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Studies have shown that ultrasound waves can affect neural activity in

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GMAT 1: 660 Q48 V33
Studies have shown that ultrasound waves can affect neural activity in  [#permalink]

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New post 15 Oct 2013, 06:33
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  35% (medium)

Question Stats:

74% (02:21) correct 26% (02:39) wrong based on 285 sessions

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Studies have shown that ultrasound waves can affect neural activity in the brain. Since current methods for brain stimulation require contact with sensitive tissue, technologies that can provide a controlled source of stimulation without direct contact with the brain are constantly sought after. Neuroscientists should research into the use of low frequency ultrasound transmission, such frequencies having the ability to penetrate the skull and engage neural stimulation without the risk of damage, as a previously unused non-invasive tool for combating psychiatric disorders.

In the argument, the two portions in boldface play which of the following roles?

A. The first is factual information that weakens a factor that the author aims to undermine; the second is evidence that directly supports the contradiction of those aims.

B. The first describes a disadvantageous circumstance; the second is support for the conclusion in the form of a characteristic with the potential to avoid such a circumstance.

C. The first presents a negative aspect of a method being challenged by the conclusion; the second is a positive characteristic inherent to that method.

D. The first is data that highlights the weakness of a certain procedure; the second is a judgement that opposes the use of that procedure.

E. The first gives details of the requirements of the use of a certain method; the second is data that indirectly calls into question the ability of that method to achieve its goal.
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Re: Studies have shown that ultrasound waves can affect neural activity in  [#permalink]

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New post 15 Oct 2013, 14:16
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akashb106 wrote:
Studies have shown that ultrasound waves can affect neural activity in the brain. Since current methods for brain stimulation require contact with sensitive tissue, technologies that can provide a controlled source of stimulation without direct contact with the brain are constantly sought after. Neuroscientists should research into the use of low frequency ultrasound transmission, such frequencies having the ability to penetrate the skull and engage neural stimulation without the risk of damage, as a previously unused non-invasive tool for combating psychiatric disorders.

In the argument, the two portions in boldface play which of the following roles?

A.) The first is factual information that weakens a factor that the author aims to undermine; the second is evidence that directly supports the contradiction of those aims.
B.) The first describes a disadvantageous circumstance; the second is support for the conclusion in the form of a characteristic with the potential to avoid such a circumstance.
C.) The first presents a negative aspect of a method being challenged by the conclusion; the second is a positive characteristic inherent to that method.
D.) The first is data that highlights the weakness of a certain procedure; the second is a judgement that opposes the use of that procedure.
E.) The first gives details of the requirements of the use of a certain method; the second is data that indirectly calls into question the ability of that method to achieve its goal.

Dear akashb106
I'm happy to help. :-)

I will say that, while I have tremendous respect for the Economist magazine, I am underwhelmed with the quality of writing in this question. For example, in the phrase "... should research into the use of ...", the use of that preposition is awkward and unidiomatic. That would never fly as a correct answer on the GMAT SC. The writing on official material GMAT CR & RC all rigorously conforms to the standards upheld on the GMAT SC, and all high quality GMAT prep material follows suit. I am a bit surprised to see the Economist falling short in this way.

As a practice GMAT CR question, this is OK.

Bold #1: current methods for brain stimulation require contact with sensitive tissue
This is a problem already experienced, a problem with current methods.

Bold #2: the ability to penetrate the skull and engage neural stimulation without the risk of damage
It's odd --- this is not a complete thought, again, uncharacteristic of what the GMAT would put in bold on the real test. This is a new piece of evidence, something that has yet to be tried, but seems like it would solve the problem addressed in the first bold statement.

(A) The first is factual information that weakens a factor that the author aims to undermine; the second is evidence that directly supports the contradiction of those aims.
The first states a problem with a method, but the deeper aim --- finding a means of brain stimulation --- that remains unchanged. The author isn't trying to "undermine" anything: the author just says, this old method had an agreed-upon problem, but the new method appears safe. That's not "undermining" at all. This is incorrect.

(B) The first describes a disadvantageous circumstance; the second is support for the conclusion in the form of a characteristic with the potential to avoid such a circumstance.
The fact that the current methods require contact with sensitive brain tissue, which they could easy damage --- that's a BIG disadvantage. The second does support the conclusion, and does have the potential to avoid the problem with the first method. This is very promising.

(C) The first presents a negative aspect of a method being challenged by the conclusion; the second is a positive characteristic inherent to that method.
We could say that the first does present a negative aspect of the old method, but then the second presents an entirely new method, not something positive about the old method. This choice is not correct.

(D) The first is data that highlights the weakness of a certain procedure; the second is a judgement that opposes the use of that procedure.
The first could be data that presents a weakness, that is, a reason for not following a certain procedure in most causes. The second is definitely not a judgment. You need a complete sentence to have a judgment! The second is just another fact. This choice is incorrect.

(E) The first gives details of the requirements of the use of a certain method; the second is data that indirectly calls into question the ability of that method to achieve its goal
The first just tells about the consequences of using that old method. It doesn't really give details, and it certainly says nothing about requirements for using that method. The second is another fact: it doesn't call anything in question; instead, it simply presents brand new information. This choice is incorrect.

Four answers are clearly incorrect, so (B) has to be the answer. In that sense, this has only one unambiguously correct answer, so this question is not bad. It just falls short of the GMAT standards in some ways. Here are some more boldface structure practice questions:
http://magoosh.com/gmat/2013/gmat-criti ... questions/

Let me know if you have any further questions.
Mike :-)
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Mike McGarry
Magoosh Test Prep


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Re: Studies have shown that ultrasound waves can affect neural activity in  [#permalink]

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New post 22 Nov 2019, 13:54
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Re: Studies have shown that ultrasound waves can affect neural activity in   [#permalink] 22 Nov 2019, 13:54
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