Degree Programs

PROGRAMS CONCERNED WITH CRITICAL THINKING AND INFORMAL LOGIC BEYOND A BASIC COURSE

This gathering of programs is a compilation of responses to a request on the two discussion lists, AILACT-D and ArgThry, for programs that go beyond a basic course in critical thinking or informal logic. It is organized alphabetically by the name of the institution.

If you would like to make changes in your listing, or add a program, please send the information about it, using the linked form, to Robert Ennis, rhennis@uiuc.edu.

UNIVERSITY OF AMSTERDAM

Name of Institution: University of Amsterdam, Faculty of Humanities

Location: Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Name of the Program: Rhetoric, Argumentation Theory and Philosophy (RAP)

Purpose of the Program: The program is a research master preparing for participation in a PhD program or to take up a research position; the program is open to qualified students with a BA in Philosophy, Linguistics, Communication, Pedagogy or another relevant field.

Degree(s) Offered: MA

Name and Title of the Person to Contact: Professor Frans H. van Eemeren or Dr. Bart Garssen

Contact Person’s Addresses, Phone, and Department:

Department of Speech Communication, Argumentation Theory and Rhetoric, University of Amsterdam
Postal: Spuistraat 134, 1012 VB Amsterdam, The Netherlands
E-mail:  F.H.vanEemeren@uva.nl; B.J.Garssen@uva.nl
Phone: +31-20-525-4711/4714/4716 (Secretary)

List of Titles of Relevant Courses, together with Frequency of Offering:

  1. Theory and practice of argumentation (introduction); Backgrounds and approaches to the study of argumentation;
  2. Verbal communication and discourse analysis;
  3. Quantitative and qualitative methodology;
  4. Logic and philosophy of language;
  5. Dialectical and rhetorical analysis and evaluation of argumentative discourse; Argumentation in legal, political and medical contexts;
  6. Theory and history of fallacies; Empirical research of fallacies.

Unique Features of the Program: Only existing research master fully dedicated to the study of argumentation

Names (first name first) and Titles of Faculty Members Involved in Offering the Program:

Frans H. van Eemeren, Eveline T. Feteris, Bart Garssen, Bert Meuffefls, José Plug, Leah Polcar, A. Francisca Snoeck Henkemans, Martin Stokhof, Frank Veltman, Jean Wagemans

University of Illinois, UC

Location: Champaign, Illinois, USA

Name of the Program: Teaching Critical Thinking

Purpose of the Program: The program will help graduates (1) Learn how to teach these skills; (2) Learn what critical thinking means in today’s multimedia- and technologically-oriented society; and (3) Become more effective advocates for critical thinking skills in today’s educational environment.

Degree(s) Offered: Master of Education (M.Ed.)

Name and Title of the Person to Contact: Linda Tabb, Coordinator of Online Programs

Contact Person’s Addresses, Phone, and Department

Postal: 360 Education Building
1310 South Sixth Street
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Champaign, IL
61820 USA
E:mail: tct@ed.uiuc.edu
Phone: 217 333 2858

List of Titles of Relevant Courses, together with Frequency of Offering :

Critical Thinking for Teachers; Disciplines, Dispositions, and Critical Thinking; Critical Thinking and the Internet; Cognitive Development and Socialization; Critical Thinking, Citizenship, and Social Justice; Foundations of Critical Pedagogy; Critically Reading the Media and Popular Culture; (Practicum) Critical Thinking and the Curriculum (taught annually)

Unique Features of the Program : Taught entirely online. M.Ed. degree can be finished in 1 1/2 years.

Names (first name first) and Titles of Faculty Members Involved in Offering the Program:

Dr. Tina Besley; Dr. Nicholas Burbules; Dr. Antonia Darder; Dr. Chris Higgins; Dr. Cris Mayo; Dr. Margery Osborne; Dr. Michele Perry; Dr. Ralph Page

UNIVERSITY OF MASSACHUSETTS BOSTON

Name of Institution: University of Massachusetts Boston

Location: Boston, MA, USA

Name of the Program: Critical and Creative Thinking

Purpose of the Program: The Critical and Creative Thinking (CCT) program provides its students with knowledge, tools, experience, and support so they can become constructive, reflective agents of change in education, work, social movements, science, and creative arts.

