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The current administration and Congress have once again practiced bad

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Re: The current administration and Congress have once again practiced bad [#permalink]

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New post 02 Jul 2008, 01:38
I go with A..
Actually A & D are close,but A is specific to disadvantaged students

Looks like weve seen this question last month, but cant recollect the answer..
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Re: The current administration and Congress have once again practiced bad [#permalink]

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New post 02 Jul 2008, 07:45
Dhawan..Buddy its time to post the OA.
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Re: The current administration and Congress have once again practiced bad [#permalink]

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New post 02 Jul 2008, 15:48
I just googled the question, and found it discussed on two message boards (one was ScoreTop, so I went to the ManhattanGMAT one instead). The OA is indeed A. D cannot be the correct answer here, incidentally. That "Pell grants improve access to higher education for those who have historically been disadvantaged" is presented as a factual premise of the argument, not as its conclusion.

I don't much like the question for two reasons:

-the argument has more than one conclusion ("Cutting Pell grants will prevent the disadvantaged from receiving higher education"; "If the disadvantaged don't get access to higher education, the gap between rich and poor will widen"; "If the gap between rich and poor widens, the stability of democracy will be strained").

-since Pell grants and the cost of US education are likely better known to US test-takers than to others, the question invites a different amount of personal input from different test-taking populations. Those who know the expense of US higher education are likely to be more tempted by D than those who do not. One of the purposes of including the many diagnostic questions, the questions which don't count, on real GMATs is to identify whether questions are 'biased'-- that is, whether certain populations answer questions better than other populations do. In the research language, the questions are examined for 'differential impact'. Questions which show significant bias are either rejected or modified. The US and non-US test-taking populations are certainly examined in these differential impact studies; GMAC has published research papers about this.
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Re: The current administration and Congress have once again practiced bad [#permalink]

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New post 09 Jul 2008, 06:40
OA is A from old posts.

11-t33756?hilit=Pell+grants
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Re: The current administration and Congress have once again practiced bad [#permalink]

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New post 09 Jul 2008, 06:57
1
I got A as well. I think what threw a few people off is not identifying the correct conclusion.

"Without that access, the gap between the rich and poor in this country will continue to widen, increasingly straining the stability of our democracy.'

If we look earlier in the argument we see that "access" is to higher education and not Pell grants. Pell grants are just one method of providing access to higher education for the disadvantaged.

So our conclusion is that not providing access to higher education will widen the gap between the rich and the poor.

A says that while we may not be increasing Pell grants (remember just one method of access for the disadvantaged), we are increasing total spending (access) to the disadvantaged.
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Re: The current administration and Congress have once again practiced bad [#permalink]

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New post 09 Jul 2008, 07:13
IMO it should be A or C.

the problem in A is that it only speaks about next year where as the argument talks abount giving higher education to underprivileged as a whole.

The problem in C is the assumption "urban communities".

C looks more convincing.
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Re: The current administration and Congress have once again practiced bad [#permalink]

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New post 09 Jul 2008, 07:33
neeshpal wrote:
IMO it should be A or C.

the problem in A is that it only speaks about next year where as the argument talks abount giving higher education to underprivileged as a whole.

The problem in C is the assumption "urban communities".

C looks more convincing.


A specifically says 'access to higher education for disadvantaged students'. If you look again at the conclusion you'll see this is exactly what we need to refute to weaken the conclusion.

C says they will increase AFTER SCHOOL PROGRAMS in URBAN COMMUNITIES.

1) After school programs are for high school and below and do not help to provide access to higher education.
2) Assuming that urban communities are disadvantaged is stereotypical and usually not socially acceptable. Urban simply means the city as compared to a rural area or suburban.
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Re: The current administration and Congress have once again practiced bad [#permalink]

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New post 09 Jul 2008, 16:50
But guys, I honestly don't like this question and I don't think it's representative of the actual gmat question. The usual answers to the CR questions will NEVER contradict the premise, something that answer choice A did in this question. The weakening or strengthening answers usually address the conclusion or the logical flow of the argument from the premise to the conclusion.

