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# When people engage in activities that help others, their brain release

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Re: When people engage in activities that help others, their brain release [#permalink]

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17 Apr 2012, 07:25
2
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Here's my explanation: The correct answer will logically complete the sentence, and so it logically has to have something to do with what has been mentioned in the first part of the sentence, which is about volunteer not boosting longevity. The sentence also contains the keyword "however", indicating that the answer must address the fact that the author is about to say something contradictory to what has come before. So, the answer must downplay the significance of the study. I found it by POE and ignoring irrelevant answer choices.

A. In the communities studied, women were much more likely to do regular
volunteer work than men were, and women tend to live longer than men do. (correct - this gives an alternate explanation to the study, weakening it by showing that the average age is only higher for volunteers because most volunteers arewomen and because women live longer than men)
B. The number of young adults who do regular volunteer work is on the increase (outside scope - young adults were not mentioned)
C. The feelings of well-being induced by endorphins can, at least for a time, mask
the symptoms of various conditions and diseases, provided the symptoms are
mild. (irrelevant)
D. It is rare for a person to keep up a regular schedule of volunteer work throughout
his or her life. (irrelevant)
E. Some people find that keeping a commitment to do regular volunteer work
becomes a source of stress in their lives. (irrelevant)

POE really helps with this one - eliminate what is outside scope or irrelevant.

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Re: When people engage in activities that help others, their brain release [#permalink]

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17 Apr 2012, 09:26
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Well, first off it isn't B because young adults were not mentioned at all, and in fact the question prompt says that the study is on adults, not young adults.

It is A because you're looking for something that will logically complete the sentence, and the sentence starts off with "However, that statistic would be what we expect even if volunteering does not boost longevity, because..." This means that whatever completes the sentence MUST provide evidence supporting the fact that the results of the study (that volunteers live longer) could have possibly been caused by something other than the act of volunteering itself. Therefore the answer must be A because A is the only answer that provides us with an additional reason that people from the survey live longer. Instead of living longer simply because they are volunteering and producing endorphins, the people in the survey are living longer because they are predominantly women (since the survey only looks at people who volunteer and the survey was done in an area where women volunteer more than men), and women live longer than men.

Does that make sense?

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Re: When people engage in activities that help others, their brain release [#permalink]

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12 Jul 2012, 12:19
albertaudi wrote:
Well, first off it isn't B because young adults were not mentioned at all, and in fact the question prompt says that the study is on adults, not young adults.

It is A because you're looking for something that will logically complete the sentence, and the sentence starts off with "However, that statistic would be what we expect even if volunteering does not boost longevity, because..." This means that whatever completes the sentence MUST provide evidence supporting the fact that the results of the study (that volunteers live longer) could have possibly been caused by something other than the act of volunteering itself. Therefore the answer must be A because A is the only answer that provides us with an additional reason that people from the survey live longer. Instead of living longer simply because they are volunteering and producing endorphins, the people in the survey are living longer because they are predominantly women (since the survey only looks at people who volunteer and the survey was done in an area where women volunteer more than men), and women live longer than men.

Does that make sense?

Thank you for your explanation. I have a question on the following: "Instead of living longer simply because they are volunteering and producing endorphins, the people in the survey are living longer because they are predominantly women".

The answWomen do more volunteer work. So how do we know women live longer is due to the fact that they are women or the fact that they do more volunteer work?er said Women are more likely to do volunteer work and women live longer. Now there are two variables: 1. They are women and 2.

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Re: When people engage in activities that help others, their brain release [#permalink]

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12 Jul 2012, 12:26
Mike. Thank you for your explanation. My question with A is that it introduces two variables: 1. They are women and 2. They do more volunteer work than men.

So how do we know they live longer is due to the fact that they are women but not the fact they do more volunteer work?

I think this is a very tough question because A introduces a new possibility (live longer because they are women) yet still keeps the other possibility open (live longer because women do more volunteer work than men).

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Re: When people engage in activities that help others, their brain release [#permalink]

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15 Jul 2012, 09:25
2
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Expert's post
Wwdrok1 wrote:
Mike. Thank you for your explanation. My question with A is that it introduces two variables: 1. They are women and 2. They do more volunteer work than men.

So how do we know they live longer is due to the fact that they are women but not the fact they do more volunteer work?

I think this is a very tough question because A introduces a new possibility (live longer because they are women) yet still keeps the other possibility open (live longer because women do more volunteer work than men).

Dear Wwdrok1,

First of all, volunteering and living longer are both topics of the original argument, so those are not new variables. Really, the only new variable introduced here is gender. It is not unusual for a GMAT CR answer choice to introduce a single new variable.

