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# Starfish, with anywhere from five to eight arms, have a

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Re: Starfish, with anywhere from five to eight arms, have a [#permalink]

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18 Feb 2014, 20:49
Hi E-GMAT,

Starfish, with anywhere from five to eight arms, have a strong regenerative ability, and if one arm is lost it quickly replaces it, sometimes by the animal overcompensating and growing an extra one or two.

A one arm is lost it quickly replaces it, sometimes by the animal overcompensating and
B one arm is lost it is quickly replaced, with the animal sometimes overcompensating and
C they lose one arm they quickly replace it, sometimes by the animal overcompensating,
D they lose one arm they are quickly replaced, with the animal sometimes overcompensating,
E they lose one arm it is quickly replaced, sometimes with the animal overcompensating,

My analysis and query, The sentence structure IC {Startfish + modifier+ verb (Have)}, and IC if + then clause+ modifier.

First query is in the "2nd IC" i'm not able to identify the Sub & Verb and

Second query is i'm not able to understand why "with" modifier is correct?
i understand that after the second clause is ended with "replaced" then Verb-ing should come instead of "with". Please correct me ?

and Lastly i always feel with seems to be the incorrect choice in GMAT in general.Could you please help me to correct my concept .

Thanks
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Re: Starfish, with anywhere from five to eight arms, have a [#permalink]

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04 Apr 2014, 01:49
egmat wrote:
Nitinaka19 wrote:
Hi E-GMAT,

Starfish, with anywhere from five to eight arms, have a strong regenerative ability, and if one arm is lost it quickly replaces it, sometimes by the animal overcompensating and growing an extra one or two.

A one arm is lost it quickly replaces it, sometimes by the animal overcompensating and
B one arm is lost it is quickly replaced, with the animal sometimes overcompensating and
C they lose one arm they quickly replace it, sometimes by the animal overcompensating,
D they lose one arm they are quickly replaced, with the animal sometimes overcompensating,
E they lose one arm it is quickly replaced, sometimes with the animal overcompensating,

My analysis and query, The sentence structure IC {Startfish + modifier+ verb (Have)}, and IC if + then clause+ modifier.

First query is in the "2nd IC" i'm not able to identify the Sub & Verb and

Second query is i'm not able to understand why "with" modifier is correct?
i understand that after the second clause is ended with "replaced" then Verb-ing should come instead of "with". Please correct me ?

and Lastly i always feel with seems to be the incorrect choice in GMAT in general.Could you please help me to correct my concept .

Thanks

Dear Nitin,

You aren't able to identify the subject and the verb because you're taking two clauses to be one clause. Your structure should read "if clause + then clause." The "if" clause is "one arm is lost" and the "then" clause is "it is quickly replaced".

Secondly, prepositional phrases are very versatile modifiers. It is perfectly fine for a prepositional phrase to modify an action. So, this part correctly tells us how the lost arm is replaced.

There is no rule that says that "with" is always in the incorrect choice. This is a complete misconception.

I hope this helps to clarify your doubts.

Regards,
Meghna

Hi Meghna,
I'm confused between option B & C.

B is in passive voice followed by ', with', where as C is in active voice followed by ',...by'. How this is possible ?

As, for passive voice 'by' should be used and 'with' should be for active voice. Still B is the correct answer...! Please clarify why so ? Is it ONLY because an 'and' is required at the end of the underlined part ?

And it'd be great if you share your detail analysis as well.

Thanks!
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Re: Starfish, with anywhere from five to eight arms, have a [#permalink]

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04 Apr 2014, 11:28
bagdbmba wrote:

Hi Meghna,
I'm confused between option B & C.

B is in passive voice followed by ', with', where as C is in active voice followed by ',...by'. How this is possible ?

As, for passive voice 'by' should be used and 'with' should be for active voice. Still B is the correct answer...! Please clarify why so ? Is it ONLY because an 'and' is required at the end of the underlined part ?

And it'd be great if you share your detail analysis as well.

Thanks!

Though I am not Meghna, I am happy to respond on this.

