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# The data being collected in the current geological survey

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Joined: 03 Mar 2013
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The data being collected in the current geological survey [#permalink]

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06 May 2013, 02:51
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Difficulty:

95% (hard)

Question Stats:

21% (02:18) correct 79% (01:13) wrong based on 5023 sessions

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The data being collected in the current geological survey are providing a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but their greatest importance might lie in how they influence the upcoming decision by those same engineers on whether to retrofit 75 bridges in the survey zone.

A. The data being collected in the current geological survey are providing a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but their greatest importance

B. The data being collected in the current geological survey provide a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but its greatest importance

C. The data collected in the current geological survey is providing a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but their greatest importance

D. The data collected in the current geological survey provides a strong warning for engineers in consideration of the new dam project, but its greatest importance

E. The data collected in the current geological survey provide a strong warning for engineers in consideration for the new dam project, but the greatest importance

If you like the question I won't mind any Kudos
[Reveal] Spoiler: OA

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Last edited by thelosthippie on 07 May 2013, 01:51, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: The data being collected in the current geological survey [#permalink]

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21 Apr 2014, 20:29
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thelosthippie wrote:
The data being collected in the current geological survey are providing a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but their greatest importance might lie in how they influence the upcoming decision by those same engineers on whether to retrofit 75 bridges in the survey zone.

A. The data being collected in the current geological survey are providing a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but their greatest importance

B. The data being collected in the current geological survey provide a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but its greatest importance

C. The data collected in the current geological survey is providing a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but their greatest importance

D. The data collected in the current geological survey provides a strong warning for engineers in consideration of the new dam project, but its greatest importance

E. The data collected in the current geological survey provide a strong warning for engineers in consideration for the new dam project, but the greatest importance

If you like the question I won't mind any Kudos

Responding to a pm:

A few things to note:

Technically, data is plural of datum. In academic writing it is almost always treated as plural. It is treated as singular in informal writing but GMAT favors treating it as plural. I do not have my OG12 at hand right now but if you look for references of data, it is used as plural.

Even if you do not know this, the use of "theyinfluence the upcoming" should tell you that data is used in plural form here.

There are many pronouns used here. Antecedent of each pronoun is present in the sentence. The usage clarifies which pronoun refers to data and which refers to engineers.

The data being collected in the current geological survey are providing a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but their greatest importance might lie in how they influence the upcoming decision by those same engineers on whether to retrofit 75 bridges in the survey zone.

they - only engineers can consider
their, they - greatest importance will be of data, data will influence the decision

There is no ambiguity in the use of pronouns. The nouns are present and the usage clarifies the antecedent.

B and D use 'its' for data so they are incorrect.

C uses "is providing" for data so it is incorrect.

In option (E), "in consideration for the new dam project" is bad diction.

Here is a note on the use of being in this sentence by Brian:

Don't get me wrong - if you eliminate "being" every time you'll be right on well over 90% of SC questions when you do so. But I know there are questions out there where it's used correctly, and they're bound to be among the more difficult since most students know the "being is wrong!" principle. So having that extra moment of caution when, like in this case, you don't like the other answer choices...that's a nice competitive advantage.

"Being" is properly used to express a temporary state. It's often used hideously on the GMAT as a modifier for something that isn't at all temporary:

Being the first man to walk on the moon, Neil Armstrong...

"Being" is wrong there - he wasn't "being" the first man on the moon...that's just who he is.

But you could correctly say:

While being driven to the shuttle launch, Neil Armstrong remarked to his chauffeur that...

Because "being driven" is a temporary state.

So in this question, which clearly denotes the "current geological survey", "being collected" is a temporary state. The data won't always be collected, but currently for a temporary period of time the data are being collected, so "being" is used properly here.

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Re: The data being collected in the current geological survey [#permalink]

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07 May 2013, 01:58
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Solution: A

Everyone got the 'data' part so the choice was between A and E.

In (E) “in consideration for” is improper diction and the meaning is unclear in the second portion – without the possessive “their” it is unclear what “the greatest importance” is referring to thus (E) is incorrect. Only (A) – even though it may sound strange to your ear – properly matches the plural data with a plural verb and plural verbs. Answer choice (A) is correct.
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Re: The data being collected in the current geological survey [#permalink]

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06 May 2013, 19:19
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First of all, "Data" can be used as either plural or singular. But the usage data as plural is more common.

Second. Because of "they", we should consider data plural noun.