Second, how do we know women live longer than men in general? Well, first of all, that answer choice states that as a general truth, not just true about the women in these particularly communities, but about women in general. Anything which the prompt presents as an argument ("It is suggested that ...") you can dispute, but anything that is stated purely factually, you need to accept at face-value as evidence. Here, it is stated factually: in general, women live longer than men. Finally, I would argue --- this is something you should just know. You don't need to be an expert in all disciplines, but there are certain basic science facts that you should recognize ---"human are mammals", "the moon orbits the Earth", "plant make the oxygen that animals breath", etc. --- and one of those is that, on average, women live longer than men. This is not a radical idea: to the contrary, this is true and has been true for centuries of human existence. Usually, the facts that the GMAT prompts state directly are in this category of obvious indisputable facts.

So, no, it is not a possibility at all that women live longer only because they volunteer. Women all over the planet, in situations and places, live longer on average than men. It is stated quite clearly as a general fact in choice (A), and it is a general fact that you as a test-taker should recognize and know.

Does that make sense?

Mike
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Re: When people engage in activities that help others, their brain release [#permalink]

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05 Nov 2012, 01:24
Not geting ( .. what actually this sentence wants to convey?

However,that statistic would be what we would expect even if volunteering does not boost longevity,.....
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Re: When people engage in activities that help others, their brain release [#permalink]

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05 Nov 2012, 03:14
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sanjoo wrote:
Not geting ( .. what actually this sentence wants to convey?

However,that statistic would be what we would expect even if volunteering does not boost longevity,.....

Responding to a pm:

Let's review the argument:

"When people help others, their brain releases endorphins, something that makes them feel well. It has been suggested that regular release of endorphins increases people’s longevity. A statistic shows that people who volunteer live longer than those who do not volunteer."

The main idea to take from here is that a statistic shows that people who volunteer live longer than those who don't. e.g. people who volunteer have an avg life of 85 yrs and those who don't have an avg life of 82 yrs. The statistic would be something like this.

Last sentence: However, that statistic would be what we would expect even if volunteering does not boost longevity, because

Here the author says that we actually expect such a statistic, such numbers, even if volunteering has no link to avg life. He says we expect that people who volunteer will live longer even if there is no connection between volunteering and long life. You have to provide a reason why we would expect this i.e. you need to provide another explanation why people who volunteer live longer. What other explanations can you think of without reading the options? I would say 'probably people who find time to volunteer usually find time to exercise too and hence live longer' or 'people who find time to volunteer (i.e. who care about others well being) are more conscious about their own well being too and hence eat healthy food which could lead to the longer life' etc
That is, we have to provide a reason which explains why people who volunteer live longer even if volunteering and endorphins etc have nothing to do with longer life.

(A) tells you that in the communities studied, women were much more likely to do regular volunteer work than men were, and women tend to live longer than men do.

So we have another reason why volunteers live longer - not because they volunteer but because majority of them at women (and we are given that women live longer than men)

The whole argument is something like this:
A: A statistic shows that people who wear skirts have longer hair than people who don't.
B: That statistic would be what we would expect even if skirts do not boost hair growth because ....

B is going to give you a reason why people who wear skirts end up having longer hair even if hair and skirts have no connection. That is, B is going to show that it is not skirts that are related to hair but skirts that are related to some other feature which is related to hair.

B: That statistic would be what we would expect even if skirts do not boost hair growth because people who wear skirts are generally women and women keep longer hair than men.

I hope you get the drift of the argument.
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Re: When people engage in activities that help others, their brain release [#permalink]

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05 Nov 2012, 04:33
VeritasPrepKarishma wrote:
sanjoo wrote:
Not geting ( .. what actually this sentence wants to convey?

However,that statistic would be what we would expect even if volunteering does not boost longevity,.....

Responding to a pm:

Let's review the argument:

"When people help others, their brain releases endorphins, something that makes them feel well. It has been suggested that regular release of endorphins increases people’s longevity. A statistic shows that people who volunteer live longer than those who do not volunteer."

The main idea to take from here is that a statistic shows that people who volunteer live longer than those who don't. e.g. people who volunteer have an avg life of 85 yrs and those who don't have an avg life of 82 yrs. The statistic would be something like this.

Last sentence: However, that statistic would be what we would expect even if volunteering does not boost longevity, because

Here the author says that we actually expect such a statistic, such numbers, even if volunteering has no link to avg life. He says we expect that people who volunteer will live longer even if there is no connection between volunteering and long life. You have to provide a reason why we would expect this i.e. you need to provide another explanation why people who volunteer live longer. What other explanations can you think of without reading the options? I would say 'probably people who find time to volunteer usually find time to exercise too and hence live longer' or 'people who find time to volunteer (i.e. who care about others well being) are more conscious about their own well being too and hence eat healthy food which could lead to the longer life' etc
That is, we have to provide a reason which explains why people who volunteer live longer even if volunteering and endorphins etc have nothing to do with longer life.

