The Power of Critical Thinking

The Power of Critical Thinking : Effective Reasoning About Ordinary and Extraordinary Claims

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Enhanced by many innovative exercises, examples, and pedagogical features, The Power of Critical Thinking: Effective Reasoning About Ordinary and Extraordinary Claims, Second Edition, explores the essentials of critical reasoning, argumentation, logic, and argumentative essay writing while also incorporating material on important topics that most other texts leave out. Author Lewis Vaughn offers comprehensive treatments of core topics, including an introduction to claims and arguments, discussions of propositional and categorical logic, and full coverage of the basics of inductive reasoning. Building on this solid foundation, he also delves into areas neglected by other texts, adding extensive material on "inference to the best explanation" and on scientific reasoning; a thorough look at the evaluation of evidence and credibility; and a chapter on the psychological and social factors that can impede critical thinking. Additional notable elements are a chapter on moral reasoning, advice on how to evaluate Internet sources, and guidelines for evaluating occult, paranormal, or supernatural claims. The Power of Critical Thinking, Second Edition, integrates many pedagogical features including hundreds of diverse exercises, examples, and illustrations; progressive, stand-alone writing modules; numerous text boxes; step-by-step guidelines for evaluating claims, arguments, and explanations; a glossary of important terms; and many reminders, summaries, and review notes throughout. The text is supplemented by a companion website at www.oup.com/us/criticalthinking (offering a student study guide and more), and an Instructor's Manual with Test Questions (available both in print and on a CD). This unique text features a modular structure that allows instructors to teach the chapters in almost any order. Written in a student-friendly style and enhanced by humor where appropriate, it is ideal for courses in critical thinking, introduction to logic, informal logic, argumentative writing, and introduction to argumentation. New to the Second Edition * Full-color throughout and an expanded art program (37 more photos and illustrations) * A new writing module--an annotated sample student paper--and five additional essays for analysis * A new section on evaluating news reports and advertising * Timely discussions of intelligent design and population (nonintervention) studies * Expanded coverage of experts and authors and reasons to doubt their reliability * More "Field Problems" and exercise questions * Chapter objectives and key terms with definitions for each chaptershow more

Product details

  • Paperback | 560 pages
  • 200.7 x 248.9 x 22.9mm | 952.56g
  • Oxford University Press Inc
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • Revised
  • 2nd Revised edition
  • 0195320417
  • 9780195320411

About Lewis Vaughn

Lewis Vaughn is the author or coauthor of several books, including: Bioethics: Principles, Issues, and Cases (OUP, 2008); How to Think About Weird Things: Critical Thinking for a New Age, Fifth Edition (2007); Doing Ethics: Moral Reasoning and Contemporary Issues (2007); Doing Philosophy: An Introduction Through Thought Experiments, Third Edition (2006); and Writing Philosophy: A Student's Guide to Writing Philosophy Essays (OUP, 2005).show more

Table of contents

Preface; 1. BASICS; 1. THE POWER OF CRITICAL THINKING; Why It Matters; How It Works; Summary; Exercises; Field Problems; Self-Assessment Quiz; CRITICAL THINKING AND WRITING: MODULE 1; Writing Assignments; 2. THE "ENVIRONMENT" OF CRITICAL THINKING; Perils of a Haunted Mind; Perils of a Haunted Worldview; Summary; Exercises; Field Problems; Self-Assessment Quiz; Integrative Exercises; CRITICAL THINKING AND WRITING: MODULE 2; Writing Assignments; 3. MAKING SENSE OF ARGUMENTS; Argument Basics; Judging Arguments; Finding Missing Parts; Argument Patterns; Diagramming Arguments; Assessing Long Arguments; Summary; Field Problems; Self-Assessment Quiz; Integrative Exercises; CRITICAL THINKING AND WRITING: MODULE 3; Writing Assignments; 2. REASONS; 4. REASONS FOR BELIEF AND DOUBT; When Claims Conflict; Experts and Evidence; Personal Experience; Fooling Ourselves; Claims in the News; Advertising and Persuasion; Summary; Exercises; Field Problems; Self-Assessment Quiz; Integrative Exercises; CRITICAL THINKING AND WRITING: MODULE 4; Writing Assignments; 5. FAULTY REASONING; Irrelevant Premises; Unacceptable Premises; Summary; Exercises; Field Problems; Self-Assessment Quiz; Integrative Exercises; CRITICAL THINKING AND WRITING: MODULE 5; Writing Assignments; 3. ARGUMENTS; 6. DEDUCTIVE REASONING: PROPOSITIONAL LOGIC; Connectives and Truth Values; Checking for Validity; Summary; Field Problems; Self-Assessment Quiz; Integrative Exercises; Writing Assignments; 7. DEDUCTIVE REASONING: CATEGORICAL LOGIC; Statements and Classes; Translations and Standard Form; Diagramming Categorical Statements; Sizing Up Categorical Syllogisms; Summary; Field Problems; Self-Assessment Quiz; Integrative Exercises; Writing Assignments; 8. INDUCTIVE REASONING; Enumerative Induction; Analogical Induction; Causal Arguments; Summary; Field Problems; Self-Assessment Quiz; Integrative Exercises; Writing Assignments; 4. EXPLANATIONS; 9. INFERENCE TO THE BEST EXPLANATION; Explanations and Inference; Theories and Consistency; Theories and Criteria; Telling Good Theories from Bad; Summary; Field Problems; Self-Assessment Quiz; Integrative Exercises; Writing Assignments; 10. JUDGING SCIENTIFIC THEORIES; Science and Not Science; The Scientific Method; Testing Scientific Theories; Judging Scientific Theories; Science and Weird Theories; Making Weird Mistakes; Judging Weird Theories; Summary; Field Problems; Self-Assessment Quiz; Integrative Exercises; Writing Assignments; 11. JUDGING MORAL ARGUMENTS AND THEORIES; Moral Arguments; Moral Theories; A Coherent Worldview; Summary; Exercises; Field Problems; Self-Assessment Quiz; Integrative Exercises; Writing Assignments; APPENDIX A: ESSAYS FOR EVALUATION; 1. "Death Penalty Discriminates Against Black Crime Victims"; 2. "Marine Parks"; 3. "The Wrong Ruling on Vouchers"; 4. "The Kalam Cosmological Argument"; 5. "More Innocents Die When We Don't Have Capital Punishment"; 6. "Misleading the Patient for Fun and Profit"; 7. "Tight Limits on Stem Cells Betray Research Potential"; 8. "The Cohabitation Epidemic"; 9. "The Demon-Haunted Sentence: A Skeptical Analysis of Reverse Speech"; 10. "Amityville: The Horror of It All"; 11. "A Deviance from God's Norm"; 12. "Marriage Still Evolving, as Ever"; 13. "Slouching Toward Chimeras"; 14. "The Right to Ridicule"; 15. "Time to Think"; APPENDIX B: ANSWERS TO EXERCISES; Notes; Glossary; Credits; Indexshow more

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73 ratings
3.76 out of 5 stars
5 25% (18)
4 38% (28)
3 29% (21)
2 5% (4)
1 3% (2)
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