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New methods of math education in this country do a disservic

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New methods of math education in this country do a disservic [#permalink] New post 12 Jul 2018, 07:00
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New methods of math education in this country do a disservice to our children. In the lower grades, math instruction should focus on the basic skills that students will need to solve complex problems in higher grades. Learning basic math skills is like learning the scales and chords that one will later use to master complicated concertos and symphonies. Increasingly, math educators in this country seem to have it backward, emphasizing in higher grades the same narrow, skills-based approach that students learned in lower grades rather than the analytical tools that they will need to solve complex math problems.

Which of the following, if true, would most seriously weaken the conclusion drawn above?

(A) While music courses are often included in elementary school curricula, such classes are rarely taught in high school.
(B) On international tests of complex math skills, high school students in this country performed no worse than did their counterparts from countries in which problem-solving is emphasized in higher grades.
(C) When presented with a math problem to solve, students in higher grades are more likely to arrive at different answers than students in lower grades.
(D) Older students tend to receive higher grades in math than younger students do.
(E) Universities in this country report a steady increase in the percentage of first-year students who qualify to take courses such as engineering that requires advanced math.
[Reveal] Spoiler: OA

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Re: New methods of math education in this country do a disservic [#permalink] New post 11 Aug 2018, 03:36
Here the conclusion says that the new method is bad. And some premises supporting the claim. We should find something that says good about the new method to make the conclusion less valid. The choice E does this.
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Re: New methods of math education in this country do a disservic [#permalink] New post 19 Jan 2020, 10:28
Doesnt B work as well??? Why is B not the answer?
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Re: New methods of math education in this country do a disservic [#permalink] New post 19 Jan 2020, 11:32
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FratNightGaming wrote:
Doesnt B work as well??? Why is B not the answer?



One possible reason could be that the argument says students should be taught to develop analytical skills that they will use to solve complicated problems.

We are looking for an answer that makes the argument weaken by finding an example that somehow proves that the current academic structure doesn't hinder students' progress in succeeding in advanced math courses. But option B only compares test results between country A and country B. We need an answer that shows that the students in the country in question are not precluded to succeed in advanced level courses offered in the same country. E is a better answer.
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Re: New methods of math education in this country do a disservic [#permalink] New post 19 Jan 2020, 11:43
But B mentions tests of complex math skills.

E is a better answer in my opinion, but doesnt B still work? Or does it not work at all?
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Re: New methods of math education in this country do a disservic [#permalink] New post 19 Jan 2020, 11:59
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FratNightGaming wrote:
But B mentions tests of complex math skills.

E is a better answer in my opinion, but doesnt B still work? Or does it not work at all?


I would probably pick B if E wasn't listed there and B clarified the level of students in those countries. What if those countries were struggling too? So, CAN'T choose B!
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Re: New methods of math education in this country do a disservic   [#permalink] 19 Jan 2020, 11:59
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