New User Special Price Expires in

Let's log you in.

Sign in with Facebook


Don't have a StudySoup account? Create one here!


Create a StudySoup account

Be part of our community, it's free to join!

Sign up with Facebook


Create your account
By creating an account you agree to StudySoup's terms and conditions and privacy policy

Already have a StudySoup account? Login here

Test 2 Study Guide

by: Audrey Simmons

Test 2 Study Guide PHIL 201

Marketplace > Liberty University > Philosophy > PHIL 201 > Test 2 Study Guide
Audrey Simmons

Preview These Notes for FREE

Get a free preview of these Notes, just enter your email below.

Unlock Preview
Unlock Preview

Preview these materials now for free

Why put in your email? Get access to more of this material and other relevant free materials for your school

View Preview

About this Document

Test 2 (Critical Thinking) Study Guide, covers logic, deduction, induction, and analyzing arguments
Introduction to Philosophy
Dr. Mark Foreman
Study Guide
logic, deduction, induction, arguments, philosophy
50 ?




Popular in Introduction to Philosophy

Popular in Philosophy

This 6 page Study Guide was uploaded by Audrey Simmons on Thursday October 13, 2016. The Study Guide belongs to PHIL 201 at Liberty University taught by Dr. Mark Foreman in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 8 views. For similar materials see Introduction to Philosophy in Philosophy at Liberty University.


Reviews for Test 2 Study Guide


Report this Material


What is Karma?


Karma is the currency of StudySoup.

You can buy or earn more Karma at anytime and redeem it for class notes, study guides, flashcards, and more!

Date Created: 10/13/16
Critical Thinking T est Review Sheet Logic: Laws and Terms Laws of Logic:  First principles of logic: they are foundational and govern the way it works  Undeniable: if they are not accepted as true, then nothing makes sense 1. Law of non-contradiction ~(P & ~ P) Something cannot both be and not be at the same time in the same way; contradictions cannot be 2. Law of the excluded middle (P v ~ P) Something either is or is not 3. Law of identity P = P Something is what it is  These laws all mutually support one another  They are both ontological and metaphysical principles  If any part of a proposition is not true, then the entire proposition is false Terminology:  Argument: a group of propositions (reasons) that support a certain belief (conclusion); the conclusion follows from the reasons given 1. Premises: reasons 2. Conclusion: belief one is trying to support 3. Inference: relationship between premises & conclusion (“therefore”)  Validity: refers to the structure of an argument itself  an argument is valid if the conclusion follows from the premises  an argument is invalid if it does not – non sequitur (“does not follow”)  Truth value: refers to the quality of the propositions in the argument – true or false  Arguments are valid or invalid  Propositions are true or false  Do NOT mix these up  Sound: an argument has soundness if it is both valid and the premises are true  An argument may be valid but unsound  An argument can never be invalid and sound Deduction  Form of logic made up of arguments where (if valid) the conclusion follows necessarily from, or is guaranteed by, the premises  Often reason from the general to the particular  In a valid deductive argument, if the premises are true, it is impossible for the conclusion to be false; the conclusion is logically certain Syllogisms  Formal procedure for writing out a deductive argument (2 premises and a conclusion)  Proposition  Makes a claim about reality  Has a truth value 1. Categorical syllogism (made of categorical propositions)  Proposition affirms or denies something in terms of subject and predicate 2. Disjunctive syllogism (made of disjunctive propositions)  1 premise: disjunctive proposition  2 ndpremise: denial of one of the alternants rd  3 premise: affirmation of the other alternant  disjunctive proposition: a proposition that affirms or denies something in terms of 2 alternatives (alternants) in the form of an “either/or” statement  disjunctive fallacy: affirming an alternant in the second premise rather than denying/removing it 3. Hypothetical syllogism (made of hypothetical propositions)  Hypothetical proposition: conditional statement that affirms or denies something in terms of an antecedent (usually “if”) and a consequent (usually “then”)  The consequent can still occur even if the antecedent did not occur  Hypothetical fallacies: denying the antecedent in the second premise Induction  Form of logic made of arguments which can lead only to a probable conclusion, not a necessary one  Usually gather particular truths and arrive at general conclusions  No inductive argument can arrive at an absolutely certain conclusion 2 Characteristics of Inductive Arguments 1. Measured in degrees of probability  High degree of probability = strong  Low degree of probability = weak  (whereas deductive arguments are “valid” or “invalid”) 2. Key ingredient to a successful inductive argument is the number (quantity/quality) of particulars gathered  The more particulars concluded (whether quantitatively more or qualitatively better), the stronger the inductive argument, the higher probability that your conclusion will be true Types of Inductive Arguments 1. Method of Generalization Most common type: one gathers together identical particular instances and arrives at some form of generalization 2. Method of Analogy Occurs when one observes relevantly similar particulars and attempts to arrive at a probable conclusion 3. Predictions-Based Probability Calculus One reasons on the basis of set rules in determining the likelihood of something occurring given all the possible variables 4. Statistical Reasoning Based on the gathering of a sample population and arriving at averages, percentages and general trends 5. Causal Inference Begins with an observed effect and reasons back to its cause 6. Hypothetical Reasoning Begins with a problem with an unknown explanation; a hypothesis is formulated and tested with the goal of explaining the problem Informal Fallacies  Errors which occur within the context of an argument usually due to one of four reasons:  It makes the argument inductively weak  The language used is not clear in its meaning  The facts are not presented accurately  Irrelevant issues are introduced that have nothing to do with the argument  Hasty Generalization  Basing a conclusion on an insufficient number of particulars or amount of evidence  Sweeping Generalization  Applying a generalization to a specific case to which the rule does not apply; treating a general principle as a hard and fast rule  False Analogy  Draw an analogy between two things that are not similar in relevant areas  False Cause  Assuming a causal relation when there is little or no evidence of one  Begging the Question  The main question/issue is not really addressed, but rather ignored/evaded  Bifurcation  Only two options are presented when other options are possible  Special Pleading  Illegitimate double standard is applied, distorts the facts  Most common use: euphemistic and pejorative terms  Ad Hominem  Attacking the person who is making the argument rather than the argument itself  Appeal to Pity  “If you don’t pass me, I won’t graduate, my parents will be upset, and I’ll never get a job.”  Ad Populum  Appealing to the fact that a belief is popular or commonly believed as evidence for its truthfulness Analyzing Arguments Elements of a Good Argument 1. Good Reasoning: conforms to the laws of logic, rules of valid inference; avoids formal/informal fallacies 2. Clarity of Thought & Language: clear in 1) clarity in your own thought and 2) clear in our communication with others; avoid being vague (no clear meaning) and ambiguous (more than one possible meaning) 3. Consistency and Coherency: consistency – within a set of beliefs, none of them contradict each other / coherency – beliefs relate to each other in a mutually supportive way 4. Comprehensive: take all the facts into account and attempt to answer all the problems; balance: need to recognize our epistemic limitations, but good arguments consider all known reasonable alternatives & arguments for a view 5. Orderly Structure: compelling arguments are mapped out, presented in a form where reasoning is apparent 6. Fair Use of Evidence: use evidence fairly and avoid suppressing it in favor of a particular position; take care not to allow biases to conceal/ignore evidence 7. Best Explanation: choose the view that explains all the facts with the least amount of problems  Explanatory scope: considers quantity of facts accounted for by explanation  Explanatory power: considers quality of explanation of facts  Plausibility: explanation fits with background knowledge  Minimally Ad Hoc: least amount of ad hoc details  Illumination: its ability to provide light on other related areas besides the question at hand 8. Positive/Negative Approach: provide positive evidence for your own view & negative evidence for the opposing view 9. Principle of Parsimony / Ockham’s Razor: “entities should not be multiplied without necessity”; balance: avoid being simplistic in an effort to simplify Steps in Analyzing an Argument 1. Find the Conclusion by distinguishing between the premises and the conclusion. What is the main point being argued for? a. often the first or last sentence b. look for: “since” “because” “for” “therefore” “so” “thus” 2. Rewrite the Argument in standard logical order (premises first, conclusion last) 3. Do these premises support this conclusion? This is the most important question; assume the premises are true 4. Are these premises reliable/true? 5. Is the language definite/clear? Does the argument contain “loaded language” (terms that are not clear, intentionally manipulative, or carry emotional baggage) 6. If examples are used: Are they representative? Are there counterexamples? (an example that refutes another) 7. If examples are used: Is it reliable and informed, impartial? Do other sources agree or disagree? Personal attacks do not disqualify arguments 8. If argument is from cause to effect: Does it explain how the cause leads to the effect? Are the correlated events actually causally related? 9. Does the argument commit a formal/informal fallacy?