Degree(s) Offered: M.A., Graduate Certificate

Name and Title of the Person to Contact: Prof. Peter Taylor, Coordinator

Contact Person’s Addresses, Phone, and Department:

UMass Boston
100 Morrissey Blvd.
Boston, MA 02125, USA
E-mail: cct@umb.edu
Phone: 1 617 287 7636

Department: Graduate College of Education

List of Titles of Relevant Courses, together with Frequency of Offering:

Foundation Courses:

  • Critical Thinking (fall or spring; summer; on-line)
  • Creative Thinking (fall; on-line in spring)
  • Foundations Of Philosophical Thought (1 semester in 3)
  • Advanced Cognitive Psychology (1 semester in 3)
  • Required Final Courses for M.A.
  • Processes of Research and Engagement (1 semester in 3)
  • Action Research for Educational, Professional and Personal Change (1 semester in 3)
  • Synthesis Of Theory And Practice (most semesters)

Elective Courses

  • Seminar In Critical Thinking (theme: Problem-based learning)
  • Seminar In Creativity (fall or spring online in summer)
  • Dialogue Processes (winter; fall or spring on-line)
  • Creative Thinking, Collaboration and Organizational Change (summer; fall on-line; spring on-line)
  • Biomedical ethics (summer)
  • Issues In Antiracist And Multicultural Education (1 semester in 3)
  • Creativity And Criticism In Literature And Art (irregularly)
  • Environment, Science and Society: Critical Thinking (irregularly)
  • Biology in Society: Critical Thinking (irregularly)
  • The Gifted and Talented Student (spring)
  • Scientific and Political Change (1 semester in 4)
  • Mathematics Thinking Skills (irregularly)
  • Children And Science (irregularly)

Unique Features of the Program:

Traditionally, the foundational knowledge emphasized in Critical and Creative Thinking has included psychological studies of the scope, limits, and techniques of critical and creative thought, information processing, and conceptual learning in children and young adults; philosophical studies of reasoning, argument, logical thinking, valuing, and judging; and work with cognitive structures and metacognitive techniques for stimulating creativity and critical thought. In the CCT Program this knowledge base is expanded through elective courses that take students into areas of specialization and through required courses in research, implementation, evaluation, and communication that introduce a range of tools for students’ own personal and professional development and for helping others develop equivalent processes. In recent years required and elective CCT courses have delved further into inter- and intra-personal dimensions of critical and creative thinking and reflective practice, involving empathy, listening, dialogue, and facilitation of other group processes. An interest in contributing to constructive social change has also led CCT faculty and students to address anti-racist and multicultural education and to promote the involvement of teachers and other citizens in debates about science in its social context. The Program’s long-standing emphasis on creativity has also been complemented by the newer courses on workplace and organizational change.

To extend students’ and graduates’ personal & professional development, community building, and educational-innovation activities beyond the formal programs of study, CCT hosts the CCT Network (monthly events), the CCT Network “ning” (social network site), a wiki (for CCT-related tools and for course work in progress), regular email news, and Open Houses. For details, see the CCT website, http://www.cct.umb.edu, and wiki, cct.wikispaces.com.

Names (first name first) and Titles of Faculty Members Involved in Offering the Program:

  • Prof. Lawrence Blum •Ethics and Moral Philosophy • Anti-racist and multicultural education
  • Dr. Nina Greenwald •Educational Psychology •Creative Thinking and Problem Solving •Problem-based learning •Gifted Education •Multiple Intelligences
  • Assoc. Prof. Arthur Millman •Philosophy of Science and Technology •Scientific Method
  • Prof. Carol Smith •Children and Science •Conceptual Change •Cognitive Development
  • Prof. Janet Farrell Smith •Biomedical ethics •Political Philosophy •Philosophy of Language
  • Prof. Peter Taylor (Program Coordinator) •Science, Technology, and Society •Social Analysis of Environmental and Health Sciences • Reflective Practice
  • Assoc. Prof. Brian White •Biology Education •Educational Software and Multimedia