In CR, one should always treat the premise as true. One should only challenge whether the logical flaw from the premise to the conclusion is appropriate. In the weakening question, we could have an extra information that could make the conclusion doubtful...but to pick an answer choice that simply contradicts a premise in the argument is just simply wrong and not the correct way to tackle CR questions!
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Re: The current administration and Congress have once again practiced bad [#permalink]

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New post 09 Jul 2008, 17:42
tarek99 wrote:
But guys, I honestly don't like this question and I don't think it's representative of the actual gmat question. The usual answers to the CR questions will NEVER contradict the premise, something that answer choice A did in this question. The weakening or strengthening answers usually address the conclusion or the logical flow of the argument from the premise to the conclusion.

In CR, one should always treat the premise as true. One should only challenge whether the logical flaw from the premise to the conclusion is appropriate. In the weakening question, we could have an extra information that could make the conclusion doubtful...but to pick an answer choice that simply contradicts a premise in the argument is just simply wrong and not the correct way to tackle CR questions!


I agree with all you're saying, except with respect to this particular question- answer choice A does not contradict any of the premises of the argument. The argument says Pell grants are being cut, but nowhere does it mention other government funding for education.
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Re: The current administration and Congress have once again practiced bad [#permalink]

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New post 10 Jul 2008, 04:27
IanStewart wrote:
tarek99 wrote:
But guys, I honestly don't like this question and I don't think it's representative of the actual gmat question. The usual answers to the CR questions will NEVER contradict the premise, something that answer choice A did in this question. The weakening or strengthening answers usually address the conclusion or the logical flow of the argument from the premise to the conclusion.

In CR, one should always treat the premise as true. One should only challenge whether the logical flaw from the premise to the conclusion is appropriate. In the weakening question, we could have an extra information that could make the conclusion doubtful...but to pick an answer choice that simply contradicts a premise in the argument is just simply wrong and not the correct way to tackle CR questions!


I agree with all you're saying, except with respect to this particular question- answer choice A does not contradict any of the premises of the argument. The argument says Pell grants are being cut, but nowhere does it mention other government funding for education.


yeah it does....look at the first sentence of the argument:

"The current administration and Congress have once again practiced bad public policy in failing to increase Pell grants or at least limit their reduction for next year’s budget"

and what does option A say?:

"Total spending on programs targeted at improving access to higher education for disadvantaged students will increase in next year’s federal budget."

my question is, even if the increase did take place, it doesn't address whether the gap between the rich and poor will increase nor whether the stability of the democracy will be strained. Also, option A is basically trying to say that one of the premises mentioned in the argument was a lie....that's not the way to tackle CR questions.
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Re: The current administration and Congress have once again practiced bad [#permalink]

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New post 10 Jul 2008, 05:39
tarek99 wrote:
IanStewart wrote:
tarek99 wrote:
But guys, I honestly don't like this question and I don't think it's representative of the actual gmat question. The usual answers to the CR questions will NEVER contradict the premise, something that answer choice A did in this question. The weakening or strengthening answers usually address the conclusion or the logical flow of the argument from the premise to the conclusion.

In CR, one should always treat the premise as true. One should only challenge whether the logical flaw from the premise to the conclusion is appropriate. In the weakening question, we could have an extra information that could make the conclusion doubtful...but to pick an answer choice that simply contradicts a premise in the argument is just simply wrong and not the correct way to tackle CR questions!


I agree with all you're saying, except with respect to this particular question- answer choice A does not contradict any of the premises of the argument. The argument says Pell grants are being cut, but nowhere does it mention other government funding for education.


yeah it does....look at the first sentence of the argument:

"The current administration and Congress have once again practiced bad public policy in failing to increase Pell grants or at least limit their reduction for next year’s budget"

and what does option A say?:

"Total spending on programs targeted at improving access to higher education for disadvantaged students will increase in next year’s federal budget."

my question is, even if the increase did take place, it doesn't address whether the gap between the rich and poor will increase nor whether the stability of the democracy will be strained. Also, option A is basically trying to say that one of the premises mentioned in the argument was a lie....that's not the way to tackle CR questions.


You're not understanding what they are saying.

The Pell grant is just ONE program that provides access to disadvantaged students. They are many other programs that do the same thing.

Let's say there are 3 programs that all help to provide access to higher education for disadvantaged students. Let's call them the Pell grant, the State Instructional grant, and the Disadvantage grant.

The choose not to increase funding for Pell grants. What A is saying is that they are increasing the the funding for all the other programs.

