What is Critical Thinking?

Quality of Thinking, Quality of Life

Vocabulary

  • Egocentric
  • Fallacy
  • Validity
  • Credibility
  • Evidence

What would someone have to say to convince you to change your mind?

Write for two minutes.

Four Defining Traits of a Game

  1. Goal. The outcome that the players will work to achieve. It focuses attention and gives you a sense of purpose.
  2. Rules. Limitations on how to achieve the goal. It will unleash creativity and foster strategic thinking.
  3. Feedback System. Tells players how close they are to achieving their goal. Provides motivation to keep playing.
  4. Voluntary Participation. Requires that you knowingly accept the goal, rules, and the feedback. You have the freedom to enter and leave the game at will.

With these four ideas in mind, how can we apply this to college?

Intro to Rhetoric

Language is an art form. Here is the Wikipedia definition of Rhetoric.

Rhetoric is the art of discourse, wherein a writer or speaker strives to inform, persuade or motivate particular audiences in specific situations.

Aristotle’s definition of rhetoric

“The faculty of observing, in any given case, the available means of persuasion

ethos pathos

Ethos: Appeals to Ethics, Credibility or Character. Ethics, ethical, trustworthiness or reputation, style/tone. The credibility of the speaker persuades.

Pathos: Appeals to Emotion. Emotional or imaginative impact, stories, values. Uses emotional response to persuade an audience.

Logos: Appeals to logic. Persuade by reason and evidence.

What is Baloney?

Bullshit involves language, statistical figures, data graphics, and other forms of presentation intended to persuade by impressing and overwhelming a reader or listener, with a blatant disregard for truth and logical coherence.

  • Carl Sagan 1996 The Fine Art of Baloney Detection. Chapter 12 in Sagan (1996) The Demon-Haunted World