The data being collected in the current geological survey are providing a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but their greatest importance might lie in how they influence the upcoming decision by those same engineers on whether to retrofit 75 bridges in the survey zone.

A. The data being collected in the current geological survey are providing a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but their greatest importance
>>> Wrong. "they" and "their" are not clear.

B. The data being collected in the current geological survey provide a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but its greatest importance
>>> Wrong.

C. The data collected in the current geological survey is providing a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but their greatest importance
>>> Wrong.

D. The data collected in the current geological survey provides a strong warning for engineers in consideration of the new dam project, but its greatest importance
>>> Wrong.

E. The data collected in the current geological survey provide a strong warning for engineers in consideration for the new dam project, but the greatest importance
>>> Correct.

Waiting for the OA.
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The data being collected in the current geological survey [#permalink]

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07 May 2013, 08:18
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The OA is disputable; let’s see why because A GMAT question is just not one aspect; it is multi-dimensional.

A. The data being collected in the current geological survey are providing a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but their greatest importance ----- ‘they consider’ who consider? Data or Engineers? Not definitely data because data do not consider; only people do it. But the second pronoun ‘does’ not refer to engineers. But data for sure. This kind dual reference is not acceptable. I am not even disputing whether data is singular or plural; Data can very well be singular in the context since it is the totality of the data as a collective unit that is being considered here.

B. The data being collected in the current geological survey provide a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but its greatest importance –discordant as far as the number agreement of the data is considered. First, data seems to imply that it is plural because they provide but the pronoun ‘its’ seems to suggest singularity. Is this permissible?.

C. The data collected in the current geological survey is providing a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but their greatest importance -- discordant as far as the number agreement of the data is considered. First, data seems to imply that it is singular because it is providing but the pronoun ‘their’ seems to suggest plurality. Is this permissible? It is obvious that their greatest importance does not refer to the Engineers’ importance

D. The data collected in the current geological survey provides a strong warning for engineers in consideration of the new dam project, but its greatest importance – This is the only choice, where pronouns fit in smugly without room any ambiguity; But there is a sly pitfall here. In consideration may also mean - at a price of- or -in return for-. Like we say the hijackers agreed to release the hostages in consideration of a ransom \$10 m. This is what thelosthippie pointed out I suppose.
E. The data collected in the current geological survey provide a strong warning for engineers in consideration for the new dam project, but the greatest importance – ----the greatest importance is too general to specify a purpose, in addition, the tricky issue of the ‘in consideration of,

I would go with D as the least objectionable choice

Hold, hold, even D is not correct. The 'they' in the non - underlined part is plural; it is not tallying with the singular 'its' and the singular 'provides'

Maybe we will have to take E as the answer in spite the idiom error
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Last edited by daagh on 31 Mar 2017, 05:56, edited 2 times in total.
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The data being collected in the current geological [#permalink]

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14 Sep 2014, 01:20
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Note: data is plural form; datum is singular form.

The data being collected in the current geological survey are providing a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but their greatest importance might lie in how they influence the upcoming decision by those same engineers on whether to retrofit 75 bridges in the survey zone.

A. The data being collected in the current geological survey are providing a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but their greatest importance
Correct. I agree A is the best among the lot, but I'm still not satisfied with "they" (as they consider......) because "they" may refer to subject data (plural) or engineers.

B. The data being collected in the current geological survey provide a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but its greatest importance
Wrong. "data" is plural --> "its" is wrong.

C. The data collected in the current geological survey is providing a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but their greatest importance
Wrong. "data" is plural.

D. The data collected in the current geological survey provides a strong warning for engineers in consideration of the new dam project, but its greatest importance
Wrong. "data" is plural.

E. The data collected in the current geological survey provide a strong warning for engineers in consideration for the new dam project, but the greatest importance
Wrong. "in consideration for" is unidiomatic. "in consideration of" is correct.

Hope it helps.
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Re: The data being collected in the current geological survey are providin [#permalink]

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21 Sep 2015, 11:33
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The data being collected in the current geological survey are providing a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but their greatest importance might lie in how they influence the upcoming decision by those same engineers on whether to retrofit 75 bridges in the survey zone.

they in non underlined portion they influence the upcoming decision is plural indicating that data is plural.