I think you have mistaken what OG's OE has said.
OG says that

IF A then B ( then since A and B are parallel, they should have same voice)

(A).one arm is lost it quickly replaces it, sometimes by the animal overcompensating and

ARM is lost => IT quickly replaces IT(ARM)

In conditional clause 'ARM' is at subject position and in the 'THEN' clause ARM is at object position. So, one in active other in passive
Hence not parallel.

(B). one arm is lost it is quickly replaced, with the animal sometimes overcompensating and

A= Arm is lost
B= IT(ARM) is quickly replaced

both in same voice hence parallel.

(C) contains comma hence wrong

Rgds,
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Re: Starfish, with anywhere from five to eight arms, have a [#permalink]

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02 May 2014, 10:16
15
2
macjas wrote:
Starfish, with anywhere from five to eight arms, have a strong regenerative ability, and if one arm is lost it quickly replaces it, sometimes by the animal overcompensating and growing an extra one or two.

(A) one arm is lost it quickly replaces it, sometimes by the animal overcompensating and
(B) one arm is lost it is quickly replaced, with the animal sometimes overcompensating and
(C) they lose one arm they quickly replace it, sometimes by the animal overcompensating,
(D) they lose one arm they are quickly replaced, with the animal sometimes overcompensating,
(E) they lose one arm it is quickly replaced, sometimes with the animal overcompensating,

JusTLucK04 wrote:
Thank You

Dear JusTLucK04,
I am happy to respond to your p.m.

I realize this is an official question, but I would call this problem one of GMAC's clunkers. It has a clear answer, but it falls short of the standards that the GMAT normally has on SC. In particular, the "with" + [noun] + [participial phrase] structure, as a substitute for a clause, is often something GMAC has considered wrong in other, better written questions, but here it is simply unavoidable. To umeshpatil, I would say: in the active voice, neither "with" nor "by" is ideal; for a new action, ideally we should have a whole new clause.

First of all, the first part is more elegant in (B):
(B) one arm is lost it is quickly replaced = concise and elegant
(E) they lose one arm it is quickly replaced = awkward
The former focuses exclusively on one subject, "one arm;" it has rhetorical focus. The latter jumps back and forth between two subjects --- the "starfish" and the "one arm." If (E) were entirely active, "if they lose one arm, they replace it," then there would be a consistent subject and consistent active voice. As it stands, (E) juxtaposes two subjects and also juxtaposes active vs. passive voice, all in a tiny clause. It's very awkward.

One crucial split in this sentence is the placement of the word "sometimes" --- exactly what should this word modify? We are already talking about the event in which the starfish loses an arm. Obviously, if the arm is replace, the animal is always the one who replaces it. The "sometimes" refers to the events in which multiple arms replace a single arm --- that sometimes happens. The placement in (E),
(E) ... sometimes with the animal overcompensating ...
suggests that sometimes the animal's action replaces the arm, and sometimes is something other than the animal replacing the arm. That's nonsensical. By contrast, (B) has:
(B) ... with the animal sometimes overcompensating and ...
Yes. It's the overcompensating that happens only sometimes, but it is always the action of the animal.

Finally, for the split at the end: this is one respect in which (B) is not ideal. I think it is awkward to put those two participles in parallel, "overcompensating and growing ..." Really, those are not two separate actions. Instead, the latter is an explanation of the former: what do we mean that starfish "overcompensates"? We mean that the starfish sometimes grows extra arms. It is an explanation of the same action, not a new action. Therefore, I think putting the two participles in parallel is less than ideal. It would be much better to give them the relationship that (E) has: "overcompensating, [that is to say] growing ..."

So (B) is the best answer, but it is not ideal. In fact, the entire question is not ideal, and it's no surprise that the GMAT got rid of it in its current material.

Let me know if anyone has any further questions.
Mike
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Re: Starfish, with anywhere from five to eight arms, have a [#permalink]

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07 May 2014, 16:48
umeshpatil wrote:
I am confused between use of 'with' and 'by'.

Is it that in Active voice, we should use 'with' and in passive voice 'by'. Can we have a good example apart from this question ?

Dear Umesh,

In this question, the choice between “with” and “by” isn’t dependent on a particular voice. The meaning of the sentence determines the same. Let’s have a look at the use of “by” and “with” in the context of this sentence.