So 2008:
Pell grant $1,000,000
State Instruction grant $1,000,000
Disadvantaged grant $1,000,000
Total $3,000,000

2009:
Pell grant $1,000,000 (no increase)
State Instructional grant $2,000,000
Disadvantaged grant $2,000,000
Total $5,000,000

They did NOT increase the Pell grants (just as stated in the passage) but total spending DID increase just as A states. You are right that the correct answer choice cannot contradict a premise (fact) within the passage. But A does not do this.
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Re: The current administration and Congress have once again practiced bad [#permalink]

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New post 10 Jul 2008, 06:04
oh, i see now....wow, thanks man! I honestly didn't realize that more than 1 grants institutions or organizations got involved in option A. that was a tricky question!
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Re: The current administration and Congress have once again practiced bad [#permalink]

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New post 04 Sep 2013, 04:35
The conclusion is that the government has “practiced bad public policy in failing
to increase Pell grants or at least limit their reduction for next year's budget." The
basis for that claim is that Pell grants improve access to higher education, which
allows lower-income students to improve their economic standing. The main
assumption this argument relies on is that Pell grants are the only means
available to lower-income students who wish to access higher education. The
correct answer will weaken the conclusion by contradicting this assumption.
(A) CORRECT. If total spending on access to higher education will increase, then
the federal government has addressed the issue that the author cites, albeit
through means other than Pell grants.
(B) Whether candidates for Pell grants are aware of their eligibility is irrelevant to
the claim that the government has practiced bad public policy.
(C) This choice may sound like a counterargument (that Congress is somehow
practicing good public policy by authorizing a bill that will increase after-school
programs in urban communities) to the argument presented (that the government
is practicing bad public policy by failing to safeguard Pell grants). However, we
have no evidence that after-school programs in urban communities help lowincome
students afford higher education, so this does not weaken the argument
presented by the author.
(D) The dollar amount of the Pell grants is irrelevant. To this argument, it matters
only that they provide some help at all.
(E) Increased spending on education as a percentage of the total budget does
not necessarily imply that low-income students will have better access to higher
education. In fact, it does not even imply that education spending (in dollars) will
increase.
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Re: The current administration and Congress have once again practiced bad [#permalink]

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New post Updated on: 05 Jun 2014, 02:59
This question seems to have stumped many because of he positioning of the conclusion. Finding the conclusion of the argument is the most important task, and here the conclusion is - The current administration and Congress have once again practiced bad public policy.

Note: The classic conclusion markers, strong tone and strong subjective opinion is found in this line. The last line - the gap between the rich and poor in this country will continue to widen, increasingly straining the stability of our democracy - is used to justify the conclusion.

Argument Structure:

PREMISES:

1. Failure to increase Pells Grant or at least limit its reduction.
2. Pell grants improve access to higher education for those who have historically been disadvantaged in our society by financial or other life circumstances, thereby helping recipients elevate themselves to the middle class.
3. Without that access, the gap between the rich and poor in this country will continue to widen, increasingly straining the stability of our democracy.

CONCLUSION:
The current administration and Congress have once again practiced bad public policy .

The question stem asks us to weaken the argument.

Lets look at Choice (E): Not Enough Information: It talks about Federal Spending on education whereas we are interested in improving access to historically disadvantaged sections of the society. We do not know how much of Federal Spending on education will be directed towards improving access to the disadvantaged sections of the society.

Choice (D): Tempting but Trap: On average, an individual Pell grant funds less than 15% of the full cost of attending a four-year college or university.

The argument states that Pells Grant improves access to higher education. It does not say it fully covers the cost of attending a four-year college or university. May be 15% is enough to improve access to higher education.

Choice (C): Irrelevant: Congress recently authorized a bill that will increase after-school programs in urban communities.
We do not know how it improves or reduces access to higher education.

Choice (B): Tempting but a Trap: The neediest candidates for Pell grants often lack information about their eligibility for such grants.
A very tempting choice but note the word "neediest". The neediest candidates lack information, and they are likely to be a small number, and the majority may actually benefit from it. So it strengthens the argument rather than weakening it.
The author of the argument is hoping that you will confuse a smaller group (neediest) with the larger group (all students who benefit from Pell's grants).

Choice (A): Correct: Total spending on programs targeted at improving access to higher education for disadvantaged students will increase in next year’s federal budget.

