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The New York Times

 

New York Times

January 8, 2006
Pop Quiz The New G.R.E.

Forget Analogies, Reason More, Memorize Less

The Graduate Record Exam, used for grad-school admissions, is undergoing the most significant overhaul in its 55-year history. To better predict student potential, the revamped G.R.E. will emphasize complex reasoning and depend less on vocabulary. That means no more analogies and antonyms but more reading passages; less geometry but more data interpretation and word problems involving real-life situations; and an additional hour and a half of test-taking. Below are new question types that the Educational Testing Service is developing. The new G.R.E. makes its debut in October.

IN "Raisin in the Sun," Lorraine Hansberry does not reject integration or the economic and moral promise of the American dream; rather, she remains loyal to this dream while looking, realistically, at its incomplete realization. Once we recognize this dual vision, we can accept the play's ironic nuances as deliberate social commentaries by Hansberry rather than as the "unintentional" irony that Bigsby attributes to the work. Indeed, a curiously persistent refusal to credit Hansberry with a capacity for intentional irony has led some critics to interpret the play's thematic conflicts as mere confusion, contradiction or eclecticism. Isaacs, for example, cannot easily reconcile Hansberry's intense concern for her race with her ideal of human reconciliation. But the play's complex view of black self-esteem and human solidarity as compatible is no more "contradictory" than DuBois's famous, well-considered ideal of ethnic self-awareness coexisting with human unity, or Fanon's emphasis on an ideal internationalism that also accommodates national identities and roles.

1. Select the sentence in the passage in which the author provides examples that reinforce an argument against a critical response cited earlier in the passage.

2. The author's primary purpose in the passage is to
a. explain some critics' refusal to consider "Raisin in the Sun" a deliberately ironic play.
b. suggest that ironic nuances ally "Raisin in the Sun" with DuBois's and Fanon's writings.
c. analyze the fundamental dramatic conflicts in "Raisin in the Sun."
d. emphasize the inclusion of contradictory elements in the play.
e. affirm the thematic coherence underlying "Raisin in the Sun."

Select entries from the corresponding columns to best complete the text.

3. Murray, whose show of recent paintings and drawings is her best in many years, has been eminent hereabouts for a quarter-century, although often regarded with (i) ____, but the most (ii) ____ of these paintings (iii) ____ all doubts.

(i)

(ii)

(iii)

partiality

problematic

exculpate

credulity

successful

assuage

ambivalence

disparaged

whet

4. There has been much hand-wringing about how unprepared American

students are for college. Graff reverses this perspective, suggesting that colleges are unprepared for students. In his analysis, the university culture is largely (i) ____ entering students because academic culture fails to make connections to the kinds of arguments and cultural references that students grasp. Understandably, many students view academic life as (ii) ____ ritual.

(i)

(ii)

primed for

an arcane

opaque to

a laudable

essential for

a painstaking

Select the two answer choices that fit the meaning of the sentence as a whole and produce completed sentences that are alike in meaning.

5. International financial issues are typically ____ by the United States media because they are too technical to make snappy headlines and too inaccessible to people who lack a background in economics.
a. neglected
b. slighted
c. overrated
d. hidden
e. criticized
f. repudiated

6. It is paradoxical that the Amazon, the lushest of all rain forests (above), is rooted in the most ____ of all soils.
a. acidic
b. coarse
c. stark
d. impoverished
e. infertile
f. austere

7. Cynics believe that people who ____ compliments do so in order to be praised twice.
a. conjure up
b. covet
c. deflect
d. grasp
e. shrug off
f. understand

House Prices No. of Houses
$100,000-$133,000 12
$134,000-$166,000 25
$167,000-$199,000 8

8. The table above shows the distribution of prices of 45 houses for sale in a certain region. Select two of the following choices and place them in the blanks below so that the resulting statement is true.

a. $175,000 b. $185,000 c. $190,000 d. at most $42,000 e. at least $57,000

If the highest price of the 45 houses is ______, then the range of the prices of the 45 houses is ______.

9. The symbol _ represents one of the four operations of addition, subtraction, multiplication and division, and 3 _ 1 = 3. For each of the following equations, indicate whether the equation must be true, must be false or could be true or false.

Equation Must Be True Must Be False Could Be True or False
6 _ 2 = 3
6 _ 2 = 4
6 _ 2 = 12