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Philosophy Papers

Consider the terms vague, ambiguity and generality as they relate to our textbook reading for this week.

  • How are vagueness, ambiguity and generality used in politics or in law in order to achieve a desired outcome?
  • What are some examples of how this might be applied in your future career as a nurse?
  • Include an example or two from current events that demonstrates the use of vagueness, ambiguity and generality.
  • Feel free to share an article, a screenshot of a social media post, a video, etc.
Textbook: Critical Thinking 13th Edition by Brooke Noel Moore and Richard Parker.
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Critical Thinking Research Paper


  • A subjective claim that people might call “a fact”
  • An objective claim that people might call “an opinion”
  • What is the difference between a claim that is “objective” and a claim that is “subjective?”
  • Explain how mislabeling these claims could negatively impact the quality of a person’s thinking. You might try thinking of claims you could hear in a hospital or another work-related environment. If a person has confused objective with subjective or fact with opinion, what is the solution?

In addition to your own post, post two substantive peer responses that demonstrate how you connect to their explanations. Provide thoughts, insight, and analysis of their answers. Your response should extend the dialog.

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Good and Bad Arguments Essay
Requirements below: 

Throughout this course, we have learned about what constitutes a good and bad argument. We have also learned about ambiguity, whether it is within a specific argumentor displayed publicly by the media. Through this knowledge, we are better able to critically think about the world around us. Now, let’s apply it. 

Select a current rhetorical dilemma from pop culture or current events. 

  • Write a 7 page research paper through which you apply the critical reasoning to analyze and explain it. In your paper, you will:
    • Introduce and fully elaborate on the topic you have selected.
    • Provide a summary of the situation by giving relevant background to establish the context.
    • Provide a balanced discussion of both sides of the issue:
      • Determine what argument is being made. What are we supposed to conclude about this situation?
      • Choose 3–5 examples of rhetorical devices discussed in class, which apply to the way in which the situation is presented by the media to the public on both sides. Provide an example and explanation of each rhetorical device. Strive for a balanced discussion of language, arguments presented, and evidence used to support an argument (formally or informally).
    • A discussion of the gatekeepers influence on the way in which the audience understands the situation.
    • A discussion of biases (cultural and personal) that influence the way in which the audience interprets the situation.
    • A discussion of at least 3 fallacies that are used. Define and discuss.
    • An analysis of how a critical thinker should approach interpreting and using the information available regarding the situation to make an informed decision or form an informed opinion.

Note: This is not an opinion paper. You are not stating whether or not you agree or disagree with a position; rather, you are presenting both sides of the issue, analyzing the rhetoric use, and determining what a critical thinker needs to know before drawing a conclusion.

Structure of research paper:

  • Your paper must be written in current APA style.
  • You must have a minimum of 6 sources (at least 3 academic). You may use your book as one source.
  • You must include a cover page, an abstract, and a complete reference page in alphabetical order.
  • You are discussing your topic through the lens of critical reasoning. Keep in mind that you are demonstrating competence, so imagine that you are going to present this paper to a group of educated adults. Do not assume that anyone knows anything about this topic.
  • Write in a professional, third person-tone (do not use “I”; no grammar or punctuation errors). 

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Square of Opposition Essay

Recall your reading in Chapter 9 of our textbook regarding categorical logic and the Square of Opposition and, in a 2- to 3-page paper, address the following:

  1. Describe the Square of Opposition
    • What is categorical logic?
    • What is the purpose of the Square of Opposition?
    • Identify key features of the Square of Opposition.
    • Explain how the Square of Opposition is used to translate statements into standard-form claims and corresponding standard-form claims including description of the relationships that are depicted within the square.
  2. Identify the components of the A, E, I and O standard-form claims (or propositions).
  3. Using the diagram in your text as a guide, create one original example using an ordinary statement and translating it into standard-form claims (A, E, I and O statements) using the Square of Opposition. Identify the translation and claims in your example using the corresponding letter.
    • For each corresponding standard-form claim, explain how you identified the translation and corresponding claims and their relationship to one another based on the relationships depicted on the square. In other words, explain why each choice of claim in your example is correct for that particular relationship.
    • Example provided must be original and not taken from our lecture, textbook readings or online resources.

Required Elements:

  • Your essay must have an APA style formatted title page and reference list.
  • Your essay should be 3 pages (in additional to a title page and reference list) with an introduction paragraph, body paragraphs that address each required portion of the prompt, and a conclusion.
  • Your essay must follow APA style formatting throughout (Times New Roman, 12-point font, double-spaced, etc.).
  • Your essay should include research that consistently supports your presented points and ideas.
  • A minimum of 2 different sources must be utilized and cited properly with in-text citations and in the reference list. Avoid using large amount of quotes. If you summarize or paraphrase information in your own words, you must cite sources to provide credit for the ideas and concepts.

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