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Main Point, FIB. The correct answer choice is (E)
The editorial presented in this stimulus compares painting to education, in that painting involves
applying layer upon layer, each depending on the proper application of the foundational layer
below. The editorialist goes on to say that the most important steps in the process of painting are the
preparation and application of the base primer coat, so it makes sense to suppose that...
Since the stimulus closes with a space to fill in the blank, you should certainly try to prephrase
the answer. The author begins by pointing out the comparability between painting and education.
Thus, if the most important part of painting is creating the proper foundation, it makes sense to
suppose that the most important part of a student's education is the foundation—the students early
Answer choice (A): This answer choice has an appealing reference to initial contact, but the stimulus
does not deal with being undemanding; rather, the editorial's point is that each layer depends upon
the strength of the foundational layers below.
Answer choice (B): The editorial's point is that each layer depends upon the layers below. This
choice provides that a strong foundational grasp will make progress likely—this is a different
direction from the focus of the editorial, which is that a strong education depends upon a strong
Answer choice (C): Since this choice has nothing to do with education's reliance on a strong
foundation, it cannot be the correct answer to this fill in the blank question.
Answer choice (D): This choice introduces several factors that are not present in the editorial, which
does not touch on the concepts of how rewarding the process is. This choice does not follow the flow
of the editorialist's thought process, so it cannot properly fill in the blank in this example.
Answer choice (E): This is the correct answer choice. As prephrased, much like painting, which
depends on the initial preparation and base, a student's educational success depends upon that
student's initial, foundational educational experiences.