Climatologists believe they know why Earth has undergone a regular sequence of ice ages beginning around 800,000 year...

ishadoshi on May 22, 2020

Tips on long question stems

Any tips on how to get through very long question stems such as this one? Not only are they intimidating, but it also gets difficult to keep track of all the information

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SamA on May 25, 2020

Hello @ishadoshi,

Rather than try to keep track of every bit of information, it helps to determine which pieces are important, and then put them into your own words. The first step is to identify the conclusion. In science-based questions, a hypothesis is almost always going to be the conclusion.

Conclusion: Ice ages are caused by orbit fluctuations that send the Earth through a cloud of dust that enters the atmosphere.

The next step is to determine what the hypothesis is based on. In this case, there is only one supporting premise.

Premise: The fluctuations coincide with ice-age cycles.

This correlation is the only premise supporting the conclusion! All of a sudden, we have broken this long stimulus down into two simple parts. Always keep your eye on the conclusion, it will keep you from getting distracted by extra information. Simplifying the argument mentally can help as well.