UNIVERSITY OF KENTUCKY

UNIVERSITY EXTENSION

Independent Study Program

Lexington, Kentucky 40506

Philosophy 120 30 Lessons

Introduction to Logic 3 Semester Hours

Instructor Beth Rosdatter

 

INTRODUCTION

Preface

Logic is, simply, the study of argument. It is the study of our attempts to reach some common ground in our reasoning together about the world. Through logic we determine the criteria by which we judge arguments to be acceptable or unacceptable. In our discussion of logic we will come to see, (among other things): what qualifies as an argument, what the different parts of arguments are, what sort of connections exist between parts of arguments, and how to recognize and construct good and persuasive arguments as opposed to poor ones.

Why then, is logic important? We use it to distinguish between good argument and a poor arguments. Most, if not all, you know came to you through argument. Almost everything we read, hear, or say involves arguments. The lawyer wants to convince the jury; the salesperson want to convince the prospective buyer; those in business want to convince each other; politicians want to convince the public. But a good argument is more than merely convincing, and a bad argument is sometimes very convincing. If you claim to know something, if you sit on a jury, if you buy a car, if you vote, you have an interest in distinguishing the really good argument from the flashy one. And for this you need logic.

Luckily, you already use logic everyday. What you will do in this course is learn names and formalized structures for manipulation and examination of processes you have been using almost since you could speak. This practice, this logical workout, will give you the mental muscle you need to live well in our culture.

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Course Goals

This course in elementary logic introduces the student to the basic concepts of both traditional and modern logic. Once acquainted with the fundamental notions, the student may gain practice in the course by applying these basic ideas in logic to everyday reasoning. Thus, this course enables the student to learn both the principles and applications of good reasoning. This course parallels Introduction to Logic (Phi 120) taught on the University of Kentucky campus.

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Text

A Concise Introduction to Logic, Seventh Edition. Patrick J. Hurley. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth, 2000. This book is available from the University of Kentucky Bookstore or Kennedy Bookstore.

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Assignments

Each lesson is designed to teach the student one or two basic concepts of elementary logic. The best study technique is the following: first, read the assigned material in the text. Then, read the study guide, which highlights and further explains the key points of the text. Next do the true/false exercises in the Hurley text to be sure you have understood the section. Next, do the assigned exercises logic coach. Then, review the text, noting difficult points. Finally, do the written assignment from this workbook...try to do the assignment without the aid of the text.

Please note that it is often the case students will lose a letter grade or two because of careless errors. Please make sure that you have copied the problem correctly, that you have read the instructions carefully and that you do not rush through the assignments.

By following the progression of the material, you should have little trouble understanding the basic concepts of logic. However, to do well in this course you must devote an appropriate amount of time to your work. A normal 3 semester hour course entails about 100 hrs. of work, (45 in class, 55 outside) which breaks down to three to four hours per lesson in this course.

It will really help you to maintain a steady pace. This will help you to stay involved with what you are doing. Many of the exercises build upon the preceding ones.

Feel free to ask questions at any time. My e-mail Address is: rosdatte@uky.edu.

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Grading Procedure

The 30 written assignments together comprise 75% of your final grade and the final exam is worth 25%.

Each lesson will be graded on a percentage basis, with 100% being the maximum percentage possible. A standard ten-point scale will be used in determining the letter grade for each assignment and for the final course grade.

A = 90 - 100%

B = 80 - 89%

C = 70 - 79%

D = 60 - 69%

E = Below 60%

I = Incomplete - (redo)

A PASSING GRADE ON THE FINAL EXAMINATION IS REQUIRED TO RECEIVE A PASSING GRADE IN THE COURSE.

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Acknowledgments

I'd like to thank Janet Roccanova, the former instructor of this course, for passing it along to me. Much of this study guide is based on her work. I'd also Like to thank Sarah Asher of Mongoose Inc. For all of her help with Unix, FTP HTML and other foreign things.

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