Critical Thinking Video

Critical Thinking Video-33
So a key part of critical[br]thinking is learning to evaluate arguments to determine whether or not they're good or bad, that is, whether or not their premises support their conclusions.The red argument is the first response that she gave, two premises, "I can't stand Monty" and "I[br]want to have a good time." And the conclusion is "Monty[br]won't be at the party." And the third argument,[br]which we'll put in purple, consisted also of two premises, "Monty's in Beijing" and[br]"He can't get from Beijing to the party in time, so[br]he won't be at the party." Now, as I indicated[br]before, the first argument is not good, while the[br]purple argument is good.

So a key part of critical[br]thinking is learning to evaluate arguments to determine whether or not they're good or bad, that is, whether or not their premises support their conclusions.

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So it's not morally right or morally good to believe something on[br]the basis of good reasons.

Similarly, it's not morally[br]wrong, or evil, or wicked to believe something on[br]the basis of a bad reason.

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.

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.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.Well, an argument is a set[br]of statements that together comprise a reason for a further statement.So, for example, we can consider one of your friend's responses[br]before as an argument.And the best way to be[br]rational in this way is to form beliefs only when you find good reasons for them.Okay, that leads us to[br]our second question: What is an argument?She's given you two statements, "Monty's really shy" and[br]"Monty rarely goes to parties," which together comprise[br]a reason for believing that Monty won't be at the party.The statements that are the reason, we call the argument's premises.And when you notice things like that, when you distinguish between good and bad reasons for believing something, you're exercising your[br]critical thinking skills.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.

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