In this question, the author intends to share the ability of starfish to regenerate their body parts. The author tells us how these starfish promptly replace a particular part of their body, sometimes going overboard in the process. The highlighted portion is the information given to us in the “with” phrase in the correct choice B. So let’s analyze this choice:

Starfish, with anywhere from five to eight arms, have a strong regenerative ability, and if one arm is lost it is quickly replaced, with the animal sometimes overcompensating and growing an extra one or two.

Now, how do you think the highlighted portion after “with” adds to the meaning of the rest of the sentence before it? The simple answer is that it gives us extra information about the action “it is quickly replaced”, right?

Let’s look at another sentence in which the “with” phrase plays a similar role:

We humans have a strong psychological defense mechanism and if faced with bereavement, we quickly go in to a denial mode, with some of us sometimes instead getting fixated on the mundane details of life.

Now in both the sentences, do you think “by” can convey the same meaning as the one conveyed by “with”?

The answer is no. Using “by” in either of the two sentences would mean that we intend to elaborate on the “how” aspect of the preceding clause. This shift in meaning is not correct.

In the example sentence, we are not trying to communicate the process through which some people go in to a denial mode. We are just trying to refer to a particular extreme circumstance in which the denial mode can be observed. Similarly, in the official question, the author intends to convey that in the process of replacing the arms, the creature sometimes ends up overcompensating and growing an extra arm or two. It is not by or through overcompensating that the animal replaces it. Now, one may argue that the original sentence has “by” in it; however, does “by” convey any logical meaning in the sentence. Let’s check the same:

Starfish have a strong regenerative ability, and if one arm is lost it is quickly replaced, sometimes by the animal overcompensating and growing an extra one or two.

Now does it make sense to say that the animal replaces the arm sometimes by/through overcompensating for the same? No it doesn’t! As stated earlier, the overcompensation happens in the process of replacement.

Hope the above discussion helps!

Regards,

Neeti.
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Re: Starfish, with anywhere from five to eight arms, have a [#permalink]

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12 May 2014, 20:54
1
1
bagdbmba wrote:
egmat wrote:
Nitinaka19 wrote:
Hi E-GMAT,

Starfish, with anywhere from five to eight arms, have a strong regenerative ability, and if one arm is lost it quickly replaces it, sometimes by the animal overcompensating and growing an extra one or two.

A one arm is lost it quickly replaces it, sometimes by the animal overcompensating and
B one arm is lost it is quickly replaced, with the animal sometimes overcompensating and
C they lose one arm they quickly replace it, sometimes by the animal overcompensating,
D they lose one arm they are quickly replaced, with the animal sometimes overcompensating,
E they lose one arm it is quickly replaced, sometimes with the animal overcompensating,

My analysis and query, The sentence structure IC {Startfish + modifier+ verb (Have)}, and IC if + then clause+ modifier.

First query is in the "2nd IC" i'm not able to identify the Sub & Verb and

Second query is i'm not able to understand why "with" modifier is correct?
i understand that after the second clause is ended with "replaced" then Verb-ing should come instead of "with". Please correct me ?

and Lastly i always feel with seems to be the incorrect choice in GMAT in general.Could you please help me to correct my concept .

Thanks

Dear Nitin,

You aren't able to identify the subject and the verb because you're taking two clauses to be one clause. Your structure should read "if clause + then clause." The "if" clause is "one arm is lost" and the "then" clause is "it is quickly replaced".

Secondly, prepositional phrases are very versatile modifiers. It is perfectly fine for a prepositional phrase to modify an action. So, this part correctly tells us how the lost arm is replaced.

There is no rule that says that "with" is always in the incorrect choice. This is a complete misconception.

I hope this helps to clarify your doubts.

Regards,
Meghna

Hi Meghna,
I'm confused between option B & C.

B is in passive voice followed by ', with', where as C is in active voice followed by ',...by'. How this is possible ?

As, for passive voice 'by' should be used and 'with' should be for active voice. Still B is the correct answer...! Please clarify why so ? Is it ONLY because an 'and' is required at the end of the underlined part ?

