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Chapter 12: What Reasonable Conclusions Are Possible?

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Rachel Trimble

on 23 October 2014

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Transcript of Chapter 12: What Reasonable Conclusions Are Possible?

Chapter 12
What Reaonable Concluseions Are Possible?
Make sure the conclusion you choose is the most reasonable and the most consistent with what point you want to get across.

If you prepare yourself you will be able to make a stronger conclusion with more evidence and options.
ASSUMPTIONS AND MULTIPLE CONCLUSIONS
Evidence and conclusions can be interpreted in different ways
Both of these things do not always speak for themselves
What makes conclusions hard is that they are made after non definite reasons or assumptions are made
As individuals we make different assumptions and conclusions based on our backgrounds
Dichotomous Thinking: Impediment To Considering Multiple Conclusions
Two Sides Or Many?
There are very few times where we have a simple “yes” or “no” answer to questions
EXAMPLES
1) Should the United States engage in peacekeeping in other countries?
2) Should the government pass a law that everyone needs to have bacon for breakfast?
How many would answer these questions only with “yes” or “no”?
Are there other answers?
Possible Answers:

(For question one)

Yes, when the country is intricately tied to the United States, such as Saudi Arabia.
Yes, if the United States is to be perceived as the sole superpower responsible for maintain world peace.
Yes, when our economic interests abroad are at stake.
No, the United States has enough domestic problems to handle such that we
Should not spend time in other countries.
(For question two)

Tell us your possible answers!

Notice each answer has a condition added before the conclusion!
Searching for Multiple Conclusions
Read reasons without looking at the conclusion
Infer other conclusions that can come from the reasons, and are supported by reasons
These other conclusions can be supported by the reasons given, but are different from the original conclusion.
Conclusion: The United States should continue to use the death penalty as a form of punishment
Without the death penalty, there is no way to punish people who commit wrongs, such as harming guards or inmates, after already having a life sentence.
It is only fair that someone should die for purposely taking the life of another

Browne; Keeley (2011) p 165
Productivity of If-Clauses
Alternative Solutions As Conclusions
The Liberating Effect of Recognizing Alternative Conclusions
Facts and logic are important, but they only take us so far
Search for possible multiple conclusions according to the facts we know
There may be a variety of possible conclusions, then we get to pick
All Conclusions are not Created Equal
Some conclusions that are formed may be more credible than others
Once disagreement is recognized, then one argument is as good as the other.
Critical thinking is important to identify the strongest reasoning.
We use an “if-clause” when we are missing certain information, assumptions, and definitions, and so we come up with several conclusions.

If-clauses: State a condition that we are assuming in order to enable us to reach a particular conclusion.

You use an if-clause to come to a conclusion without pretending that you know more than you actually do

An if-clause comes before the conclusion

“If-clauses” gives you multiple conclusions to think about before you make up your mind about a topic or issue

Example of an if-clause: “If the tax cut is targeted toward those at the lower end of the economic spectrum, then…”
Dichotomous thinking, is only yes or no answers, this leaves only two possible answers.
This restricts thinking, and can have a devastatingly bad effect on the way we think.
These thinkers fail to think of other possible answers.
When reading a paper you should ask, when is it accurate? Where is it accurate? Why or for what purpose is it accurate?
A proper response you should do or ask is, “it depends on…” You should make the answer a lot more difficult than it really is.
The next person is able to show how the restrictive effects of dichotomous thinking can be.

Should we do X? Is X desirable?
How about Y?
Full transcript