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Critical Thinking (12 - Old Edition)by George W. Rainbolt
Synopses & ReviewsPlease note that used books may not include additional media (study guides, CDs, DVDs, solutions manuals, etc.) as described in the publisher comments.
With a complete, approachable presentation, CRITICAL THINKING: THE ART OF ARGUMENT is an accessible yet rigorous introduction to critical thinking. The text emphasizes immediate application of critical-thinking skills to real life. The relevance of these skills is shown throughout the text by highlighting the advantages of basing one's decisions on a thoughtful understanding of arguments and presenting the overarching commonalities across arguments. With its conversational writing style and carefully selected examples, the book employs a consistent and unified treatment of logical form and an innovative semiformal method of standardizing arguments that illustrates the concept of logical form while maintaining a visible connection to ordinary speech. Without sacrificing accuracy or detail, the authors have clearly presented the material with appropriate study tools and exercises that emphasize application rather than memorization.
About the Author
Dr. George W. Rainbolt is Professor and Chair of the Department of Philosophy at Georgia State University. He is the co-author of ETHICS (Harper-Collins 1994) and the author of THE CONCEPT OF RIGHTS (Springer 2006) as well as numerous articles. He chairs the Georgia State University Senate Committee on Admissions and Standards, has served on Georgia State University's General Education Assessment Committee, was a member of the Georgia State's SACS Accreditation Leadership Team, and is a member of Georgia State's Critical Thinking through Writing Leadership Team. Dr. Sandra L. Dwyer is Senior Lecturer in the Department of Philosophy at Georgia State University. As Coordinator for Graduate Teaching, she mentors twenty to thirty graduate students each year, overseeing their initial experience of teaching philosophy, including Critical Thinking sections. Over the past twenty years, she has taught numerous courses including more than 100 sections of critical thinking. She is the author of THINKING ETHICALLY IN BUSINESS (Humanities-Ebooks, 2008).
Table of Contents
1. CRITICAL THINKING and ARGUMENTS. What Critical Thinking Is. What an Argument Is. Statements. Statements v. Sentences. Why Think Critically? Finding Arguments. The First Three Steps. Step 1. Look for an Attempt to Convince. Step 2. Find the Conclusion. Step 3. Find the Premises. Complicating Factors. Indicator Words Are Imperfect Guides. Sentence Order. Conclusions and Premises Not in Declarative Form. Unstated Premises and Unstated Conclusions. Things That Are Not Arguments. Assertions. Descriptions. Questions and Instructions. Explanations. Putting Arguments into Standard Form. Diagramming Arguments. Chapter Summary. 2. WHAT MAKES A GOOD ARGUMENT? The Two Characteristics of a Good Argument. True Premises. Audience. The Problem of Ignorance. Proper Form. Deductive and Inductive Arguments. Guide: Terms Used in Logic, Philosophy and Math. Relevance. Dependent and Independent Premises. Arguing about Arguments. Fallacies and Relevance. Fallacy: Easy Target. Fallacy: Appeal to Popularity. Fallacy: Appeal to Novelty or Tradition. Fallacy: Ad Hominem. Fallacy: Appeal to Ignorance. Fallacy: Begging the Question. Chapter Summary. 3. PREMISES AND CONCLUSIONS. Three Kinds of Premises. Empirical Statements. Testimonial Empirical Statements. Definitional Statements. Statements by Experts. Appropriate Credentials. Reliability. Lack of Bias. Appropriate Area of Expertise. Fallacy: Inappropriate Expertise. Expert Consensus. Guide: Proper Citation of Experts. Premises and the Internet. A Common Mistake. Conclusions. Strength of Conclusions. Scope of Conclusions. Chapter Summary. 