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Friday, February 19, 2010

High School Philosophy

Update: This live course has concluded and is will be available 05/11/10 as a recorded course through our Subscription Service. This is a great way to learn at your own pace when your schedule allows.To subscribe or learn more: Adult and High School Online Classes

Philosophy: Fallacies and Paradoxes
To register, click above.

Class dates: Tuesdays, March 23 to April 27, 2010
Total classes: 6
Starting time: 3:00 pm, Eastern (2:00 Central)
Duration: 1 hour 15 minutes
Professor: Jean Rioux, Ph.D.
Fee: $90

Course description: This six-session class will be devoted to learning about, and identifying, examples of flawed reasoning. One sort of logical mistake, the fallacy, can arise on account of the subject matter about which one reasons (language-based, or linguistic, fallacies), or through being inattentive to the structure (or form) of one's reasoning (non-linguistic, or formal, fallacies). There is also a class of logical error called paradoxes, in which reason finds itself trapped between two, apparently sound, but incompatible lines of reasoning; something is wrong here, but what, exactly? Analyzing paradoxes, and their solutions, helps us better to understand the nature of human reasoning itself, and how best to assure that we arrive at the truth (and not falsity) through its use.

Week-by-week outline:
Class One: Linguistic Fallacies and Formal Non-Linguistic Fallacies (theory)
Class Two: Linguistic Fallacies and Formal Non-Linguistic Fallacies (application)
Class Three: Formal Non-Linguistic Fallacies and Material Non-Linguistic Fallacies (theory)
Class Four: Formal Non-Linguistic Fallacies and Material Non-Linguistic Fallacies (application)
Class Five: Logical Paradoxes (examples)
Class Six: Logical Paradoxes (resolutions and implications)

The "theory" classes would be devoted to laying out what fallacies there are and why they are fallacies; the "application" classes would consist of going over lots of examples, and asking students to classify the fallacies on the basis of distinctions already made.

Homework: There will be no written homework for this course. However, there will be assigned reading. Dr. Rioux will be available via email in between classes for questions and comments.

Course materials: The text will be provided free of charge by Dr. Rioux.

High school credit: This course is worth 1/2 semester credit. Dr. Gotcher's course Introduction to Logic is the perfect companion to this course and the two together would make up a full semester credit.

Professor's biography: Dr. Rioux is a professor and chair of the philosophy department at Benedictine College in Atchison, Kansas, where he has taught for twenty-three years. A graduate of Thomas Aquinas College, he completed his graduate work in philosophy at the Center for Thomistic Studies in Houston, earning the M.A. in 1984 and the Ph.D. in 1990. Specializing in the thought of Aristotle and St. Thomas Aquinas, Dr. Rioux has published textbooks in logic and natural philosophy, as well as articles on the philosophy of mathematics in the Thomist and the Aquinas Review. He came to Benedictine with a love for the study of primary texts, as well as a keen interest in what computers might bring to that study. His contributions to the philosophical life of Benedictine College range from Great Books Sequences in philosophy and theology to 3D software for students of logic. He and his wife, Maria, raise their nine children in a farmhouse in rural Kansas. They have been designing their own curricula and educating their children at home for over twenty years.

Equipment requirements:
Students are required to have high-speed internet and a headset with microphone.

Course Access:
All Homeschool Connections courses are recorded and available to registered students for up to six months.

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