McMASTER UNIVERSITY

Name of Institution: McMaster University

Location: Hamilton, Ontario, Canada

Names of the Programs:

  1. Honours BA in Philosophy, Combined Honours B.A. in Philosophy and another subject, B.A. in philosophy, minor in philosophy
  2. M.A. in Philosophy
  3. Ph.D. in Philosophy

Purposes of the Programs:

  1. to provide a basic grounding, with variable degrees of concentration, in the study of philosophy.
  2. “to enable candidates to understand how one makes professional contributions to philosophy in both teaching and research” (The department has supervised MA theses on the following topics in the field of informal logic: the fallacy of equivocation, norms for political argumentation in a liberal democracy, rational argumentation and the dialectical tier.)
  3. “to develop in students the research capabilities required of professional philosophers and to qualify students to teach philosophy at university level” (A recent external appraisal of the PhD program mentioned informal logic as a particular strength of the department. The department has been approved to supervise PhD theses in five fields, one of which (the philosophy of science, language and logic) is construed to include informal logic and critical thinking.)

Degree(s) Offered: See “Name of the Programs” above

Name and Title of the Person to Contact: David Hitchcock, Professor of Philosophy

Contact Person’s Addresses, Phone, and Department:

Department of Philosophy
McMaster University
1280 Main St. W.
Hamilton, Ontario
Canada L8S 4K1
E-mail: hitchckd@mcmaster.ca
Phone: 905-523-9140, ext. 23464
Web site: http://www.humanities.mcmaster.ca/~philos/index.html

List of Titles of Relevant Courses, together with Frequency of Offering:

  • Humanities 2C03 (Critical Thinking): an introductory undergraduate skill development course, offered at least once every 12 months
  • Philosophy 3M03 (Theory of Argumentation): an undergraduate theoretical course, offered in alternate years (once every 24 months)
  • Philosophy 760 (Selected Topics in Logic and Theory of Argumentation): a graduate seminar, offered occasionally on a topic in the theory of argumentation

Unique Features of the Programs: We are one of the few philosophy departments in the world that both offers a doctoral program and has more than one person actively doing research in the field of informal logic and critical thinking.

Names (first name first) and Titles of Faculty Members Involved in Offering the Program: The departmental specialists in informal logic and critical thinking are:

David Hitchcock, Professor of Philosophy; Mark Vorobej, Associate Professor of Philosophy

UNIVERSITY OF NEVADA, LAS VEGAS

 Name of Institution:  University of Nevada, Las Vegas

Location:  Las Vegas, Nevada, USA

Name of the Program: n/a

Purpose of the Program: n/a

Degree(s) Offered: B.A. in Philosophy

Name and Title of the Person to Contact:  Dr. Ian Dove, Assistant Professor of Philosophy, and director of logic and critical thinking

Contact Person’s Addresses, Phone, and Department:

Department of Philosophy
University of Nevada, Las Vegas
Box 455028
Las Vegas
NV 89154-5028
USA
E-mail:  ian.dove@unlv.edu
Phone:  (702)895-3460

List of Titles of Relevant Courses, together with Frequency of Offering:

  • PHI 302: Intermediate Critical Thinking and Reasoning [every two years]
  • PHI 420: Logical Theory [ever two years]

Unique Features of the Program:

Names (first name first) and Titles of Faculty Members Involved in Offering the Program:

Ian Dove, Assistant Professor of Philosophy and director of logic and critical thinking

UNIVERSITY OF NORTHERN ARIZONA

Name of Institution:Northern Arizona University

Location: Flagstaff, Arizona, USA

Name of the Program: Courses in philosophy

Purpose of the Program: Courses offered both for major and general education credit

Degree(s) Offered: The courses are part of a degree program. We do not offer a degree in critical reasoning per se.

