PHIL138-24SU1 (C) Summer Jan 2024 start

Logic and Critical Thinking

15 points

Start Date: Monday, 8 January 2024
End Date: Sunday, 11 February 2024
Withdrawal Dates
Last Day to withdraw from this course:
  • Without financial penalty (full fee refund): Sunday, 14 January 2024
  • Without academic penalty (including no fee refund): Sunday, 28 January 2024


Thinking rationally involves many skills. This course will help students acquire and develop those skills.

Logic is about how to think rationally and critically. This six week course teaches students a wide variety of tools for reasoning in both academic contexts and daily life. It focuses specifically on the basic principles of deductive logic—on what arguments are and how to evaluate them to see if they are rationally persuasive. The tools it covers include truth tables, the tree method, and how to identify common fallacies of reasoning. The skills taught will be beneficial both to philosophy and non-philosophy students, and include an enhanced ability to assess academic texts critically and think independently about them. This is a course for everyone, and no prior knowledge of logic is required.

Learning Outcomes

Students will acquire the following knowledge and skills:
1. An understanding of the notions of truths, arguments, validity, and soundness.
2. The ability to identify arguments in texts.  
3. A familiarity with key elements of Aristotelian logic.
4. A familiarity with key elements of propositional logic.
5. The ability to analyse arguments using logical notation and rules of inference.
6. The ability to recognise logical fallacies in non-academic contexts.
7. An enhanced ability to effectively analyse arguments in philosophy.
8. Enhanced problem solving and argument-construction skills in daily life contexts.

University Graduate Attributes

This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attributes specified below:

Critically competent in a core academic discipline of their award

Students know and can critically evaluate and, where applicable, apply this knowledge to topics/issues within their majoring subject.

Employable, innovative and enterprising

Students will develop key skills and attributes sought by employers that can be used in a range of applications.

Globally aware

Students will comprehend the influence of global conditions on their discipline and will be competent in engaging with global and multi-cultural contexts.


PHIL132 (prior to 2006), MATH130, PHIL134/MATH134

Timetable 2024

Students must attend one activity from each section.

Lecture A
Activity Day Time Location Weeks
01 Tuesday 10:00 - 12:00 Ernest Rutherford 141
8 Jan - 4 Feb
Lecture B
Activity Day Time Location Weeks
01 Thursday 10:00 - 12:00 Beatrice Tinsley 111
8 Jan - 11 Feb
Tutorial A
Activity Day Time Location Weeks
01 Friday 10:00 - 11:00 Karl Popper 612
8 Jan - 11 Feb
02 Friday 12:00 - 13:00 Online Delivery
8 Jan - 11 Feb

Course Coordinator

Douglas Campbell


Assessment Due Date Percentage  Description
Quizzes 32% Four weekly quizzes over five weeks (8% x 4 = 32%).
Tests 68% Two in-class tests (34% x 2 = 68%).

Please check the course LEARN page for further details and updates.

Textbooks / Resources

There are no required textbooks for PHIL138. Recommended further reading(s) will be given after each lecture.

Indicative Fees

Domestic fee $844.00

International fee $3,950.00

* All fees are inclusive of NZ GST or any equivalent overseas tax, and do not include any programme level discount or additional course-related expenses.

For further information see Humanities .

All PHIL138 Occurrences

  • PHIL138-24SU1 (C) Summer Jan 2024 start
  • PHIL138-24SU1 (D) Summer Jan 2024 start (Distance)