Review for Final Rhetoric Exam


Review for Rhetoric Final Exam, Spring 2014
Friday, April 25th 8:00-9:30


1.      Aristotle’s Methods of Persuasion (Ethos, Pathos, Logos)

2.      Why political rhetoric can be difficult to analyze

3.      Science and Pseudoscience

a.      General steps in the process of scientific reasoning

b.      Randomized experimental studies , nonrandomized prospective studies, and nonrandomized retrospective studies

c.      Testable claims (verifiable in principle, falsifiable in principle0

d.      Characteristics of pseudoscience

e.      The psychology behind pseudoscience

4.      Skepticism

5.      Deduction vs. induction

a.      Deductive validity and inductive strength

b.      Deductive soundness and inductive cogency

6.      The Principle of Charity

7.      The Principle of Rational Acceptance

8.      Fallacies

9.      Barriers to critical thinking

10.   General disputes, merely verbal disputes, and apparently verbal disputes


Possible Essay Questions

1.      Explain, in general, what fallacies are, why they are so easy to use, and why we should avoid them.

2.      How does one go about deciding if an argument is a “good” argument?

3.      Describe pseudoscience in as much detail as possible. Why are pseudoscientific claims so easy to believe and why are they possibly dangerous?

4.      Provide an explanation for why the world is flat. Seriously.

5.      Discuss the balance between creative thinking and skepticism. Why does good thinking require both?