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An Introduction to Critical Thinking and Creativity: Think More, Think Better

Book Description

This book is about the basic principles that underlie critical thinking and creativity. The majority of the content is on critical thinking since more topics are naturally involved and since they can be discussed readily and systematically. The last few chapters are devoted to creativity and research methodology, not typical the book's plethora of competition. Each chapter introduces a specific topic, usually by introducing the relevant theories in conjunction with realistic examples that show how the theories can be applied. Each chapter concludes with a set of exercises whose solutions are detailed at the rear of the book. While the writing style is purposefully informal, the presentation is complete, at least with respect to the intended introductory level.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
  2. Half Title page
  3. Title page
  4. Copyright page
  5. Dedication
  6. Preface
  7. Chapter 1: Introduction
    1. 1.1 Thinking Skills in The Age of Globalization
    2. 1.2 Some Misconceptions About Critical Thinking
    3. 1.3 Improving Our Thinking
    4. Exercises
  8. Chapter 2: Thinking and Writing Clearly
    1. 2.1 Literal Meaning
    2. 2.2 Connecting Ideas
    3. 2.3 Five Tips for Effective Writing and Presentation
    4. Exercises
  9. Chapter 3: Definitions
    1. 3.1 Reportive Definition
    2. 3.2 Stipulative Definition
    3. 3.3 Precising Definition
    4. 3.4 Criteria for Good Definitions
    5. 3.5 Definition Techniques
    6. 3.6 Three Misconceptions About Definitions
    7. Exercises
  10. Chapter 4: Necessary and Sufficient Conditions
    1. 4.1 Necessary Conditions
    2. 4.2 Sufficient Conditions
    3. 4.3 Describing How Two Things are Connected
    4. 4.4 The Write-Off Fallacy
    5. 4.5 Different Kinds of Possibility
    6. 4.6 Exclusive and Exhaustive Possibilities
    7. Exercises
  11. Chapter 5: Linguistic Pitfalls
    1. 5.1 Unclear Meaning
    2. 5.2 Distortion
    3. 5.3 Empty Meaning
    4. 5.4 Gobbledygook Everywhere
    5. Exercises
  12. Chapter 6: Truth
    1. 6.1 Relativism
    2. 6.2 Statements
    3. 6.3 Types of Truth
    4. Exercises
  13. Chapter 7: Basic Logic
    1. 7.1 Some Basic Concepts
    2. 7.2 Logical Connectives
    3. Exercises
  14. Chapter 8: Identifying Arguments
    1. 8.1 What is An Argument?
    2. 8.2 Identifying Premises and Conclusions
    3. 8.3 Extracting and Formulating Arguments
    4. Exercises
  15. Chapter 9: Valid and Sound Arguments
    1. 9.1 Validity and Soundness
    2. 9.2 Patterns of Valid Arguments
    3. 9.3 Arguments Involving Generalizations
    4. 9.4 Soundness
    5. Exercises
  16. Chapter 10: Inductive Reasoning
    1. 10.1 Inductive Strength
    2. 10.2 Defeasibility of Inductive Reasoning
    3. 10.3 Cases of Inductive Reasoning
    4. 10.4 Deductive and Inductive Arguments?
    5. Exercises
  17. Chapter 11: Argument Mapping
    1. 11.1 Mapping Reasons and Objections
    2. 11.2 Some Niceties
    3. Exercises
  18. Chapter 12: Argument Analysis
    1. 12.1 What is A Good Argument?
    2. 12.2 Four Ways to Attack an Argument
    3. 12.3 Argument Analysis: Checklist
    4. Exercises
  19. Chapter 13: Scientific Reasoning
    1. 13.1 The Dear Method
    2. 13.2 Relying on Expert Opinion
    3. Exercises
  20. Chapter 14: Mill’s Methods
    1. 14.1 The Method of Agreement
    2. 14.2 The Method of Difference
    3. 14.3 The Joint Method
    4. 14.4 The Method of Concomitant Variations
    5. 14.5 The Method of Residues
    6. 14.6 Limitations of Mill’s Methods
    7. Exercises
  21. Chapter 15: Reasoning About Causation
    1. 15.1 Why Correlation is not Causation
    2. 15.2 Good Evidence for Causation
    3. 15.3 Causation Is Complicated
    4. Exercises
  22. Chapter 16: Diagrams of Causal Processes
    1. 16.1 Causal Networks
    2. 16.2 Fishbone Diagrams
    3. 16.3 Flowcharts
    4. Exercises
  23. Chapter 17: Statistics and Probability
    1. 17.1 Evaluating Surveys and Sampling Studies
    2. 17.2 Absolute Vs. Relative Quantity
    3. 17.3 Misleading Statistical Diagrams
    4. 17.4 Probability
    5. Exercises
  24. Chapter 18: Thinking About Values
    1. 18.1 Different Types of Values
    2. 18.2 Moral Values and Normativity
    3. 18.3 Morality and God
    4. 18.4 Moral Relativism
    5. 18.5 Moral Absolutism, Relativism, and Contextualism
    6. 18.6 Things to Avoid in Moral Discussion
    7. 18.7 Four Types of Moral Arguments
    8. Exercises
  25. Chapter 19: Fallacies
    1. 19.1 Classifying Fallacies
    2. 19.2 Fallacies of Inconsistency
    3. 19.3 Fallacies of Inappropriate Assumption
    4. 19.4 Fallacies of Irrelevance
    5. 19.5 Fallacies of Insufficiency
    6. 19.6 A List of Fallacies
    7. Exercises
  26. Chapter 20: Cognitive Biases
    1. 20.1 Memory Biases
    2. 20.2 Context Bias
    3. 20.3 Evidential Failures
    4. 20.4 Ego Biases
    5. 20.5 Combating Cognitive Biases
    6. Exercises
  27. Chapter 21: Analogical Reasoning
    1. 21.1 Evaluating Analogical Arguments
    2. 21.2 Treating Like Cases Alike
    3. Exercises
  28. Chapter 22: Making Rational Decisions
    1. 22.1 A Good Decision Process
    2. 22.2 Evaluating Decisions: A Summary
    3. 22.3 Typical Problems in Decision Making
    4. 22.4 Visualizing Decisions
    5. Exercises
  29. Chapter 23: What is Creativity?
    1. 23.1 The Creativity Cycle
    2. Exercises
  30. Chapter 24: Creative Thinking Habits
    1. 24.1 Creative Thinking Habits
    2. 24.2 Brainstorming and Group Creativity
    3. 24.3 Creativity and Self-Management
    4. Exercises
  31. Solutions to Exercises
  32. Bibliography
  33. Index