GMAT Integrated Reasoning: Table Analysis Example Problem #1

April 23, 2012 in Example Problems

Example ProblemsIn June of 2012, the GMAT will contain a new 12 problem Integrated Reasoning section. To help you prepare for the IR section, we are working out the problems for you! Below is a sample IR Table Analysis problem from the Graduate Management Admissions Council (GMAC) at www.mba.com.  You can find this and other integrated reasoning problems online at http://www.mba.com/the-gmat/nex-gen/integrated-reasoning-question-formats.aspx.

Problem:

GMAT Integrated Reasoning Table Analysis Example Problem

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Solution:

Question type! Table Analysis

Whenever you are given a table in the Integrated Reasoning, you should spend a few seconds evaluating the table.  Read any information above the table since it will give you important information about the table.  In this case, the table is giving information about Brazilian agricultural products in 2009.  From the top of the table, we know the table is giving us five pieces of information: type of commodity, Brazil’s world share of production of the commodity, Brazil’s world rank in production of the commodity, Brazil’s world share of the exports of the commodity, and Brazil’s world rank in exports of the commodity

Tip! When working with a table, always look for the ways you can sort the table.  This can save you a lot of time when you’re answering questions.

The table in this data can be sorted five ways:

GMAT Integrated Reasoning Table Analysis Example Problem

 

 

 

Now let’s look at our questions.  We need to determine whether or not each statement can be supported by the information in the chart, in other words, whether the statement is True or False.

Tip! Since every problem on the Integrated Reasoning section is a little different, always read the instructions before answering the question.

Let’s look at the first statement: No individual country produces more than one-fourth of the world’s sugar.

To answer this question, we must figure out how much sugar Brazil produces.  In other words, we want to look at Brazil’s world share of production of sugar.  Since we are looking for the world share of production, let’s sort the table this way.
GMAT Integrated Reasoning Table Analysis Example Problem

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

From the chart, we see that Brazil produces 21% of the world’s sugar.

Tip! Always make sure you are answering all parts of the question.

Be careful! The question is not just asking how much of the world’s sugar Brazil produces.  You also need to find out where Brazil ranks in production of the world’s sugar. How do we know how Brazil’s production of sugar relates to the rest of the world? Let’s resort our table by production world rank.

GMAT Integrated Reasoning Table Analysis Example Problem

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Now we see that Brazil actually ranks first in the world’s production of sugar.  In other words, Brazil produces more of the world’s sugar than any other country.  If Brazil produces 21% of the world’s sugar and it produces more than any other country, then no other country can produce more than 21% of the world’s sugar.  21% is less than ¼ (25%), therefore the first statement is true.  As the instructions for the problem indicate, select “Yes.”

GMAT Integrated Reasoning Table Analysis Example Problem

 

 

Now let’s look at the next statement: If Brazil produces less than 20% of the world’s supply of any commodity listed in the table, Brazil is not the world’s top exporter of that commodity.

We want to find out which commodities are Brazil’s number 1 exports, in other words, which exports are #1 in world rank.  Let’s sort our chart by “Exports, world rank.”

GMAT Integrated Reasoning Table Analysis Example Problem

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

From the chart, we see that Brazil is the #1 exporter of orange juice, coffee, sugar, beef, and chickens.

Does Brazil produce less than 20% of the world share of any of these commodities? Yes.  It only produces 16% of the world’s beef, and only 15% of the world’s chickens.  Since Brazil is the world’s top exporter of some commodities of which it produces less than 20% of the world’s supply, the second statement is false. Select “No.”

GMAT Integrated Reasoning Table Analysis Example Problem

 

 

 

 

Finally, let’s evaluate the last statement: Of the commodities in the table for which Brazil ranks first in world exports, Brazil produces more than 20% of the world’s supply.

Good news: we have already done all the work to answer this last statement.  We need to find out two things: the commodities for which Brazil ranks first in world exports and whether Brazil produces more than 20% of the world’s supply for all the commodities. Remember, the question states “Of the commodities in the table for which Brazil ranks first in world exports,” in other words, of all the commodities for which Brazil ranks first in world exports.  For this statement to be true, Brazil must produce more than 20% of the world’s supply of all the commodities for which it ranks first in world exports.

Can you think of a commodity for which Brazil ranks first in world export but produces less than 20% of the world’s supply?  From the last question, we already know that Brazil ranks #1 in the world as an exporter of beef and chickens.  We also know that Brazil produces less than 20% of the world’s supply of beef and less than 20% of  the world’s supply of chickens.  Therefore, we know that the final statement must  be false, since we have found two commodities for which Brazil ranks #1 in exports but produces less than 20% of the world’s supply.

Your final answers should look like this.

GMAT Integrated Reasoning Table Analysis Example Problem

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Looking for Integrated Reasoning practice? Check out the links below!

Table Analysis Example Problem #2

Table Analysis Example Problem #3

Multi-Source Reasoning Example Problem #1

Multi-Source Reasoning Example Problem #2

Two-Part Analysis Example Problem #1

Two-Part Analysis Example Problem #2

Two-Part Analysis Example Problem #3

Graphics Interpretation Example Problem #1