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In 1981 children in the United States

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In 1981 children in the United States

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In 1981 children in the United States spent an average of slightly less than two and a half hours a week doing household chores; by 1997 they had spent nearly six hours a week.
A. chores; by 1997 they had spent nearly six hours a week
B. chores; by 1997 that figure had grown to nearly six hours a week
C. chores, whereas nearly six hours a week were spent in 1997
D. chores, compared with a figure of nearly six hours a week in 1997
E. chores, that figure growing to nearly six hours a week in 1997

How to approach this question???

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it is battle btw A and C.. the rest compares children to figure.. I hate ending up in 2

I am going with C as they ... have

C>A

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This is my first post...

I say the answer is "B"

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In 1981 children in the United States spent an average of slightly less than two and a half hours a week doing household chores; by 1997 they had spent nearly six hours a week.

The sentence intends to show the hours spent by children in 1997 with those spent by children in 1981. So, use of Past perfect tense is OK in A. Also, the sentence maintains grammatical and logical //lism.

A. chores; by 1997 they had spent nearly six hours a week Correct
B. chores; by 1997 that figure had grown to nearly six hours a week awkward. It appears that figure itself grew to that number. Also, I am sure what "that" refers to.
C. chores, whereas nearly six hours a week were spent in 1997 The orginal sentence does not signals any contrast. Also, this choice is passive
D. chores, compared with a figure of nearly six hours a week in 1997 What is being compared?? What figure refers to in 1997??
E. chores, that figure growing to nearly six hours a week in 1997 "COMMA + that" is awkward, and a sentence fragment



Last edited by singh181 on Tue Mar 29, 2011 5:28 am; edited 1 time in total

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I believe the answer is b, though it's slightly difficult to explain why. We need the past perfect tense "had+V3" because this clause refers to the past of the past: something that happened BEFORE 1997.
for example: "by 1998, the people had already lost their faith in their chosen representative" talks about something that happened before the past date of 1998.

The problem with A is that children did not spend 6 hours a week before 1997: it's an ongoing process of increasing number of hours per week. Then may have spent an average of 3 hours in 1993, 4 hours in 1994, etc. etc. but by 1997, the number of hours of week they spend had grown to 1997.

C is correct, but unnecessarily passive and awkward.
D Incorrectly compares children to a figure. Answer choice B avoids doing this comparison mistake by using a semiconlon to logically separate the two clauses into two independant "sentences", unrelated to each other.
E "that figure growing' is awkward; "in 1997 is a drastic change of meaning for a sentence that wishes to express an idea that happened before 1997.

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Geva@MasterGMAT wrote:
I believe the answer is b, though it's slightly difficult to explain why. We need the past perfect tense "had+V3" because this clause refers to the past of the past: something that happened BEFORE 1997.
for example: "by 1998, the people had already lost their faith in their chosen representative" talks about something that happened before the past date of 1998.

The problem with A is that children did not spend 6 hours a week before 1997: it's an ongoing process of increasing number of hours per week. Then may have spent an average of 3 hours in 1993, 4 hours in 1994, etc. etc. but by 1997, the number of hours of week they spend had grown to 1997.

C is correct, but unnecessarily passive and awkward.
D Incorrectly compares children to a figure. Answer choice B avoids doing this comparison mistake by using a semiconlon to logically separate the two clauses into two independant "sentences", unrelated to each other.
E "that figure growing' is awkward; "in 1997 is a drastic change of meaning for a sentence that wishes to express an idea that happened before 1997.
Your post rock Geva...OA is B only

I was actually confused in choices A, B and C...though rejected C for the same reason u mentioned (Passive), But the difference you pointed out between A and B was really amazing....I think you actually talked about the EMPHASIS on the thing which is ongoing and changing...

Now if i understand correctly, the sentence suggests that...the change occurred in...The Attitude of children in contribution to household work....and change can be reflected by putting emphasis on the change in fig..if m wrong please correct me...

Thanks a lot

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singh181 wrote:
In 1981 children in the United States spent an average of slightly less than two and a half hours a week doing household chores; by 1997 they had spent nearly six hours a week.