B. The data being collected in the current geological survey provide a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but its greatest importance(it is used for plural subject data)

C. The data collected in the current geological survey is providinga strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but their greatest importance (plural subj-singular verb)

D. The data collected in the current geological survey provides a strong warning for engineers in consideration of the new dam project, but its greatest importance (plural subj-singular verb)

left with A and E,

A. The data being collected in the current geological survey are providing a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but their greatest importance

E. The data collected in the current geological survey provide a strong warning for engineers in consideration for the new dam project, but the greatest importance
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Re: The data being collected in the current geological survey are providin [#permalink]

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28 Mar 2017, 09:04
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I hate to say this, but I wouldn't lose too much sleep over this particular example. My usual disclaimer: this isn't an official GMAT question, and it's extraordinarily difficult for test-prep companies to perfectly copy the style of real GMAT questions. After all, the GMAT spends somewhere in the neighborhood of \$1500-\$3000 to develop each question. Even the very best test-prep companies can't compete with that.

And in this particular case, I think the question has some ambiguities that wouldn't appear on the actual exam.

First, let's talk about the issue of whether data is plural or singular. Reasonable and highly educated people disagree on this point. When I was in PhD school, my professors disagreed about whether data was singular or plural. Most editors treat it as singular now. Technically, I suppose that "datum" is singular, and "data" is plural, but most people would say "data is awesome" not "data are awesome" -- and that's how it would appear in most credible publications. So it's a grey area.

But guess what? That doesn't matter. The GMAT will never test you on something this ambiguous. Plenty of other nouns (media, fish, deer, etc.) could be either singular and plural, and the GMAT was always give you some other clue that tells you whether the noun is singular or plural. Here's a good example from the GMATPrep: https://gmatclub.com/forum/analyzing-ca ... 56-40.html

So no, you don't need to know if "data" or "media" are inherently singular or plural, because there's no standard answer, and it's not going to be an issue on the exam. If you think it's an issue on a question, look closely: the GMAT will give you another hint somewhere else.

I'm skeptical of this language in (A), to be honest: "The data being collected in the current geological survey are providing a strong warning..." It's not necessarily wrong, but the GMAT is unlikely to use "are providing" (progressive tense, if you like that jargon) unless there's a darned good reason for it.

The pronouns are dodgy, but arguably OK. The first "they" clearly refers to engineers; you could argue that "their" refers unambiguously to "data," since "their" is the subject of the second clause, and must refer back to the subject of the first clause. But it's hard to find official questions with pronouns that sound this murky, with several variations of "they" and "their" referring to different antecedents. Again, it's not necessarily wrong, but it's also not a typical construction that you'd see on the actual test.

In other words: don't worry too much about this one. I can see why (A) is the OA, but I see at least three issues that don't quite smell like the real thing.
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Re: The data being collected in the current geological survey are providin [#permalink]

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28 Mar 2017, 10:56
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GMATNinja wrote:
I hate to say this, but I wouldn't lose too much sleep over this particular example. My usual disclaimer: this isn't an official GMAT question, and it's extraordinarily difficult for test-prep companies to perfectly copy the style of real GMAT questions. After all, the GMAT spends somewhere in the neighborhood of \$1500-\$3000 to develop each question. Even the very best test-prep companies can't compete with that.

And in this particular case, I think the question has some ambiguities that wouldn't appear on the actual exam.

First, let's talk about the issue of whether data is plural or singular. Reasonable and highly educated people disagree on this point. When I was in PhD school, my professors disagreed about whether data was singular or plural. Most editors treat it as singular now. Technically, I suppose that "datum" is singular, and "data" is plural, but most people would say "data is awesome" not "data are awesome" -- and that's how it would appear in most credible publications. So it's a grey area.

But guess what? That doesn't matter. The GMAT will never test you on something this ambiguous. Plenty of other nouns (media, fish, deer, etc.) could be either singular and plural, and the GMAT was always give you some other clue that tells you whether the noun is singular or plural. Here's a good example from the GMATPrep: https://gmatclub.com/forum/analyzing-ca ... 56-40.html

So no, you don't need to know if "data" or "media" are inherently singular or plural, because there's no standard answer, and it's not going to be an issue on the exam. If you think it's an issue on a question, look closely: the GMAT will give you another hint somewhere else.

I'm skeptical of this language in (A), to be honest: "The data being collected in the current geological survey are providing a strong warning..." It's not necessarily wrong, but the GMAT is unlikely to use "are providing" (progressive tense, if you like that jargon) unless there's a darned good reason for it.

