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Instructor: Dr. Olga S. Gerhart Sections Office: Arts and Humanities 273 02 MWF 8:45-9:35 SBSC 121 E-Mail: gerhartos@utpa.edu 03 MWF 10:45-11:35 PHYS 1.119 Mailbox: Arts and Humanities 342 Office Hours: Mondays and Wednesdays: 9:45am – 10:35am and by appointment COURSE DESCRIPTION The primary objective of this course is to teach good reasoning, which in turn will help you make important decisions about what to believe and how to act. The core of your critical thinking skills is your ability to detect, generate, and evaluate reasons given in support of some conclusion. This conclusion might be a new belief, a change in plans, or a confirmation of the old belief. The technical term for a set of reasons plus their intended conclusion is “argument.” Thus the central topic of this course is argumentation. Critical thinking skills are not peculiar to philosophy but are applicable to a variety of academic subjects. Moreover, critical thinking skills are crucial to the fulfillment of the responsibilities you have in virtue of your roles as a citizen, parent, child, employee, and consumer. To develop critical thinking skills, students will be expected to participate actively in class activities and discussions. Time in class will be devoted in the main to practice, not to lecture. In short, you will learn by doing. REQUIRED TEXTS Authors: David R. Morrow and Anthony Weston Title: A Workbook for Arguments: A Complete Course in Critical Thinking Edition: 2011 Publisher: Hackett Publishing Company, Inc. ISBN-13: 978-1603845496 Additional readings will be made available on Blackboard. Abbreviated lecture notes will be made available on Blackboard. ATTENDANCE Attendance is required and will constitute part of your grade. Attendance is graded by dividing the number of classes you attend by the total number of classes; this gives a percentage grade on a hundred point scale.

SPRING 2014 PHIL 1305, Sections 02, 03: Critical Thinking

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Students should arrive for class on time. If you arrive more than 15 minutes late to class, you will be counted as absent. Students should stay until class is dismissed. If you leave before class is dismissed, you will be counted as absent. Absences will be excused only if they are University-approved absences. The University absence policy is located here: http://www.utpa.edu/hop/policies/?6.7.8 You must provide appropriate documentation before the absence or within three working days following the absence. Please be advised that transportation problems are not excused absences. Excuses signed by parents are not acceptable. Make-ups will be allowed only for assignments missed due to excused absences. Make-up work should be submitted within one week of the missed due date. Likewise, make-up exams should be scheduled within one week of the missed exam time. You are responsible for contacting a classmate for missed lecture notes. PARTICIPATION Your participation is essential. Course participation grades are based on contributions to the collective learning experience of the class as a whole in terms of completing and actively engaging the assigned material, asking pertinent questions, offering insightful observations, and offering other meaningful expressions of interest that help encourage learning. There will be no texting, no cell phone use, and no web surfing during class. Engaging in these activities will negatively impact your participation grade. HOMEWORK Homework will be assigned at the end of class every day. The homework assignment will also be announced on Blackboard after class. A hard copy of your homework will be due weekly, at the beginning of class every Friday. You will submit the entire week of homework. I will not accept electronically submitted homework. If you cannot submit your homework in class, you should leave it in my mailbox, in Arts and Humanities 342. You will receive a completion grade for homework. You do not have to get the homework problems right to get credit for the assignment; you only have to show that you made an honest effort at every problem. Unless you have an excused absence, the penalty for late work will be half a letter grade for every 24 hours past the time due.

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IN-CLASS WRITING ASSIGNMENTS You will frequently write in class. Please come prepared with paper and writing utensils. In-class writing assignments will be graded for completion. You do not have to get the assignment right to get credit for the assignment; you only have to show that you made an honest effort. In-class writing assignments cannot be made up in case of absence. If your absence is excused, the assignment will count neither for nor against you. If your absence is not excused, you will receive a 0 for the assignment. EXAMS There will be four (4) short in-class exams and a final. The format of each exam will be announced before each exam date. FINAL EXAM You will not have an in-class final. For your final, you will outline an argument in support of a position; you will then outline a second argument against the same position. You will submit your final to turnitin.com during a prescribed time window. Turnitin.com will check your work for academic integrity. Detailed information regarding the final will be provided later in the semester. EVALUATION Attendance and Participation Homework and In-Class Writing Assignments Exam 1: Short Arguments, Generalizations, Analogies, Causes Exam 2: Deductive Arguments Exam 3: Common Fallacies Exam 4: Assigned Articles Final Exam: Extended Argument Outline GRADING A B C D F 90% - 100% 80% - <90% 70% - <80% 60% - <70% <60% 10% 20% 15% 15% 15% 15% 15%