Name and Title of the Person to Contact: David Sherry or Michael Malone, both professors of philosophy

Contact Person’s Addresses, Phone, and Department:

Department of Philosophy
Box 6011
Northern Arizona University
Flagstaff, AZ 86011
USA
E-mail:  david.sherry@nau.edu, Michael.malone@nau.edu
Phone: (928) 523-7092, (928) 523-7090

List of Titles of Relevant Courses, together with Frequency of Offering:

  • PHI 223 Argument Analysis,
  • PHI 203 Scientific Reasoning, both offered annually;
  • PHI 323 Topics in Philosophy of Logic, offered annually.
  • PHI 323 is upper division. Topics vary. Some, such as deviant logics, are concerned with formal logic. Recently topics have included decision theory and statistical reasoning. While these topics tend to be more formulaic and mathematical than editorials, they are not formalistic.

Unique Features of the Program:

PHI 223 emphasizes identification and evaluation of arguments in discourse students will read outside of the logic class – in textbooks for other classes, in other philosophy classes or classes in other subjects, editorials, legal decisions, letters to the editor etc. PHI 203 focuses on arguments used by scientists. It is an informal logic course, distinct from courses in philosophy of science. Topics in PHI 323 fall under the heading of inductive reasoning. While there is a mathematical component to each of them, they are courses in philosophy, not mathematics.

Names (first name first) and Titles of Faculty Members Involved in Offering the Program:

PHI 223 regularly taught by Professor Michael Malone; PHI 203 regularly taught by Professor Peter Kosso; PHI 323 regularly taught by Professor David Sherry.

SIMON FRASER UNIVERSITY

Name of institution: Simon Fraser University

Location: Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

Name of the Program: M.Ed. in Critical, Creative, and Collaborative Inquiry

Purpose of the Program:

This program leads to the Master of Education (M.Ed.) degree and is intended for community leaders and educators in both the K-12 system (private, public, or alternative schools) and post-secondary. The objective of this program is to develop participants’ capacity to think critically, creatively, and collaboratively, and their ability to plan and implement coherent educational programs dedicated to critical, creative, and collaborative inquiry.

Degree(s) Offered, If Any:

M.Ed. (Master of Education)

Name and Title of the Person to Contact:

Dr. Sharon Bailin, Professor Emeritus

Contact Person’s Addresses, Phone, and Department:

E-mail:  bailin@sfu.ca

Department: Faculty of Education

List of Titles of Relevant Courses, together with Frequency of Offering:

  • EDUC 710-5   Special Topics: Teaching Critically, Creatively and Collaboratively
  • EDUC 711-5   Special Topics: How to Think Critically
  • EDUC 823-5   Curriculum & Instruction in an Individual Teaching Specialty*
  • EDUC 816-5   Developing Educational Programs and Practices for Diverse Educational Settings*
  • EDUC 830-5   Implementation of Educational Programs*
  • EDUC 904-5   Fieldwork III*
  • EDUC 883-5   M.Ed. Comprehensive Examination

*These courses all have as a specific focus the development and implementation of programs emphasizing critical, creative and collaborative inquiry.

The courses are offered every second year.

Unique Features of the Program:

This is a two year cohort program, with students as a group following the courses in sequence over a two year period. The courses are offered on weekends to accommodate the schedules of practicing educators. There is an emphasis on collaborative inquiry, ongoing instructor and peer feedback and revision, and the development and implementation of programs and resources which can be used in the students’ own instructional settings.

Names and Titles of Faculty Members Involved in Offering the Program:

  • Dr. Sharon Bailin, Emeritus Professor, Simon Fraser University
  • Dr. Bruce Beairsto, Former Superintendent, Surrey School District; Lecturer, Simon Fraser University
  • Dr. Roland Case, Executive Director of The Critical Thinking Consortium; Sessional Instructor, Simon Fraser University
  • Dr. Rebecca Cox, Assistant Professor, Simon Fraser University
  • Dr. Larry Johnson, Former Director of Instruction and School Superintendent, North Vancouver School District; Sessional Instructor, Simon Fraser University

SPAIN: JOINT GRADUATE PROGRAM IN LOGIC AND PHILOSOPHY OF SCIENCE

Name of Institutions: University of Salamanca, University Autonoma Madrid, University of La Laguna, University of Valladolid, University of A Coruña, Spain

Location: Spain; the courses will be taught at one of the institutions involved, rotating every two years among the universities that take part in the program.

