Thought and Knowledge: An Introduction to Critical Thinking

By Diane F. Halpern | Go to book overview

who have used the first two editions of this book. Their questions and comments have shaped the third edition in several ways by pointing out those sections that needed to be clarified, suggesting where I should cut material, and convincing me of the need to write a separate exercise book so that the skills can be practiced with many different sorts of problems.

Several psychologists have given freely of their time and expertise to help make the third edition as clear and as accurate as possible. I sincerely thank Dale Berger at Claremont Graduate School, Steve Ceci at Cornell University, Carole Wade at Dominican College at San Rafael, and Linda Coodley at Napa Valley College for their helpful comments on sections of this edition. Larry Wagner at Claremont Graduate School patiently read and commented on every chapter, and numerous faculty from colleges all over the world have written and phoned me with their thoughts and comments over the 12 years since the first edition was published. My sincere thanks to all of you.

I also express my gratitude and admiration to the renowned San Diego artist and my good friend, Robert Perine, who created the cover for this book. His new interpretation of Rodin's famous statue "The Thinker" shows how the artist expresses his critical and creative thoughts in a nonverbal medium. I hope that you, the reader, find pleasure in this fine drawing.


Many people have assisted in the preparation of this book. Mr. Jack Burton, Vice President, Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Inc., has guided me through the publication process with tact and wisdom. In the process, he has become an admired and respected friend. Dr. George Mandler at the University of California, San Diego, has read and reread the manuscript, offering expert advice and practical good sense. His wise counsel has been very much appreciated. My dear "aunt," Dr. Katherine D. Newman, now retired from the English Department at West Chester State College, has not only commented on the manuscript, offering helpful suggestions and corrections, but has also served as a life-long role model. She has influenced greatly the course of my life. Dr. Susan Nummedal at California State University, Long Beach, has afforded me the benefit of her expertise with helpful suggestions on the manuscript and has given me support and encouragement with this project. It is deeply appreciated. Dr. Dorothy Piontkowski at San Francisco State University provided several useful insights, especially on chapter 3, "The Relationship Between Thought and Language." I would also like to thank an "anonymous philosopher" for comments on the reasoning chapter. Ms. Sandi Guideman, production editor, deserves special thanks for all of her help in "pulling the book together" and contributing to its format.

The people most responsible for this text are my husband, Sheldon, and my children, Evan and Joan. Sheldon has read and commented on the entire manuscript, suffered through low points in the writing, encouraged me throughout this project and in almost every endeavor in my life. Evan and Joan have helped in numerous ways, but mostly by just being there and taking pride in my accomplishments. Thanks to all of you.


This book has benefitted greatly from the thoughtful comments of many wonderful colleagues. My sincere appreciation goes to Dr. Richard Block of Montana State


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Thought and Knowledge: An Introduction to Critical Thinking
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Preface xi
  • Acknowledgments xiii
  • Acknowledgments for the First Edition xiii
  • 1 - Thinking: an Introduction 1
  • Chapter Summary 32
  • 2 - Memory: The Acquisition Retention, and Retrieval of Knowledge 36
  • Chapter Summary 70
  • 3 - The Relationship Between Thought and Language 75
  • Chapter Summary 115
  • 4 - Reasoning: Drawing Deductively Valid Conclusions 118
  • Chapter Summary 162
  • 5 - Analyzing Arguments 167
  • Chapter Summary 207
  • 6 - Thinking as Hypothesis Testing 212
  • Chapter Summary 237
  • 7 - Likelihood and Uncertainty: Understanding Probabilities 241
  • Chapter Summary 277
  • 8 - Decision Making 281
  • Chapter Summary 313
  • 9 - Development of Problem-Solving Skills 317
  • Chapter Summary 360
  • 10 - Creativethinking 364
  • Chapter Summary 389
  • 11 - The Last Word 393
  • References 395
  • Author Index 409
  • Subject Index 415


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