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The Interstate Bridge over the Apache River, built in the 19

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The Interstate Bridge over the Apache River, built in the 19  [#permalink]

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07 Mar 2014, 06:18
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The Interstate Bridge over the Apache River, built in the 1950s, shows a substantial amount of rust: as much as 45% of its surface is coated in rust. Community activists have argued that the bridge presents a hazard: it is likely to collapse in places where it has rusted through. Professors of mechanical engineering at the local university did an extensive analysis of the bridge. These professors and their graduate students determined that 98% of the rust on the bridge exists on the surface only, and actually seals the underlying steel from the corrosive influence of the elements. The results of this academic study suggest that the bridge is safe for continued use.

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

(A) The first is evidence in support of the conclusion; the second is that conclusion.

(B)The first is the main conclusion of the argument; the second provides evidence that calls this conclusion into question.

(C) The first is evidence taken to support one conclusion; the second provides evidence that calls this conclusion into question.

(D) The first is a position that the argument opposes; the second is the conclusion of the argument.

(E) The first is an interpretation of evidence; the second calls that evidence into question.

The answer is easy to determine by POE (Process of Elimination), but I don't understand how would could determine the main conclusion in this argument, because there are two valid conclusions each with their own premises.
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Re: The Interstate Bridge over the Apache River, built in the 19  [#permalink]

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12 Oct 2017, 19:43
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Thank you very much this is useful
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Re: The Interstate Bridge over the Apache River, built in the 19  [#permalink]

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07 Mar 2014, 22:06
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TooLong150 wrote:
The Interstate Bridge over the Apache River, built in the 1950s, shows a substantial amount of rust: as much as 45% of its surface is coated in rust. Community activists have argued that the bridge presents a hazard: it is likely to collapse in places where it has rusted through. Professors of mechanical engineering at the local university did an extensive analysis of the bridge. These professors and their graduate students determined that 98% of the rust on the bridge exists on the surface only, and actually seals the underlying steel from the corrosive influence of the elements. The results of this academic study suggest that the bridge is safe for continued use.

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

(A) The first is evidence in support of the conclusion; the second is that conclusion.

(B)The first is the main conclusion of the argument; the second provides evidence that calls this conclusion into question.

(C) The first is evidence taken to support one conclusion; the second provides evidence that calls this conclusion into question.

(D) The first is a position that the argument opposes; the second is the conclusion of the argument.

(E) The first is an interpretation of evidence; the second calls that evidence into question.

The answer is easy to determine by POE (Process of Elimination), but I don't understand how would could determine the main conclusion in this argument, because there are two valid conclusions each with their own premises.

IMO : Main Conclusion is the main point that the author of the argument wants us to understand / believe. After reading the full argument we can say that author wants us to believe that "the bridge is safe for continued use".

Can you say that author wants us to believe that "the bridge presents a hazard: it is likely to collapse"? For me, the answer is "no" (I hope that after reading this post, for you also the answer will be "no").

The main conclusion is the main point that author wants us to believe in....

Hope this helps
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Re: The Interstate Bridge over the Apache River, built in the 19  [#permalink]

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25 Apr 2015, 23:09
1
The Interstate Bridge over the Apache River, built in the 1950s, shows a substantial amount of rust: as much as 45% of its surface is coated in rust. Community activists have argued that the bridge presents a hazard: it is likely to collapse in places where it has rusted through. Professors of mechanical engineering at the local university did an extensive analysis of the bridge. These professors and their graduate students determined that 98% of the rust on the bridge exists on the surface only, and actually seals the underlying steel from the corrosive influence of the elements. The results of this academic study suggest that the bridge is safe for continued use.

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

The 1st BF is the position which is opposed in the argument and in the main conclusion. The main conclusion is "bridge is safe for continued use". The evidence to support the 1st BF is stated as "built in the 1950s, shows a substantial amount of rust: as much as 45% of its surface is coated in rust". So 1st BF is not "Evidence"

(A) The first is evidence in support of the conclusion; the second is that conclusion. -> Wrong

(B)The first is the main conclusion of the argument; the second provides evidence that calls this conclusion into question. -> The main conclusion of the argument is 2nd BF.

(C) The first is evidence taken to support one conclusion; the second provides $$evidence$$that calls this conclusion into question.-> None of the BF provide any evidence. Both the BF are views or positions or judgement.

