Let us see what the Analysis of An Argument question is. The Analysis of An Issue question in GMAT expects you to think over a controversial issue, take a position on it and or justify your position. On the contrary, the Analysis of An Argument question in GMAT does not ask for your views on a subject.
The question on Analysis of an Argument mentions a conclusion reached by an author on a certain issue with a premise based on which he had reached that conclusion. It then asks you to analyze whether the conclusion necessarily follows from the premise, to guess what unstated assumptions the author had made while arriving at his conclusion and whether these assumptions are truly valid. It also asks you to state what other facts must be stated or ascertained before the author's conclusion can be justified.
The Analysis of an Argument questions thus have a similarity with Critical Reasoning questions.
What to look for in this?
The first fact you can notice is that while there were verbal variations among the questions that following the initial statement in the Analysis of Issue category, the questions under Analysis of Argument are all identically worded as stated below.
Discuss how well reasoned you find this argument. In your discussion, be sure to analyze the line of reasoning and the use of evidence in the argument. For example, you may need to consider what questionable assumptions underlie the thinking and what alternative explanations or counterexamples might weaken the conclusion. You can also discuss what sort of evidence would strengthen or refute the argument, what changes in the argument would make it logically sound and what, if anything, would help you better evaluate the conclusion.
Secondly, the initial narration in an Analysis of Argument question does not always follow the sequence premise followed by conclusion.
It is quite possible that the conclusion is stated first and the premise is stated later.
It is also equally possible that the conclusion is stated somewhere in the middle of some facts and then premise.
How to approach this?
Remember that there is no right or wrong opinion which decides the score that you will be awarded. What’s needed is that you should write a cogent and logical essay supporting your opinion.
So, your first task when you read an Analysis of An Argument question is to spot which, among the given sentences, is the premise and which is the conclusion.
If you make a fundamental error of identifying a premise as a conclusion and vice-versa, your essay will prove to be illogical.
Here is the List of 140 topics ( Analysis of An Argument ), issued by Educational Testing Services, from which one topic will be chosen for you by the computer when you take your GMAT.