The pronouns are dodgy, but arguably OK. The first "they" clearly refers to engineers; you could argue that "their" refers unambiguously to "data," since "their" is the subject of the second clause, and must refer back to the subject of the first clause. But it's hard to find official questions with pronouns that sound this murky, with several variations of "they" and "their" referring to different antecedents. Again, it's not necessarily wrong, but it's also not a typical construction that you'd see on the actual test.

In other words: don't worry too much about this one. I can see why (A) is the OA, but I see at least three issues that don't quite smell like the real thing.

Dear Charles,

Through my English study, teachers told us that 'Data' is sigular but I found that OG 12 may treats 'Data' as Plural.

SC36, p. 40:
New DATA from United States Forest Service ecologists SHOW that for every dollar spent on controlled small- scale burning, forest thinning, and the training of fire-management personnel, seven dollars are saved that would have been spent on extinguishing big fires.

p. 360:
They ruled out local bias because breakage DATA obtained from other Pleistocene sites WERE similar to the La Brea data.

p. 366:
These DATA HAVE established a strong connection between variations in the Earth’s orbit and the periodicity of the ice ages.

what do you think?
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Re: The data being collected in the current geological survey [#permalink]

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06 May 2013, 11:49
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thelosthippie wrote:
The data being collected in the current geological survey are providing a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but their greatest importance might lie in how they influence the upcoming decision by those same engineers on whether to retrofit 75 bridges in the survey zone.

A. The data being collected in the current geological survey are providing a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but their greatest importance

B. The data being collected in the current geological survey provide a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but its greatest importance

C. The data collected in the current geological survey is providing a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but their greatest importance

D. The data collected in the current geological survey provides a strong warning for engineers in consideration of the new dam project, but its greatest importance

E. The data collected in the current geological survey provide a strong warning for engineers in consideration for the new dam project, but the greatest importance

I'll post the OA tomorrow. If you like the question I won't mind any Kudos

Took 150 secs approx. i will try to explain. although I'am new to this.

The correct option depends greatly on "how they influence the upcoming decision by those same engineers". Here IMO "they" refers to the data that will influence the engineer's decision. So "the data" is considered in plural form.

so i can directly strike out

B. The data being collected in the current geological survey provide a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but its greatest importance

C. The data collected in the current geological survey is providing a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but their greatest importance

D. The data collected in the current geological survey provides a strong warning for engineers in consideration of the new dam project, but its greatest importance

left with options A and E

now let us look at the tense of the correct portion of the sentence - "they influence the upcoming decision". this is in simple present. "they" refers to the data which "influence the upcoming decision." so in the 1st portion of the sentence also, the tense should be simple present.

So

Hippie: (tomorrow) please tell me how badly have I understood this if i'm utterly wrong.

P.S. - thoroughly tough
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Re: The data being collected in the current geological survey [#permalink]

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04 Jan 2015, 21:13
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aviram wrote:
thelosthippie wrote:
The data being collected in the current geological survey are providing a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but their greatest importance might lie in how they influence the upcoming decision by those same engineers on whether to retrofit 75 bridges in the survey zone.

A. The data being collected in the current geological survey are providing a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but their greatest importance

B. The data being collected in the current geological survey provide a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but its greatest importance

C. The data collected in the current geological survey is providing a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but their greatest importance

D. The data collected in the current geological survey provides a strong warning for engineers in consideration of the new dam project, but its greatest importance

E. The data collected in the current geological survey provide a strong warning for engineers in consideration for the new dam project, but the greatest importance

If you like the question I won't mind any Kudos

You can narrow down to A and E pretty easily. Intuitively, I find both a little problematic, but in option A, the use of 'they' to refer the engineers and 'their' to refer to data, followed by 'they' to refer to data and 'those' to refer to engineers is very unclear. That leaves us with answer E, which has a very cumbersome construction (especially the in consideration... part) but can't find anything specifically incorrect with it. My answer by elimination is E. The best way would be to use the antecedents in sentence A, but that isn't amongst the choices.

(E) is incorrect. The correct answer is (A)
You should check out these two posts:
http://www.veritasprep.com/blog/2014/11 ... s-part-ii/
http://www.veritasprep.com/blog/2014/10 ... -sc-myths/

The first one discusses this question and the second one discusses a similar question with multiple pronouns.
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Re: The data being collected in the current geological survey are providin [#permalink]

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21 Sep 2015, 22:52
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kanigmat011 wrote:
souvik101990 wrote:
The data being collected in the current geological survey are providing a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but their greatest importance might lie in how they influence the upcoming decision by those same engineers on whether to retrofit 75 bridges in the survey zone.

