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1

Critical thinking is about evaluating ___?

Beliefs --> which beliefs are worth believing?

2

Example of a belief

1. The earth is round
2. Toronto is the capital of Canada

3

Where do beliefs come from

- Parents & family
- TV, movies
- Reading books & magazines

4

Critical thinking is ______?

The systematic evaluation or beliefs, statements by rational standards

5

What is logic?

- Formal logic: a set of symbolisms for representing and examining logical relations
- Informal logic: the study of rules, guidelines and techniques

6

The basic conceptual toolbox of critical thinking

- Statement
- Premise
- Conclusion
- Argument

7

Statement

AKA a "claim"
- An assertion that something is or is not the case

ie. "Taxes are too high"

8

Statements must be _____?

True or false

Can be used as premises and conclusions

9

Examples of non-statements

1. Commands
2. Questions
3. Requests
4. Exclamations
5. Names/Titles
6. Expletives

10

Purpose of arguments

- intended to persuade
- explore the implications

11

Premises

A statement given as a reason in support of another statements

12

Conclusion

A statement that premises are used to support

13

Premises versus conclusions

- Conclusion: What the speaker wants the audience to accept

- The premises state reasons for the audience to accept that conclusion

14

Examples of premises & conclusions

Premise: "I got sick when I ate there"
Conclusion: " You should avoid that restaurant"

15

Rules of thumb about arguments

1. A weak argument is still an argument
2. Premises are still premises

16

Two ways to question an argument

1. Question the premises
2. Question the reasoning process leading from premises to conclusion

17

Inference?

The process of reasoning from premises to conclusion

ie. "Based on these tests, it seems safe to infer that it's safe to drink the water"

18

Difference between an argument and an explanation

Explanation: tells us WHY something happened.

Argument: why we should BELIEVE a statement is true

19

Can explanations be a part of arguments?

Yes

20

How to recognize an argument?

- Look for a conclusion + supporting premises
- Look for indicator words

21

Premise Indicators

- Because, since, given that, due to the fact that etc.

22

Conclusion indicators

- therefore, so, we can conclude that, thus, it follows that etc.

23

Explanation

Series of statements to show why an accepted fact is the case (NOT an argument)

24

Argument

Series of statements in which some (premises) are claimed to logically support or defend a conclusion