Knewton Support/GMAT Reading Comprehension/RC1: Retest: Making MAPS

Answered

GMAT Reading Comprehension: What is the author's attitude... [Passage: In 1998, a number of...]

Academics Team
asked this on April 14, 2011 03:28 PM

What is the author's attitude toward WADA?

  • (A)

    Vehement revulsion

  • (B)

    Detached interest

  • (C)

    Unguarded support (CORRECT ANSWER)

  • (D)

    Gushing enthusiasm

  • (E)

    Cool detachment

 

Comments

User photo
Academics Team
Knewton, Inc.

Student Question: What does "unguarded support" mean?

May 26, 2011 06:36 PM
User photo
Academics Team
Knewton, Inc.
Check Answer

"Unguarded support" means that the author supports WADA without reservation or qualification. In general with these questions, be careful not to choose a question that is too extreme, that ascribes a powerful emotion to the author that really is not reflected in the passage. 

May 26, 2011 06:36 PM
User photo
Academics Team
Knewton, Inc.

Student Question: Why is Choice A incorrect?

May 26, 2011 06:37 PM
User photo
Academics Team
Knewton, Inc.
Check Answer

Be VERY wary of answer choices that ascribe strong emotions to the author. The RC passages tend to be quite calm, and stay well within the realm of civilized academic discourse. "Vehement revulsion" is WAY too strong for this passage. Furthermore, it is actually an opposite answer choice, since the author is in fact not expressing any negativity about WADA whatsoever.

May 26, 2011 06:38 PM
User photo
Academics Team
Knewton, Inc.

Student Question: How can I approach these types of questions in general?

May 26, 2011 06:42 PM
User photo
Academics Team
Knewton, Inc.
Check Answer

The author's attitude can be rather slippery in terms of language, because the "voice" of the author changes in different passages and prompts. We can give you some factors to look out for and some SAMPLE attitude words, but you should by no means consider this short list to be definitive.

When looking for an author's attitude, you are looking for words that have an emotional charge or connote that the author has a specific feeling toward the subject at hand. GMAT passages very rarely express strong emotions like "sadness", "anger", "joy", etc. Approval/support/optimism, neutral/analytical, or disapproval/doubt/pessisism is about as wide a spectrum as you can expect. Here are some examples:

Words or terms that express doubt/disapproval/pessimism:

Dubious
Skeptical
Supposed
Alleged
Unlikely
Only in rare cases
The debate is unresolved
Cannot explain
"X's theory is unproven"
"X theory is unhelpful in describing..."
"X claims, without proof, that..."
X's proposal will not result in...
"I Disagree"
Ongoing problem

Words or terms that express approval/support/optimism:

Makes a strong case
The prevailing theory
Brilliant/Ingenius/Clever/Thoughtful
Explains most cases
Resolved the debate
Solved the problem
Likely to address/solve/remedy...
Available evidence supports...
Research has shown that...
Theorists (or historians/biologists/authors, etc.) agree that...
Proposal X is the best/better/most likely to...
X's prediction
High hopes
"I Agree"

Again, you are very likely to see other words that express attitude besides these. This is a good place to start. Notice the emotional "charge" and tone of all these words.

May 26, 2011 06:42 PM