A. The data being collected in the current geological survey are providing a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but their greatest importance

B. The data being collected in the current geological survey provide a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but its greatest importance

C. The data collected in the current geological survey is providing a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but their greatest importance

D. The data collected in the current geological survey provides a strong warning for engineers in consideration of the new dam project, but its greatest importance

E. The data collected in the current geological survey provide a strong warning for engineers in consideration for the new dam project, but the greatest importance

My understanding of this:

I considered Data as singular which rules out Option A,B,E on Sub Verb error
Left are C and D out of which
D has ambiguous its

So IMO C

Further to check usage of Data I found it can be used both as Singular or Plural

So confused now should we consider it singular or plural here!
Data is a Latin plural with a singular datum though datum is seldom used on its own any more. The Macquarie Dictionary says: ‘The connection between data the plural and datum the singular has been almost completely broken, so that while datum survives in such compounds as datum point, it does not have the frequency of use that data has.

But should data be singular or plural?

Many writers, knowing its Latin origins, insist that data must take a plural verb.

The data were analysed after they were collected.
rather than
The data was analysed after it was collected.

Both usages exist today, but often the distinction will be made based on whether you are treating data as a count or noncount noun (also known as a mass noun).

When data is a count noun (items that can be counted), the plural makes sense.

The data used were out of date.

In that type of sentence, you could replace data with another count noun such as ‘facts’.

However, when data is treated as a noncount noun (items cannot be counted), the singular makes sense.

The data used was out of date.

With that type of sentence, you could replace data with a word such as ‘information’.
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Re: The data being collected in the current geological survey are providin [#permalink]

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21 Sep 2015, 23:00
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kanigmat011 wrote:
kanigmat011 wrote:
souvik101990 wrote:
The data being collected in the current geological survey are providing a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but their greatest importance might lie in how they influence the upcoming decision by those same engineers on whether to retrofit 75 bridges in the survey zone.

A. The data being collected in the current geological survey are providing a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but their greatest importance

B. The data being collected in the current geological survey provide a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but its greatest importance

C. The data collected in the current geological survey is providing a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but their greatest importance

D. The data collected in the current geological survey provides a strong warning for engineers in consideration of the new dam project, but its greatest importance

E. The data collected in the current geological survey provide a strong warning for engineers in consideration for the new dam project, but the greatest importance

My understanding of this:

I considered Data as singular which rules out Option A,B,E on Sub Verb error
Left are C and D out of which
D has ambiguous its

So IMO C

Further to check usage of Data I found it can be used both as Singular or Plural

So confused now should we consider it singular or plural here!
Data is a Latin plural with a singular datum though datum is seldom used on its own any more. The Macquarie Dictionary says: ‘The connection between data the plural and datum the singular has been almost completely broken, so that while datum survives in such compounds as datum point, it does not have the frequency of use that data has.

But should data be singular or plural?

Many writers, knowing its Latin origins, insist that data must take a plural verb.

The data were analysed after they were collected.
rather than
The data was analysed after it was collected.

Both usages exist today, but often the distinction will be made based on whether you are treating data as a count or noncount noun (also known as a mass noun).

When data is a count noun (items that can be counted), the plural makes sense.

The data used were out of date.

In that type of sentence, you could replace data with another count noun such as ‘facts’.

However, when data is treated as a noncount noun (items cannot be counted), the singular makes sense.

The data used was out of date.

With that type of sentence, you could replace data with a word such as ‘information’.

Considering the above findings I feel here data should be plural

So Now B and D are out because of usage of its is incorrect and ambiguous

Further Option C is out as is cannot refer to plural data

Left with A and E
A makes better sense to me as "but the greatest importance""in E does not make it clear who's greatest importance

IMO A is correct
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Re: The data being collected in the current geological survey are providin [#permalink]

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29 Mar 2017, 08:44
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Yes -- the GMAT has a history of treating both "data" and "media" as plural. But I think it's a non-issue. Notice that in each of the examples you cited, you don't have any choice: in the first one, "New data... show" isn't even underlined, so it has no impact on the answer. The other two examples are CR, and the subject-verb agreement isn't our problem.

So you deserve 20 points for attention to detail! (Hopefully the GMAT folks will apply those points directly to your score!) But I still don't think it's anything to worry about: I still haven't seen an official question that requires you to actually know whether potentially ambiguous nouns (data, media, fish, deer...) are singular or plural. If it's an issue, they'll give you another clue to tell you whether "data" is singular or plural.

