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Chapter Objectives
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The following are the main learning objectives from this chapter. To help you coordinate your studies, these objectives are organized into sub-sections (1-1, 1-2, etc.) and listed with the relevant page numbers from the textbook.
Objective 1-1
  • Recognize the skills and practices that go into deciding whether to accept a claim.
  • Understand the definition of "issue" and the role of issues in debates.
Objective 1-2

Understand the role of arguments in critical thinking.

  • Learn the definitions of argument, premise, and conclusion.
  • Recognize the difference between an argument and means of persuasion, or between an argument and an explanation.
  • Become familiar with the linguistic cues that help to identify an argument and its parts.
Objective 1-3

Understand the nature and role of issues in critical thinking.

  • Be able to identify the issue at stake in an argument.
  • Understand the difference between a subjective and nonsubjective issue.
  • Realize that subjective issues must be approached differently from nonsubjective ones (but that they do not have to be given up on entirely).
  • Understand the shortcomings of both relativism and subjectivism.
Objective 1-4

Begin to get familiar with critical thinking's attention to clarity and rationality.

  • Acquire some sensitivity to the psychological impact of language in arguments and in the description of issues.
  • Be prepared to use certain terms like "issue" and "truth" with greater specificity than one usually does in ordinary language.

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