THINKING FOR YOURSELF: DEVELOPING CRITICAL THINKING SKILLS THROUGH READING AND WRITING offers a unique integration of composition, reading, and critical thinking. As you complete the book's writing assignments, you'll see how your writing reflects your thinking and how self-directed improvement in thinking also improves writing. The book offers step-by-step nstruction, humor, cartoons, Internet research exercises, and up-to-date social and political examples.
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Table of Contents
Preface. Introduction. Introduction to Critical Thinking. Learning How You Think. Discovery Exercise. Experiencing How We Actually Think: An Exercise for the Whole Class to Complete Together. Learning from Sharing How We Think. What Is Critical Thinking? Comparisons to Creative Thinking. Diagram: Different Functions of Left and Right Brain. Why Learn Critical Thinking? The Habits of Critical Thinking. Box: Habits of a Critical Thinker. Box: The values of Critical Thinking. Chart: The Composition Sequence. Part I: BASICS OF CRITICAL THINKING. 1. Observation Skills: What's Out There? Discovery Exercises. Comparing Our Perceptions. What Is Observing? Observing a Cube. Observation and Insight. Using Observation Skills to Develop New Knowledge. Reading. Look at Your Fish, by Samuel H. Scudder. Core Discovery Writing Application. Observing the Familiar: Vegetables and Fruit. Evaluating Your Work by Using the Scoring Boxes. Alternate Core Discovery Writing Application. Observing the Unfamiliar: A Tool. The Observation Process: Sensing, Perceiving, Thinking. Barriers to Observation. How Discomfort Leads Us to Think. Diagram: A Choice for Thinking. The Rewards of Skilled Observation. Building Arguments. Observation Skills. Reading. The Innocent Eye, by Dorr Bothwell. Chapter Summary. Chapter Quiz. Composition Writing Application. Survival as a Result of Observing: A Descriptive Narrative Essay. Reading. Desert Solitaire, by Edward Abbey. Optional Internet Research Assignment. 2. Word Precision: How Do I Describe It? Discovery Exercise. Words Matching Senses. Reading. On Finding the Right Word. Discovery Exercise. Sorting Out Confusion about Dictionaries. How Well Do You Use Your Dictionary? Clear Thinking Depends on Clear Word Definitions. What Makes a Definition? Diagram: Definition Boundaries. Exercise. Word Boundaries. Kinds of Definitions. The Connotations of Words. The Importance of Defining Key Ideas. Word Concepts. Defining Reality. Defining Truth. What Is Critical Reading? Building Arguments. Word Choices. Chapter Summary. Chapter Quiz. Composition Writing Application. A Short Essay of Definition. Box: Clustering. Readings. Modern Slavery by Kevin Bales. Fighting for Our Lives, by Deborah Tannen. Saved, by Malcolm X. Advanced Optional Writing Assignment. Optional Internet Research Assignment. 3. Facts: What's Real? Discovery Exercises. Beginning with the Word Fact. Learning to Recognize Facts. Verifying Facts. Facts and Reality. Facts Are Not Absolutes. Discerning Facts from Fiction. Feelings Can Be Facts. Facts and Social Pressure. Diagram: Standard and Comparison Lines in the Asch Experiment. Facts and Our Limited Senses. Reading. The Blind Men and the Elephant. Statements of Fact. Core Discovery Writing Application. Using a List of Facts to Describe a Photograph. Standards We Use to Determine Facts. Chapter Summary. Chapter Quiz. Composition Writing Application. Writing a Short Fact-Finding Report. Reading. The Accident and Aftermath, by Hayden Herrera. Advanced Optional Writing Assignment. Language and Personal Power. Readings. Lies My Teacher Told Me, by James W. Loewen. Fast Food Nation, by Eric Schlosser. Building Arguments. Facts. Optional Internet Research Assignment. 