Deductive Reasoning


deduction, in logic, form of inference such that the conclusion must be true if the premises are true. For example, if we know that all men have two legs and that John is a man, it is then logical to deduce that John has two legs. Logicians contrast deduction with induction, in which the conclusion might be false even when the premises are true. Deduction has to do with necessity; induction has to do with probability. The famous Aristotelian syllogism is one species of deductive reasoning, which was greatly extended by the development of symbolic logic.

See R. J. Ackermann, Modern Deductive Logic (1971); P. J. Hurley A Concise Introduction to Logic (1985).

The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright© 2014, The Columbia University Press.

Selected full-text books and articles on this topic

Deductive Reasoning and Strategies
Walter Schaeken; Gino De Vooght; André Vandierendonck; Géry D'Ydewalle.
Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, 2000
Reasoning, Necessity, and Logic: Developmental Perspectives
Willis F. Overton.
Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, 1990
Librarian’s tip: "A Theory of Deductive Reasoning" begins on p. 2
Training Overcomes Reasoning Schema Effects and Promotes Transfer
Ansburg, Pamela I.; Shields, Leeann.
The Psychological Record, Vol. 53, No. 2, Spring 2003
Peer-reviewed publications on Questia are publications containing articles which were subject to evaluation for accuracy and substance by professional peers of the article's author(s).
Challenge and Response: Justification in Ethics
Carl Wellman.
Southern Illinois University Press, 1971
Librarian’s tip: Chap. 1 "Deduction"
The Teaching of Thinking
Raymond S. Nickerson; David N. Perkins; Edward E. Smith.
Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, 1985
Librarian’s tip: "Errors in Deductive Reasoning" begins on p. 111
Proceedings of the Twentieth Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society
Morton Ann Gernsbacher; Sharon J. Derry.
Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, 1998
Librarian’s tip: "Deductive Reasoning in Right-Brain Damaged" begins on p. 386
Cognitive Psychology and Artificial Intelligence: Theory and Research in Cognitive Science
Morton Wagman.
Praeger, 1993
Librarian’s tip: "Deductive Reasoning" begins on p. 23
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