Philosophy and Skepticism

  • Posted on: 24 March 2015
  • By: brentsilby

In this introduction to skepticism we analyze the extraordinary claims of fortune tellers, clairvoyants, psychics, and homeopaths. Should we believe what they tell us, or should we ask for more evidence? We discuss the dangers of blind acceptance of ideas, and develop a “Baloney Detection” toolbox.

SLOs
1. Students will be able to identify differences between pseudoscientific and scientific claims
2. Students will be able to identify examples of bad reasoning
3. Students will be able to construct rationally convincing argument
4. Students will demonstrate understanding of validity and soundness in an argument

Learning Sequence
* Run through powerpoint each week
- Discuss in guided sessions

* View relevant youtube clips/TED talks

* Look for examples of valid and invalid arguments on the internet - with explanation as to why these are examples of such (SLO 1, 2, 4)

* Find examples of bad reasoning on internet and on television news - with explanation as to why these are examples of such (SLO 1, 2, 4)

* Work through baloney detection kit

Learning Area: 
Levels: 
4