Critical Reasoning: A Practical Introduction (1996) by Anne Thomson

By Anne Thomson

Reasoning is the standard approach that all of us use with a purpose to draw conclusions from evidence or proof. To imagine seriously approximately what you learn and listen to is a crucial ability for everybody, even if you're a pupil or no longer. once we are confronted with texts, information goods or speeches, what's being stated is usually obscured through the phrases used and we can be not sure even if our reasoning, or that of others, is in truth sound. by way of the top of this topical and exercise-based advent to serious considering, it is possible for you to to: * establish flaws in arguments * examine the reasoning in newspaper articles, books or speeches * method any subject having the ability to cause in actual fact and to imagine severely This stimulating new advent to reasoning will attract all those that want to enhance their reasoning talents, no matter if at paintings, in school or within the seminar.

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We can forget important aspects of what has happened, particularly if some time elapses before we report an incident. In the case of people gathering and assessing evidence, as for example scientists and psychologists do, the accuracy of their observations and interpretations can be affected by their strong expectation of a particular result, or their strong desire to have a particular theory confirmed. Sometimes when we have evidence from more than one source, we find that two (or more) people agree in their descriptions of events—that is to say, their evidence corroborates the statements of others.

Ironically, this puts those few people who do contract the disease in greater danger than they would have been before. The disease can cause serious complications, and it is difficult to diagnose without previous experience because the symptoms are similar to those of several other diseases. (Law School Admission Test, Dec. 1984) 6 There is a much higher incidence of heart attack and death from heart disease among heavy cigarette smokers than among people who do not smoke. It has been thought that nicotine was responsible for the development of atherosclerotic disease in smokers.

The subject under discussion may be a highly specialized subject which is understood only by those who have had appropriate education or training. We would not expect reliable information on brain surgery to be given by people who have had absolutely no medical training. This is why in many areas of knowledge, we have to rely on what experts say. Of course, people who are not experts can read about specialized subjects, and pass on information to us about such subjects, so we do not have to disbelieve people simply because they are not experts.

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