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That vs those

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Jatinder Really wants to Beat The GMAT! Default Avatar
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That vs those Post Sun Oct 26, 2008 11:46 pm
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  • Lap #[LAPCOUNT] ([LAPTIME])
    I have a lil confusion about the use of that

    As per grammer, "that" is a relative prounoun and it can be singular as well as plural.

    and in the following question :
    Since 1986 enrollments of African Americans, American Indians, and Hispanic Americans in fulltime engineering programs in the United States has steadily increased, while the number of other students who enter the field has fallen.(A) has steadily increased, while the number of other students who enter the field has fallen
    (B) has steadily increased, while other students entering the field have declined in number
    (C) increased steadily, while there was a decline in the number of other students entering the field
    (D) have steadily increased, while the number of other students entering the field has fallen
    (E) have steadily increased, while that of other students who enter the field fell

    The official explanation says : [E] - that should be the plural those

    and in the following example:

    "The peaks of a mountain range, acting like rocks in a streambed, produce ripples in the air flowing over them: the resulting flow pattern, with crests and toughs that remain stationary although the air that forms them is moving rapidly, are known as "standing waves."

    that clearly refers to the compound subject which is plural and hence we correctly used remain

    Pls explain where am i going wrong ?

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    raunekk GMAT Titan Default Avatar
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    Post Mon Oct 27, 2008 4:08 am
    Firstly,

    An amazing question!!! Idea Smile

    IMO:

    in the first sentence:

    That a relative pronoun is not used as a relative pronoun but as a demonstative pronoun

    In demonstrative pronoun:

    That ,with its plural those ,is used to avoid repetition of a preceding noun.

    Eg:Our soldiers were better drilled than those of enemies.

    (Source:Wren and martin)

    Point to note:"That is used preferably with reference to persons"
    (source :wren and martin)
    (Though this point is not applicable over here. Wink )

    Secondly,
    the tricky part of the second question is...

    the resulting flow pattern(singular ) is joined(& tricked Wink ) using the preposition with with plural compound word crests and toughs, is the object to which relative pronoun that is refering to...


    thus the pronoun "that " is used in the second sentence...


    i hope this helps!!!


    thx

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    rmpaes Rising GMAT Star
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    Post Mon Oct 27, 2008 10:40 am
    "That" can replace a noun in a comparison when the noun in the singular. "Those" can replace a noun in a comparison when the noun is plural.

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    Post Wed Oct 29, 2008 3:16 am
    Jatinder wrote:
    I have a lil confusion about the use of that

    As per grammer, "that" is a relative prounoun and it can be singular as well as plural.

    and in the following question :
    Since 1986 enrollments of African Americans, American Indians, and Hispanic Americans in fulltime engineering programs in the United States has steadily increased, while the number of other students who enter the field has fallen.(A) has steadily increased, while the number of other students who enter the field has fallen
    (B) has steadily increased, while other students entering the field have declined in number
    (C) increased steadily, while there was a decline in the number of other students entering the field
    (D) have steadily increased, while the number of other students entering the field has fallen
    (E) have steadily increased, while that of other students who enter the field fell

    The official explanation says : [E] - that should be the plural those

    and in the following example:

    "The peaks of a mountain range, acting like rocks in a streambed, produce ripples in the air flowing over them: the resulting flow pattern, with crests and toughs that remain stationary although the air that forms them is moving rapidly, are known as "standing waves."

    that clearly refers to the compound subject which is plural and hence we correctly used remain

    Pls explain where am i going wrong ?
    so, where are you actually going wrong?
    you haven't actually listed any mistakes on your part.

    the only things you've said so far are:
    * "that" should be "those" in the first problem (pronoun that's part of a parallel construction - since it's parallel to a plural noun, it should be plural)
    * "that" in the second problem is a relative pronoun referring to "crests and troughs", and should therefore be plural

    you haven't actually given any indication that you were wrong about anything!

    what were you wrong about?

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    Jatinder Really wants to Beat The GMAT! Default Avatar
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    Post Wed Oct 29, 2008 4:39 am
    lunarpower wrote:
    Jatinder wrote:
    I have a lil confusion about the use of that

    As per grammer, "that" is a relative prounoun and it can be singular as well as plural.

    and in the following question :
    Since 1986 enrollments of African Americans, American Indians, and Hispanic Americans in fulltime engineering programs in the United States has steadily increased, while the number of other students who enter the field has fallen.(A) has steadily increased, while the number of other students who enter the field has fallen
    (B) has steadily increased, while other students entering the field have declined in number
    (C) increased steadily, while there was a decline in the number of other students entering the field
    (D) have steadily increased, while the number of other students entering the field has fallen
    (E) have steadily increased, while that of other students who enter the field fell