Buy Material

Are you sure you want to buy this material for

50 Karma

Buy Material

BOOM! Enjoy Your Free Notes!

We've added these Notes to your profile, click here to view them now.


You're already Subscribed!

Looks like you've already subscribed to StudySoup, you won't need to purchase another subscription to get this material. To access this material simply click 'View Full Document'

Why people love StudySoup

Steve Martinelli UC Los Angeles

"There's no way I would have passed my Organic Chemistry class this semester without the notes and study guides I got from StudySoup."

Anthony Lee UC Santa Barbara

"I bought an awesome study guide, which helped me get an A in my Math 34B class this quarter!"

Bentley McCaw University of Florida

"I was shooting for a perfect 4.0 GPA this semester. Having StudySoup as a study aid was critical to helping me achieve my goal...and I nailed it!"

Parker Thompson 500 Startups

"It's a great way for students to improve their educational experience and it seemed like a product that everybody wants, so all the people participating are winning."

Become an Elite Notetaker and start selling your notes online!

Refund Policy


All subscriptions to StudySoup are paid in full at the time of subscribing. To change your credit card information or to cancel your subscription, go to "Edit Settings". All credit card information will be available there. If you should decide to cancel your subscription, it will continue to be valid until the next payment period, as all payments for the current period were made in advance. For special circumstances, please email


StudySoup has more than 1 million course-specific study resources to help students study smarter. If you’re having trouble finding what you’re looking for, our customer support team can help you find what you need! Feel free to contact them here:

Recurring Subscriptions: If you have canceled your recurring subscription on the day of renewal and have not downloaded any documents, you may request a refund by submitting an email to

Satisfaction Guarantee: If you’re not satisfied with your subscription, you can contact us for further help. Contact must be made within 3 business days of your subscription purchase and your refund request will be subject for review.

Please Note: Refunds can never be provided more than 30 days after the initial purchase date regardless of your activity on the site.