Tools of Thinking: Understanding the World Through Experience and Reason Audiobook | The Great Courses | Audible.com
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Tools of Thinking: Understanding the World Through Experience and Reason | [The Great Courses]

Tools of Thinking: Understanding the World Through Experience and Reason

Everyone has to think in order to function in the world, but what is the best way to reason effectively in your pursuit of reliable beliefs and useful knowledge? What is the best way to prove a case, create a rule, solve a problem, justify an idea, invent a hypothesis, or evaluate an argument? In short, what is the best way to think? Professor Hall helps you cut through deception and faulty reasoning in these 24 humorous, clear, and interesting lectures, offering a friendly but intellectually rigorous approach to the problem of thinking. Among the topics you'll learn about are:. Deduction: This form of reasoning reaches a conclusion based on a set of premises; if the premises are true, then the conclusion necessarily follows.. Induction: Less ironclad than deduction, this approach surveys the evidence and then generalizes an explanation to account for it; the conclusion may be probable, but it is not certain.. Syllogism: This simple but powerful deductive argument offers two premises and a conclusion. An example: "All Greeks are mortals. All Athenians are Greeks. Therefore, all Athenians are mortals.". Dialectic: A question-and-answer dialogue, called dialectic, is valuable for uncovering first principles.. Venn diagrams: This technique uses overlapping circles to represent different classes of objects or ideas in order to clarify a syllogism.Some of the greatest philosophers who ever lived have used these tools to separate ideas that make sense from those that don't. Now you, too, can think more clearly, making better lives for ourselves and for those to come.
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Publisher's Summary

Everyone has to think in order to function in the world, but what is the best way to reason effectively in your pursuit of reliable beliefs and useful knowledge? What is the best way to prove a case, create a rule, solve a problem, justify an idea, invent a hypothesis, or evaluate an argument? In short, what is the best way to think?

Professor Hall helps you cut through deception and faulty reasoning in these 24 humorous, clear, and interesting lectures, offering a friendly but intellectually rigorous approach to the problem of thinking. Among the topics you'll learn about are: Deduction (this form of reasoning reaches a conclusion based on a set of premises; if the premises are true, then the conclusion necessarily follows); Induction (less ironclad than deduction, this approach surveys the evidence and then generalizes an explanation to account for it; the conclusion may be probable, but it is not certain); Syllogism ( this simple but powerful deductive argument offers two premises and a conclusion, e.g., "All Greeks are mortals. All Athenians are Greeks. Therefore, all Athenians are mortals."); Dialectic (a question-and-answer dialogue, called dialectic, is valuable for uncovering first principles); Venn diagrams (this technique uses overlapping circles to represent different classes of objects or ideas in order to clarify a syllogism).

Some of the greatest philosophers who ever lived have used these tools to separate ideas that make sense from those that don't. Now you, too, can think more clearly, making better lives for ourselves and for those to come.

Disclaimer: Please note that this recording may include references to supplemental texts or print references that are not essential to the program and not supplied with your purchase.

©2005 The Teaching Company, LLC (P)2005 The Great Courses

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  •  
    Douglas Auburn, WA, United States 08-18-13
    Douglas Auburn, WA, United States 08-18-13 Member Since 2008

    College English professor who loves classic literature, psychology, neurology and hates pop trash like Twilight and Fifty Shades of Grey.

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    "Wow!"

    Stunned by the negative review of this wonderful lecture series. I can't imagine anyone halfway versed in metacognition having any problems following this material, supplements or no. Granted, I have done a lot of study in this area and from much more in-depth books than this, but anyone should find this a greatly enlightening book on the process of human thought and logic. I recommend it be read with Novallis' The Deceptive Mind and perhaps Ridgley's Strategic Thinking. Unlike the other reviewer, I have yet to come across a lecture series in The Great Courses that I didn't absolutely love and devour. I wish I could somehow work them into my own classrooms.

    8 of 9 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tero Helsinki, Finland 08-18-13
    Tero Helsinki, Finland 08-18-13 Member Since 2011

    tero_pajunen

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    "This course is too much based on superstition"
    Would you try another book from The Great Courses and/or Professor James Hall?

    The Great Courses concept is fine by me, but Professor James Hall's insight on taking superstition as an equal part of rational reasoning with (scientific) facts, is just way too much for me - and thus I lost the interest to this book within 2 hours.


    Has Tools of Thinking: Understanding the World Through Experience and Reason turned you off from other books in this genre?

    No. As long as I don't have to listen to James Hall's opinions.


    How did the narrator detract from the book?

    He clearly has a theological hidden agenda.


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    Disappointment.


    Any additional comments?

    I might listen through the whole book after a while... maybe there is some true substance in this book - as its title suggests.

    1 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Eric Sarasota, FL, United States 07-28-13
    Eric Sarasota, FL, United States 07-28-13 Member Since 2012
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    "It's great, but not for audio-only"
    Would you try another book from The Great Courses and/or Professor James Hall?

    I have tried some of "The Great Courses," even before they appeared on audible. One each on Math, Art, Public Speaking, Meditation, and now his Logic course. "The Great Courses" could be more aptly named "The Hit or Miss Courses" simply because the quality of the Professors, their presentations, and their actual relation to the subject matter varies intensely. Of the courses I have tried, three (math, art, and public speaking) weren't worthwhile for various reasons. The public speaking course was so poor in every way that the professor wasn't even associated with his university's communications program, and was one of the worst presenters I've ever encountered. On the other hand the meditation course was honestly fantastic, and this course, too, would be fantastic. Yet, logic, even a basic and abridged introduction (or recap, depending on your life experiences so far) is complex. You're not going to retain (or even be able to imagine) everything Dr. Hall is discussing, and that's a problem. Apparently it is possible to go to "The Great Courses" website to purchase a hard copy of the workbook/ guide (yet, not the electronic version) without repurchasing the course. Audible should be providing the electronic version of the supplemental material, or it should be available, and heavily discountable, through Amazon with a clearly associated link. Until such an option is available I'd save your money or your credit for use on what you subscribed to this service for, an audio book. There are so many good reads waiting for you!


    What did you like best about this story?

    Dr. James Hall is clearly an "expert," that word being used as a compliment with the intended meaning being that the professor defines in the course (someone who has spent a long, long time thinking over a set of problems and thus really knows their stuff)!


    What does Professor James Hall bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    There isn't a book to read, and that's a problem, unless you have an obscenely perfect memory... Which may be its own sort of problem?


    What character would you cut from Tools of Thinking: Understanding the World Through Experience and Reason?

    There aren't any characters


    Any additional comments?

    From here on out I'm sticking to audio books.

    1 of 6 people found this review helpful
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