PHIL/MATH 330: Symbolic Logic

"Contrariwise," continued Tweedledee, "if it was so, it might be; and if it were so, it would be; but as it isn't, it ain't. That's logic." --Lewis Carroll

Spring Semester, 2018

Dr. Scott Kimbrough

Office Hours: M 10:00-11:00, T 11:0-12:00 or by appointment

Office: Council 121

Phone: 256-7118

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Course Description

Logic, according to Gottlob Frege, the founder of modern mathematical logic, is the science of thought. By this, he did not mean that logic studies how we actually do think -- psychology does that. Rather, he meant logic is the most general science, the study of rules of correct thinking that govern every discipline. No matter what you're thinking about, you have to obey the laws of logic if you want to avoid error. Following Frege, this course studies rules of formal deductive reasoning. We will study validity and invalidity of argument forms, consistency, and translation between the formal system and ordinary language. We will study truth-functional logic (the logic of sentences related by 'and', 'or', 'not', 'if...then', and 'if and only if') and predicate logic (the logic of sentences containing terms such as 'all', 'every', and 'some'). Frege’s logic, as refined by subsequent logicians, forms the theoretical basis of computer science.

Required Book

Hausman, Kahane & Tidman. Logic and Philosophy: A Modern Introduction, 12th Edition. Thomson Wadsworth Publishing. 2012.

Course Requirements


This syllabus

Reading assignments



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