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I am looking at this question:
In which two countries was there a considerable discrepancy between married and single people between 1996 and 1998?

I feel confused. There seems to be so many options to do the comparison:
1. Within each of the two countries, first compare the number of married people in 1996 to that in 1998, then do this for the single people; or compare married people and single people in each year.
2. I can also do the comparison between the two countries.

So, I was wondering, what the sentence would like us to compare? Thanks.
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Hi,

I am looking at this question:
In which two countries was there a considerable discrepancy between married and single people between 1996 and 1998?

I feel confused.Me too! Emotion: crying It's a very, very poorly and unclearly worded question.

It doesn't even tell you to look at numbers. eg Maybe there is some discrepancy related to their levels of happiness.

However, you are probably being asked to look at numbers, but I have no idea in what way.

Even the word 'discrrpancy' seems poorly chosen here, because it suggests that there is some expected correspondence, but that correspondence is not defined in the question.

There seems to be so many options to do the comparison:
1. Within each of the two countries, first compare the number of married people in 1996 to that in 1998, then do this for the single people; or compare married people and single people in each year.
2. I can also do the comparison between the two countries.

So, I was wondering, what the sentence would like us to compare?

Clive
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Hi Clive,

Thanks a lot for input. That sentence came with a lot of bar graphs, which show the numbers of young, old, death, married, and single people in four countries.
Check out this link: http://www.ielts-exam.net/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=265&Itemid=36#AB

But, still, I have no clue about what to do. Any new ideas?

How about I change the sentence to this one:
In which two countries was there a considerable discrepancy between the numbers of married and single people between 1996 and 1998?

Is this clear now?

Thanks.
Hi,

Thanks a lot for input. That sentence came with a lot of bar graphs, which show the numbers of young, old, death, married, and single people in four countries.
Check out this link: http://www.ielts-exam.net/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=265&Itemid=36#AB

But, still, I have no clue about what to do. Any new ideas?

How about I change the sentence to this one:
In which two countries was there a considerable discrepancy between the numbers of married and single people between 1996 and 1998?

Is this clear now? It's better. The topic is clearly based on numbers.

I took a quick look at the link.

between 1996 and 1998 does not mean 'compare the two years 1996 and 1998'. It means 'look at years 1996/1997/1998'.

a considerable discrepancy I believe the writer just means 'a considerable difference'. (Perhaps he does not understand that a discrepancy is not simply the same as a difference.)

So, just look at each country, for those 3 years. Look for big diiferences each year between the number of married people and the number of single people. Choose the two countires where these differences were the biggest.

Clive
Clive,

Thanks a lot for your time.

Bbser
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