(A) tells you that in the communities studied, women were much more likely to do regular volunteer work than men were, and women tend to live longer than men do.

So we have another reason why volunteers live longer - not because they volunteer but because majority of them at women (and we are given that women live longer than men)

The whole argument is something like this:
A: A statistic shows that people who wear skirts have longer hair than people who don't.
B: That statistic would be what we would expect even if skirts do not boost hair growth because ....

B is going to give you a reason why people who wear skirts end up having longer hair even if hair and skirts have no connection. That is, B is going to show that it is not skirts that are related to hair but skirts that are related to some other feature which is related to hair.

B: That statistic would be what we would expect even if skirts do not boost hair growth because people who wear skirts are generally women and women keep longer hair than men.

I hope you get the drift of the argument.

Ohhhh thanks alot Karishma..!!

wat i was thinking we had to weaken it...i was luking for that choice..and i cudnt find that choice.i confused..

it means..we have to strenthen it..I got it now..!!

Thank u
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Re: When people engage in activities that help others, their brain release [#permalink]

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16 Jan 2014, 22:52
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VerbalBot wrote:
Hello from the GMAT Club VerbalBot!

Thanks to another GMAT Club member, I have just discovered this valuable topic, yet it had no discussion for over a year. I am now bumping it up - doing my job. I think you may find it valuable (esp those replies with Kudos).

Want to see all other topics I dig out? Follow me (click follow button on profile). You will receive a summary of all topics I bump in your profile area as well as via email.

The argument has already been discussed in detail. Here is a quick overview of cause and effect flaw-

According to a recent study, people who listen to folk music are found to be calm
Therefore listening to folk music makes people calm.

People who go to gym everyday are found to be well aware about the health benefits of exercising than people who don't exercise.
Hence going to gym makes people aware about health benefits.

Counter points:
1. it could be a coincident/ correlation... Premise doesn't state 'going to the gym' to be the cause. Hence we need to ASSUME that author's cause is correct
X cause Y to bridge the gap in reasoning.

2. People who know the health benefit of exercising go to gym everyday (reverse causation, just flip the cause and effect...) reverse causation weakens the conclusion and thus for our argument to be valid we need to assume that there is NO REVERSE CAUSATION.

Assumptions are nothing but unstated premise. They bridge the gaps in reasoning in order to have the conclusion valid.

In both the examples stated above, author claims one thing to be the cause of the other.

For the above argument to be true, we need to make certain assumptions.

First of all we need to believe that

1. X causes Y
x- classical music
Y- calmer people

2. there is no other factor
(If we were to know that these people were having some medication/ anti anxiety pills to remain calm. It seriously weakens author's conclusion because now folk music may not be the cause.)

3. No reverse causation
(Reverse causation (Y causes X) calm people listen to folk music. We need to deny any such possibility.
Y doesn't cause X

4. No third variable that causes both X and Y
Z doesn't cause X and Y
Only senior citizens participated in the stated study who are both calm and likely to listen to classical music.
If this is true,
X doesn't cause Y
Y doesn't cause X

A third variable causes both. Z cause both X and Y.

Usually in GMAT, author assumes correlation to be the cause.

Coming to the question-

Fact- When people engage in activities that help others, their brain releases endorphins, the brain’s natural opiates, which induce in people a feeling of well-being.

It has been suggested that regular release of endorphins increases people’s longevity. And a statistic on adults who regularly engage in volunteer work helping others shows that they live longer, on average, than adults who do not volunteer.

Adults who volunteer tend to live longer.
Effect- live longer

However, that statistic would be what we would expect even if volunteering does not boost longevity, because ___________REASON?

If X doesn't cause Y and Stats would be what we would expect

This can happen for 2 reasons:

1. Y causes X

If we were to know that people who are ' believed to live longer 'engage themselves in 'volunteering'.
REVERSE CAUSAL- weakens the argument!

2. Z causes both X and Y

Some third variable causes 'volunteering' and ' longevity' ..

Option A

A. In the communities studied, women were much more likely to do regular volunteer work than men were, and women tend to live longer than men

Women- 3rd variable

Women go for volunteer work
Z causes X

Women tend to live longer
Z causes Y

Hope it helps!
Dolly Sharma
Verbal Trainer
CrackVerbal
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Re: When people engage in activities that help others, their brain release [#permalink]

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08 Mar 2015, 04:16
When people engage in activities that help others, their brain releases endomorphins, the brain’s natural opiates, which induce in people a feeling of well-being. It has been suggested that regular release of endomorphins increases people’s longevity. And a statistic on adults who regularly engage in volunteer work helping others shows that they live longer, on average, than adults who do not volunteer. However, that statistic would be what we would expect even if volunteering does not boost longevity, because ________________________

Which of the following most logically completes the argument?

