Calling BS! New non-credit course
- Monday, March 25, 2019 from 6:30pm to 8:30pm
- Gaines Hall, 101 - view map
Join us for a four-week course beginning Monday, March 25.
Every day, we are bombarded with claims, some of which may be true and some of which may be false. For example:
- There was widespread voter fraud in Florida.
- Red wine is good for you! Red wine is bad for you!
- GMOs are safe for human consumption.
- Smoking causes cancer.
- Vaccines can cause autism.
- Climate change is a hoax.
- Claims about Russian collusion are fake news.
- There has been a decrease in illegal immigration.
How do we know what to believe and what is…well… BS? To the extent that we have to rely on experts, how do we know whom to trust? To the extent that we can investigate something ourselves, what sources of evidence should we use? How can we assess evidence and recognize errors in reasoning? This non-credit course will cover a range of topics aimed at helping us think critically and responsibly about medical claims, scientific claims, political claims, and claims made by and about the media.
After taking the course, you should be better able to:
- Guard against BS, deceitful claims, and unreliable sources.
- Recognize potentially misleading claims or fallacious reasoning in a variety of contexts.
- Figure out for yourself precisely why something is BS.
- Be able to help better explain to others why something is BS.
The course is lead by MSU's Kristen Intemann, professor of philosophy in the Department of History and Philosophy at Montana State University. She specializes in philosophy of science, environmental ethics, biomedical ethics, and research ethics. Her new book is entitled The Fight Against Doubt: How to Bridge the Gap Between Scientists and the Public
NOTE: Thoughtful and intelligent people can hold opposing views. We will have the opportunity to review several contrasting positions, but, ultimately, you are expected to engage with the issues and form your own views. Your learning in this course will depend on your willingness to think critically and formulate your own views so that you can improve your ability to express them clearly and convincingly. It is okay to disagree or challenge a claim someone makes! At the same time, it will be extremely important to respect each other in discussions.
$129.00 - Register 2 people for the discounted price of $129. Must register both at the same time using coupon code MULTIPLE in both records)
$29.00 - MSU students; please use coupon code STUDENT
- Academic Technology and Outreach