opencourseware on critical thinking, logic, and creativity

The term "logic" is often used in many different ways. It is sometimes understood broadly as the systematic study of the principles of good reasoning. As such logic is not very different from critical thinking. But sometimes "logic" is understood more narrowly as what we might call "deductive logic". Roughly speaking, deductive logic is mainly about the consistency of statements and beliefs, as well as the validity of arguments. These are the topics we shall investigate in the following modules.

Formal logic is the study of logic using special symbols and clearly-defined rules of reasoning. They are very useful in linguistics, philosophy, artificial intelligence and mathematics. The tools of formal logic can also help us formulate ideas and arguments more precisely. In our web site we introduce two of the most basic systems of formal logic.

- See this page from Joe Lau for a list of textbooks on formal logic.
- Entries on logic in the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy - These are articles that discuss some of the main issues in the philosophy of logic. They are difficult!

Men are apt to mistake the strength of their feeling for the strength of their argument. The heated mind resents the chill touch and relentless scrutiny of logic.

William Gladstone

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