Friday, 24 March 2017


Directions (1-15): Each of the following questions has a paragraph from which the last sentence has been deleted. From the given options, choose the one that completes the paragraph in the most appropriate way.

Q1. Lower winter temperatures were common in Europe during the second half of the 17th century, famously allowing frost fairs to be held on the frozen Thames in London before riverine developments increased the flow rate. These cold winters coincided with the Maunder minimum in solar activity when the Sun remained virtually free of sunspots for almost 50 years. However, establishing that this was not just a chance occurrence requires that the relationship continue to hold over a long interval, such that cold European winters become less frequent when solar activity is high and then more common again when solar activity falls. Various indicators show that during the recent minimum of the 11 year sunspot cycle, the Sun has been quieter than at any time in the previous 90 years.
(a) This means that solar activity during the current sunspot minimum has fallen to levels unknown since the start of the 20th century.
(b) This yields an opportunity for a better test of the relationship between solar activity and cold European winters.
(c) This proves that cold winters occur more commonly in the UK during low solar activity.
(d) This regional and seasonal effect relating to European winters may have a global effect.
(e) None of the above is appropriate 

Q2. Debt is more common in families with disabled children: the parents were unable to keep up with any local property taxes, water, and telephone bills, and were not likely to be able to afford basic items such as a family holiday once a year, a bicycle, or even two pairs of shoes. A disabled baby needs more nappies. Families’ ability to work grows difficult, and finding childcare is a real burden. Households with disabled children will depend more on social security benefits and are faced with the additional financial costs associated with caring for a disabled child.
(a) There is a strong link between child disability and poverty.
(b) The highest prevalence of childhood disability is found in the poorest families.
(c) It is an adverse and serious social gradient that families with disabled face.
(d) But thanks to science, these children live longer and medicines keep them alive.
(e) None of the above is appropriate 

Q3. What a super film experience Green Zone is! From the firecracker opening to the sucker-punch climax, the film is a non-stop adrenalin rush. The hand-held camera and natural light make you feel as if you are seeing the action from the front, as if you have access to footage shot from a sniper’s sights. Whether it is a Bourne-in-Baghdad kind of relentless action thriller or a strong statement against the U.S. war in Iraq, (incidentally, it is both) Green Zone succeeds as a pure cinema, delivering thrills, spills and chills in breathless succession hardly giving anyone time to breathe.
(a) This is a movie that takes you on a thrilling, provocative, exhilarating ride.
(b) There is really nothing more you could ask for from a movie.
(c) Green Zone effectively knits several strands together to make a cohesive whole.
(d) The plot is taut and truthful.
(e) None of the above is appropriate 

Q4. Talented youth can ill-afford to resign to their fate just because they can’t properly communicate in English. They should confront the challenges which should, in fact, bring out their best. A little confidence and hard work are all that is needed for them to climb up the career ladder. For that they need to develop communication skills in English, shape up their personalities and acquire the much-needed knowledge.
(a) Knowledge and communication skills are the key ingredients that make up the recipe for success.
(b) Students have to act as leaders in the college itself.
(c) Success will automatically follow.
(d) Speaking and writing in English are important, thinking in English is twice as important.
(e) None of the above is appropriate 

Q5. Philosophy of music has been dominated by the view that the best music is autonomous and formally complex. As recently as 1990, philosophy of popular music consisted of variations on a single theme. Philosophers defended the twin assumptions that popular music is essentially different from “serious” or art music, and that the former is aesthetically inferior to the latter.
(a) As a result, music could not be regarded as art if it lacked genius and autonomy.
(b) As a result, popular music competes with and replaces local and regional folk traditions.
(c) As a result, most philosophers concentrated on identifying the aesthetic deficiencies inherent in popular music.
(d) As a result, philosophers have investigated popular music by identifying and critiquing key concepts that shape our response to this music.
(e) None of the above is appropriate 