And it'd be great if you share your detail analysis as well.

Thanks!

Dear Bagdmba,

I can understand how the “and” difference between choice B and C may not seem very deterministic. That being said, choice C fails to convey the intended meaning of the author. The issue here is not that of active or passive voice. Please refer to the following post to understand how “by” does not work in the context of the sentence:
[url]
starfish-with-anywhere-from-five-to-eight-arms-have-a-132488-20.html#p1362426[/url]

Also the way choice C is written, it could be taken to nonsensically suggest that multiple starfish (they) collectively loose one arm (it). This issue does not arise in choice B. Please reconsider the question in the light of this discussion and do let me know if you have any other doubts.

Regards,
Neeti.
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Re: Starfish, with anywhere from five to eight arms, have a [#permalink]

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28 Oct 2014, 08:03
Pl. let me know if my understanding of the passage is correct: And suggest any changes to cement the gaps in the understanding:

Meaning Analysis:
The sentence wants to tells us two things about starfish:

1. They have several arms
2. They have excellent regenerative capability.

Due to the second one whenever one of the arms is lost they replace it quickly & in the process sometimes may overcompensate by growing one or two arms more.

Sentence structure:

1.Starfish ( Subj. )
with anywhere from five to eight arms ( Prepositional Phrase == FYI info. )

have ( Verb) a strong regenerative ability, & ( , FANBOYS hence new IC)
2. If one arm ( Subject ) is lost (verb) it (starfish but not grammatically correct , Subject) quickly replaces(Verb) it, sometimes by animal overcompensating & growing an extra one or two. ( Additional info. about previous cl. giving description as to how the arm is replaced.

Query:

1. I have rejected choice B as it says overcompensating & growing. It appeared to me that these to actions ( Overcompensation & growing of extra arm happened sequentially & thus eliminated choice B as it suggests that they ( overcompensate. & growing ) were describing replacement.

2. I have selected choice E as I thought Starfish= Plural per sentence needs to have they as the pronoun.
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Re: Starfish, with anywhere from five to eight arms, have a [#permalink]

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28 Oct 2014, 11:23
Quote:
1. I have rejected choice B as it says overcompensating & growing. It appeared to me that these to actions ( Overcompensation & growing of extra arm happened sequentially & thus eliminated choice B as it suggests that they ( overcompensate. & growing ) were describing replacement.

overcompensating and growing are actually modifying animal.

Quote:
2. I have selected choice E as I thought Starfish= Plural per sentence needs to have they as the pronoun.

The animal sometimes overcompensates and grows an extra one or two arms. So, sometimes is supposed to logically modify overcompensates.

However, in E, sometimes seems to be modifying animal.

By the way, option B, the correct answer, uses passive voice (one arm is lost) and is preferred over active voice in E (they lose one arm) because of meaning implications.
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Re: Starfish, with anywhere from five to eight arms, have a [#permalink]

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07 Feb 2015, 12:18
Option B. we need AND in the last to maintain the parallelism {overcompensating AND growing}

this removes, CDE

In option A, it is ambiguous.

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Re: Starfish, with anywhere from five to eight arms, have a [#permalink]

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08 Feb 2015, 09:10
Merged similar topic

rules-for-posting-in-verbal-gmat-forum-134642.html

#1 rule is just there because is the most important among the others

regards
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Re: Starfish, with anywhere from five to eight arms, have a [#permalink]

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02 Mar 2015, 02:44
macjas wrote:
Starfish, with anywhere from five to eight arms, have a strong regenerative ability, and if one arm is lost it quickly replaces it, sometimes by the animal overcompensating and growing an extra one or two.

A one arm is lost it quickly replaces it, sometimes by the animal overcompensating and
B one arm is lost it is quickly replaced, with the animal sometimes overcompensating and
C they lose one arm they quickly replace it, sometimes by the animal overcompensating,
D they lose one arm they are quickly replaced, with the animal sometimes overcompensating,
E they lose one arm it is quickly replaced, sometimes with the animal overcompensating,

A- The logical antecedent of IT is not clear and IT keeps jumping between Starfish and the arm. The sentence makes it cleat that starfish is plural because of the usage of the verb have in the non-underlined portion of the sentence.

