Introduction to the Issue Task

The "Analyze an Issue" task assesses your ability to think critically about a topic of general interest and to clearly express your thoughts about it in writing. Each Issue topic makes a claim that can be discussed from various perspectives and applied to many different situations or conditions. Your task is to present a compelling case for your own position on the issue. Before beginning your written response, be sure to read the issue and the instructions that follow the Issue statement. Think about the issue from several points of view, considering the complexity of ideas associated with those views. Then, make notes about the position you want to develop and list the main reasons and examples you could use to support that position.

It is important that you address the central issue according to the specific instructions. Each task is accompanied by one of the following sets of instructions:

  • Write a response in which you discuss the extent to which you agree or disagree with the statement and explain your reasoning for the position you take. In developing and supporting your position, you should consider ways in which the statement might or might not hold true and explain how these considerations shape your position.
  • Write a response in which you discuss the extent to which you agree or disagree with the recommendation and explain your reasoning for the position you take. In developing and supporting your position, describe specific circumstances in which adopting the recommendation would or would not be advantageous and explain how these examples shape your position.
  • Write a response in which you discuss the extent to which you agree or disagree with the claim. In developing and supporting your position, be sure to address the most compelling reasons and/or examples that could be used to challenge your position.
  • Write a response in which you discuss which view more closely aligns with your own position and explain your reasoning for the position you take. In developing and supporting your position, you should address both of the views presented.
  • Write a response in which you discuss the extent to which you agree or disagree with the claim and the reason on which that claim is based.
  • Write a response in which you discuss your views on the policy and explain your reasoning for the position you take. In developing and supporting your position, you should consider the possible consequences of implementing the policy and explain how these consequences shape your position.

The GRE® readers scoring your response are not looking for a "right" answer — in fact, as far as they are concerned, there is no correct position to take. Instead, the readers are evaluating the skill with which you address the specific instructions and articulate and develop an argument to support your evaluation of the issue.

 

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