New York: Routledge (2017)

Barry Ward
University of Arkansas, Fayetteville
Jack Lyons
University of Glasgow
This innovative text is psychologically informed, both in its diagnosis of inferential errors, and in teaching students how to watch out for and work around their natural intellectual blind spots. It also incorporates insights from epistemology and philosophy of science that are indispensable for learning how to evaluate premises. The result is a hands-on primer for real world critical thinking. The authors bring a fresh approach to the traditional challenges of a critical thinking course: effectively explaining the nature of validity, assessing deductive arguments, reconstructing, identifying and diagramming arguments, and causal and probabilistic inference. Additionally, they discuss in detail, important, frequently neglected topics, including testimony, including the evaluation of news and other information sources, the nature and credibility of science, rhetoric, and dialectical argumentation. The treatment of probability uses frequency trees and a frequency approach more generally, and argument reconstruction is taught using argument maps; these methods have been shown to improve students’ reasoning and argument evaluation.
Keywords Critical Thinking  Causal Inference  Probabilistic Inference  dual system psychology
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Reprint years 2017, 2018
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ISBN(s) 1138687480   9781138687479   9781138687486   1138687472
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