SAT Math Multiple Choice Question 306: Answer and Explanation

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Question: 306

6. Source: Data from Eurostat.

One indicator of a declining economy is a continued decline in birth rates. In 2010, birth rates in Europe were at an all-time low, with the average number of children that a woman has in her lifetime at well below two. In the figure above, f(t) represents birth rates for Portugal between 1960 and 2010, and g(t) represents birth rates in Slovakia for the same time period. For which value(s) of t is f(t) > g(t)?

  • A. 1960 < t < 1980 only
  • B. 1980 < t < 2000 only
  • C. 1960 < t < 1980 and 1990 < t < 2000
  • D. 1960 < t < 1980 and 2000 < t < 2010

Correct Answer: D



Difficulty: Medium

Category: Passport to Advanced Math / Functions

Strategic Advice: This is a crossover question, so quickly skim the first couple of sentences. Then look for the relevant information in the last couple of sentences. It may also help to circle the portions of the graph that meet the given requirement.

Getting to the Answer: Because greater means higher on a graph, the statement f(t) > g(t) translates to "Where is f(t) above g(t)?" The solid curve represents f and the dashed curve represents g, so f > g between the years 1960 and 1980 and again between the years 2000 and 2010. Look for these time intervals in the answer choices: 1960 < t < 1980 and 2000 < t < 2010.

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