And I also agree with your English training: at least in the United States, "data" is singular. So please hug your teachers for me.
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Re: The data being collected in the current geological survey [#permalink]

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06 May 2013, 19:46
Marked D first, but E is the correct answer!

E. The data collected in the current geological survey provide a strong warning for engineers in consideration for the new dam project, but the greatest importance
>>> Correct.

Totally skipped to see the complete sentence and had marked D in the begining.

Two learnings:

1) Data can be used both as singular and Plural
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Re: The data being collected in the current geological survey [#permalink]

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29 Oct 2013, 03:16
thelosthippie wrote:
Solution: A

Everyone got the 'data' part so the choice was between A and E.

In (E) “in consideration for” is improper diction and the meaning is unclear in the second portion – without the possessive “their” it is unclear what “the greatest importance” is referring to thus (E) is incorrect. Only (A) – even though it may sound strange to your ear – properly matches the plural data with a plural verb and plural verbs. Answer choice (A) is correct.

So data IS or data ARE or the both?

I am quite confused here... I norrow is down to A & B, but i chose B because ITS seems logical to me...

Thx you!
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Re: The data being collected in the current geological survey [#permalink]

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21 Apr 2014, 06:19
I faced this question in the recent mock of VeritasPrep.

And not I am convinced that the OA is debatable due to pronoun ambiguity the OA offers.

The data being collected in the current geological survey are providing a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but their greatest importance

Per the meaning the 'THEIR' should refer the 'DATA'and 'THEY' should refer the 'engineers'. But since we know the rule of PRONOUN REPEATS both should refer to single noun, this answer choice is not worthy.

Experts plz pour in

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Re: The data being collected in the current geological survey [#permalink]

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21 Apr 2014, 07:48
Quote:
The data being collected in the current geological survey are providing a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but their greatest importance

Per the meaning the 'THEIR' should refer the 'DATA'and 'THEY' should refer the 'engineers'. But since we know the rule of PRONOUN REPEATS both should refer to single noun, this answer choice is not worthy.

pronoun ambiguity is not an absolute rule .the things that we need to think about pronoun are :
1 ) does pronoun had an antecedent
2) do they match in plurality or singularity

also "being" does not make any answer choice wrong
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Re: The data being collected in the current geological survey [#permalink]

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21 Apr 2014, 10:01
Quote:
The data being collected in the current geological survey are providing a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but their greatest importance

Per the meaning the 'THEIR' should refer the 'DATA'and 'THEY' should refer the 'engineers'. But since we know the rule of PRONOUN REPEATS both should refer to single noun, this answer choice is not worthy.

pronoun ambiguity is not an absolute rule .the things that we need to think about pronoun are :
1 ) does pronoun had an antecedent
2) do they match in plurality or singularity

also "being" does not make any answer choice wrong

Hi,

I totally disagree with you in terms of what you said for pronoun ambiguity since the above sentence won't convey the intended meaning as per choice (A).

It is not an absolute rule. However, this question is testing only this aspect.

OG says this rule is not to look after since the question has other violations of grammar, but when the question is testing only this aspect then it has to be considered.

Furthermore, this question has been rejected as debatable OA in many forums.

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The data being collected in the current geological [#permalink]

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14 Sep 2014, 08:45
Thanks souvik101990 for posting all these goodies.I appreciate.
The data being collected in the current geological survey are providing a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but their greatest importance might lie in how they influence the upcoming decision by those same engineers on whether to retrofit 75 bridges in the survey zone.

A. The data being collected in the current geological survey are providing a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but their greatest importance
B. The data being collected in the current geological survey provide a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but its greatest importance
C. The data collected in the current geological survey is providing a strong warning for engineers as they consider the new dam project, but their greatest importance
D. The data collected in the current geological survey provides a strong warning for engineers in consideration of the new dam project, but its greatest importance
E. The data collected in the current geological survey provide a strong warning for engineers in consideration for the new dam project, but the greatest importance

1:Data mentioned in underlined part is plural.
2:"Their" in second clause point to the data in first clause and those stands for engineers.They/their in second clause doesn't make sense with engineer so no ambiguity here.
3: A Vs E:
I don't see any grammatical issues. what makes A better than E is that in E data is removed from "the greatest importance". "the greatest importance" of what? Data.
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