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# SC: Nuclear Power Plants

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CEO
Joined: 21 Jan 2007
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Re: SC: Nuclear Power Plants [#permalink]

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12 Aug 2007, 13:56
boubi wrote:
buckkitty wrote:
gmatirp wrote:
It is an early question from the SC1000. What is the explanation for the answer of the following question?

A majority of the international journalists surveyed view nuclear power stations as unsafe at present but that they will, or could, be made sufficiently safe in the future.
(a) that they will, or could,
(b) that they would, or could,
(c) they will be or could
(d) think that they will be or could
(e) think the power stations would or could

Thanks beforehand.

I think that "they" in D could refer to either power plants or journalists. But since it is closest to power stations let's just say that its "close enough" to not eliminate it for that reason and look at other errors.

It has to be D because Will/Would and Could have to make sense without the other in the sentence.
Break it out:
..journalists surveyed view nuclear power stations as unsafe at present but that they WILL be made sufficiently safe in the future.

..journalists surveyed view nuclear power stations as unsafe at present but that they COULD be made sufficiently safe in the future.

So it has to be WILL not WOULD. Would does not make sense here because "would" is used with past tense conditional statements (From Manhattan GMAT)
If she WON the lottery she would give all the money to charity
If she WINS the lottery she will give all the money to charity

In our sentence we have the verb "view"
Journalists VIEW power stations as unsafe at present but that they WILL be made sufficiently safeâ€¦.

Yes? No?

Thanks Buckkitty

Okay, let me take another stab at this.

Think is a "thinking verb"
it requires THAT.
strictly based on this rule, no other choice is correct.

believe that
think that
theorizes that
belief that...

will be...could be...
parallel

in addition, THEY is NOT a relative pronoun. it does not matter what noun is closer. Although THEY is ambiguous, it fits into the context of this sentence. There is no other choice that clarifies this error without introducing another error.
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Re: it may be D) [#permalink]

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05 Oct 2007, 09:49
buffetfollower wrote:
looking at the question first, I thought E) may be right answer.

But, with the experience I had with some of official guide questions, I am wondering may be D) could be the correct answer.

I found that on some of the questions I was over-focusing on the Pronoun errors while ignoring the other errors. In those choices, usually most of the choices have ambiguous pronoun references but the choice with the correct pronoun reference has some other error like incorrect idiom. And the answer choice was the one with ambiguous pronoun.
I will try to post that question if i find that.

So I have decided to check for the pronoun error in the choices only after confirming that there are no other types of errors like "verb tense", "idioms", "subject-verb agreement" ..etc.

Hi - I see that you've made some very valid points. To add to the specific thing relating to pronoun reference ambiguity that you've not clarified - i wanted to add my two cents.

Usually - pronoun reference is a tricky issue. What we need to be chary of is that the pronoun should have a logical referent. It should make sense. Just because we have a pronoun and two POSSIBLE nouns that it could refer to - it doesn't necessarily mean we have landed in a pronoun ambiguity situation. We have to think if we can logically associate a pronoun unambigiously to a particular antecendent.

In the situation at hand in this question - it's obvious that it's the powerstations that are being talked about and not the journalists themselves.
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05 Oct 2007, 11:39
people, this sentence is in passive tense. because the passive part of the sentence is not underlined, we know that we don't need to know who is the subject doing the action. therefore, the "they" is clearly referreing to the power plants because how can you use a passive tense on a person?
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05 Oct 2007, 11:40
sorry, i meant power stations instead of power plants!
05 Oct 2007, 11:40

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