Thursday, January 22, 2009

Preparation for Test #2, Jan. 27

We will be having our second test on Tuesday, Jan 27. It will cover most of Chapter 3.
You do not have to know the common patterns of INDUCTIVE REASONING, pp.70-74; or inductive cogency and strngth, pp. 80-83.
HOWEVER be sure you:

1) do exercises in the book. I strongly suggest Exercises 3. 2, 3.3, and 3.5.

2) do the website T/F quiz and the multiple choice quiz.

3) make sure you know the stuff relating to deduction on the website chapter outline.

4) While we are emphazising deductive arguments, be sure you are able to distinguish deductive from an inductive arguments, and understand the concepts of validity and soundness. Be able to list and identify the 5 common patterns of deductive reasoning.
5) review the handouts.

Be familiar with these concepts and able to identify and use them:

  • deduction

  • induction

  • strict necessity

  • logical impossibility

  • physical impossibility

  • affirming the antecendent (modus ponens)

  • denying the consequent (modus tolens)

  • conditional (hypothetical) statement;

  • syllogism

  • hypothetical syllogism

  • categorical syllogism

  • argument by elimination

  • argument based on mathematics

  • argument from definition

  • valid argument

  • invalid argument

  • sound argument

  • unsound argument

  • chain argument

  • Be able to

    1) identify the key differences between deductive and inductive arguments (cf. p.58)

    2) tell whether an argument is deductive or inductive, by means of indicator word test, strict necessity test, and the common pattern test.

    3) list the common deductive indicator words;

    4) list the common inductive indicator words

    5) Identify the five common patterns of deductive reasoning

    6) identify arguments that are valid and that are invalid

    7) identify arguments that are sound and that are unsound

    For this test, YOU DON'T NEED TO MEMORIZE THE SIX COMMON PATTERNS OF INDUCTIVE REASONING...we'll do that in our next unit. You DO need to know how to tell the difference between a deductive and an inductive argument; but at this point, you can figure that anything I give you that doesn't fit one of the deductive forms will be inductive.

    The test will have the following sections:

    1. Ten T/F questions, worth 2 points each (total 20 points)

    2. Twenty multiple choice questions, worth 2 points each (total 40 points)

    3. Ten "Identify Arguments as valid or invalid" questions, worth 2 points each (total 20 points)

    4. Ten "Determine whether the argument is Sound or Unsound" questions, worth 2 points each, (total 20 points)

Monday, January 19, 2009

Test #1 Results:

Here's the totals for our first test. We had one almost-perfect paper, with the student missing only one question. The results below show me that the test was difficult, but not impossible.

Again, I strongly urge anyone who has made a D or below to see me, and to talk with your advisor. I must know immediately if you have any identified learning disabilities, so that I can work with your advisor to best understand how to help you.

If you are having problems, you need to be sure you are doing your exercises, checking them and availing yourself of the study helps online. Remember when you read the textbook, don't underline; outline! The extra time it takes pays back in the end.

Many students also find that having a "study buddy" helps improve their accountability, and, as a result, their comprehension of the material.

If you are doing all these things and still are having problems, you MUST see me as soon as possible, or else you will not be able to pass the course.

A = 1
B+ = 1
B- = 1
C= 4
C- = 1
D+ = 1
D = 2
D- = 2
F = 8

Friday, January 09, 2009

Study Guide for Test #1

We will be having Test #1 on Thursday Jan. 15. It will cover all of chapters 1-2.

My tests will almost always have two parts: the first part will be T/F (usually 10 questions worth 2 points each) and the second part will be multiple choice (usually 20 questions worth 4 points each.) Questions will be taken from the textbook website T/F and multiple choice quizzes; from the chapter exercises in the textbook, and a few new ones that I make up.

As always, do the TF and Multiple choice quizzes and the PPT tutorial on the textbook website. Do as many of the exercises in the textbook as you need in order to master the material, and then check your work against the answer key, which is on library reserve. Review the handouts. Review the chapter summaries.

Remember, this is a SKILLS class; so PRACTICE makes perfect!

Be able to define or identify these terms and use them :

Critical thinking
Group bias
---Logical inconsistency
---Practical inconsistency
Self-interested thinking
Self-serving bias
Unwarranted assumption
Wishful thinking
Argument A claim defended with reasons.
Conclusion indicators (be able to list at least four or five)
Conditional statement
Premise indicator (be able to list four or five)
Principle of charity
Rhetorical question
unsupported assertion
conditional statement

Also, be able to:

1) State the standards for clear thinking

2) State the barriers to critical thinking

3) Pick out statements/propositions from other kinds of sentences.

4) Identify ought-imperatives as opposed to regular imperatives; and identify rhetorical questions as opposed to regular questions.

5) Know when an imperative sentence is a statement and when it is not.

6) Identify the premises of any given argument

7) Identify the conclusion of any given argument

8) Be able to identify the antecedent and the consequent in a given conditional statement.

9) Be able to state whether a given piece of text is an illustration, or an explanation, or an argument