Q6. Marriage, in America at least, is an institution in decline. There is a significant drop in the number of married couples between the ages of 30 and 44: 60% in 2007, down from 84% in 1970. This erosion in legally bound partners has been steady: 77% of this demographic was married in 1980, down to 65% in 2000. During this same period another dramatic change was taking place: the expansion of economic and educational opportunities for women. You might be tempted to conclude that the new economic caste of well-employed, highly educated women is responsible for marriage’s decline; it’s not.
(a) They want to experience something of youth, work and life before committing to a life-long contractual bond.
(b) For many women in the West, the matter of marriage is deeply vexed.
(c) Given the decline in the popularity of marriage, the institution itself must be becoming less significant.
(d) Examining the necessity of marriage, for oneself and for women in general, is actually not self-indulgent or frivolous.
(e) Perhaps, there is never going to be any tidy ultimate conclusion here.

Q7. People who pursue happiness through material possessions are liked less by their peers than people who pursue happiness through life experiences. The mistake we can sometimes make is believing that pursuing material possessions will gain us status and admiration while also improving our social relationships. In fact, it seems to have exactly the opposite effect.
(a) This is really problematic because we know that having quality social relationships is one of the best predictors of happiness, health, and well-being.
(b) Not only will investing in material possessions make us less happy than investing in life experiences, but that it often makes us less popular among our peers as well.
(c) Material possessions don’t provide as much enduring happiness as the pursuit of life experiences.
(d) So there’s a real social cost to being associated with material possessions rather than life experiences.
(e) None of the above is appropriate 

Q8. Three centuries have passed since the polymath Sir Christopher Wren predicted that “a time will come when men will stretch out their eyes-they should see planets like our Earth.” By most astronomers’ accounts, that time is just about nigh. Indeed, detecting big planets orbiting other stars is no longer tricky-nearly 450 such exoplanets have been cataloged. Smaller, rocky planets orbiting at a comfortable distance from their stars-as the Earth does-remain more elusive. Most exoplanets have been discovered by inferring their presence from the rhythmic wobble their gravity imparts on their home star-like a waltz between two dancers of markedly different weights. The problem is that this method favours the discovery of large planets close to their stars.
(a) As a result, the catalog of planets is filled with huge bodies basking brightly in the light of their sun.
(b) As a result, mankind’s ability to look for extraterrestrial life remains defeated.
(c) As result, planets a little farther away from their stars cannot support life.
(d) As a result, astronomers have solved the problem of looking at objects near to a star’s bright glare.
(e) None of the above is appropriate 

Q9. The basic principle in magic is that if you believe in the magic you do, the audience will too. Secondly, magic does not happen on stage, but in the minds of the audience.
(a) Magic is like a tree that you water and nurture.
(b) There is psychology to magic.
(c) A successful magician just triggers off the magic.
(d) A little alteration to a card, a coin, or napkin can create magic.
(e) None of the above is appropriate 

Q10. Iceland has a lot of volcanoes, and it’s a rare decade when one of them doesn’t erupt. So why is the eruption of Eyjafjallajokull causing such chaos, and what does that mean for the future? The answer to the first question is that the Eyjafjallajokull eruption is peculiarly well attuned to messing with international air travel; most eruptions of a similar size would do a lot less long-distance harm. (a) The answer to the second is that very little is known about the effects of erupting volcanoes on air travel.
(b) The answer to the second is that many of Europe’s busiest airports will remain out of action for some time.
(c) The answer to the second is that the future of air travel at least in Europe is bleak.
(d) The answer .to the second is that less well attuned but considerably larger eruptions are all but certain in decades to come.
(e) None of the above is appropriate 

Q11. For everyone who expected Budget 2010 to lay out the roadmap for goods and services tax (GST) rollout, there was much disappointment Not only did the Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee sound cautiously optimistic about April 2011 rollout, there was very little in the form of explicit steps in that direction other than alignment of rates for goods and services as well as expansion of the ambit of service tax.
(a) It can be argued that the government has added a few more services to the list like the previous years.
(b) A comprehensive list of services is critical for the implementation of GST.
(c) It can be argued that when GST is at the threshold, the government should not have tinkered with the rates.
(d) But everything is not as simple as it appears.
(e) So where does the plan to migrate to GST stand?

