# Empirical and Deductive Reasoning

Empirical and Deductive Reasoning (FD-EDR) is one of the six Foundational Disciplines that are part of the WCAS bachelor's degree.

We learn about the world in two main ways: empirically, from observations, and by making logical deductions from what we already know or conjecture. Courses in this discipline teach students to use these two modes of inference.

Empirical conclusions, derived from observations about the world, come with uncertainties or probabilities. Courses in empirical reasoning teach students to apply statistical reasoning to interpret evidence, to estimate the uncertainties inherent in their conclusions, and to build theoretical models based on data.

We also reason by deduction from axioms we take as certain, or from conjectural models of the real world. Courses in this discipline teach students both the power and limitations of such formal reasoning. Students will learn to create and analyze chains of mathematical or logical deductions, or computational algorithms.

## Learning objectives for FD-EDR

Courses in Empirical and Deductive Reasoning are designed to achieve a combination of the following learning outcomes:

• Recognize empirical versus deductive modes of inference
• Articulate the power and the limitations of statistical reasoning, including the quantification of uncertainties in data
• Recognize the dangers of reasoning biases, including conclusions from anecdotal evidence, and the limits of when causal claims can be made from correlational data
• Learn to create and analyze formal models of real world phenomena
• Appreciate the power of abstraction in applying similar formal constructs to a range of different problems
• Learn to clearly and persuasively communicate both empirical and logical arguments, via writing, presentation, and graphical formats

## FD-EDR Courses

Courses approved for the 2024-2025 academic year.

Course Title
BIOL_SCI 337-0Biostatistics
BIOL_SCI 338-0Modeling Biological Dynamics
COG_SCI 202-0Evaluating Evidence
COMP_SCI 110-0Introduction to Computer Programming
COMP_SCI 111-0Fundamentals of Computer Programming
COMP_SCI 150-0Fundamentals of Computer Programming 1.5
EARTH 361-0Scientific Programming in Python
LING 260-0Formal Analysis of Words & Sentences
LING 270-0Meaning
LING 330-0Research Methods in Linguistics
LING 334-0Introduction to Computational Linguistics
MATH 100-0Quantitative Reasoning
MATH 202-0Finite Mathematics
MATH 211-0Short Course in Calculus
MATH 218-1Single-Variable Calculus with Precalculus
MATH 218-2Single-Variable Calculus with Precalculus
MATH 218-3Single-Variable Calculus with Precalculus
MATH 220-1Single-Variable Differential Calculus
MATH 220-2Single-Variable Integral Calculus
MATH 226-0Sequences and Series
MATH 228-1Multivariable Differential Calculus for Engineering
MATH 228-2Multivariable Integral Calculus for Engineering
MATH 230-1Multivariable Differential Calculus
MATH 230-2Multivariable Integral Calculus
MATH 235-0Series and Multiple Integrals
MATH 240-0Linear Algebra
MATH 250-0Elementary Differential Equations
MATH 281-1Accelerated Mathematics for ISP: First Year
MATH 281-2Accelerated Mathematics for ISP: First Year
MATH 281-3Accelerated Mathematics for ISP: First Year
MATH 285-1Accelerated Mathematics for MMSS
MATH 285-2Accelerated Mathematics for MMSS
MATH 285-3Accelerated Mathematics for MMSS
MATH 290-1MENU: Linear Algebra and Multivariable Calculus
MATH 290-2MENU: Linear Algebra and Multivariable Calculus
MATH 290-3MENU: Linear Algebra and Multivariable Calculus
MATH 291-1MENU: Intensive Linear Algebra and Multivariable Calculus
MATH 291-2MENU: Intensive Linear Algebra and Multivariable Calculus
MATH 291-3MENU: Intensive Linear Algebra and Multivariable Calculus
PHIL 150-0Elementary Logic I
PHIL 250-0Elementary Logic II
POLI_SCI 210-0Introduction to Empirical Methods in Political Science
POLI_SCI 212-0Evaluating Evidence
POLI_SCI 312-0Statistical Research Methods
PSYCH 201-0Statistical Methods in Psychology
PSYCH 205-0Research Methods in Psychology
PSYCH 333-0Psychology of Thinking
SOCIOL 303-0Analysis and Interpretation of Social Data
STAT 201-0Introduction to Programming for Data Science
STAT 202-0Introduction to Statistics and Data Science
STAT 210-0Introduction to Probability and Statistics
STAT 228-0Series and Multiple Integrals