4. Inferences: What Follows? Discovery Exercise. Recognizing Inferential Thinking. Understanding the Words Infer and Inference. Discovery Exercises. Drawing Inferences from Evidence. Drawing Inferences from Facts. Distinguishing Inferences from Facts. How Inferences Can Go Right and Wrong. Reading. A Study in Scarlett, by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Drawing Inferences from Careful Observation. Core Discovery Writing Application. Using Facts and Inferences to Describe a Photograph. Generalizations Are Inferences. Composition Writing Application. Writing a Paragraph from Facts, Inferences, and Generalizations. Core Discovery Writing Application. Analyzing the Use of Facts and Inferences in a Newspaper Article. Reading. Tougher Grading Better for Students. Building Arguments. Inferences. Chapter Summary. Chapter Quiz. Readings. The Three Perceptives, by Idries Shah. Stone Boy, by Gina Berriault. Objectives Review of Part I. viii Contents. Part II: PROBLEMS OF CRITICAL THINKING. 5. Assumptions: What's Taken for Granted? Discovery Exercise. What Is an Assumption? Understanding Assumptions. Types of Assumptions. Identifying Hidden Assumptions in Reasoning. Diagram: Argument with Rug of Assumptions. Hidden Assumptions in Arguments. Discovery Exercise. Articulating Hidden Assumptions Underlying Arguments. Value or Belief Assumptions. Assumption Layers in Arguments. Diagram: Pyramid of Value Assumptions. Assumptions, Incongruities, and Thinking. Building Arguments. Assumptions: Building an Argument. Chapter Summary. Chapter Quiz. Composition Writing Application. Expository Essay: Solving a Problem by Uncovering Assumptions. Diagram: Thesis as a Frame. Readings. Lateral and Vertical Thinking, by Edward de Bono Winterblossom Garden, by David Low. Advanced Optional Writing Assignment. Comparison and Contrast. Optional Internet Research Assignment. 6. Opinions: What's Believed? Discovery Exercises. Comparing a Sample of Opinions. Why Do We Get Confused by the Word Opinion? An Exercise in Evaluating Opinions. Types of Opinions. Distinguishing between Responsible and Irresponsible Opinions. Contents ix. Looking at Public Opinion Polls. Opinions as Claims in Arguments. Diagram: Argument Structure. Composition Writing Application. First Option: A Short Argument Supporting an Opinion. Second Option: A Short Expository Essay about an Opinion. Third Option: A Short Essay Analyzing Three Opinions. Peer Review. Chapter Summary. Building Arguments. Opinions. Chapter Quiz. Readings. The Other Parent, by James P. Steyer. A Nation of Victims, by Charles J. Sykes. Advanced Optional Writing Assignment. Opinion on Sykes'' or Steyer's Essay. 7. Evaluations: What's Judged? Discovery Exercises. Defining Evaluate. Recognizing Evaluative Words. On Evaluations. Premature Evaluations. Evaluations Are Not Facts. Expectations Influence Evaluations. Recognizing Evaluations in Word Connotations. Discovery Exercise. Recognizing Evaluative Words'' Persuasive Powers. Skilled Use of Evaluations. Readings. The Maltese Falcon. Discarding the Concept of Man as "Killer Ape," by Richard Leakey. How Hidden Evaluations Appear in Propaganda. Building Arguments. Evaluations. Chapter Summary. Chapter Quiz. Composition Writing Application. x Contents. First Option: Observing and Analyzing Evaluations in Advertisements. Second Option: Writing a Critical Review. Readings. Porn, Pervasive Presence by William F. Buckley. Evaluation from Nickled and Dimmed, by Barbara Ehrenreich. Advanced Optional Writing Assignment. Comparing and Contrasting the Values of Ehrenreich and Buckley. Optional Internet Research Assignment. 8. Viewpoints: What's the Filter? Discovery Exercises. Understanding the Term Viewpoint. What Types of Viewpoints Are There? Viewpoints in Literature. On Unconscious Viewpoints. Discovery Exercise. Recognizing Political and Social Points of View. Diagram: The Left-to-Right Political Spectrum. Diagram: Trails of Political Systems on Left-to-Right Spectrum. Recognizing Viewpoints Left and Right. Reading. The Myth of Objectivity, by Jay Davis. Diagram: The Two-Axis Model of Political Views. Core Discovery Writing Application. A Survey of Two Alternative Viewpoints in Two Magazines or Newspapers. Hidden Viewpoints: The Use of News Framing. Discovery Assignment. Observing How a Newspaper Frames Its Information. Chapter Summary. Building Arguments. Viewpoints. Chapter Quiz. Advanced Optional Writing Assignment. Essay: Comparing and Contrasting the Reading Audience of Two Magazines. Readings. The Loyalty Questionnaire from To The Stars by George Takei. The Real Story Versus the Official Story, by Junôt Diaz. Objectives Review of Part II. Contents xi. Part III: FORMS AND STANDARDS OF CRITICAL THINKING. 