E. chores, that figure growing to nearly six hours a week in 1997 "COMMA + that" is awkward, and a sentence fragment
@ Singh,

Buddy i find your posts really good but in this question for Op E u said that its a FRAGMENT...i think Op E is not a fragment because the part before comma is an independent clause and the part after the comma is a phrase acting as a modifier...so here
IC + modifying phrase both in combination make a complete statement which can stand alone in terms of meaning...thats why it can not be a FRAGMENT...this is just my opinion...if m wrong please correct me...

Thanks

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atulmangal wrote:
singh181 wrote:
In 1981 children in the United States spent an average of slightly less than two and a half hours a week doing household chores; by 1997 they had spent nearly six hours a week.

E. chores, that figure growing to nearly six hours a week in 1997 "COMMA + that" is awkward, and a sentence fragment
@ Singh,

Buddy i find your posts really good but in this question for Op E u said that its a FRAGMENT...i think Op E is not a fragment because the part before comma is an independent clause and the part after the comma is a phrase acting as a modifier...so here
IC + modifying phrase both in combination make a complete statement which can stand alone in terms of meaning...thats why it can not be a FRAGMENT...this is just my opinion...if m wrong please correct me...

Thanks
Hey,
thanks for pointing it out. I appreciate that. Smile

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Please elaborate reasons, I could not understand

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atulmangal wrote:
Your post rock Geva...OA is B only

I was actually confused in choices A, B and C...though rejected C for the same reason u mentioned (Passive), But the difference you pointed out between A and B was really amazing....I think you actually talked about the EMPHASIS on the thing which is ongoing and changing...

Now if i understand correctly, the sentence suggests that...the change occurred in...The Attitude of children in contribution to household work....and change can be reflected by putting emphasis on the change in fig..if m wrong please correct me...

Thanks a lot
It's close to what I had in mind. When you say "I had spent 6 hour a week by 1997", it is possible to interpret this as a one time thing: at some point before 1997, there was a single week in which I had spent 6 hours". This is not what the sentence is trying to say - the sentence is trying to say that the practice has changed by 1997, not discuss a single occurrence where this is so. That's why we need B to talk about the figure - the average number of hours children spend each week - and the fact that it has grown.

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Geva@MasterGMAT wrote:
atulmangal wrote:
Your post rock Geva...OA is B only

I was actually confused in choices A, B and C...though rejected C for the same reason u mentioned (Passive), But the difference you pointed out between A and B was really amazing....I think you actually talked about the EMPHASIS on the thing which is ongoing and changing...

Now if i understand correctly, the sentence suggests that...the change occurred in...The Attitude of children in contribution to household work....and change can be reflected by putting emphasis on the change in fig..if m wrong please correct me...

Thanks a lot
It's close to what I had in mind. When you say "I had spent 6 hour a week by 1997", it is possible to interpret this as a one time thing: at some point before 1997, there was a single week in which I had spent 6 hours". This is not what the sentence is trying to say - the sentence is trying to say that the practice has changed by 1997, not discuss a single occurrence where this is so. That's why we need B to talk about the figure - the average number of hours children spend each week - and the fact that it has grown.
Thanks Geva

I got your point...thanks a lot..

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Geva@MasterGMAT wrote:
I believe the answer is b, though it's slightly difficult to explain why. We need the past perfect tense "had+V3" because this clause refers to the past of the past: something that happened BEFORE 1997.
for example: "by 1998, the people had already lost their faith in their chosen representative" talks about something that happened before the past date of 1998.

The problem with A is that children did not spend 6 hours a week before 1997: it's an ongoing process of increasing number of hours per week. Then may have spent an average of 3 hours in 1993, 4 hours in 1994, etc. etc. but by 1997, the number of hours of week they spend had grown to 1997.