C-This option illogically suggests that ALL the starfish WORK TOGETHER to replace one lost arm .

D-This option illogically suggests that the STARFISH are REPLACED.

E- Mixes up with active voice and passive voice- parallelism error.
If X ,( then) Y , -both X and Y should be of same voice.
if they lose one arm(then) it is quickly replaced. Here the part X is in active voice and the part Y is in passive voice.

Now we are left with B. B is correct because it addresses all the errors.
1. The antecedent of it is clear.
2. The meaning is clear .
3. Parallelism error is corrected. If X (then) Y. In this choice both X and Y are in passive voice.
4.The prepositional phrase starting with 'with' gives additional info. which is now more clear and not ambiguous.
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Re: Starfish, with anywhere from five to eight arms, have a [#permalink]

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02 Mar 2015, 02:46
Starfish, with anywhere from five to eight arms, have a strong regenerative ability, and if one arm is lost it quickly replaces it. sometimes by the animal overcompensating and growing an extra one or two.

A)one arm is lost it quickly replaces it, sometimes by the animal overcompensating and

(B) one arm is lost it is quickly replaced, with the animal sometimes overcompensating and

(C) they lose one arm they quickly replace it, sometimes by the animal overcompensating,

(D) they lose one arm they are quickly replaced, with the animal sometimes overcompensating,

(E) they lose one arm it is quickly replaced, sometimes with the animal overcompensating

A- The logical antecedent of IT is not clear and IT keeps jumping between Starfish and the arm. The sentence makes it cleat that starfish is plural because of the usage of the verb have in the non-underlined portion of the sentence.

C-This option illogically suggests that ALL the starfish WORK TOGETHER to replace one lost arm .

D-This option illogically suggests that the STARFISH are REPLACED.

E- Mixes up with active voice and passive voice- parallelism error.
If X ,( then) Y , -both X and Y should be of same voice.
if they lose one arm(then) it is quickly replaced. Here the part X is in active voice and the part Y is in passive voice.

Now we are left with B. B is correct because it addresses all the errors.
1. The antecedent of it is clear.
2. The meaning is clear .
3. Parallelism error is corrected. If X (then) Y. In this choice both X and Y are in passive voice.
4.The prepositional phrase starting with 'with' gives additional info. which is now more clear and not ambiguous.
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Re: Starfish, with anywhere from five to eight arms, have a [#permalink]

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31 Mar 2015, 14:27
Starfish, with anywhere from five to eight arms, have a strong regenerative ability, and if one arm is lost it quickly replaces it, sometimes by the animal overcompensating and growing an extra one or two.

We can eliminate S,D and E at the first sight. Overcompensating and growing must be connected - you can not just write overcompensating, growing.

A one arm is lost it quickly replaces it, sometimes by the animal overcompensating and --> Starfish is plural (starfish ...... have)
B one arm is lost it is quickly replaced, with the animal sometimes overcompensating and --> Correct. If..then used both with a passive construction; Pronoun problem has benn sliminated.
C they lose one arm they quickly replace it, sometimes by the animal overcompensating --> worng for the reasons stated above
D they lose one arm they are quickly replaced, with the animal sometimes overcompensating --> worng for the reasons stated above
E they lose one arm it is quickly replaced, sometimes with the animal overcompensating --> worng for the reasons stated above
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Re: Starfish, with anywhere from five to eight arms, have a [#permalink]

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14 Apr 2015, 13:54
Starfish, with anywhere from five to eight arms, have a strong regenerative ability, and if one arm is lost it quickly replaces it, sometimes by the animal overcompensating and growing an extra one or two.