Q12. It remains to be seen whether the economy-wide innovative trend would be sufficient to shore up growth in the secular period. For, as researchers like Solow have shown since the 1950s, the bulk of growth over the long term is not so much due to increase in factor inputs like capital and labour as technological change, efficiency improvements and productivity gains. And given our weak science, technology and innovation indicators, to assume world-leading growth for decades would verily belie the empirical evidence of umpteen studies –
(a) that growth is essentially about technological progress.
(b) that the Solow thesis is not the heart of modern growth theory.
(c) that economic growth in India would surpass those of the other major economies soon.
(d) that technology is not really an exogenous, standalone factor.
(e) that figures can be rather deceptive.

Q13. The Economic Survey went to the extent of expunging details of distribution losses of power utilities, preferring to drop an entire table of figures on rates of return, commercial losses and other attendant annual projections. The Economic Advisory Council is concerned about unacceptably-large revenue leakages in distributing power-and rightly so. But without up-to-date data and comprehensive figures about happenings and goings-on in the vexed power sector, the policy process would surely be left plodding along in the dark.
(a) The survey clearly needs to have wide-ranging data on distribution. 
(b) When it comes to power distribution, large unaccounted-for losses continue pan-India.
(c) The fact is that there’s a huge gap when it comes to electricity generation and supply.
(d) Yet, we seem more focused on ritualizing reforms and opening up.
(e) Yet, aggregate technical and commercial losses amount to almost 35%.

Q14. Finding ways to improve humanity’s living standards is the point of economics. Having a good measure of living standards, you may think, is therefore pretty fundamental to the discipline. For decades, economists have turned to gross domestic product (GDP) when they want an estimate of how well off people are. By how much are Americans better off than Indians, or than their parents’ generation? Chances are the answer will start with GDP. GDP is really a measure of an economy’s output, valued at market prices. As societies produce more, and therefore earn more, their material well-being rises.
(a) That said, economists and statisticians have been debating for years whether GDP measures true well-being.
(b) But GDP was not intended to be a comprehensive measure of society’s well-being.
(c) But GDP is not a true measure of improving living standards as GDP is an aggregate measure.
(d) But GDP isn’t the only measure.
(e) So when economists want to measure the living standards of whole societies, GDP is where they usually start.

Q15. The American novelist John Gardner famously defined the crafting of fiction as the creation of a vivid and continuous dream-first in the mind of the writer and then, if the novelist does his or her job properly, in the mind of the reader. The British novelist Rupert Thomson too talks about the roots of his inspiration in a similar way: whenever I start a new book I have nightmares. Night after night. For a long time I didn’t understand why. Recently I came up with a theory. To write fiction of any power and authenticity you have to draw on the deepest, most secret parts of yourself.
(a) You might say that I want my fiction to have that relationship to reality.
(b) The paradox at the heart of Thomson’s work is that it remains as strange as a dream.
(c) That’s where fiction comes from, but it’s also where dreams are made.
(d) I seem to be attracted to ideas that allow me to do this.
(e) Thomson works hard to help the reader imagine himself deeply into the story.


S1. Ans.(b)
Sol. “... establishing that this was not just a chance occurrence requires that the relationship continue to hold over a long interval...” is the crux of the paragraph. Hence the sun being “quiet” is an opportunity to find this correlation. Options (c) and (d) can be very easily eliminated as not related to the purpose of the paragraph. Option (a) is true, is an inference not related to the purpose of the paragraph.

S2. Ans.(c)
Sol. This statement is a very low level inference that logically closes the paragraph. The paragraph is not sufficient to establish the link as in option (a). Option (b) goes farther away from the paragraph. Option (d) is unrelated to the purpose of the paragraph.

S3. Ans.(b)
Sol. All options may appear correct. The scoring option, however, has to close the paragraph, and not merely continue it. Option (a) will be repetitive. Options (c) and (d) will continue the paragraph.

