Philosophy 100: Schedule and Syllabus

PHILOSOPHY 100: Logic and Critical Thinking
Spring 2010 (2nd 8-week)
Section 72635  MW 6:35-9:45 PM    Location: H-304

INSTRUCTOR: Dr. Ian Duckles
        Office Hours: M 5:30-6:30 in H-301

TEXTBOOK: Introduction to Logic, 13th Edition, Irving M. Copi & Carl Cohen, Pearson, Prentice Hall, Upper Saddle River, New Jersey, 2009. (This text is required. We will use it daily in class.) You may use the 12th edition of the text.

COURSE DESCRIPTION: This course explores the relationship of communications and critical thinking with a focus on good reasoning and the impediments to its mastery. This course emphasizes the development of skills in logical processes including familiarity with the more common fallacies. This course is designed for students learning to apply principles of critical thinking to the practical problems of everyday life.

COURSE OBJECTIVE: Students will learn the basic elements of critical thinking with a particular focus on logical fallacies and then will learn to apply these tools to real world problems and issues.

COURSE CALENDAR (topics and important dates included): Homework will be due daily and assignments will be announced in class. Do not be concerned if we fall ahead or behind on this schedule. The most important goal is that everyone understand the concepts and problems. This schedule is subject to change. All changes will be announced in class and posted on the course website.

 Week 1
 March 22
Syllabus, Policies, Introduction
Chapter 1: Basic Logical Concepts
    Have read: pp 4-36

  1. Find two arguments (no more than one of which can be an ad).
  2. Identify the premises and conclusions of those arguments.
  3. Identify whether the argument is inductive or deductive.
  4. If deductive determine whether it is valid or invalid; if inductive determine whether it is strong or weak. 
  5. If deductive determine whether it is sound or unsound; if inductive determine whether it is cogent or not cogent.
  March 24              
Chapter 2: Analyzing Arguments.
    Have Read: pp. 37-70.
  March 29-April 2
 Week 2
 April 5
Chapter 3: Language and Definitions
    Have Read: pp. 71-117
  April 7

 Week 3
 April 12
Chapter 8: Symbolic Logic
    Have Read: 315-339
  April 14
Continue Symbolic Logic
    Have Read: 342-349
 Week 4
 April 19
Continue Symbolic Logic
    Have Read: 349-371
  April 21
    Readings Announced in Class
 Week 5
 April 26
  April 28
Chapter 4: Fallacies
    Have Read: 118-177
 Week 6
 May 3
Fallacies Con't
More Rhetorical Devices
  May 5
Rhetorical Devices Con't
Introduction of Essay Prompt
Fallacies and Critical Thinking: A Case Study
    In-Class: Watch Film Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed
 Week 7
 May 10
How to write a philosophy paper.
Chapter 13: Science and Hypothesis and the Theory of Evolution
    Have Read: 559-587
  May 12      
Science and Hypothesis and the Theory of Evolution Con't
 Week 8
 May 17
In-Class Peer Editing
Class Meets in LRC 229
  May 19
Final Exam
Final Paper Due


Grading:    15% Midterm Examination 1
15% Midterm Examination 2
20% Final Examination               
20% Homework. Homework will be due at the start of the class for which it is assigned. I will not accept late assignments.

20% Pop Quizzes. These will be given almost daily at the start of class, they cannot be made up if missed.
Essay. Though this is only worth 10% of your grade failure to complete this assignment of the associated pre-writing will result in an F in the course.

Grade Scale:

    ≥ 90 = A
    ≥ 80 = B
    ≥ 70 = C
    ≥ 60 = D
    < 60 = F


Student Responsibility to Drop/Withdraw: It is the student’s responsibility to officially add, drop, or withdraw from the course stated in the class schedule. Failure to do so can result in a failing grade.

Class Attendance: A student may be disenrolled from the course after two absences; however, a student will be disenrolled from the course after eight absences without exception. This count will begin the first day of class. ATTENDANCE IS VERY IMPORTANT FOR THIS PARTICULAR COURSE.

Tardiness/Early Departure: If a student arrives unreasonably late or leaves early without notifying the instructor before the event, then that student will be considered absent for that class session.

Professionalism: It is assumed that students will conduct themselves in a professional manner with a positive attitude. An open mind is one of the most important tools required for success in academia. If a student is negative and feels as is there is nothing of value to be gained by the college experience or this course, he or she will not do well in this course.

Academic Integrity and Conduct: Mesa College students are bound by the Student Code of Conduct, Policy 3100.  In this course, cheating, plagiarism, disruptions of instructional activity, fraud and/or lying will result in, at a minimum, a grade of “F” for the assignment/test with no make up permitted.  Any of these infractions may result in an “F” for the course as well and formal disciplinary action by the Dean of Student Affairs as described in the code (as published in the catalog or online).

Accommodations for Students with Disabilities: Students with disabilities who may need accommodations in this class are encouraged to notify the instructor and DSPS. DSPS can be found at or by calling (619) 388-2780; (619) 388-2974 tty.