Critical Thinking Learning College Essay For Transfer Students
So "Monty's really shy" is premise one, "Monty rarely goes to[br]parties" is premise two, and the statement that[br]those premises give you reason to believe, we call[br]the argument's conclusion.
A good argument is one[br]in which the premises give you a good reason for[br]the conclusion, that is, the premises make the[br]conclusion likely to be true.
In that case, we say that the argument supports the conclusion.
So critical thinking is making sure we have good reasons for our beliefs, and so one of the essential[br]skills that you learn when you're studying[br]critical thinking is how to distinguish good reasons[br]for believing something from bad reasons for believing something.The second reason,[br]though, is a good reason to believe that Monty[br]won't be at the party.If he's really shy and[br]rarely goes to parties, then it's probable that he[br]won't be at tonight's party.So, for example, if you found out that your friend was[br]the person who decided who was going to be invited to the party, then the fact that she can't stand Monty and wants to have a good time would give you a good reason to believe that Monty won't be at the party, because it would give you reason to believe that she didn't invite him. Those two premises[br]considered in themselves give you no reason to believe that Monty won't be at the party.Okay, our last topic is to distinguish two different types of arguments.The fact that your[br]friend can't stand Monty and wants to have a good[br]time doesn't do anything to make it more likely[br]that Monty won't be there. In the purple argument,[br]though, the premises, if they're true, they guarantee[br]the conclusion is true. The truth of the premises[br]guarantees the truth of the conclusion, and so[br]in the purple argument, the premises do support the conclusion.Now, it's worth pointing[br]out that the red argument, though it's bad as it[br]stands, could be made a good argument with the addition of some background premise.Similarly, the third reason[br]also gives you a good reason to believe that[br]Monty won't be at the party.If he's in Beijing, and[br]it's impossible to get here from Beijing in an afternoon,[br]then it's guaranteed that he won't be at the party.Now, it's worth saying something about how I'm using the term "good" here.I'm not using it to indicate anything having to do with morality or ethics.