Name of the Program: Graduate Program in Logic and Philosophy of Science

Purpose of the Program: addressed to students who have a BA in philosophy or in any one of the natural or social sciences, as well as mathematics or computer science. The program includes a taught part and a research part. The taught part offers courses organized in four tracks, one of which being Argumentation Studies. The languages of the program are Spanish and/or English.

Degree(s) Offered: MA and PhD

Language of Instruction: English and/or Spanish

Website: http://epimenides.usal.es/

Name and Title of the Person to Contact in Salamanca:

Professor María Manzano

Contact Person’s Addresses, Phone, and Department:

Departamento de Filosofía y Lógica y Filosofía de la Ciencia, Universidad de Salamanca
Edificio FES, Despacho 516
Campus Unamuno
37007 Salamanca
España
E-mail: mara@usal.es
Phone: (34) 923 294500 ext. 3432 (Secretary)

Name and Title of the Person to Contact in Santiago de Compostela:

Professor Concepción Martínez

Contact Person’s Addresses, Phone, and Department:

Departamento de Lóxica e Filosofía Moral de la Facultade de Filosofía
Edificio Praza de Mazarelos s/n
15872 Santiago de Compostela
España
E-mail: mconcepcion.martinez@usc.es
Phone: (34) 981563100, ext 12530 Fax: (34) 981530847

List of Titles of Relevant Courses, together with Frequency of Offering: the courses offered each year that deal with topics in argumentation theory are the following:

  1. Argumentation Theory: Perspectives and Problems. Vega, L. (UNED)
  2. Concepts and Techniques for Argument Analysis. Marraud, H. (UAM)
  3. The Pragmatics and Normativity of Linguistic Communication. Corredor, C. (Uva)
  4. Logic and Rhetoric in Philosophical Argumentation. Alcolea, J. (UV)
  5. Formal Methods and Resources in the Analysis of Meaning, Barba, J. (Uva)
  6. List of Titles of Courses of different tracks from where the student could also make a selection:
  7. Logic
  8. History and Philosophy of Logic. Martínez, C. (USC)
  9. Non-Classical Logics. Burrieza, A. (UMA)
  10. Higher Order Logics. Nepomuceno, A. (US)
  11. Quantifiers and Logical Constants. Frapolli, M.J. (UGR)
  12. Theoretical Computation. The State of the Art. Alonso, E. (UAM)
  13. Logics for the Web. Manzano. M. (USAL)
  14. Mind and Language
  15. Philosophy of Mind. Martínez-Freire, P. (UMA)
  16. Mind and World: a Neurological Approach. Vázquez, J. (USC)
  17. Language, Thought and Theories of Representation. Vicente, A.
  18. Theories of Reference. Fernández Moreno, L. (UCM)
  19. Meaning, Reference and Intentionality. Vicario, I. (UMA)
  20. Bidimensional Semantics. Acero, J.J. (UGR)
  21. Objectivist Conceptions of Information: Logic and Ontology. Sagüillo, J.M. (USC)

Unique Features of the Program: it is a joint program between five universities, (teaching responsibilities are divided among more than 30 lecturers at 11 Spanish universities) and therefore the student can choose from a great variety of courses in argumentation theory, logic, philosophy of social and natural sciences, philosophy of language, philosophy of mind, epistemology etc (for more information see our website). The program implements blending learning, part of the courses being taught through distance learning methods.

UNIVERSITY OF WINDSOR

Name of Institution: University of Windsor

Location: Windsor, Ontario, Canada.  (Across the river from Detroit, Michigan.)

Name of the Program: BA/MA in Philosophy

Purpose of the Program: The Department offers a general four-year BA in philosophy.  We consider our strengths to be in the areas of social critique and informal logic/argumentation.  With regard to the latter we aim to teach informal logic and argumentation skills to undergraduate students and to teach the theories of informal logic and argumentation to senior undergraduate students and MA students.