A one arm is lost it quickly replaces it, sometimes by the animal overcompensating and
Usage of "it" is modifying starfish which is plural + by the animal must be with the animal
B one arm is lost it is quickly replaced, with the animal sometimes overcompensating and
Correct
C they lose one arm they quickly replace it, sometimes by the animal overcompensating,
by the animal must be with the animal + Usage of second "they" has not reference + and is required in the end
D they lose one arm they are quickly replaced, with the animal sometimes overcompensating,
Usage of second "they" is wrong + and in the end is missing
E they lose one arm it is quickly replaced, sometimes with the animal overcompensating,
Placement of "sometimes" changes the meaning + and is missing

Hence B!
Ans

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Re: Starfish, with anywhere from five to eight arms, have a [#permalink]

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20 Apr 2015, 11:08
1
1
thangvietnam wrote:
macjas wrote:
Starfish, with anywhere from five to eight arms, have a strong regenerative ability, and if one arm is lost it quickly replaces it, sometimes by the animal overcompensating and growing an extra one or two.

A one arm is lost it quickly replaces it, sometimes by the animal overcompensating and
B one arm is lost it is quickly replaced, with the animal sometimes overcompensating and
C they lose one arm they quickly replace it, sometimes by the animal overcompensating,
D they lose one arm they are quickly replaced, with the animal sometimes overcompensating,
E they lose one arm it is quickly replaced, sometimes with the animal overcompensating,

I do not like this problem though it is in the latest og book. overcompensating and growing can not be separate actions. so "and" is wrong to connect them. the separateness is tested a lot on gmat sc and is central staple gmat play on us . strange, why gmat make mistake on this point.

or my english grammar is not good enough.

dont worry, there is only one question like this in the latest og book.

Dear thangvietnam,
I'm happy to respond. Yes, this is SC #114, in the OG13 and the OG2015.

It's absolutely true that the OA, (B), is not ideal. The "and" link between the two participles, "overcompensating" and "growing," is certainly questionable. Technically, are those two actions identical? Does losing the arm set off a biological chain of events in the starfish that we would called "overcompensating," and that one result among many of this "overcompensating" is the "growing" of two arms? I certainly don't know enough about the biology of starfish to answer this question either way, but it's at least conceivable that the actions "overcompensating" and "growing" are not coextensively identical and therefore merit an "and" conjunction. Admittedly, this is somewhat ambiguous.

Similarly, the "with" + [noun] + [participle] structure---actually, two participles in parallel---is also questionable. Certainly, this structure, with different emphases, is considered incorrect on some questions. Again, this is iffy.

So, (B) has nothing that is clearly, unambiguously wrong, but it has some "shades of gray" problems. What makes it the right answer is that each other answer has something definitively wrong about it. Choices (A) & (C) & (D) all make trainwreck pronoun errors, so they are not even possibly correct. In (E), the big problem is subtle. In a condition statement, an if-then statement, the "if" part is called the premise, and the "then" part is called the conclusion. The grammar supports the logic of the conditional statement when both premise and conclusion are in the same voice---either both active or both passive. (E) makes the mistake of having an active premise and a passive conclusion, and this sounds undefinably awkward. Since (E) can be right, it only leaves (A) with all its imperfections.

Remember, this is #114 in the OG. There is a rough correlation between question number and difficulty, and since this is a higher question, it is one of the more difficult questions in the OG. This is one characteristic of the more difficult SC questions: the OA is far from ideal, but it's better than the other four answers, each of which is wrong for a clear and discernible reason.

Does all this make sense?
Mike
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Re: Starfish, with anywhere from five to eight arms, have a [#permalink]

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13 May 2015, 07:06
daagh wrote:
The tagging may include SV number agreement, and conjunction, which are also important things tested here. Starfish is treated as plural here as can be seen from the plural verb have in the non-underlined part

A one arm is lost it quickly replaces it, sometimes by the animal overcompensating and--- [color=#0000FF]it seems as if the plural starfish is pronouned by the first, singular it; in addition in an active voice sentence, the use of by is improper
[/color]
B one arm is lost it is quickly replaced, with the animal sometimes overcompensating and ------- seems ok with the SV problem avoided altogether. Here the it should logically refer to the arm. correct choice

C they lose one arm they quickly replace it, sometimes by the animal overcompensating, -----use of by is improper in an active voice setting. It should be with the animal rather than by the animal; overcompensating, growing is improper co-ordination. There should be an and in between

D they lose one arm they are quickly replaced, with the animal sometimes overcompensating,’---use of they means that the starfish themselves are replaced; over compensating should be followed by and

