Your first Reaction Paper is aimed at evaluating what you have learned about the theories of truth, in light of the problems you came to understand in the Critical Thinking module. So, think about the problems that are inherent in trying to be critical in our thinking – for that problem leads to the discussion on theories of truth. Imagine yourself as a bystander listening to Socrates and Euthyphro talk, or consider trying to decide whether a “news” story you come across on line is actually true. Think about how would be able to know what is true and what is false. With that in mind, answer the following prompt:Briefly list the Pro’s and Cons for each of the three perspectives on Truth that we studied in Module B (Plato, Locke and Hume), and then argue for which one you think is the best.The point of the paper is for me to see how you can understand and evaluate the assigned readings in this Module. You must engage the assigned readings in this class, do not rely solely on the videos or on other sources other than those readings assigned in this text for this Module. Keep the evaluation (pros and cons) of the two you did not choose rather brief, and concentrate on the one you chose as best and go into greater detail on that choice. Even if you have another option, or find none of them “best” or what to say the best is a blend of several theories, I want to see how well you can evaluate the assigned material, so do choose one and argue for it – even if it isn’t your favorite. Also, DO NOT USE ANY SOURCE OTHER THAN OUR TEXT AND ASSIGNED READINGS THEREIN.Do not confuse the three assigned readings with the Introduction video in the module. Here is the blurb that was on that page as a reminder:“There are a few general theories of truth and these videos will briefly explain a few of them. Theories of truth discuss how to know when things come together in a way that we can decide is true – considering that it is not always easy to know the difference between truth and falsity. Here are a couple of videos that offer a few very general theories of truth, although in the module we will be reading three specific perspectives on what is true from three specific philosophers. Please keep in mind that these are only intro videos aimed at giving you a sense of what you are getting into here – do not write your papers based on these videos. Your paper is based on Plato, Locke and Hume and their specific perspectives on what is most true, not these general introductory theories of truth.”As a reminder – here is the advice that the syllabus stated to further guide you:Reaction Papers: You will be asked to write short summary papers of about 3 – 5 pages in length which will test your understanding of a given topic after you have read it, been quizzed on it, and discussed it. You are therefore expected to be an “expert” on the material by the time you begin to write, and will be pulling things together on the assumption that you understand the pieces. They are thus intended to encourage you to keep thinking about and coming to understand a topic over a longer period of development. These papers will be graded on both style and content. The former will include things like how well it reads, how clear it is, and whether it is organized and structured. The latter is basically how well you engage the text. By “engaging the text” I mean that you should let the text talk for you – that is, develop your opinions from the thinker’s ideas. It is more important in this course to grapple with the ideas of the thinkers than express your own opinions. The latter is, of course, easier – but the point of this course is for you to deal with new ideas. It is great to make connections to your own perspectives, but first and foremost you want to demonstrate that you have read and understood the text. That is the major thing I am looking for – the footprint of the text in your paper. So, it is important to be able to understand the material and to express that understanding clearly. If you are not good at writing short essays, you should seek additional help. The point of my lectures is to explicate the text, and to help you to understand what you read, but do not quote them or refer to them – refer to the text in your paper. Hence, for the best grade, the papers must include references to the text (a quote a two) and must not refer to what I have said in class.Font: something “normal” – New Times Roman, Bookman, Calista…Format: Follow normal grammar and format conventions as you would for or any other college paper (indent paragraphs etc). That is, you are writing an essay, with standard essay format – and introduction, body and conclusion. You should include a thesis statement in your introduction which directly answers the prompt you were assigned. If you are unfamiliar with how to write a college paper, or essay, contact the Writing Lab for more help. But, for citations, there is no need to use APA, MLA or Chicago Style. Since we are only using our text – do this to cite the page numbers from the quotes you use: (Cahn, p.89) [“Cahn” is the author of the text. “89” is simple a number i randomly chose for example purposes, you will use the corresponding page number not 89]Sources: Use ONLY our text, DO NOT consult any other internet or published source. The reason is that I want to see how YOU think, not how you can find things online.Style: Make sure to proofread your work. Grammar is important, here and in your professional careers, so make sure to check it over before submitting. Try to use a simple and clear style, you needn’t be loquacious or poetic. Also make sure to include a simple and clear thesis in your introductory paragraph which directly answers the prompt, and to which all other sections of the paper relate.Files: I never have trouble opening Word or PDF’s, but other extensions I might not be able to (like .pages) So, please use Word or PDFReaction PapersCriteria Ratings PtsThis criterion is linked to a Learning OutcomeGrammarYour paper should be grammatically perfect. You should do a proofread of your work to catch any little issues before you submit. Good grammar is a useful skill in life as it shows your are professional and that you care about the quality of your work.2 ptsFull MarksA “2” means your paper is fine, and mistake free.1 ptsProofreadA “1” means you should do another proofread to catch things0 ptsNo MarksA “0” means there are too many mistakes and the paper needs revision.2 ptsThis criterion is linked to a Learning OutcomeEngagement of the textIn the syllabus (under the advice parts) “engaging the text” was mentioned and defined. It means that your answers are based on the assigned readings. “Based on” means understanding the readings, but also referring to them and quoting them. You want to make it seem like the “text is talking” when you write, and should include 2 or 3 quotes in a paper and cite them.That is the hallmark of a scholar.3 ptsFull MarksIt is obvious that the paper adheres to the assigned text, and provides several supporting quotes and references.2 ptsSome EngagementThere is a quote but the paper could use more grounding in the assigned reading.1 ptsNeeds More EngagementThe paper shows at least some very basic influence of the text, or relies on the video lectures.0 ptsNo engagementThe paper has no visible connections to the assigned readings3 ptsThis criterion is linked to a Learning OutcomeKnowledge of materialKnowledge of material means that the paper shows that the author understood the assigned readings and thought about them. Ideally, the quotes and references from the text are in relation to key and relevant aspects as befit the assignment.3 ptsFull MarksThe paper demonstrates great understanding and facility with the assigned materials.2 ptsAdequate KnowledgeThe paper generally keeps with the ideas of the material but misses some aspects or confuses things a bit1 ptsMaybe review the materialsThis paper shows a lack of understanding of the major ideas of the material.0 ptsNo MarksThis paper did not show familiarity with the assigned materials.3 ptsThis criterion is linked to a Learning OutcomeInsightInsight means that the paper shows some creative or deeper thinking. It shows that the issues were contemplated on a deeper level and shows their true significance.2 ptsFull MarksThe paper demonstrates creativity, originality and deep thinking1 ptsA good idea or twoThe paper does an adequate job in answering the question, but maybe a bit more rumination time could help with a deeper perspective.0 ptsNo MarksThis paper showed little insight and/or simply tried to answer the question on the simplest level2 pts
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