(D) The first is a position that the argument opposes; the second is the conclusion of the argument. -> Correct

(E) The first is an interpretation of evidence; the second calls that evidence into question. -> 2nd BF doesn't call the evidence "shows a substantial amount of rust: as much as 45% of its surface is coated in rust". The argument actually acknowledges that fact and provides extra facts to draw the 2nd BF as conclusion.
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Re: The Interstate Bridge over the Apache River, built in the 19  [#permalink]

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08 Mar 2014, 00:07
Sentence X - "Community activists have argued that the bridge presents a hazard: it is likely to collapse in places where it has rusted through."

Sentence Y - "The results of this academic study suggest that the bridge is safe for continued use."

One could approach such questions by analyzing the tone of the passage or question. Words like 'argued'(in sentence X) when contrasted with words like 'suggest' and 'results'( in sentence Y) often help in differentiating the main conclusion from the rest.

The logical flow of the passage like indicated in the above comment get you to arrive at the conclusion that the bridge is safe. If the author presented evidence to support the argument that the bridge was unsafe then one could argue that it would be the main conclusion. But here the arguments presented in the question oppose the conclusion that the bridge is unsafe and target the premise that "as much as 45% of its surface is coated in rust".

Hope the explanation helped!
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Re: The Interstate Bridge over the Apache River, built in the 19  [#permalink]

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28 Jun 2014, 22:43
shanaya wrote:
What's wrong with option E?

The Interstate Bridge over the Apache River, built in the 1950s, shows a substantial amount of rust: as much as 45% of its surface is coated in rust. Community activists have argued that the bridge presents a hazard: it is likely to collapse in places where it has rusted through. Professors of mechanical engineering at the local university did an extensive analysis of the bridge. These professors and their graduate students determined that 98% of the rust on the bridge exists on the surface only, and actually seals the underlying steel from the corrosive influence of the elements. The results of this academic study suggest that the bridge is safe for continued use.

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

(E) The first is an interpretation of evidence; the second calls that evidence into question.

IMO

The Interstate Bridge over the Apache River, built in the 1950s, shows a substantial amount of rust: as much as 45% of its surface is coated in rust. (Premise 1)

Community activists have argued that the bridge presents a hazard: it is likely to collapse in places where it has rusted through. (Premise 2 based on Premise 1)

Professors of mechanical engineering at the local university did an extensive analysis of the bridge. (Premise 3)

These professors and their graduate students determined that 98% of the rust on the bridge exists on the surface only, and actually seals the underlying steel from the corrosive influence of the elements. (Premise 4)

The results of this academic study suggest that the bridge is safe for continued use. (Main conclusion)

What is the relationship between BF 1 & BF 2? BF 2 (i.e. main conclu) contradicts with BF 2 (i.e. opinion of community activists)

What Option E say: The first is an interpretation of evidence; the second calls that evidence into question.
The first is an interpretation of evidence;

Yes, "the bridge presents a hazard: it is likely to collapse in places where it has rusted through" can be drawn from "substantial amount of rust: as much as 45% of its surface is coated in rust. "

the second calls that evidence into question.

No, there is no connection in BF 2 and the evidence (i.e. "substantial amount of rust: as much as 45% of its surface is coated in rust. ").

We can say that analysis done by professor ("These professors and their graduate students determined that 98% of the rust on the bridge exists on the surface only, and actually seals the underlying steel from the corrosive influence of the elements." ) create a doubt on the evidence ("substantial amount of rust: as much as 45% of its surface is coated in rust. ") used to draw the conclusion by community activists.

Hope this helps
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Re: The Interstate Bridge over the Apache River, built in the 19  [#permalink]

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07 Aug 2018, 18:28

Official Explanation

The first statement is a fact: everyone agrees with that. The second sentence is a conclusion (signal words: "argue that") --- the first boldface section is conclusion #1, the conclusion of the community activities. Then more facts --- the results of scientific investigations are always facts! The final sentence is another conclusion (signal words: "suggest that"), conclusion #2, the conclusion of the professors. Both boldface statements are conclusions, and the argument ultimately disagrees with the first and accepts the second --- the second is the conclusion of the argument as a whole.

This is what (D) says. The first is a conclusion, a position, that the argument opposes, and the second is the conclusion of the argument. (D) is the credited response.
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Re: The Interstate Bridge over the Apache River, built in the 19   [#permalink] 07 Aug 2018, 18:28
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