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Critical and Logical Thinking

  1. Oct 1, 2004 #1

    Cod

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    Are there any good books or websites that can help me become a better thinker, both critically and logically? Science is one of the things in life that interest me most, but I have trouble studying and understanding it since I'm not the best "deep" thinker.

    Any help is greatly appreciated.
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 1, 2004 #2
  4. Oct 2, 2004 #3

    Ivan Seeking

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    I think the best subject for improving one's logic is mathematics. No arm waiving is allowed. It is logic in its purest form.
     
  5. Oct 2, 2004 #4
    I think the problem with most schools is that critical thinking is not encourage, there is more emphasis on rote memorization. Based on how much facts, and details you can memorize for tests.
     
  6. Oct 2, 2004 #5

    Ivan Seeking

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    I think this depends greatly on the teacher. I did some private tutoring for the State for a time and saw both outrageously bad, and really great teachers. The sophistication required by one local high school history teacher was amazing. This guy had his students focused on highly abstract and advanced concepts that were way beyond anything I ever saw in high school. On the flip side, I hate to even tell you about the worst that I saw. It was equally amazing.
     
  7. Oct 2, 2004 #6

    Math Is Hard

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    A Guide to Good Reasoning by David C. Wilson offers a pretty good introduction to critical thinking and formal logic. We used this book in my critical reasoning class this summer.
     
  8. Oct 2, 2004 #7

    Cod

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    Thanks for all the advice thus far. I'll definitely have to check that book out next week (if I can find it).
     
  9. Oct 2, 2004 #8
    I tell you what, though, it sure helped improve my memory.
     
  10. Oct 2, 2004 #9

    Moonbear

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    Unfortunately, I think there are more bad teachers than great teachers out there. I taught some 4th and 5th graders in an after-school science program MANY years ago. The class met one day a week for about two months. My friend and I taught the class (we had to have two instructors present for the class size) and asked a lot of "why" questions. For 4th and 5th graders, they did a great job of answering those questions. Of course we led them a bit toward the answers, and they did come up with some really funny attempts, but even at that young age, they were pretty good at thinking about why things happened, not just memorizing things we told them. I think teachers underestimate what kids are capable of doing, so miss opportunities for teaching more challenging concepts. Then again, the types of kids who will take an after-school science class instead of dance or art or any of the other activities offered might be more likely to be the ones who like asking why things happen and trying to find answers.
     
  11. Oct 2, 2004 #10

    Moonbear

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    I'm not sure how much a book is really going to help. I think practice is much more useful for developing critical thinking skills. Before you learn to ask good questions yourself, you need someone else to ask you the questions and let you think about the answers. As for good websites for this, this one right here is good for it! :biggrin:
     
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