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EXTRA CREDIT I will provide opportunities for extra credit. Possible extra credit assignments will be announced the first week of March. GRADE COMPLAINTS I will be more than happy to discuss your grade. First, you must wait at least 24 hours after you get the assignment back. Second, you must provide a written statement about why you think your response to the prompt should be re-graded. Third, you must present the written statement within one week of the date the assignment is returned. ACADEMIC INTEGRITY Academic integrity includes a commitment to not engage in or tolerate acts of falsification, misrepresentation or deception. Such acts of dishonesty include cheating or copying, plagiarizing, submitting another person’s work as one’s own, or using internet sources without citation. In accordance with due process procedures outlined by the UTPA Center for Academic Integrity (http://portal.utpa.edu/utpa_main/dess_home/dos_home/slts_home/ez_home/ez_sjs/sjs_integrity), any student charged with academic dishonesty will; 1. Receive written or oral notice of the charge by the instructor and, 2. Be given a three-day period in which the student may meet with the instructor to dispute the charges and/or sign the faculty referral form. After three days, the faculty referral form and appropriate documentation will then be forwarded to the Dean of Students Office with a request for a full-scale investigation along with a recommended sanction of F for the course. AMERICANS WITH DISABILITIES ACT (ADA) POLICY STATEMENT Students with disabilities are encouraged to contact the Disability Services office for a confidential discussion of their individual needs for academic accommodation. It is the policy of the University of Texas-Pan American to provide flexible and individualized accommodation to students with documented disabilities that may affect their ability to fully participate in course activities or to meet course requirements. To receive accommodation services, students must be registered with the Disability Services office (DS), University Center #108, 665-7005 or disabilityservices@utpa.edu. ONLINE STUDENT COURSE EVALUATIONS Mandatory Course Evaluations period (April 9 – April 30): Students are required to complete an ONLINE evaluation of this course, accessed through your UTPA account (http://my.utpa.edu/); you will be contacted through email with further instructions. The evaluation window closes at 11:59 pm on April 30th, the last day of spring classes. Students who complete their evaluations by April 30th will have priority access to their grades.

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SCHEDULE I may change the schedule throughout the semester as needed. Week 1 1 2 3 Monday, January 13 Wednesday, January 15 Friday, January 17 Begin Short Arguments, Generalizations, Analogies, Causes Week 1 Homework Due

Week 2 Monday, January 20 Wednesday, January 22 Friday, January 24 NO CLASS: MARTIN LUTHER KING DAY HOLIDAY Week 2 Homework Due

4 5

Week 3 6 7 8 Monday, January 27 Wednesday, January 29 Friday, January 31

Week 3 Homework Due

Week 4 9 10 11 Monday, February 3 Wednesday, February 5 Friday, February 7 Exam 1: Short Arguments, Generalizations, Analogies, Causes Begin Deductive Arguments Week 4 Homework Due

Week 5 12 13 14 Monday, February 10 Wednesday, February 12 Friday, February 14

Week 5 Homework Due

Week 6 15 16 17 Monday, February 17 Wednesday, February 19 Friday, February 21

Week 6 Homework Due

Week 7 18 19 20 Monday, February 24 Wednesday, February 26 Friday, February 28 Exam 2 Begin Common Fallacies Week 7 Homework Due

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Week 8 21 22 23 Monday, March 3 Wednesday, March 5 Friday, March 7 Watch Twelve Angry Men in class Watch Twelve Angry Men in class Week 8 Homework Due

*** Spring Break: Monday, March 10 – Friday, March 14 *** Week 9 24 25 26 Monday, March 17 Wednesday, March 19 Friday, March 21 NO CLASS: WALK Week 9 Homework Due

Week 10 27 28 29 Monday, March 24 Wednesday, March 26 Friday, March 28 Exam 3 Craig, “Five Reasons to Believe in God” Pascal, “The Wager”; Week 10 Homework Due

Week 11 30 31 32 Monday, March 31 Wednesday, April 2 Friday, April 4 Russell, “Why I am not a Christian” Russell, “Why I am not a Christian” Szasz, “The Ethics of Addiction”; Week 12 Homework Due

Week 12 33 34 35 Monday, April 7 Wednesday, April 9 Friday, April 11 Goodin, “The Ethics of Smoking” LaFollette, “Licensing Parents” Wrap-Up; Week 12 Homework Due

Week 13 36 37 Monday, April 14 Wednesday, April 16 Friday, April 18 Exam 4 Begin work on outlines for final NO CLASS: EASTER HOLIDAY

Week 14 38 39 40 Monday, April 21 Wednesday, April 23 Friday, April 25

Week 14 Homework Due

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Week 15 41 42 Monday, April 28 Wednesday, April 30 In-Class Peer Review Wrap-Up

May 1 and 2: NO CLASSES: STUDY DAYS

Final Exam Schedule Section Section 02 Section 03 Meeting Time MWF 8:45am MWF 10:45am Final Time Wednesday, May 7 Monday, May 5 8 – 9:45am 10:15am – 12:00pm

Your final must be submitted to www.turnitin.com, which you will access through Blackboard, by the end of your section’s final exam period time.

7…...

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