A Practical Study of Argument, Enhanced Edition

Govier, Trudy

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The workshops were the best part - they solidified content learnt throughout the week, and was an overall great learning environment as the tutors are very approachable and friendly. Of course, they can be quite frightening the first few weeks especially if you've never done philosophy before but after a while you start to really understand and engage with the content more if you show up regularly. This was a unit that had to really grow on me as I've never done anything like this before this unit. I feel like this unit would be quite hard for people who don't have English as their primary language as the unit content is just like another Literature class but more focused on the language* (if that makes sense). The assessments are rather easy though and the tutor and profs are super supportive. The mode of teaching during the first half of the unit did make learning a bit hard as I much preferred going to the lectures as I feel that I understood the content better in person. Learning is different for everyone though; this was just my personal opinion. I think the Miri and Benji did an excellent job at teaching!

Anonymous, Semester 1, 2024

A really really really good broadening/elective for anyone, it does lack theory so at times it's quite boring, but the skills you learn are incredibly useful for literally everything in your life. It's not as nearly as much work as other reviews suggested, but there is a lot of content to memorise which is unusual for Arts units.

Anonymous, Semester 1, 2022

It is dry and lacks philosophical theory, so if you want a unit like that you're better off in one of the other two L1 PHIL units. However, it still has interesting moments, and as someone who hadn't really touched formal logic before I didn't struggle with the content as much as I thought I would. I don't normally call a unit 'easy' or 'hard', but the structure of the assessments means a HD is pretty easy to achieve. Short lectures and readings mean there isn't a huge amount of work but the study commitment required will vary a lot depending on how naturally this sort of thing comes to you. I can definitely see this being beneficial to students in a wide variety of degrees, not just PHIL, so it makes sense it is increasingly becoming a core unit

Anonymous, Semester 1, 2022

I did this unit as an elective, I thought there would be philosophy theory but I was mistaken. Would not recommend if you are looking for a low work unit, I found myself spending more time on this than my core units. Pretty dry content, at times very confusing but that is all subjective. It is all on argument and forming/ analysing arguments. If I knew, I would have picked something else as I do not find argument structure interesting. Exam was pretty easy however, just make sure you remember the content and know how to standardise and devise a reductio should be fine (:

Anonymous, Semester 1, 2021

Really interesting unit - I think every student would benefit from this unit. It is a methodology unit so lots of practice is key! You use only one textbook throughout the semester, not much reading involved. 40% of the unit is from participation and quizzes - easy to get 40/40 if you participate in all tutorials and make a serious attempt in the quizzes. This unit will help you in argumentation/discussion. I found learning about the different fallacies really fun. Lecturers are funny and engaging. Tutors very helpful and friendly too.

Anonymous, Semester 1, 2020

As a philosophy major, I found this unit really interesting with lots of useful concepts. The two assessments are given 100% if you attempt all of the questions (doesn't matter if your answers are right or wrong). The exam was pretty straight forward if you revised beforehand. Making notes along the way and revising thoroughly before the exam got me a HD. However if you're thinking of doing it as broadening unit, it is quite time consuming.

Anonymous, Semester 1, 2019

Was a little dry but a good foundation unit for studying philosophy/developing critical thinking skills.

Anonymous, Semester 1, 2017

I took this unit as a broadening unit, so had no foundational knowledge of philosophy at all. Although I found the concepts and ideas quite interesting, the examples used workshops were often taken from philosophers and philosophical texts, therefore more difficult to interpret than a modern day example would have been. 40% of your grade is practically given to you; you need only show up to the workshops and put reasonable effort into the two assessments. The remaining 60% is made up in the exam, which is like doing both assessments at the same time.

Anonymous, Semester 1, 2019

Critical thinking is an important unit to do if you know you will be doing other philosophy units in the future. It provides an excellent foundation to analyse arguments & is the most useful of all level one philosophy units. I found that there was too much content crammed into the unit, making it difficult to memorise & understand everything covered. The textbook is a very useful resource, however the lectures are not. Halfway through the semester the lecturer stopped writing the relevant information on the slides because everyone was typing instead of paying attention. This increased the difficulty of studying for the exam. The workshops were a good way of applying techniques learnt into the analysis of arguments.

Anonymous, Semester 1, 2018

Being objectively as I can, I must give props to the content in this course. When processed through my brain, it really was an eye opener into social reality, and I have grown the wiser into listening into blasphemous politics and emotionally driven radicals. But that's where it ends. For those who don't have as much patience as I do, it can be really easy to lose interest in this course. The lack of content in the PowerPoints is to blame. That wouldn't matter if the lecturers were engaging enough, but that wasn't the case. It felt as if it the lecturer droned on and on, something you'd expect in a movie or a book. The other saving grace though, was the workshops. The tutor explained things that were in lectures in the matter of minutes, and immediately put it to use.

Anonymous, Semester 1, 2017