9. Argument: What's a Good Argument? Discovery Exercise. Reading and Judging Arguments. Critical Reading of Arguments. What Viewpoint Is the Source of This Argument? What Is the Issue of Controversy? Is It an Argument or a Report? Box: Arguments and Reports: Different Purposes, Structures, and Standards. How Is the Argument Structured in Terms of Reasons and Conclusions? Identifying the Conclusion of an Argument. Identifying Reasons. Exercise. Identifying Reasons and Conclusions. More on Distinguishing Reasons from Conclusions. Conclusions in a Series. Conclusions at the Beginning. Conclusions in the Middle. Exercise. More Practice in Identifying Reasons and Conclusions. Exercise. More Practice with Longer Arguments. Core Discovery Writing Application. Writing a Short Persuasive Argument: A Letter of Complaint. What Are the Strengths and Weaknesses of This Argument? Detecting Missing Information. Detecting False or Contradictory Information. Reading. Junkman's Answer to Terrorism: Use More Asbestos. Chapter Summary. Readings. Striking a Balance: Civil Liberties versus National Security. Arguments by John Ashcroft and Anthony D. Romero. xii Contents. 10. Fallacies: What's a Faulty Argument? Discovery Exercise. Recognizing Fallacies. Fallacies of Trickery. Trickery with Language. Trickery with Emotions. Trickery with Distraction. Fallacies Involving Trickery with Language. Box: Chart of Fallacies of Trickery Covered in This Chapter. Word Ambiguity. Misleading Use of Euphemisms. Prejudicial Language. Fallacies Involving Trickery with Emotions. Emotional Appeals to Fear and Pity. Appeal to False Authority. Appeal to Prejudice: Personal Attack and Poisoning the Well. Fallacies Using the Trickery of Distraction. Red Herring. Pointing to Another Wrong Straw Man. Circular Reasoning. Chapter Summary. Chapter Quiz. 11. Inductive Reasoning and Inductive Fallacies: How Do I Reason from Evidence? Discovery Exercises. Defining Key Terms. Answering a Survey on Test Performance. Looking at Inductive Reasoning. Reasoning from Sensory Observation. Reasoning from Enumeration. Analogical Reasoning. Discovering Patterns. Reasoning from and about Causes. Reasoning with Hypotheses. Reasoning through Statistics and Probability. Discovery Writing Application. Working from Facts to Inferences to Hypotheses. Summary: Inductive Reasoning. Contents xiii. Building Arguments. Induction. Quiz: Inductive Reasoning. Reading. The Global 2000 Study of 1975: A Forecast Prepared under President Jimmy Carter. Fallacies of Inductive Reasoning. The Hasty Generalization. Box: Chart of Fallacies of Inductive Reasoning Covered in This Chapter. The Either-Or Fallacy, or False Dilemma. The Questionable Statistic. Contradictions and Inconsistencies. The Loaded Question. The False Analogy. Discovery Exercise. Evaluating Analogies. False Cause. The Slippery Slope. Summary: Fallacies of Inductive Reasoning. Quiz: Fallacies of Inductive Reasoning. Advanced Optional Short Research Assignment. Detecting Fallacies in an Argument. 12. Deductive Reasoning: How Do I Reason from Premises? Discovery Exercises. What Is Deductive Reasoning? Evaluating Deductive Arguments. About Deductive Reasoning. Thee Basic Vocabulary of Logic. Argument. Reasoning. Syllogism. Premises and Conclusion. Validity. Soundness. Standardized Forms in Syllogisms. Discovery Exercise. Practice in Constructing Syllogisms. What Syllogisms Do. xiv Contents. What Is Said and Is It True? Is There a Hidden Premise? Is the Reasoning Correct? Exercise. Reviewing the Vocabulary of Logic. Summary: The Interplay of Inductive and Deductive Reasoning. Box: Chart of Comparing Inductive and Deductive Reasoning. Writing Application. Writing a Deductive Argument. Building Arguments. Deduction. Chapter Summary. Chapter Quiz. Readings. The Declaration of Independence (excerpt), by Thomas Jefferson. Letter from a Birmingham Jail (excerpt), by Martin Luther King, Jr. Objectives Review of Part III. Appendix: The Research Paper. Research Paper Assignments in This Text. Two Research Writing Applications: First Research Option Second Research Writing Option. Student Model Paper: Analysis of Two Arguments on the Issue Can Civil Liberties be Maintained Given the New National Security Policies? Index.