The intricate structure of the compound insect eye

Question

The intricate structure of the compound insect eye, having hundreds of miniature eyes called ommatidia, help explain why scientists have assumed that it evolved independently of the vertebrate eye.

Option A
Option B
Option C
Option D
Option E

(This question is from Official Guide. Therefore, because of copyrights, the complete question cannot be copied here. The question can be accessed at GMAT Club)

Solution

Sentence Analysis

  • The intricate structure of the compound insect eye, (Main Subject – “structure”)
    • having hundreds of miniature eyes (verb-ing modifier modifying the subject)
      • called ommatidia, (verb-ed modifier modifying “eyes”)
  • help explain (Main Verb – “help”)
    • why scientists have assumed (dependent clause modifying “explain”)
      • that it evolved independently of the vertebrate eye. (dependent clause modifying “assumed”)

The sentence provides an explanation for the scientists’ assumption that the compound insect eye evolved independently of the vertebrate eye. The explanation is the intricate structure of the compound insect eye. The compound insect eye has hundreds of miniature eyes.

The sentence has one error: the singular subject “structure” doesn’t agree with the plural verb “help”.

Option Analysis

(A) Incorrect. For the error mentioned above.

(B) Incorrect. For the following reasons:

  1. “they” refers to “miniature eyes”, which is present in a non-essential modifier within double commas and thus doesn’t seem to be a logical referent at this position in the sentence. Logically, we need a singular pronoun to refer to compound insect eye.
  2. “that are” is redundant.

(C) Incorrect. For the following reasons:

  1. Error no. 1 of option B
  2. The use of “assuming” is awkward since a proper noun form “assumption” exists.
  3. “that are” is redundant.

(D) Incorrect. For the following reasons:

  1. The singular subject “structure” doesn’t agree with the plural verb “help”.
  2. Problem no. 2 of option C

(E) Correct. This option corrects the error in the original sentence without introducing any new problem.

About Chiranjeev Singh

An Alumnus of IIM Ahmedabad and with scores of 780 (2017) and 770 (2013) on GMAT and 99.98%ile on CAT, Chiranjeev is one of the most qualified GMAT tutors in India. Chiranjeev has earlier served as Director of Curriculum at e-GMAT. Chiranjeev has been helping students ace GMAT since 2012. He follows a concept-based methodology to teaching GMAT and is very committed to student success. You may contact him for any private GMAT tutoring needs at CJ@GMATwithCJ.com. He conducts online sessions for students across the world.

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