E they lose one arm it is quickly replaced, sometimes with the animal overcompensating, --- in a passive voice we need to use by rather than with ; in addition overcompensating should be followed by and

Hi daagh
thank you for your explanations. here are some conclusions. (actually my opinion as a non-native) and please correct me
1- you said in AC "E" that in a passive voice we need to use "by" rather than "with", but in AC "B", which is the OA, GMAC used the same construction "with".
conclusion: choice "E" is incorrect because of two reasons: 1- the lack of "and" 2- rhetorical agreement (as in If X, Y both clauses must be either passive or active)
2- choice C, D and A have the mentioned rhetorical agreement.
3- all the ACs are pretty ugly and even the Choice B is questionable , as [with]+[n]+[pp] along with ambiguity in parallelism between "overcompensating" and "growing". but this choice a little bit better than the other choices

comment?
tnx
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Re: Starfish, with anywhere from five to eight arms, have a [#permalink]

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16 Apr 2016, 20:13
mikemcgarry wrote:
thangvietnam wrote:
macjas wrote:
Starfish, with anywhere from five to eight arms, have a strong regenerative ability, and if one arm is lost it quickly replaces it, sometimes by the animal overcompensating and growing an extra one or two.

A one arm is lost it quickly replaces it, sometimes by the animal overcompensating and
B one arm is lost it is quickly replaced, with the animal sometimes overcompensating and
C they lose one arm they quickly replace it, sometimes by the animal overcompensating,
D they lose one arm they are quickly replaced, with the animal sometimes overcompensating,
E they lose one arm it is quickly replaced, sometimes with the animal overcompensating,

I do not like this problem though it is in the latest og book. overcompensating and growing can not be separate actions. so "and" is wrong to connect them. the separateness is tested a lot on gmat sc and is central staple gmat play on us . strange, why gmat make mistake on this point.

or my english grammar is not good enough.

dont worry, there is only one question like this in the latest og book.

Dear thangvietnam,
I'm happy to respond. Yes, this is SC #114, in the OG13 and the OG2015.

It's absolutely true that the OA, (B), is not ideal. The "and" link between the two participles, "overcompensating" and "growing," is certainly questionable. Technically, are those two actions identical? Does losing the arm set off a biological chain of events in the starfish that we would called "overcompensating," and that one result among many of this "overcompensating" is the "growing" of two arms? I certainly don't know enough about the biology of starfish to answer this question either way, but it's at least conceivable that the actions "overcompensating" and "growing" are not coextensively identical and therefore merit an "and" conjunction. Admittedly, this is somewhat ambiguous.

Similarly, the "with" + [noun] + [participle] structure---actually, two participles in parallel---is also questionable. Certainly, this structure, with different emphases, is considered incorrect on some questions. Again, this is iffy.

So, (B) has nothing that is clearly, unambiguously wrong, but it has some "shades of gray" problems. What makes it the right answer is that each other answer has something definitively wrong about it. Choices (A) & (C) & (D) all make trainwreck pronoun errors, so they are not even possibly correct. In (E), the big problem is subtle. In a condition statement, an if-then statement, the "if" part is called the premise, and the "then" part is called the conclusion. The grammar supports the logic of the conditional statement when both premise and conclusion are in the same voice---either both active or both passive. (E) makes the mistake of having an active premise and a passive conclusion, and this sounds undefinably awkward. Since (E) can be right, it only leaves (A) with all its imperfections.

Remember, this is #114 in the OG. There is a rough correlation between question number and difficulty, and since this is a higher question, it is one of the more difficult questions in the OG. This is one characteristic of the more difficult SC questions: the OA is far from ideal, but it's better than the other four answers, each of which is wrong for a clear and discernible reason.

Does all this make sense?
Mike

Mike, thanks for the explanation. Your thoughts are well reasoned.

I will just like to the differences between E and B since I have got it wrong.

Somewhere in this thread says that the problem with E is that "sometimes with" changes the meaning. I do not dispute this point.

