A cautionary note about the teaching of critical reasoning

You are here

Research and Development in Higher Education: Learning for an Unknown Future Vol. 26

July, 2003, 692 pages
Published by
Helen Mathews and Rod McKay
ISBN
0 90 8557 55 8
Abstract 

Following Kaplan (1966) and Scollon (1997) this paper makes a distinction between contrastive rhetoric, contrastive poetics and contrastive inferencing. From this, it is argued that there are a number of confusions implicit in the teaching of critical reasoning. The paper looks at the construction of inferences in the form of syllogistic reasoning as one form of 'critical reasoning'. A number of problems are outlined: 1. the conflation of poetic and inferential form; 2. The 'exposition' problem; 3. The problem of the shifting conclusion; 4. The implied argument problem; and 5. Critical thinking and disciplinary bias.

Keywords: critical reasoning; contrastive rhetoric; contrastive inferencing.

A cautionary note about the teaching of critical reasoning

pdf (211.33 KB)
Download
Davies, W.