In a certain class consisting of 36 students, some boys and some girls, exactly 1/3 of the boys and exactly 1/4 of the

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In a certain class consisting of 36 students, some boys and some girls, exactly 1/3 of the boys and exactly 1/4 of the girls walk to school. What is the greatest possible number of students in this class who walk to school?

A. 9
B. 10
C. 11
D. 12
E. 13

Answer: C

Source: Official Guide

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Vincen wrote:
Wed Jan 12, 2022 9:14 am
In a certain class consisting of 36 students, some boys and some girls, exactly 1/3 of the boys and exactly 1/4 of the girls walk to school. What is the greatest possible number of students in this class who walk to school?

A. 9
B. 10
C. 11
D. 12
E. 13

Answer: C

Source: Official Guide
The important thing here to recognize here is that the number of girls and the number of boys who walk must be positive INTEGERS. For example, we can't have 5 1/3 boys.

Also recognize that we're told that we have some boys and some girls
Since "some" means 1 OR MORE, we cannot have zero boys or zero girls.

Okay, now onto the question...

We want to MAXIMIZE the number of students who walk to school. Since a greater proportion of boys walk to school, we want to MAXIMIZE the number of boys in the class.
The greatest number of boys is 35 (since 36 boys would mean 0 girls, and we must have at least 1 girl)

35 boys
This is no good, because 1/3 of the boys walk to school, and 35 is not divisible by 3.

So, let's try ...
34 boys
This is no good, because 1/3 of the boys walk to school, and 34 is not divisible by 3.

As you can see, we need only consider values where the number of boys is divisible by 3. So, that's what we'll do from here on...

33 boys
If 1/3 of the boys walk to school, then 11 boys walk. Fine.
HOWEVER, if there are 33 boys, then there must be 3 girls.
If 1/4 of the girls walk to school, then there can't be 3 girls, since 3 is not divisible by 4.

30 boys
This means there are 6 girls
If 1/4 of the girls walk to school, then there can't be 6 girls, since 6 is not divisible by 4.

27 boys
This means there are 9 girls
If 1/4 of the girls walk to school, then there can't be 9 girls, since 9 is not divisible by 4.

24 boys and 12 girls
1/3 of the boys walk to school, so 8 boys walk
1/4 of the girls walk to school, so 3 girls walk
PERFECT - it works!!
So, a total of 11 children walk

Answer: C

Cheers,
Brent
Brent Hanneson - Creator of GMATPrepNow.com
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