Symbolic Logic
Philosophy 16, Mathematics 16, Computer Science 16
10:00 MTThF Peter Suber
Carpenter 322 Winter 1994-95
Syllabus


The only required text for this course is Irving Copi, Symbolic Logic, fifth edition, Macmillan, 1979.

Sections and exercises cited for a given day will be covered that day in class and should have been read in advance. Material in parentheses is recommended but not required.

Week 1. January 2-6
M: No class
T: No reading due; introductories; lottery if necessary
Th: This syllabus; Copi Sections 1.1, 1.2, 1.3, 1.4.
F: Sec. 2.1, (9.3, 9.4). Exercises at pp. 14-15 (Exercises Part II optional).

Week 2. January 9-13
M: Sec. 2.2. Exercises at pp. 18-19 (Exercises Part II optional).
T: Sec. 2.3. Exercises at pp. 25-26.
Th: Sec. 2.3 again, 3.3, (3.8). Exercises at pp. 25-26, 49, (62) (but not yet any exercise containing '[symbol for material equivalence').
F: Sec. 2.4. Exercises at pp. 30-31.

Week 3. January 16-20
M: No reading due; review truth tables. (Sec. 9.5.). Quiz #1 on truth tables
T: Sec. 3.1. Exercises at pp. 34-38.
Th:Sec. 3.1 again. Exercises at pp. 34-38.
F: Sec. 3.2. Exercises at pp. 43-48.

Week 4. January 23-27
M: Sec. 3.2 again. Exercises at pp. 43-48.
T: Review day
Th: Sec. 3.4, 3.5. Exercises at p. 52, 54. Quiz #2 on sentential logic derivations
F: Sec. 3.6, 3.7, (Appendix B). Exercises at pp. 56, 61, (343).

Week 5. January 30 - February 3
M: Insurance day; review day
T: No reading due. Review derivations and sentential logic generally, for mid-term examination.
Th: Mid-term examination, covering sentential logic.
F: No class; mid-term break.

Week 6. February 6-10
M: Sec. 4.1. Exercises at pp. 69-71.
T: Sec. 4.1 again; 4.2. Exercises at pp. 69-71, 76-78.
Th: Sec. 4.2. Exercises at pp. 76-78.
F: Sec. 4.2 again. Exercises at pp. 76-78.

Week 7. February 13-17
M: Sec. 4.3. (Exercises at pp. 82-83, optional.)
T: Sec. 4.4. Exercises at pp. 88-89.
Th:Sec. 4.4 again. Exercises at pp. 88-89.
F: Sec. 4.4 again. Exercises at pp. 88-89. Quiz #3 on predicate logic translation.

Week 8. February 20-24
M: Sec. 4.5. Exercises at pp. 92, 100-01, 103-05.
T: Sec. 4.5 again. Exercises at pp. 92, 100-01, 103-05.
Th: Sec. 4.5 again. (4.6). (Exercises at p. 108, optional.)
F: Sec. 4.7. Exercises at p. 115.

Week 9. February 27 - March 3
M: Review predicate logic derivations. Quiz #4 on predicate logic derivations.
T: Sec. 5.1. Exercises at pp. 127-130.
Th: Sec. 5.1 cont.
F: Sec. 5.1 cont.; Sec. 5.2. Exercises at pp. 132-34.

Week 10. March 6-10
M: Sec. 5.2 cont.
T: Sec. 5.2 cont., (5.3).
Th: No reading due; review predicate logic and the course generally, for final examination. Evaluation form due before next class.
F: Last day of class; no reading due; more review; some oral evaluation.

Work Summary

The four quizzes include about a half-hour's worth of problems, but you will have an hour to do them. Each is an "office-door" quiz. This means that I will put the blank quizzes in the envelope outside my office door by 9:00 AM. You come by anytime during the day, take a copy, go to a private place, take the quiz, and return it by 4:00 PM the same day. The advantage is that quizzes do not take up class time. I put them on Wednesdays so you will have a little more flexibility in when you can take them. You are on your honor to give yourself no more than one hour to take the quiz, and to work alone. If you return the quiz after I have left for the day, push it under my door. If you return it after 4:00 PM, it is an NP. Turn in the exam questions along with your answers, for security. I will return the question sheet as a study guide when I return your graded answers.

Please follow these instructions for each of our quizzes and exams:

The quizzes will test you on some material covered recently in class and on other material assigned for the day of the quiz but not yet covered in class. Hence, keep up in the reading.

The final exam will be held during exam week at the end of the term; I'll announce the date and time in class.

I strongly recommend that you do the exercises in the book. You should do every exercise in every section until you are confident that a smaller number will suffice. I won't ask you to submit worked exercises. But I promise you that most of the problems on the exams and quizzes will be just like the exercises in the book. Practicing on them is the best way to learn the material and prepare for the exams.

Notice that the starred exercises are answered in the back of the book so that you can test yourself. I've written a hand-out of answers to the rest of the exercises, which I will put on reserve so that you can test yourself more thoroughly.

Even though no exercises are assigned, and even though all the answers will be on reserve in the library, do not hesitate to drop in to my office to talk if you are having trouble with any of the exercises. We can go over your exercises one-on-one as a way to diagnose and correct your difficulties.

The final grade will be based on these elements with these weights:

four quizzes40% (10% each)
mid-term exam25%
final exam35%
evaluation form0%

Both the examinations must be taken to pass the course. Missed quizzes will be counted as zeroes. Note that there is no credit for attendance or participation; you must learn symbolic logic to pass this course.

The primary objective of the course is to master the content and methods of formal deductive logic. We focus on methods of testing validity and deriving conclusions, but chiefly in order to provide a working knowledge of the nature and limits of this branch of logic. Specifically, you will be expected to (1) recognize and reconstruct arguments in ordinary language, (2) translate propositions and arguments from English into logical notation, (3) test propositions for equivalency, consistency, tautology, contradiction, and contingency, (4) test arguments for validity, and (5) generate valid conclusions from assumed premises under stipulated rules of inference. You will be expected to know the notation and the techniques of propositional (sentential) logic and predicate (quantificational) logic. I hope you also develop a sense for when the techniques of truth-functional logic and the formal analysis of reasoning are inapplicable or too cumbersome to be useful. The body of logical doctrine and method covered by this course is worth learning for its utility in application, for the discipline of the mind it cultivates, and for the insight it provides into the nature of inference and formalized reasoning. It is also a foundation for some of the most interesting and important scientific discoveries of the 20th century, including Gödel's theorems and the theory of computation.

The natural sequel to this course is Logical Systems, which is offered in alternate years.

Please remember that this course does not satisfy the distribution requirement in philosophy. For purposes of distribution credit, it counts only as a mathematics course, and therefore satisfies only the requirement in non-laboratory science. To get this credit, it doesn't matter whether you registered for this course as Philosophy 16, Mathematics 16, or Computer Science 16.


[Blue
Ribbon] Peter Suber, Department of Philosophy, Earlham College, Richmond, Indiana, 47374.
Office phone 317/983-1214. peters@earlham.edu