Degree(s) Offered, If Any: BA and MA

Name and Title of the Person to Contact: Dr. Hans V. Hansen

Contact Person’s Addresses, Phone, and Department:

Dept of Philosophy
Univ. of Windsor
Windsor ON
Canada N9B 3P4
E-mail:  hhansen@uwindsor.ca
Phone: 519 923 3000 x 2342

List of Titles of Relevant Courses, together with Frequency of Offering:

  • 34-160. Reasoning Skills (every term). An explanation of, and practice in, the basic knowledge, skills and attitudes which are essential components of reasoning well. (Antirequisite: 34-161 and 34-162.)
  • 34-162. Logic and Argumentation (every year, but only for students in the Bachelor of Arts and Sciences Programme)). Basic deductive logic and argumentation theories and their application to the interpretation, assessment and construction of arguments used in the humanities, social sciences, and sciences as well as in discourse in the public realm. Topics include: deductive, inductive, presumptive reasoning or arguments, elementary sampling, differences between the kinds of support in different fields, elementary rhetoric and dialectic, and common fallacies. (Prerequisite: Open only to students in the BAS program.) (Antirequisite: 34-160, 34-161.)
  • 34-260. Informal Logic: Fallacy (every year). The objective is to develop the ability to discriminate between good and bad arguments found in everyday settings, using the concept of fallacy. A variety of kinds of fallacy are explained, and the skill of identifying them is taught. The basic tools for analyzing arguments are presented and put to use. Material for analysis is drawn from newspapers, current periodicals, and other sources of actual arguments. (Prerequisite: 34-160 or 34-161 or semester 3 or above standing; or consent of the instructor.)
  • 34-261. Informal Logic: Argumentation (ever year). The objective is to develop the ability to analyze and evaluate extended arguments found in the public media, books and articles, and to construct a well-argued case. (Prerequisite: 34-260 or 34-160 and semester 3 or above standing; or consent of the instructor.)
  • 34-266. Reasoning about Weird Things (every year). How to evaluate extraordinary claims, such as claims about psychic phenomena (e.g. ESP), subliminal messages, crop circles, and water divining. The course may include topics such as: the limits of personal experience as a source of evidence, expert opinion, assessment of studies, scientific method. (Prerequisite: Semester 3 or above standing; or consent of instructor.) (Students may not receive credit for both 34-161 and 34-266.)
  • 34-360. Argumentation Theory (every second year). Topics may include: the nature and uses of argument; the evaluation of argument; arguments and argumentation; the relations between argument and rhetoric, logic, and pragmatics; linguistic theories of argument; ethics and epistemology related to argument; the role of argument in philosophy. (Prerequisite: 34-260 or 34-261, or consent of the instructor.)
  • 34-560. Movements and Figures in Argumentation Theory and Informal Logic (either 560 or 561 is offered once a year). The course will focus on selected contemporary movements and figures in Argumentation Theory and Informal Logic. The movement and figure studied in any given year will be determined by the latest developments in the field.
  • 34-561. Problems in Argumentation and Informal Logic (either 560 or 561 is offered once a year). Note: about a half-dozen students have written their Master’s theses or major papers on topics in informal logic or argumentation.

Unique Features of the Program: Faculty who teach informal logic or argumentation courses in the Philosophy Department also belong to the Centre for Research in Reasoning, Argumentation and Rhetoric (CRRAR).  Four of the faculty members listed below (Blair, Johnson, Hansen, Tindale) are the co-editors of the journal, INFORMAL LOGIC; the Department has hosted three of the last four OSSA conferences (Ontario Society for the Study of Argumentation).

Names (first name first) and Titles of Faculty Members Involved in Offering the Program:

Marcello Guarini (PhD, Western Ontario), Associate Professor; Hans V. Hansen (PhD, Wayne State), Associate Professor; Cate Hundleby (PhD, Western Ontario), Associate Professor; Christopher W. Tindale (PhD, Waterloo), Professor.

In addition the following are available for consultation and thesis supervision: J. A. Blair (MA, Michigan), Professor Emeritus; R. H. Johnson (PhD, Notre Dame), Professor Emeritus; R. C. Pinto (PhD, Toronto), Professor Emeritus; D. N. Walton (PhD, Toronto), Adjunct Professor of Philosophy, Assumption University Chair in Argumentation Studies, and CRRAR Distinguished Research Fellow.

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