Note the words - “total spending on programs targeted at improving access to higher education for disadvantaged students will increase in next year’s federal budget.” It uses the same set of words and is a perfect alternative to the Pell Grants. Hence the criticism of the Congress for failing to increase Pell Grants is nullified. This is the right choice!

Hope that helps!

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Originally posted by CrackVerbalGMAT on 05 Jun 2014, 00:43.
Last edited by CrackVerbalGMAT on 05 Jun 2014, 02:59, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: The current administration and Congress have once again practiced bad [#permalink]

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New post 05 Jun 2014, 00:58
buffdaddy wrote:
Argument:
Pell Grants are being reduced
Pell Grants improve access to higher education (and therefore middle class) for student
Concl:Without this access, the gap between classes widens hence grants should not be reduced

IMO A, since A is correct here since it shows actually access is provided somehow differently


I think its right analysis but the most weakening argument would be "even with its access, the gap between classes cannot be reduced". Option B points out that even with Pell Grants, the gap will not be filled as the neediest of the grants has no or little knowledge about the same.

I go with B
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Re: The current administration and Congress have once again practiced bad [#permalink]

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New post 09 May 2015, 14:39
How to find conclusion in these kind of arguments. Please help
As per MGMAT, this is the conclusion : The conclusion is that the government has “practiced bad public policy in failing to increase Pell grants or at least limit their reduction for next year's budget."
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Re: The current administration and Congress have once again practiced bad [#permalink]

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New post 09 May 2015, 14:39
How to find conclusion in these kind of arguments. Please help
As per MGMAT, this is the conclusion : The conclusion is that the government has “practiced bad public policy in failing to increase Pell grants or at least limit their reduction for next year's budget."
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Re: The current administration and Congress have once again practiced bad [#permalink]

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New post 09 Oct 2015, 05:30
The current administration and Congress have once again practiced bad public policy in failing to increase Pell grants or at least limit their reduction for next year’s budget. Pell grants improve access to higher education for those who have historically been disadvantaged in our society by financial or other life circumstances, thereby helping recipients elevate themselves to the middle class. Without that access, the gap between the rich and poor in this country will continue to widen, increasingly straining the stability of our democracy.

Which of the following, if true, most seriously weakens the conclusion of this argument?

A) Total spending on programs targeted at improving access to higher education for disadvantaged students will increase in next year’s federal budget. correct, as if the total spending are increasing, the premise of the argument is contradicted and thus weakening the conclusion
B) The neediest candidates for Pell grants often lack information about their eligibility for such grants. wrong, here we are talking about only a fraction of total beneficiaries.
C) Congress recently authorized a bill that will increase after-school programs in urban communities. wrong, here too only a fraction
D) On average, an individual Pell grant funds less than 15% of the full cost of attending a four-year college or university. wrong again, as how much the grant is, it will help
E) Federal spending on education for next year will increase as a percentage of the total budget. wrong, talking about education and not particularly about higher education as discussed in the argument
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Re: The current administration and Congress have once again practiced bad [#permalink]

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New post 25 Jun 2016, 23:25
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- they did not increase pell grants, more over limiting it next year.
- PG improve access to higher education for needy
- if not this then gap between poor and rich will widen. - conclusion

Flaw with these arguments is - anything that contradict this conclusion, ofcource if they get more PG next year.


A) Total spending on programs targeted at improving access to higher education for disadvantaged students will increase in next year’s federal budget. - well a poor will get more benefit by this.
B) The neediest candidates for Pell grants often lack information about their eligibility for such grants. - means poor will not get PG due to lack of info
C) Congress recently authorized a bill that will increase after-school programs in urban communities. - increasing after school program is not going to help. better give one program but give PG with it.
D) On average, an individual Pell grant funds less than 15% of the full cost of attending a four-year college or university. - by this they are trying to say that help coming from PG is not significant. poors still need to pay a hefty price.
E) Federal spending on education for next year will increase as a percentage of the total budget. - if federal spending will increase then PG should also increase, but i can't say that with certainty, if yes then this will also weaken.

close call between A and E but i will go with A
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Re: The current administration and Congress have once again practiced bad [#permalink]

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New post 17 Jul 2016, 04:26
A directly attacks the premise. Is it common in weaken Q? I mean, it's extraneous to the conclusion..
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Re: The current administration and Congress have once again practiced bad   [#permalink] 17 Jul 2016, 04:26

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