Television network executive: Some scientists have expressed concern about the numerous highly popular television pr...

Logan on January 18 at 08:04PM

Why A over E

Can you please explain why A is the better answer than E please? Thanks!

1 Reply

Skylar on January 19 at 10:52AM

@llowe, happy to help.

C: Claims that paranormal television programming encourages superstition that impedes the public's scientific understanding are baseless.
P: Paranormal activity has been incorporated into dramas throughout history, yet the scientific understanding has steadily advanced.

(A) points out that the premise (knowledge has steadily advanced) does not necessarily lead to the conclusion (understanding is impeded) and that both could be true at the same time. In other words, scientific understanding can be advancing throughout time but still impeded somewhat/hindered from reaching its full potential because of the limitations imposed by paranormal television programming. Therefore, the passage fails to consider that the steadily advancing of a phenomenon (public scientific understanding) can occur even when that phenomenon is being impeded by another phenomenon (paranormal television programming encouraging superstition), so (A) is correct.

(E) is incorrect because it is too far-reaching in making the claim that any such contention is baseless under a certain circumstance, rather than focusing on the specifics of the passage at hand. Moreover, it is focused on "the contention that one phenomenon causes another," which is not the contention made in the passage. We could potentially chart this as paranormal television programming causing an impediment on public understanding, but the rest of (E) would follow as stating this causation claim is baseless if an impediment on public understanding has persisted despite steady increases in pervasiveness of paranormal television programming, which does not follow the logic of the passage. Here, it is helpful to read the answer choice in your head while replacing "phenomenon" with the corresponding relationship from the passage. We know that the answer choice is incorrect if it does not make sense.

Does that make sense? Please reach out with any additional questions!