PHIL2303: Logic

Matthew Daude Laurents, Ph.D.

Synonym: 25399
MTWH 6:00-7:50 PM
RGC 135

Summer, 2005

Contact Information

Office Rio Grande Campus
Peach Street Office Building, Room 2-I
ACC email
Instructional email
Instructional Web

Instructional Office Hours

Monday 9:00 to 10:30 AM RGC, Peach Street, 2-I
Tuesday 9:00 to 11:00 AM online (Windows Messenger or Blackboard)
Wednesday 9:00 to 10:30 AM RGC, Peach Street, 2-I

Other times by appointment

Course Description

Students will be introduced to the rules of argument, inductive and deductive reasoning, the recognition of informal and formal fallacies, and the application of logical thinking in work and social situations.

There are no course prerequisites for Introduction to Philosophy. A passing score or the equivalent on the reading, writing, and mathematics portions of the TComp is required.

We will explore a number of issues central to logic, including (but not limited to) the nature and functions of language, fallacies in reasoning, inductive vs. deductive argument forms and strategies, mathematical logic, and scientific method. Our emphasis will be on application of these tools in the construction and evaluation of arguments.

Required Texts/Materials

Baum. Logic, 4th edition (ISBN 0155016172)

The text is available in the ACC bookstore. Additional readings and assignments will also be posted to the Blackboard instructional web for this course. The online material is required as well.

I will announce reading assignments in class and on the online course calendar. Handouts, if any, will be posted as well. Check the course calendar for supplementary material and other items of interest (including Matthew's famous Logic Puzzle of the Week!).

Instructional Methodology

The class will consist predominantly of lecture and in-class group work, but it will also include a significant online component using a Blackboard online classroom. I may use a variety of media in my presentations, including web material, etc. The major form of individual assessment will be exams and online quizzes. I may also use online forms to gather information about your progress in the coursework. I would prefer that assignments be submitted by email wherever possible.

Internet access and an email address is required.

Course Rationale

As human beings we think of ourselves as rational beings, beings who use reason in drawing judgments and determining actions. Since Logic is the science through which we assess the quality of reasoning, logic is essential to good judgment and right action.

PHIL2303 Objectives

Departmental Course Objectives/Outcomes

  1. Students will become acquainted with techniques of reasoning, including deduction and induction.
  2. Students will develop the means to analyze and critically evaluate arguments, both in the classroom and as they appear in everyday contexts.
  3. Students will (further) develop the ability to construct cogent arguments.

Coursework and Grading Policy

There will be frequent short quizzes, three exams, and a series of application exercises this semester, weighted according to the following chart. I will occasionally give extra credit problems that will be factored into the quiz average, and there may be some extra credit points available on the exams. I do not accept late work, except by prior arrangement ("prior" means "prior to the time it was due"!). Please see the General Course Policies for further guidelines.





Application Projects 40%

See the Coursework Guide for a more detailed explanation of the written work.


Review my Course Policies online. There are links to the Course Policies on the main page of my instructional web and on the Blackboard portal for this course. The Course Policies page is part of this syllabus.

Course Outline

Since the class will help determine the pace at which we cover the material, I will give only an outline of the topics I plan to cover.

  1. Introductory comments: language, truth and inquiry
    1. Basic concepts
    2. Inquiry and Truth: What is an argument?
    3. Uses of Language
    4. Definitions
  2. Informal analysis of arguments
    1. The general structure of arguments
    2. Induction and Deduction
  3. Induction
    1. Analogical Reasoning
    2. Enumerative Induction
    3. Causality
    4. Scientific Method
    5. Probability (?)
  4. Deduction
    1. Aristotelian Logic
    2. Propositional Logic
    3. Quantification
  5. Nonformal Fallacies
    1. Fallacies of Relevance
    2. Fallacies of Presumption
    3. Fallacies of Ambiguity
  6. Conclusion

Refer to the course calendar on Blackboard for a more detailed list of topics, reading assignments, and exercises. Check the course calendar frequently for due dates and other announcements.

First Assignment

Your first assignment is to complete a web-based form called the "First Assignment." Please note that I will not accept coursework from you until you complete the First Assignment, and I will withdraw you from the course if you have not submitted your first assignment by Friday of the first week of class.

Have the following information information ready:

  • your full name as reflected in ACC records
  • the five-digit synonym number of your course
  • the email address that you want to use for this course (Don't forget to update your email address in Blackboard as well!)
  • a telephone number at which you can be reached

This information is required, but there is also a voluntary (fairly brief) survey in the First Assignment form. I encourage you to complete the survey, as it provides information that may help me support your work in this course.

I will begin processing First Assignments when the semester begins. When I receive your First Assignment, I will attempt to verify your enrollment. If you are officially enrolled in the course, I will send you a confirmation. If there is a problem with your enrollment, I will notify you. If you do not hear from me within 48 hours (not including Saturdays!) of submitting your First Assignment, ">contact me.

Please note:

Submitting a First Assignment is your certification that

(1) you accept the policies, procedures, and course design set forth in the Syllabus and this Orientation, and
(2) you agree to communicate by email with me regarding all matters related to this course. This means that some confidential information, including but not limited to your grades, will be transmitted by email.

Read the information in the Orientation and Syllabus and related links carefully, and if you have questions or concerns about the policies and procedures for this class, please let me know before you complete this First Assignment.

Now you are ready to complete and submit your First Assignment.


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This page was last updated 12/28/2009 10:16:16 PM by drdaude.