Critical Thinking: A Concise Guide

Overview

Attempts to persuade us -- to believe something, to do something, to buy something -- are everywhere. What is less clear is how to think critically about such attempts and how to distinguish those that are sound arguments. Critical Thinking: A Concise Guide is a much-needed guide to argument analysis and a clear introduction to thinking clearly and rationally for oneself. Through clear and accessible discussion, this book equips students with the essential skills required to ...
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Critical Thinking: A Concise Guide

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Overview

Attempts to persuade us -- to believe something, to do something, to buy something -- are everywhere. What is less clear is how to think critically about such attempts and how to distinguish those that are sound arguments. Critical Thinking: A Concise Guide is a much-needed guide to argument analysis and a clear introduction to thinking clearly and rationally for oneself. Through clear and accessible discussion, this book equips students with the essential skills required to tell a good argument from a bad one.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

'The way in which this text combines clear and detailed explanations of technical concepts with a comprehensive set of contemporary and relevant examples is excellent. Whilst the focus is largely on developing the practical skills of argument reconstruction and analysis, the authors never lose sight of the larger philosophical picture, and this makes the book a joy both to teach with, and to learn from.' - Joel Walmsley, University College Cork, Ireland

'Bowell & Kemp's Critical Thinking: A Concise Guide is, in my view, the best textbook by some distance for undergraduate students approaching the subject for the first time. It is clearly written and introduces the fundamental concepts of the subject in an accessible and systematic way which equips students with the essential skills needed for the construction and analysis of arguments. The exercises are carefully selected to really embed the concepts in examples that will be relevant and interesting to students, and provide an excellent teaching resource. The book will be of great value to students of philosophy, providing them with an analytical framework within which they can properly understand and assess the texts they study. Furthermore, students of any academic discipline will benefit greatly from the book as a guide to organising their thoughts into rigorous arguments. The fourth edition contains welcome new material on probabilistic reasoning, as well as continued improvements throughout the book. It remains the clear first-choice textbook for my course.' - Graham Stevens, University of Manchester, UK

Praise for previous editions:

'This concise guide offers relevant, rigorous and approachable methods…The authors focus on analysing and assessing arguments in a thoughtfully structured series of chapters, with clear definitions, a glossary, plenty of examples and some useful exercises.' - Will Ord, Times Educational Supplement

'In my view this book is the most useful textbook on the market for its stated audience. It provides exceptionally clear explanations, with sufficient technical detail, but without over-complication. It is my first-choice text for teaching critical thinking to first-year undergraduate students.' - Dawn Phillips, University of Southampton, UK

'…written with actual undergraduates, and the standard mistakes and confusions that they tend to be subject to, clearly borne in mind…' - Helen Beebee, University of Manchester, UK

'This is the best single text I have seen for addressing the level, presumptions, and interests of the non-specialist.' - Charles Ess, Drury University, USA

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780415820929
  • Publisher: Taylor & Francis
  • Publication date: 11/10/2014
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 4
  • Pages: 328
  • Sales rank: 1,285,116
  • Product dimensions: 6.70 (w) x 9.50 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Tracy Bowell is Senior Lecturer in Philosophy at the University of Waikato, New Zealand.

Gary Kemp is Senior Lecturer in Philosophy at the University of Glasgow, UK.

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Table of Contents

Ch. 1 Why should we become critical thinkers? 1
Ch. 2 Logic : deductive validity 43
Ch. 3 Logic : inductive force 80
Ch. 4 Rhetorical ploys and fallacies 113
Ch. 5 The practice of argument-reconstruction 168
Ch. 6 Issues in argument assessment 226
Ch. 7 Truth, knowledge and belief 261
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