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Initally i used to read Question stem first and read the argument. knowing question stem first always influenced my thoughts while reading the premise and argument and often i used to skip some points which are critical to get the correct answers.
So, in my case, now i read argument first with empty mind, after reading argument, take a pause and analyze and paraphrase it in my mind, and then read the Question stem.
It may very well be most important for you to have a system you're confident in...I've heard great things about the Powerscore book, but I've always taught (and practiced) question stem first and for me I wouldn't do it any other way.
One advantage I see to question-stem-first is that then you know what you're looking for in the argument. If it's a Strengthen or Weaken question (or a derivative like "which data would be most useful to evaluate the argument", the singlemost important part of the stimulus is the conclusion, so you can look out specifically for that and then build your argument around it. To me, that makes things pretty efficient and gives me a reading "anchor" so that I'm invested in the question before reading about botany, zoology, poetry, etc. I like turning on that critical part of my mind "I'm looking for the conclusion and the flaw in the reasoning" first and feel that it's most efficient and productive, but ultimately the key is to do what makes you confident and efficient. _________________
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