Video Assignment: Logical Fallacies

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Video title: DIRECTV commercial - Don't Wake Up in a Roadside Ditch

Topic(s): Faulty reasoning, logical fallacies, slippery slope

Search terms: direct tv commercial roadside ditch

Time (of video): 0:32

Posted by: David Preece

Date posted: May 6, 2013

 

Video description: What happens when you don’t make the switch from cable? Watch a humorous example of the falling-victim-to-false-cause fallacy.

 

Question/writing prompt: Fallacies can slip into even the most careful reasoning. One false claim can derail an entire argument. Can you think of an example of weak logic in something you have recently read or heard?

 

In-class activities:

 

Logical Fallacies and Advertising Objective: Students learn the different types of logical fallacies.

Show the commercial.

  1. Ask students to explain how the commercial uses the falling-victim-to-false-cause fallacy. Discuss why advertisers employ this strategy.
  2. Break the class into as many as eight small groups. Assign a different form of faulty reasoning, a different logical fallacy, to each group.
  3. Task each group with writing a new DirecTV commercial using the logical fallacy they were assigned.
  4. Students should storyboard their new commercials and present them to the class.

 

Policing Others and Oneself Objective: Students explore the importance of logic in reasoning.

Show the commercial and ask students the following questions:

  • How can you look out for weak logic in your own arguments?
  • Can you acknowledge a time when you used faulty reasoning on purpose?
  • What can you do to identify weak logic in what you hear and read?

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