ask: what does the phrase "due to _______" modify? In this sentence, "due to the highly sensitive nature of their work" is trying to describe "were instructed" -- but that doesn't work, since "due to _____" can only modify a noun. And it definitely doesn't make sense to say that "all State Department staff members... were due to the highly sensitive nature of their work." Eliminate (A).

Quote:
(B) Because diplomatic work was highly sensitive, the State Department’s staff had been instructed to store all files on secure servers.

The verb tenses don't make any sense in (B). Whenever you see "had + verb" (past perfect tense, if you like jargon), the action has to occur before some other time marker in the past (usually, another action in simple past tense). In this case, the sentence seems to be saying that the staff had been instructed to use secure servers first, and then the diplomatic work became highly sensitive later. That doesn't make sense, so we can get rid of (B).

Quote:
(C) Whereas diplomatic work was highly sensitive, the State Department’s staff was instructed to store their files on secure servers.

"Staff" is singular, but "their" is plural, so (C) can be eliminated easily enough.

Quote:
(D) Because of the highly sensitive nature of their work, all State Department staff members were instructed to store their files on secure servers.

This looks fine to me. Pronoun agreement is fine, and we don't have any issues with "due to" or verb tenses. We'll keep this one.

Quote:
(E) The State Department’s staff had been instructed to store their files on secure servers, since their work was highly sensitive.

(E) gives us nicer-sounding versions of the errors in (B) and (C). (D) is the winner.



can anyone differentiate between due to and because of?
I'm really confused between the two.

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Re: QOTD: Due to the highly sensitive nature [#permalink]

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Re: QOTD: Due to the highly sensitive nature [#permalink]

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New post 02 Jun 2017, 07:31
I would first look at Because of to replace Due to - used only with a noun.

Option B incorrectly uses past perfect

Option C uses whereas incorrectly, changing the whole meaning of the sentence.

Option D uses Because of correctly, this is the right answer.

Option E again uses past perfect without a past event as a ref. Incorrect

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Re: QOTD: Due to the highly sensitive nature [#permalink]

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New post 24 Sep 2017, 03:35
In the option D how come because is used without a verb. Shouldn't because introduce a clause? I was under the impression that because is always used as a subordinating conjunction.

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Re: QOTD: Due to the highly sensitive nature   [#permalink] 24 Sep 2017, 03:35
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