What you'll learn
Welcome to the Course
How to Spot an Argument
How to Untangle an Argument
How to Reconstruct an Argument
Catch-Up and Final Quiz
How to Understand Arguments Think Again: How to Reason and Argue Reasoning is important. This series of four short courses will teach you how to do it well. You will learn simple but vital rules to follow in thinking about any topic at all and common and tempting mistakes to avoid in reasoning. We will discuss how to identify, analyze, and evaluate arguments by other people (including politicians, used car salesmen, and teachers) and how to construct arguments of your own in order to help you decide what to believe or what to do. These skills will be useful in dealing with whatever matters most to you. Courses at a Glance: All four courses in this series are offered through sessions which run every four weeks. We suggest sticking to the weekly schedule to the best of your ability. If for whatever reason you fall behind, feel free to re-enroll in the next session. We also suggest that you start each course close to the beginning of a month in order to increase the number of peers in the discussion forums who are working on the same material as you are. While each course can be taken independently, we suggest you take the four courses in order.
Course 1 – Think Again I: How to Understand Arguments Course 2 – Think Again II: How to Reason Deductively Course 3 – Think Again III: How to Reason Inductively Course 4 – Think Again IV: How to Avoid Fallacies About This Course in the Series: When is someone giving an argument instead of just yelling? Which parts of what they say contribute to the argument? Why are they arguing instead of fighting? What are arguments made of? What forms do they take? Think Again: How to Understand Arguments will answer these questions a more. In this course, you will learn what an argument is. The definition of argument will enable students to identify when speakers are giving arguments and when they are not. Next, we will learn how to break an argument into its essential parts, how to put them in order to reveal their connections, and how to fill in gaps in an argument. By the end of this course, students will be better able to understand and appreciate arguments that they and other people present. Suggested Readings: Students who want more detailed explanations or additional exercises or who want to explore these topics in more depth should consult Understanding Arguments: An Introduction to Informal Logic, Ninth Edition, Concise, Chapters 1-5, by Walter Sinnott-Armstrong and Robert Fogelin. Course Format: Each week will be divided into multiple video segments that can be viewed separately or in groups. There will be short ungraded quizzes after each segment (to check comprehension) and a longer graded quiz at the end of the course.
Access to a computer or mobile device with an internet connection.
Motivation to learn!
There are no special materials or prerequisite knowledge required for this course.
Who this course is for
Students who are new to this field
Students willing to put in a couple hours to learn about Think Again I: How to Understand Arguments
Advanced students wanting to add another skill to their portfolio
Dr. Walter Sinnott-Armstrong – Professor – Philosophy
Dr. Ram Neta – Professor – Philosophy
This course includes
Option for learning at your own pace
Videos and reading material about the course
Assessed tasks with feedback from other course participants
Evaluated tests with feedback
Evaluated programming tasks