While the term “logic” ought to go beyond formal logic, for philosophers it often does not extend very far…

  • Valuable for philosophy majors and popular with science students
  • Familiar material for many instructors with philosophy training
  • Not relevant to most of everyday reasoning and civic discourse
  • Generally lacks an overarching rationale or purpose
  • Typically neglects presumptive argumentation schemes and falls back on the inadequate categories of inductive and deductive reasoning.
  • Should count as a specialty subject matter, not general critical thinking, but has dominated Anglo-American conceptions of philosophical reasoning

Many older and out of print books; sometimes referred to as “baby logic.”


Formal logic textbooks are sometimes used to teach CT, but I advise against it. Look instead for an argumentation or comprehensive text that involves and integrates the type of formal logic that you consider important if that’s your priority or expertise.

black and white image of critical thinking textbooks packed tightly on a shelf