PHIL 1004 Introduction to Logical Thinking

Credit Points 10

Legacy Code 101189

Coordinator Craig Mcgarty Opens in new window

Description This subject introduces psychology students to the basic aspects of reasoning and argument, with particular emphasis on psychological and scientific thinking. It aims to help students develop the skills needed to understand and evaluate psychological research and the processes of scientific reasoning, and to present their own ideas and arguments effectively. Topics covered include: barriers to critical thinking; nonrational forms of persuasion; the structure of arguments; the concepts of knowledge, belief, truth, validity, soundness, values; linguistics sources of confusion; evaluating arguments; formal and informal fallacies in reasoning; deduction and induction in science; arguments related to enduring debates and worldviews in psychology.

School Psychology

Discipline Behavioural Science

Student Contribution Band HECS Band 4 10cp

Check your fees via the Fees page.

Level Undergraduate Level 1 subject

Equivalent Subjects PHIL 1005 - Introduction to Logical Thinking

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this subject, students should be able to:

  1. Describe the relationship between logical thinking and other forms of thinking (APAC Graduate Attribute 1);
  2. Explain distinctions between facts, truth, assertions, beliefs, value judgments, etc. and the interdependence of theory and practice in psychology (APAC GA 3);
  3. Identify the basic structural components of arguments (premises, conclusions, hidden premises) (APAC GA 3);
  4. Describe the role of the basic forms of argument (deductive, inductive), and in scientific and psychological theory and research, hypothesis testing, explanation, etc. (APAC GA 3 and 4).
  5. Criticize arguments in terms of: (i) the concepts of truth, validity, soundness, cogency; (ii) the concept of evidence; and (iii) common errors (formal and informal fallacies) (APAC GA 3);
  6. Evaluate arguments which arise in the context of debates on the major enduring conceptual issues in psychology, and on the relationship between psychology, philosophy and science (APAC GA 3)

Subject Content

1. Logical thinking and psychology
2. Ground rules for logical thinking
3. Logical thinking and language
4. Analysing arguments
5. Evaluating arguments
6. Conceptual issues in psychology; psychology, philosophy, logic and science
7. Evaluating psychological research


The following table summarises the standard assessment tasks for this subject. Please note this is a guide only. Assessment tasks are regularly updated, where there is a difference your Learning Guide takes precedence.

Type Length Percent Threshold Individual/Group Task
Portfolio Tutorial questions from weeks 3-7 (3,000 words) 50 N Individual
Final Exam 2 hours 50 N Individual