GMAT Essay Topic 446 - The following appeared in an article in a college departmental newsletter "Professor Taylor of Jones University is promoting a model of foreign language instruction in which students receive ten weeks of intensive training, then go abroad to live with families for ten weeks. The superiority of the model, Professor Taylor contends, is proved by the results of a study in which foreign language tests given to students at 25 other colleges show that first -year foreign language students at Jones speak more fluently after only ten to twenty weeks in the program than do nine out of ten foreign language majors elsewhere at the time of their graduation." Discuss how well reasoned . . . Etc.
In the passage, the author argues that the foreign language training program is superior at Jones University than at any other colleges. This is based on the premises that the first year foreign language students at Jones speak more fluently after only ten to twenty weeks in the program than do most foreign language students elsewhere. However, on deeper analysis, it become apparent that certain relevant aspects have not been taken into consideration, leading to a number of mistaken assumption and logical flaws.
One such flaw is that Professor Taylor assumed that the foreign language instruction at Jones is better than elsewhere on the basis of the result of a study in which foreign language tests given to students of twenty five others colleges show that first year foreign language students at Jones speak more fluently than do most of foreign language students elsewhere at the time of their graduation. However there may be other reason of superior performance of students at Jones. What if students at Jones are the best students selected across the globe. What if the students from 25 colleges, who participated in study are mediocre and their level of commitment does not matches with that of students at Jones. so, In order to strengthen the argument , more factual information should be provided why students at Jones performance is better than students of other colleges.
Moreover the writer’s argument is incorrectly based on the assumption that Jones model of foreign language training is better because its students speak better than students elsewhere at the time of graduation. The writer assumes that speaking is only criteria to decide the superiority of foreign language teaching model and He forgot other criteria such as writing and reading to ascertain the quality training program at Jones. What if the students at other colleges are better in writing and reading. To overcome this flaw, the argument should contain factual information about other parameter such as reading and writing standard of students.
After closer examination of the passage, it is apparent that there are several logical flaws in the argument. If it include the recommendation discussed above instead of solely explaining that foreign language training program at Jones is better than training program elsewhere on single parameter, the argument would have been more through and convincing.
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