But what I had problems with is B, "compensating and growing xxxx". I saw this problem as bigger than "sometimes with" since "growing xxx" is a modifier to "the animal sometimes overcompensating". However, if we say "growing xxx" modifies "the animal sometimes", it changes the meaning. "growing xxx" is an elaboration of overcompensating and not just standalone as "growing xxx". This was why I had chose against B.

I guess this problem is less of an issue compared with that of E.

Happy to hear any thoughts!
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Re: Starfish, with anywhere from five to eight arms, have a [#permalink]

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17 Apr 2016, 11:11
Starfish do not replace the arm - Imagine a Human replacing his/her arm. (The arms are replaced by X / Y)
A C out.
D - pronoun error, arm --- they.
E missing the word 'by' - they lose one arm it is replaced "by" , sometimes......, growing an extra one or two. Also, If Active {Then} Passive is wrong. So word by also will not help.
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Re: Starfish, with anywhere from five to eight arms, have a [#permalink]

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27 Oct 2016, 10:14
Hi mikemcgarry,

In one of the questions, the solution was that in case where there is too much action in the prepositional phrase, it is wrong in GMAT.

FOr OA, the prepositional phrase is with the animal sometimes overcompensating and ...

Here it is prepostional phrase+noun+verb, hence it is necessary to make it a seperate sentence.

Regards
mikemcgarry wrote:
thangvietnam wrote:
macjas wrote:
Starfish, with anywhere from five to eight arms, have a strong regenerative ability, and if one arm is lost it quickly replaces it, sometimes by the animal overcompensating and growing an extra one or two.

A one arm is lost it quickly replaces it, sometimes by the animal overcompensating and
B one arm is lost it is quickly replaced, with the animal sometimes overcompensating and
C they lose one arm they quickly replace it, sometimes by the animal overcompensating,
D they lose one arm they are quickly replaced, with the animal sometimes overcompensating,
E they lose one arm it is quickly replaced, sometimes with the animal overcompensating,

I do not like this problem though it is in the latest og book. overcompensating and growing can not be separate actions. so "and" is wrong to connect them. the separateness is tested a lot on gmat sc and is central staple gmat play on us . strange, why gmat make mistake on this point.

or my english grammar is not good enough.

dont worry, there is only one question like this in the latest og book.

Dear thangvietnam,
I'm happy to respond. Yes, this is SC #114, in the OG13 and the OG2015.

It's absolutely true that the OA, (B), is not ideal. The "and" link between the two participles, "overcompensating" and "growing," is certainly questionable. Technically, are those two actions identical? Does losing the arm set off a biological chain of events in the starfish that we would called "overcompensating," and that one result among many of this "overcompensating" is the "growing" of two arms? I certainly don't know enough about the biology of starfish to answer this question either way, but it's at least conceivable that the actions "overcompensating" and "growing" are not coextensively identical and therefore merit an "and" conjunction. Admittedly, this is somewhat ambiguous.

Similarly, the "with" + [noun] + [participle] structure---actually, two participles in parallel---is also questionable. Certainly, this structure, with different emphases, is considered incorrect on some questions. Again, this is iffy.

So, (B) has nothing that is clearly, unambiguously wrong, but it has some "shades of gray" problems. What makes it the right answer is that each other answer has something definitively wrong about it. Choices (A) & (C) & (D) all make trainwreck pronoun errors, so they are not even possibly correct. In (E), the big problem is subtle. In a condition statement, an if-then statement, the "if" part is called the premise, and the "then" part is called the conclusion. The grammar supports the logic of the conditional statement when both premise and conclusion are in the same voice---either both active or both passive. (E) makes the mistake of having an active premise and a passive conclusion, and this sounds undefinably awkward. Since (E) can be right, it only leaves (A) with all its imperfections.

Remember, this is #114 in the OG. There is a rough correlation between question number and difficulty, and since this is a higher question, it is one of the more difficult questions in the OG. This is one characteristic of the more difficult SC questions: the OA is far from ideal, but it's better than the other four answers, each of which is wrong for a clear and discernible reason.

Does all this make sense?
Mike
Re: Starfish, with anywhere from five to eight arms, have a   [#permalink] 27 Oct 2016, 10:14

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