Basically, the questions asks for alternate reasoning which will support the statistics but the correlation between "volunteer work" and "longevity" is not true.

A. In the communities studied, women were much more likely to do regular volunteer work than men were, and women tend to live longer than men do. - Perfect alternate reason
B. The number of young adults who do regular volunteer work is on the increase - It doesn't support the longevity
C. The feelings of well-being induced by endorphins can, at least for a time, mask the symptoms of various conditions and diseases, provided the symptoms are mild -
As per the passage "helping others" is correlated to "endomorphins" and "endomorphins" will mask some diseases. But masking diseases might not contribute to "longevity". We need another assumption here but also we don't have alternate reasoning.
D. It is rare for a person to keep up a regular schedule of volunteer work throughout his or her life - Doesn't support the statistics
E. Some people find that keeping a commitment to do regular volunteer work becomes a source of stress in their lives. Doesn't support the statistics
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Re: When people engage in activities that help others, their brain release [#permalink]

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19 Nov 2016, 20:58
Got it down to A and C.

My reasoning went as follows: C tells us that the conditions are masked by the endorphins people receive from doing volunteer work. This sounds great and all, and allows us to tie in endorphins into our answer, but the fact that it masks symptoms does not mean that it buys that individual a longer period of survival. They could be comfortable longer than if they weren't doing the activity, but we would have to make an additional assumption (that the endorphins actually prolong life in the face of illness) for us to be able to use this answer. Thus, C can be eliminated.

A is correct by default. Initially, I was skeptical because it brought up differences in gender and that had not been discussed in the prompt. Taking a second look, though, I was able to see that gender differences account for why we would be able to see prolonged life without the statistic.

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Re: When people engage in activities that help others, their brain release [#permalink]

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26 May 2017, 12:55
monikaleoster wrote:
When people engage in activities that help others, their brain releases endorphins,the brain’s natural opiates, which induce in people a feeling of well-being. It has been suggested that regular release of endorphins increases people’s longevity. And a statistic on adults who regularly engage in volunteer work helping others shows that they live longer, on average, than adults who do not volunteer. However, that statistic would be what we would expect even if volunteering does not boost longevity, because ________________________

Which of the following most logically completes the argument?

A. In the communities studied, women were much more likely to do regular volunteer work than men were, and women tend to live longer than men do.
B. The number of young adults who do regular volunteer work is on the increase
C. The feelings of well-being induced by endorphins can, at least for a time, mask the symptoms of various conditions and diseases, provided the symptoms are mild.
D. It is rare for a person to keep up a regular schedule of volunteer work throughout his or her life.
E. Some people find that keeping a commitment to do regular volunteer work becomes a source of stress in their lives.

[Reveal] Spoiler:
I am not able to understand meaning of this line,Is it something which is weakening or strengthening the argument

However, that statistic would be what we would expect even if volunteering does not boost longevity, because ________________________

Does anyone work with the MGMAT Prep Books and can tell me what category this type of question falls in? Due due the "because blank space" I thought about Strengthen Argument but the correct solution is not a support rather a weakness. Any thoughts?

Thanks

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Re: When people engage in activities that help others, their brain release [#permalink]

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19 Aug 2017, 21:04
monikaleoster wrote:
Which of the following most logically completes the argument?

When people engage in activities that help others, their brain releases endorphins, the brain’s natural opiates, which induce in people a feeling of well-being. It has been suggested that regular release of endorphins increases people’s longevity. And a statistic on adults who regularly engage in volunteer work helping others shows that they live longer, on average, than adults who do not volunteer. However, that statistic would be what we would expect even if volunteering does not boost longevity, because _______________.

(A) In the communities studied, women were much more likely to do regular volunteer work than men were, and women tend to live longer than men do.

(B) The number of young adults who do regular volunteer work is on the increase

(C) The feelings of well-being induced by endorphins can, at least for a time, mask the symptoms of various conditions and diseases, provided the symptoms are mild.

(D) It is rare for a person to keep up a regular schedule of volunteer work throughout his or her life.

(E) Some people find that keeping a commitment to do regular volunteer work becomes a source of stress in their lives.

[Reveal] Spoiler:
I am not able to understand meaning of this line,Is it something which is weakening or strengthening the argument

However, that statistic would be what we would expect even if volunteering does not boost longevity, because ________________________

"A" invalidates the findings of the study because it states the study had biased results- results that indicate women are inherently predisposed to activities that prolong their life. Volunteering is not the cause- gender is.

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Re: When people engage in activities that help others, their brain release   [#permalink] 19 Aug 2017, 21:04

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