Howard University College of Arts and Sciences
Department of Philosophy
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Principles of Reasoning

Phil 051

This course examines the systems of logic, fallacies, strategies of logical persuasion, propaganda and theories of meaning and truth. The goal of the course is twofold: that students gain an appreciation of the manifold character of “everyday” reasoning, and that they develop sensitivity to the possibilities and pitfalls of persuasive discourse.

The course is designed for students who have little or no knowledge/background in logic. Accordingly, the course will introduce students to the basic principles of reasoning that are used to distinguish between good (correct) and bad (incorrect) reasoning. Through the study of logic students acquire the ability to express their ideas clearly and concisely, enlarge their capacity to understand the relationship between premises and conclusions, and increase their skill in determining when arguments succeed or fail to establish their conclusions.

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