The ability to reason soundly is prized across academic and vocational settings. Every worthwhile academic enterprise attempts, in its chosen area, to uncover truths that are the conclusions of good arguments. Similarly, the degree to which one is professionally successful is founded on one’s capacity for judicious decision-making and powers of persuasion, which necessarily demand the skill to think correctly and critically. This natural selection argument aside, developing the faculty to reason well is an indispensable step towards fulfilling our uniquely human potential, given that it is the propensity for sophistication in reasoning that distinguishes us from other species. In this context, this course attempts to equip students with a tool kit that enables them to distinguish between truths and falsehoods, justified and unjustified beliefs, coherent and incoherent claims, and good and bad decisions. In addition, this course provides students with the rigour, restraint and discipline required for a self-directed understanding of, and learning about, the world. All the principles of reasoning presented in this course are developed keeping in mind how we speak, write and communicate with each other on an everyday basis. There are two primary advantages of this approach. Firstly, the reasoning skills acquired become transferable across our students’ academic, professional and personal roles. In addition, it emphasises that the capacity for and the commitment to critical thought is an indispensable life skill. This is perhaps the central precept of this course.
Credit Units: 2.5
Presentation Pattern: Every semester
E-Learning: BLENDED - Learning is done MAINLY online using interactive study materials in Canvas. Students receive guidance and support from online instructors via discussion forums and emails. This is supplemented with SOME face-to-face sessions. If the course has an exam component, this will be administered on-campus.