4. LANGUAGE. Identifying Definitions. Extension and Intension. Genus and Species. Dictionary Definitions. Technical Definitions. Evaluating Definitions. Correct Extension. Correct Intension. Language and Clarity. Ambiguity. Fallacy: Equivocation. Vagueness. Language and Emotion. Fallacy: Appeal to Emotions. Persuasive Definitions. Euphemism. Rhetorical Devices. Chapter Summary. 5. PROPOSITIONAL ARGUMENTS. Identifying Propositional Statements. Negations. Disjunctions. Conjunctions. Conditionals. Conditionals: Some Complications. Evaluating Propositional Arguments. Denying a Disjunct. Fallacy: Affirming an Inclusive Disjunct. Affirming an Exclusive Disjunct. Fallacy: False Dichotomy. Affirming the Antecedent. Fallacy: Denying the Antecedent. Denying the Consequent. Fallacy: Affirming the Consequent. Tri-conditional. Chapter Summary. 6. CATEGORICAL ARGUMENTS. Identifying Categorical Statements. Universal Affirmation, All G1 Are G2. Universal Negation, All G1 Are Not G2. Particular Affirmation, Some G1 Are G2. Particular Negation, Some G1 Are Not G2. Evaluating Categorical Arguments with One Premise. Fallacy: Confusing a Contrary and a Contradictory. Conversion. Complements. Contraposition. Obversion. Evaluating Categorical Arguments with Two Premises. Identifying Categorical Syllogisms. Evaluating Categorical Syllogisms: the Test Method. The Equal Negations Test. The Distributed Conclusion Test. The Distributed Middle Category Test. Evaluating Categorical Syllogisms: the Venn Method. Chapter Summary. 7. ANALOGICAL ARGUMENTS. Identifying Analogical Arguments. The Form of Analogies. Illustrative Analogies. Uses of Analogies. Logical Analogies. Refutation by Logical Analogy. Evaluating Analogical Arguments. The True Premises Test. The Proper Form Test. Relevance. Analogies, Consistency, and False Beliefs. Chapter Summary. 8. STATISTICAL ARGUMENTS. Descriptive Statistics. The Many Meanings of "Average." Standard Deviation. Distributions. Regressions. Identifying Statistical Arguments. Parts of a Statistical Argument. Statistical Arguments and Analogical Arguments. Evaluating Statistical Arguments. The True Premises Test. The Proper Form Test. Sampling Techniques. Statistical Fallacies. Fallacy: Hasty Generalization. Fallacy: Biased Sample. Fallacy: Biased Questions. Chapter Summary. 9. CAUSAL ARGUMENTS. The Many Meanings of "Cause." Cause as Necessary Condition. Cause as Sufficient Condition. Cause as Necessary and Sufficient Condition. Contributory Cause. Primary Cause. Remote and Proximate Causes. Identifying Causal Arguments. The Form of a Causal Argument. Evaluating Causal Arguments. Premise (1), Correlation. Binary Correlation. Scalar Correlation. Establishing Correlations, Mill's Methods. The Method of Agreement. The Method of Difference. The Joint Method of Agreement and Difference. The Method of Scalar Variation. Correlation Is Not Causation. Fallacy: Hasty Cause. Fallacy: Causal Slippery Slope. Premise (2), Causation and Time. Fallacy: Post Hoc. Premise (3), Third Party Causation. Causal Arguments by Elimination. Premise (4), Coincidental Correlation. The Scientific Method. Step 1. Identify the Question to Be Answered. Step 2. Formulate a Tentative Theory. Step 3. Check for Correlations. Step 4. If Necessary, Formulate a New Theory. Step 5. Check for Reverse Causation, Third-party Causation, and Coincidental Correlation. Step 6. Develop New Questions. An Example of the Scientific Method. Chapter Summary. 10. MORAL ARGUMENTS. Identifying Moral Arguments. Values: Often Overlooked Presuppositions. The Nature of Moral Arguments. Moral Arguments and Truth. Moral Arguments, Emotion, and Self-interest. Evaluating Moral Arguments. Consequentialist Moral Arguments. Deontic Moral Arguments. Aretaic Moral Arguments. Moral Conflict. Chapter Summary. REFERENCE GUIDE. Alphabetical List of Fallacies. Alphabetical List of Guides. Alphabetical List of Habits of Critical Thinkers. Alphabetical List of Key Concepts. Alphabetical List of Technical Terms. Index. Guide for Finding, Standardizing, and Evaluating Arguments.
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