C is correct, but unnecessarily passive and awkward.
D Incorrectly compares children to a figure. Answer choice B avoids doing this comparison mistake by using a semiconlon to logically separate the two clauses into two independant "sentences", unrelated to each other.
E "that figure growing' is awkward; "in 1997 is a drastic change of meaning for a sentence that wishes to express an idea that happened before 1997.
Geva,

Thank you very much for your explanation but I'm still unsure if I'd be able to reject option D on the exam unless it is the exact same problem on the exam Sad

My problem is that I can't see how "compared with" in option D is comparing children to figure. Could you please help me understand?
e.g. I could always say the following sentence, could I?
I put in 2 hrs/day into study in my first grade compared with 5 hrs/day in the fourth grade.
Isn't the above sentence doing a correct comparison and isn't this sentence very parallel to option D? Please explain. thanks in advance

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Geva@MasterGMAT wrote:
atulmangal wrote:
Your post rock Geva...OA is B only

I was actually confused in choices A, B and C...though rejected C for the same reason u mentioned (Passive), But the difference you pointed out between A and B was really amazing....I think you actually talked about the EMPHASIS on the thing which is ongoing and changing...

Now if i understand correctly, the sentence suggests that...the change occurred in...The Attitude of children in contribution to household work....and change can be reflected by putting emphasis on the change in fig..if m wrong please correct me...

Thanks a lot
It's close to what I had in mind. When you say "I had spent 6 hour a week by 1997", it is possible to interpret this as a one time thing: at some point before 1997, there was a single week in which I had spent 6 hours". This is not what the sentence is trying to say - the sentence is trying to say that the practice has changed by 1997, not discuss a single occurrence where this is so. That's why we need B to talk about the figure - the average number of hours children spend each week - and the fact that it has grown.
Thanks Geva for the explanation, I got the OA as b but with less of grammar and more on interpretation of the meaning - would this be wrong:

the original sentence talks about 'spending 6 hours a week by 1997', except for A and B all other sentences talk of 6 hours a week in 1997 which distorts the meaning in itself? And I would eliminate A as 'they' usage is ambiguous.

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Geva@MasterGMAT wrote:
I believe the answer is b, though it's slightly difficult to explain why. We need the past perfect tense "had+V3" because this clause refers to the past of the past: something that happened BEFORE 1997.
for example: "by 1998, the people had already lost their faith in their chosen representative" talks about something that happened before the past date of 1998.

The problem with A is that children did not spend 6 hours a week before 1997: it's an ongoing process of increasing number of hours per week. Then may have spent an average of 3 hours in 1993, 4 hours in 1994, etc. etc. but by 1997, the number of hours of week they spend had grown to 1997.

C is correct, but unnecessarily passive and awkward.
D Incorrectly compares children to a figure. Answer choice B avoids doing this comparison mistake by using a semiconlon to logically separate the two clauses into two independant "sentences", unrelated to each other.
E "that figure growing' is awkward; "in 1997 is a drastic change of meaning for a sentence that wishes to express an idea that happened before 1997.
Thank you expert,pls help
regarding D.
because you said" incorrectly compares children to a figure" I understand that

"comma+compared " modifies the subject of previous clause.

I agree that this situation appears many times on og and gmatprep. But this situation is specific because normally do-ed modifies the closest noun. for example:
tired, I still learn gmat.
we can not say
I still learn gmat, tired.

but we can still say:

compared to my classmate, I am not better

this sentence is normal and right.

in sumarry, I can say that "comma+compared to/with" can modifies the closest noun or subject of previous clause.

is my thinking correct?

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A. The problem with A is that its not clear if children spent 6 hours a week every year before 1997 or not. It might be an ongoing process of increasing number of hours per week. Then may have spent an average of 3 hours in 1993, 4 hours in 1994, etc. etc. but by 1997, the number of hours of week they spend had grown to 1997. So, it should have been “by 1997 they had spent an average of nearly six hours a week” or it should have been “In 1997 they had spent nearly six hours a week”.
B. Perfect use of tense and the right comparison has been made here. Hence, B is the answer.
C. Parallelism issue involving a combination of active and passive is less parallel relatively. Therefore, C is inferior.
D. two sides of the comparison are not parallel- the clause 'children spent x doing y' is compared here with 'a figure of..'
E. Misplaced modifer - that is modifying chores!

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