Logical thinking is the ability to consider a set of premises as true for the purposes of reasoning and to derive a logically valid conclusion from them. A logically valid conclusion is a conclusion that is necessarily true if the premises are true. The critical part of such reasoning is the ability to distinguish between conclusions that are necessarily true and conclusions that are possibly true. One can see this distinction by looking at an example from conditional (if-then) reasoning, which is probably the most extensively studied form of logical reasoning. Given the premises “if P then Q. P is true,” the conclusion that “Q is true” is necessarily true and is thus logically valid. However, for the premises “if P then Q. Q is ...

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