GMAT Verbal: Critical Reading Example Problem #3

Question Type! Specificveroxybd.com

The author quotes Snyder et al in lines 38-43 most probably in order to

(A) reveal some of the assumptions underlying their theory
(B) summarize a major finding of their experiments
(C) point out that their experiments were limited to the mouse
(D) indicate that their experiments resulted only in general correlations
(E) refute the objections made by supporters of the older theory

Tip! Always read the question first.  Then find the part of the passage the question is testing and read that area before answering the question.

Tip! First, identify the question type.

Your first step in tackling these problems is to read the question and identify the question type.  This question asks why the author quotes Snyder et al in lines 38-43.  Therefore, you are looking for the reason that the author quoted Snyder et al.

Tip! Second, find your area using key words or line numbers.

While you’re reading the question, look for key words or line numbers that indicate where you will find the answer to your question.  Remember, you can always find a specific area of the passage with the answer to a specific or inference question.  This question is asking about lines 38-43, so this is the area where we will find the answer to the question.

PASSAGE EXCERPT:

To buttress their case that caffeine acts instead by pre-
(35)      venting adenosine binding, Snyder et. al compared the
stimulatory effects of a series of caffeine derivatives with
their ability to dislodge adenosine from its receptors in
the brains of mice. “In general,” they reported, “the
ability of the compounds to compete at the receptors
(40)      correlates with their ability to stimulate locomotion in
the mouse; i.e., the higher their capacity to bind at the
receptors, the higher their ability to stimulate locomo-
tion.” Theophylline, a close structural relative of caffeine
and the major stimulant in tea, was one of the most
(45)      effective compounds in both regards.

Tip! Stick to your area! Only answer the question based on the information presented in the area.

AREA (Lines 38-43):

the brains of mice. “In general,” they reported, “the
ability of the compounds to compete at the receptors
correlates with their ability to stimulate locomotion in
the mouse; i.e., the higher their capacity to bind at the
receptors, the higher their ability to stimulate locomo-
tion.”
Theophylline, a close structural relative of caffeine

SOLUTION (continued):

Now that we’ve identified our area, we can evaluate our answer choices.  In this case, we want to understand what the quotation is saying on a general level, or the main idea of the quotation. Then, we want to find the answer choice that best describes the quotation.  Most importantly, remember that we still need to base our answer on the information presented in our area only.  If we see a word or idea that cannot be supported by the above quotation, we can eliminate that answer choice.

Tip! One wrong key word makes an entire answer choice wrong.

With the above tip in mind, let’s evaluate our answer choices.

Choice (A): Are they presenting a theory in this quotation? No, they are reporting something they discovered as part of their experiment.  They have not yet turned it into a theory.  Furthermore, are Snyder et. al discussing any assumptions underlying their experimental methods? No, they are not.  Eliminate choice (A).

Choice (B):  Is the quotation providing a summary of one major finding of the experiment?  It mentions one idea they discovered, “the ability of the compounds to compete at the receptors correlates with their ability to stimulate locomotion in the mouse,” and then summarizes what this means, “the higher their capacity to bind at the receptors, the higher their ability to stimulate locomotion.”  Choice (B) looks pretty good, so leave it as an option while you evaluate the remaining choices.

Tip! Always evaluate all of the answer choices before picking your final answer.

Choice (C):  Does the quotation mention a mouse? Yes, it does, so choice (C) is looking OK.  More importantly, though, is the main purpose of the quotation to point out that the experiments were limited to mice? No, instead the quotation is using the experiments with the mouse to draw general conclusions about the effect of the stimulating compounds (“the higher their capacity to bind at the receptors, the higher their ability to stimulate locomotion.”)  Eliminate choice (C).

Choice (D): Does the quotation mention anything about correlations?  In other words, does it indicate a relationship between two variables?  No, it does not.  It simply presents one variable, the introduction of compounds to mice, and draws conclusions about its effects.  eliminate choice (D).

Choice (E):  You can eliminate choice (E) for two reasons.  First, the quotation does not refute any objections.  It simply presents findings.  Furthermore, there is no mention of an “older theory” anywhere in the quotation, or even in the paragraph as a whole.  Eliminate choice (E) for being all kinds of wrong.

Now that we’ve determined that choices (A), (C), (D), and (E) are incorrect, we can confidently pick choice (B), the only answer choice that effectively describes the quotation.

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