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Scientists claim that the discovery of the first authenticated mammal

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Scientists claim that the discovery of the first authenticated mammal  [#permalink]

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New post Updated on: 16 Sep 2018, 15:20
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Scientists claim that the discovery of the first authenticated mammal bones in amber could provide important clues of determining, in addition to how, when mammals colonized the islands of the West Indies.

(A) of determining, in addition to how, when mammals colonized the islands of the West Indies

(B) in the determination of how and when the islands of the West Indies were colonized by mammals

(C) to determine how mammals colonized the islands of the West Indies and when they did

(D) for determining when the islands of the West Indies were colonized by mammals and how they were

(E) for determining how and when mammals colonized the islands of the West Indies

https://www.nytimes.com/1996/04/16/science/mammal-bones-found-in-amber-for-first-time.html

The discovery of the first authenticated mammal bones in amber was announced in the current issue of the journal Nature by Dr. Ross D. E. MacPhee, a curator of mammalogy at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City, and Dr. David A. Grimaldi, a specialist in amber fossils at the museum.

The scientists said the discovery could provide an important clue to how and when mammals — or any land animals — colonized the islands of the West Indies. Only in recent years have scientists begun to find fossils of vertebrate animals that lived more than a few thousand years ago, long after the islands could have been connected to the mainland as a peninsula accessible to South American land animals.

Originally posted by jerrywu on 12 Sep 2006, 23:39.
Last edited by hazelnut on 16 Sep 2018, 15:20, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Scientists claim that the discovery of the first authenticated mammal  [#permalink]

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New post 12 Sep 2006, 23:47
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Going with E:

A: of determining, in addition to how, when mammals colonized the islands of the West Indies - clues of?(need clues-to or clues-for) WRONG

B:in the determination of how and when the islands of the West Indies were colonized by mammals - clues in? (need clues-to or clues-for).WRONG

C:to determine how mammals colonized the islands of the West Indies and when they did - they is ambiguos. WRONG.

D:for determining when the islands of the West Indies were colonized by mammals and how they were - they is ambiguos. WRONG.

E:for determining how and when mammals colonized the islands of the West Indies - CORRECT.
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Re: Scientists claim that the discovery of the first authenticated mammal  [#permalink]

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New post Updated on: 17 Nov 2010, 09:40
Besides being incomplete, but more importantly in C and D, what does the pronoun -they - stand for? Is it - the West Indies or the islands or the mammals? - A pronoun should not only stand for its true referent logically but also seem to stand for the due referent unambiguously. So I would rather rule out C and D, notwithstanding other extant errors in these two choices. But E tactfully avoids the pronoun equivocation, uses active voice and employs the right idiom - for determining – and thus is the indisputable choice.
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Originally posted by daagh on 16 Nov 2010, 18:56.
Last edited by daagh on 17 Nov 2010, 09:40, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Scientists claim that the discovery of the first authenticated mammal  [#permalink]

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New post 06 Nov 2012, 09:23
Answer E

In the bold part of the sentence "in addition to" is wordy and inaccurately placed.

The correct phrase is "provide for". This eliminates A, B and C

D - This has so many flaws that please add to the list for I'm sure I'll miss a few. But, to mention a few - usage of passive voice is not preferrable; the way the sentence is worded makes it sounds incomplete/awkward.

E - short and concise; properly connects the "how" and "when"; uses active voice.
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Re: Scientists claim that the discovery of the first authenticated mammal  [#permalink]

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New post 06 Nov 2012, 09:26
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Scientists claim that the discovery of the first authenticated mammal bones in amber could provide important clues of determining, in addition to how, when mammals colonized the islands of the West Indies.

A. of determining, in addition to how, when mammals colonized the islands of the West Indies [i]"in addition to how" acts as a modifier and hence it is gievn a low level. Giving equal preference to both HOW and WHEN will correct this option.[/i]
B. in the determination of how and when the islands of the West Indies were colonized by mammals Two mistakes i)"in the determination" is unidiomatic ii)"of" is a preposition and hence it should be followed by a noun or noun phrase
C. to determine how mammals colonized the islands of the West Indies and when they did CLOSE CONTENDER. Reason for elimination- "they" is ambigous
D. for determining when the islands of the West Indies were colonized by mammals and how they were "THEY" is ambigous
E. for determining how and when mammals colonized the islands of the West IndiesCorrect. IMO


Whats the OA and OE.
Whats the source.
IMO E

Hope that helps
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Re: Scientists claim that the discovery of the first authenticated mammal  [#permalink]

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New post 22 Jan 2013, 23:54
is B wrong only because it is not concise?
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Re: Scientists claim that the discovery of the first authenticated mammal  [#permalink]

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New post 23 Jan 2013, 00:49
Sachin9 wrote:
is B wrong only because it is not concise?


"clues in the determination of how" is unnecessarily using the passive voice and its also has awkward construction. Choice (E) is concise and serves the meaning.
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Re: Scientists claim that the discovery of the first authenticated mammal  [#permalink]

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New post 23 Jan 2013, 01:17
PraPon wrote:
Sachin9 wrote:
is B wrong only because it is not concise?