    The official explanation says : [E] - that should be the plural those and in the following example:

    "The peaks of a mountain range, acting like rocks in a streambed, produce ripples in the air flowing over them: the resulting flow pattern, with crests and toughs that remain stationary although the air that forms them is moving rapidly, are known as "standing waves."

    that clearly refers to the compound subject which is plural and hence we correctly used remain

    Pls explain where am i going wrong ?
    so, where are you actually going wrong?
    you haven't actually listed any mistakes on your part.

    the only things you've said so far are:
    * "that" should be "those" in the first problem (pronoun that's part of a parallel construction - since it's parallel to a plural noun, it should be plural)
    * "that" in the second problem is a relative pronoun referring to "crests and troughs", and should therefore be plural

    you haven't actually given any indication that you were wrong about anything!

    what were you wrong about?
    Question is: if that can refer to singular and plural then why the official explanation says that should be those ?

    scoobydooby GMAT Titan Default Avatar
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    Post Wed Oct 29, 2008 5:04 am
    1) we need those for the option E in the first sentence, those refers to the enrollments which is plural. it is used to substitute for the enrollments

    2) when we use crests and trough that remain stationary we are actually modifying the crests and trough, that here is a restrictive clause and not a pronoun to substitute for the crests and trough. if one used those here it wouldnt make sense

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    Post Thu Oct 30, 2008 3:56 am
    Jatinder wrote:
    Question is: if that can refer to singular and plural then why the official explanation says that should be those ?
    the word that is being used in two different ways in the two sentences.

    in the first sentence, it's being used as what's called a demonstrative pronoun. if i were you, i wouldn't bother memorizing that term; rather, i would just memorize this:
    when that is a PRONOUN that forms the second part of a PARALLEL CONSTRUCTION, it needs to match the number (singular / plural) of its counterpart in the first half of the parallel construction.
    that's a bit verbose, but i trust that you can see what i'm talking about. in the referenced post, "those" is parallel to "enrollments", which is a plural noun; therefore, it must be plural.

    in the second sentence, it's being used at what's called a relative pronoun. in this case, there's no parallel construction; rather, it's just a construction along the lines of "the car that was in my driveway."
    try to make this construction with "those"; i think you'll agree that it's ridiculous.

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    Jatinder Really wants to Beat The GMAT! Default Avatar
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    Post Fri Oct 31, 2008 7:26 am
    Thanks Ron.
    I understood now.

    2010gmat GMAT Destroyer! Default Avatar
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    Post Mon Mar 30, 2009 8:56 pm
    lunarpower wrote:
    Jatinder wrote:
    Question is: if that can refer to singular and plural then why the official explanation says that should be those ?
    the word that is being used in two different ways in the two sentences.

    in the first sentence, it's being used as what's called a demonstrative pronoun. if i were you, i wouldn't bother memorizing that term; rather, i would just memorize this:
    when that is a PRONOUN that forms the second part of a PARALLEL CONSTRUCTION, it needs to match the number (singular / plural) of its counterpart in the first half of the parallel construction.
    that's a bit verbose, but i trust that you can see what i'm talking about. in the referenced post, "those" is parallel to "enrollments", which is a plural noun; therefore, it must be plural.

    in the second sentence, it's being used at what's called a relative pronoun. in this case, there's no parallel construction; rather, it's just a construction along the lines of "the car that was in my driveway."
    try to make this construction with "those"; i think you'll agree that it's ridiculous.
    Great explanation...and if we apply your logic(correct me if i am not applying it correctly) then I think Jatinder made a point when he said that choice E in the first question should have "Those" and not "That"...isn't it a parallel construction..??? and the pronoun should match in no.

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    Post Tue Mar 31, 2009 12:34 am
    2010gmat wrote:
    Great explanation...and if we apply your logic(correct me if i am not applying it correctly) then I think Jatinder made a point when he said that choice E in the first question should have "Those" and not "That"...isn't it a parallel construction..??? and the pronoun should match in no.
    if anything, yes, it should be "those" ... because it refers to the word "enrollments", which is plural.
    under no circumstances can a singular pronoun stand for a plural noun, or vice versa.

    maybe you're missing the fact that (e) is one of the wrong answers...?
    note that there are other things wrong with (e), too; for instance, the verb tenses aren't parallel. the first clause uses the present perfect, while the second clause uses the simple past. since the two changes are concurrent, this mismatch is not acceptable.

    the correct answer to that question is, presumably, (d). this is the only answer choice that contains proper subject-verb agreement (enrollments ... have) AND parallel verb tenses (has increased / has fallen).

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