This GMAT sample question is a verbal sentence correction question testing your understanding of Word Usage, Intent & Meaning.
Question 7: In addition to being convenient, affordable, and versatile, legumes are also full of fiber, vitamins, key minerals and plant protein, plus their antioxidant levels rival berries.
Look for differences across the answer options to identify what is being tested in the sentence.
Some of the options use “in addition to” and some use the construction “Not only”.
Some options use the construction “rich in” and some use the “full of” construction.
Also, the placement of these constructions varies across the options.
The intent of the sentence is to list the various benefits of legumes; also, legumes are compared with berries on the basis of one of the benefits.
The comparison in the sentence should be between “legumes” and “berries” or the “antioxidant levels of legumes” and the “antioxidant levels of berries”.
The “of” construction cannot be used in all situations. For example, “unemployment rate” is the correct usage. Referring to the same as “rate of unemployment” is incorrect.
Option (A), however, compares the “antioxidant levels of legumes” with “berries”.
“levels of antioxidants” in option (B) is a wordy and awkward construction. “antioxidant levels” is the appropriate usage.
Using “the” for legumes gives the impression that we are talking about some specific legumes – only the ones that are convenient, affordable, and versatile. The meaning in option (C) is that the few specific legumes that are convenient, affordable, and versatile are the ones that are full of fiber etc – implying that other legumes are not.
Using the -ing construction in Option (D) – rivalling berries in antioxidant levels - implies a cause-effect relationship. The meaning of the sentence is that BECAUSE legumes are rich in fiber etc, their antioxidant levels rival those of berries. However, that is not the intent of the sentence. Fiber content is one benefit and high antioxidant levels are simply another unrelated benefit.
Option (E) is straightforward in that the list of benefits is clear and easy to understand. Some of the benefits are in the modifier and some as part of the main sentence itself. The comparison is also correctly made between legumes and berries.
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