1. CRITICAL THINKING & 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.
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.
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.
Guide for Finding, Standardizing, and Evaluating Arguments.