fallacy & summary assignments
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Office: Muenzinger Room D447-B
Office Phone: 303-492-4282
Office Hours: M 11:00-12:00 and by appointment
The secondary goal of the class is to practice skills of critical thinking. Being able to critically evalute ideas requires some fundamental skills. Among the skills we will be practicing in this class are:
Discussion Questions. To facilitate discussions and encourage doing the readings on time, you will post TWO discussion questions inspired by the assigned reading and/or answers to other people's posted questions. The questions may range from somewhat "superficial" questions about the content of the reading to truly "deep" questions about the implications of the reading; integrating other sources from your own life, introspection, experiences; or plain speculation. These questions/answers should be posted by 9AM the day we are due to discuss the corresponding reading. There will be approximately 20 of these; 3 will be dropped. That means you can miss 3 discussion postings without affecting your grade.
Quizzes. On most class days, there will be a 1pt multiple choice quiz covering the reading for that day. These quizzes are not meant to be tricky, just to make sure that you're getting the basics you'll need to participate in discussions and to get the most out of the course. There will be more than 15 of these quizzes, so that you can score more than 15 points total. Anything above 15 points will count as extra credit toward your final grade.
Assignments. During the course of the class there will be four group assignments. The purpose of these assignments is to integrate or apply what we have discussed during the preceding section of the course. Before each of these assignments you will be given a series of questions to think about or exercises to complete in preparation for the group assignment to come. Your grade for these assignments will composed by the grade of your individual prep work and the evaluation of your group work as a whole.
Fallacy and Bias. To keep in mind the issue of critical thinking and to expand our vocabulary, we will begin each class by explaining and discussing common logical fallacies. During the semester, each of you will be responsible for choosing and explaining one common fallacy. You will bring handouts explaining your chosen fallacy (including one or two examples), as well as post this information in the dedicated topic in our online discussion forum. You can choose one from wikipedia (this one also has good examples) or from any reliable source. Soon we will be able to accuse one another of committing the fallacy of converse accident or whatnot. (Note: Using obscure terminology is not a sanctioned way of arguing a point in this class (in fact, it is a logical fallacy), but go ahead and use it to impress your friends.)
In addition, once during the semester, each of you will be responsible for presenting a cognitive bias. As with the fallacy, you will bring handouts explaining your chosen cognitive bias and post that information in the dedicated topic in our online discussion forum. Here's a nice comprehensive list of cognitive biases for you to choose from.
Final paper and Presentation. The final paper (8-12 typed, double-spaced pages) and presentation (about 15-20 minutes) should be on a topic of interest to you that is related to the content of the course. We will discuss this in more detail later in the course. Preparing these papers will require much work, thought, and outside research, so you will do well to start early. The following timeline is designed to ensure that you make progress on your paper 5 of the 45 points for the paper will come from simply making each of the five deadlines before the final due date) and that you receive feedback on it before turning in the final version.
|Feb 23||Paper topic|
|Mar 18||Paper draft 1|
|Apr 8||Paper draft 2|
|Apr 29||Final paper|
|Fallacy & Bias||5|
Letter grades will be assigned as follows.
|A+ = 98-100||B+ = 88-89||C+ = 78-79||D+ = 68-69|
|A = 92-97||B = 82-87||C = 72-77||D = 62-67|
|A- = 90-91||B- = 80-81||C- = 70-71||D- = 60-61|
|F < 60|
Remember that requests for assignments must be done by email, not in person before or after class. And if they are not turned in during class, they must be sent before class by email. This is so that we can keep records correctly.
|Week 1||Jan 12||Introduction|
|Jan 14||Language and Thought
|Week 2||Jan 19||Languages and Concepts
|Jan 21||Language and Human Nature
|Not-so-controversial Language Effects|
|Week 3||Jan 26||Labeling effects on categorization - babies
|Jan 28||Labeling effects on categorization - adults
Lupyan Rakison, & McClelland, 08
|Week 4||Feb 2||Verbal mediation
Emerson & Miyake, 03
|Feb 4||Assignment - mechanisms
No reading, but please answer this in preparation for class activity.
|Different languages - Cross-cultural research|
|Week 5||Feb 9||Gender
Boroditsky, Schmidt, & Phillips, 2003
Winawer et al, 2007
|Week 6||Feb 16||Number
Gordon, 04, supporting materials
|Feb 18||Assignment: methods|
|More than one language - Bilingualism|
|Week 7||Feb 23||Discuss final paper||Paper Topic|
|Feb 25|| Bilingual Brains
Kim et al, 1997
|Week 8||Mar 2||Self-construal
Marian & Kaushanskaya, 2004
|Mar 4|| Aging
Bialystok et al, 2007
|Week 9||Mar 9|| Education
Lesaux & Siegel, 2003
|Mar 11||Assignment: policy|
|Some or no Language - Special cases|
|Week 10||Mar 16||Dogs and Word Learning
Kaminski et al, 04, Markman & Abelev, 04
|Mar 18||Chimps and Theory of Mind
Tomasello et al, 03
|Week 12||Mar 30||NSL
Morgan & Kegl, 06
Whitehouse et al, 06
|Week 13||Apr 6||Late Talkers
|Apr 8||Assignment: intervention||Draft 2|
|Putting it all together|
|Week 14||Apr 13||Language and Society
Landau et al, 09
|Apr 15||Presentations: Mihaly, Guy, Callie, Daniel|
|Week 15||Apr 20||Presentations: Janet, Scott, Collin, Courtney|
|Apr 22||Presentations: Christy, Jamie, Koki|
|Week 16||Apr 27||Presentations: Steven B., James, Ashley, Andrea|
|Apr 29||Presentations: Brittany, Steven D.||Final paper