Deduction is taught through the study of formal logic. Logic (both inductive and deductive logic) is the science of good reasoning. It is called formal because its main concern is with creating forms that serve as models to demonstrate both correct and incorrect reasoning. The difference is that, unlike induction, where an inference is drawn from an accumulation of evidence, deduction is a process that reasons about relationships between classes, characteristics and individuals. Deductive arguments start with one or more premises and then reasons to consider what conclusions must necessarily follow from them.
In order to understand logic, it is crucial to grasp and analyze key terms that are linked with it and explain its basics. First of all, an argument appears both in inductive and deductive reasoning. Deductive arguments involve premises that lead to a conclusion, whereas inductive ones establish premises based on experience and general evidence. Reasoning is another term linked with logic, and it describes the process of drawing conclusions, judgments or inferences from facts or premises.
Logic arranges deductive arguments in standardized forms that make the structure of the argument clearly visible for study and review. These forms are called syllogisms.
Syllogisms are useful for testing the reliability of a deduction according to the rules of logic. A syllogism usually contains two premises and a conclusion. The first one is called major and the second is called minor. They are claims made in an argument that provide the reasons for believing in the conclusion. A syllogism present claims concerning a relationship between the terms given in the premises and those in the conclusion. Their purpose is to clarify the claims of the premises, to discover and expose any hidden premises and to find out if one thought follows logically from the previous one. In inductive thinking, if the premises are true, the conclusion is... [continues]
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