S4. Ans.(c)
Sol. The purpose of the paragraph is in the first sentence - “can ill-afford to resign to their fate.” Option (a) is already clearly stated-it just states the same thing in different words. Option (b) takes off on a tangent and brings in leadership; option (d) also does not close the paragraph. Option (c) just does that-the paragraph has no loose ends.

S5. Ans.(c)
Sol. The purpose of the paragraph is: Philosophers consider popular and serious music different. The former lacks complexity and autonomy, the later is variations on a single them-and that popular music is inferior. “As a result” will discuss its direct consequences and close the paragraph. Hence option (c) scores. Option (a) is stated. Option (b) is irrelevant in “replace” and “folk music”. Option (d) is irrelevant in “our response.”

S6. Ans.(c)
Sol. “Marriage, in America at least, is an institution in decline” is how the paragraph and proving this is the writer’s purpose. The statistics quoted is for this purpose. The writer also cautions making any conclusions against this. Hence option (c) reinforces the first conclusion of the writer.

S7. Ans.(c)
Sol. “this is really problematic” eliminates option (a). The paragraph needs to be concluded without contradicting the writer’s purpose of stating that material possessions (nor the pursuit) makes us happy-but life experiences (the pursuit) does. This is indicated by “the mistake we make in believing...” etc. the writer does not seem to tell us what we have to do – he simply expresses in opinion. Hence option (b) may be not necessary. Option (d) is eliminated because his purpose is not to point out only the social cost. Option (c) is most neutral statement and merely summarizes his point of View.

S8. Ans.(a)
Sol. “As a result…" helps you reach the correct option. The direct consequence of “inferring their presence from the rhythmic wobble their gravity imparts on their home star” is that discovery of large “exoplanets” is no longer tricky, but the discovery of smaller/distant planets is difficulty, hence the catalogue is largely made up of large planets.

S9. Ans.(c)
Sol. The paragraph is about the magician’s strong belief creating it in the minds of the audience. Hence the magician merely triggers it off in the minds of others.

S10. Ans.(d)
Sol. The last sentence has to answer the second question ‘what does it mean for the future?’ Option (d) best answers this in the light of the information in the paragraph.

S11. Ans.(b)
Sol. If the purpose of the paragraph is clear to you the disappointment in relation to the expectation of a roadmap for GST -options (b) and (d) help to conclude the paragraph. The reason for the disappointment is that “there was very little in the form of explicit steps” – alignment of rates and expansion of the ambit (addition to the list). Option (e) leaves the whole issue uncertain with a question. Option (b) closes it emphatically by stating what is necessary to be done. Option (b) closes with a definitive ending.

S12. Ans.(a)
Sol. “bulk of growth over the long term is not so much due to increase in factor inputs like capital and labour as technological change etc.,” is the gist of the paragraph. Our weak science etc... “belie the empirical evidence...” the empirical evidence is already stated in the above-italicized part. Option (a) reinforces this and completes the paragraph. Option (d) requires further clarifications.

S13. Ans.(a)
Sol. The purpose of the paragraph is to states that there should be sufficient data to formulate policies – in the context of power sector (Economic survey and Economic Advisory Council). Option (a) concludes the paragraph by stating this purpose explicitly without bringing in any new ideas that may require further clarification. Once the purpose is established (not inferred) option (d) can make sense.

S14. Ans.(e)
Sol. Perhaps, the options are close. The purpose of the paragraph is almost stated in “Chances are the answer will start with GDP.” Nothing to the contrary is even suggested by the paragraph. Hence the ‘debate’ option (a) and the counterarguments with “but” options (b), (c) and (d) are irrelevant. The paragraph takes a particular view and concludes it in option (e).

S15. Ans.(c)
Sol. Thomson talks about his inspiration in a similar way-which is creating a continuous dream. Option (a) is, hence, eliminated. Option (b) requires further explanation about “paradox.” Option (d) appears fine; the idea of dream is still incomplete. Option (e) suddenly brings in the reader. Option (d) closes the paragraph and idea of the seamless dream.