Critical Thinking (long seminar without exam)

Constructing and evaluating arguments is fundamental in all branches of science, as well as in everyday life. The course provides the basic skills and tools to recognize correct forms of inference and reasoning, detect the unsound or fallacious ones, and assess the strength of various kinds of argument. The toolbox includes elementary deductive logic, patterns of inductive and abductive inference, the basics of statistical and probabilistic reasoning, and the analysis of heuristics and biases in cognitive psychology. We shall discuss real-world examples of correct and incorrect reasoning from both scientific and non-scientific literature (newspapers, social media, and so on). No previous knowledge of logic, philosophy, or advanced mathematics is required.