"clues in the determination of how" is unnecessarily using the passive voice and its also has awkward construction. Choice (E) is concise and serves the meaning.



why is there no rule for awkwardness? :evil:
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Re: Scientists claim that the discovery of the first authenticated mammal  [#permalink]

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New post 23 Jan 2013, 11:06
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Hi Sachin,

Choice B is incorrect because it is very wordy. It does not have any grammatical error, but it certianly is lot more wordy. Choice E is concise.

Well, there are no rules for awkwardness because it is a stylistic issue and not a grammatical issue.

Hope this helps. :-)
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Re: Scientists claim that the discovery of the first authenticated mammal  [#permalink]

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New post 23 Jan 2013, 12:23
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Sachin9 wrote:
PraPon wrote:
Sachin9 wrote:
is B wrong only because it is not concise?


"clues in the determination of how" is unnecessarily using the passive voice and its also has awkward construction. Choice (E) is concise and serves the meaning.



why is there no rule for awkwardness? :evil:


Sachin, sometimes you will be able to apply few rules based on grammar or meaning to identify choices with wordy/awkward constructions, however most times you will have to trust your ears to identify such errors. We may "not always" be able to identify/apply the rules for concision.
A quick tip: Always read the SC OG solutions given by GMAC (whether you get the answer right or wrong). Most cases GMAC eliminates answers by just calling them as wordy/awkward (without further explanations), try analyzing those patterns and tune your ears to it. Dont take them as a thumb rule, but during exam once you narrow down to two (grammatically) correct choices, chose the one which is more concise and follows the meaning.

In the concerned problem, "for determining" is more concise (and active in voice) than "in the determination of". Why? check below:

Reasoning & similar example from MGMAT:
Pattern: Prefer verb to action noun
o Wordy: The townspeople’s revolution was against the king.
Revolution is a noun that expresses an action
o Better: The townspeople revolted against the king.

In our case, "determining" verb is preferred over the action noun "(in the) determination of".

Hope this helps.
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Re: Scientists claim that the discovery of the first authenticated mammal  [#permalink]

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New post 02 Jul 2018, 23:51
daagh wrote:
Besides being incomplete, but more importantly in C and D, what does the pronoun -they - stand for? Is it - the West Indies or the islands or the mammals? - A pronoun should not only stand for its true referent logically but also seem to stand for the due referent unambiguously. So I would rather rule out C and D, notwithstanding other extant errors in these two choices. But E tactfully avoids the pronoun equivocation, uses active voice and employs the right idiom - for determining – and thus is the indisputable choice.



Hi Daagh Sir,

WIll you pls suggest why usage of "They" is ambiguous out here ?

As per my understanding They do have clear antecedent as Mammals, especially in C

how mammals colonized the islands of the West Indies and when they did

Garamatically in option C they can refer to Mammals i.e. subject of previous clause. Again these two sentences are parallel and joined by And. SO subject of first sentence is doer of action and same should be doer for "THey did" also.

Pls suggest !
Thanks in advance !
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Re: Scientists claim that the discovery of the first authenticated mammal  [#permalink]

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New post 03 Jul 2018, 02:06
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True. I agree. E is preferred more for concision and the use of a more suitable idiom.
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Re: Scientists claim that the discovery of the first authenticated mammal  [#permalink]

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New post 09 Nov 2018, 01:10
Hi GMATNinja ,
I have some queries here.
Quote:
(C) to determine how mammals colonized the islands of the West Indies and when they did
I think there is no problem with "they" as according to parallelism , "they" must refer to mammals.
Quote:
(E) for determining how and when mammals colonized the islands of the West Indies
Is there ellipsis here like :
for determining how (mammals colonized the islands of the West Indies) and when mammals colonized the islands of the West Indies .
Is it right to have ellipsis before ?

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Re: Scientists claim that the discovery of the first authenticated mammal  [#permalink]

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New post 09 Nov 2018, 06:35
Hi,
I have written the queries here for this question.
https://gmatclub.com/forum/scientists-c ... l#p2168633
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Re: Scientists claim that the discovery of the first authenticated mammal  [#permalink]

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New post 11 Nov 2018, 12:04
guptakashish02 wrote:
Hi GMATNinja ,
I have some queries here.
Quote:
(C) to determine how mammals colonized the islands of the West Indies and when they did
I think there is no problem with "they" as according to parallelism , "they" must refer to mammals.
Quote:
(E) for determining how and when mammals colonized the islands of the West Indies
Is there ellipsis here like :
for determining how (mammals colonized the islands of the West Indies) and when mammals colonized the islands of the West Indies .
Is it right to have ellipsis before ?

Thanks


Hi,

I think 'they' can also refer to Scientists as well as per parallelism and 'did' can refer to the action 'Claim'. So , ambiguous and distorts the meaning.

GMATNinja , sir would be great if you can check whether my explanation is correct here.
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Re: Scientists claim that the discovery of the first authenticated mammal &nbs [#permalink] 11 Nov 2018, 12:04
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