Bunuel wrote:

How many unique quadrilaterals can be inscribed in the vertices of a nonagon (a 9-sided figure), if points A and B, two vertices in the nonagon, cannot make up the same quadrilateral?

(A) 126

(B) 105

(C) 96

(D) 65

(E) 21

Since a nonagon has 9 vertices and a quadrilateral has 4 vertices, the number of quadrilaterals that can be made is 9C4 = (9 x 8 x 7 x 6)/4! = (9 x 8 x 7 x 6)/(4 x 3 x 2) = 3 x 7 x 6 = 126, if there are no restrictions. However, since vertices A and B can’t both be in the same quadrilateral, we need to subtract the number of quadrilaterals that have both vertices A and B. The number of such quadrilaterals is 2C2 x 7C2 = 1 x (7 x 6)/2! = 42/2 = 21 (notice that 2C2 is the number of ways A and B can be picked if they have to be 2 vertices of the quadrilateral and 7C2 is the number of ways the other 2 vertices of the quadrilateral can be picked from the other 7 vertices).

Thus, the number of quadrilaterals such that vertices A and B are not in the same quadrilateral is 126 - 21 = 105.

Answer: B

_________________

Jeffrey Miller

Jeffrey Miller

Head of GRE Instruction