Errors in reasoning aren’t limited to just us regular folk.  Even highly educated scientists – who are taught how to think and are taught how to follow the scientific method – are not immune to committing logical fallacies.  Unbeknownst to us, biases find a way to creep into into our thoughts and eventually into the arguments we make.  It takes a a lot of effort to avoid using logical fallacies.  But understanding them is essential to making rational and reasonable decisions in life.  The Upturned Microscope Presents:  Logical Fallacies in the Lab, of all places, with a few of our favorites being:

  • The Burden of Proof:  Asserting that a claim is true because it cannot be proven false.
  • Arguing from Fallacy:  Presuming that a claim must be wrong because it was based on a logical fallacy.
  • The Appeal to Authority:  Assuming a claim is true because an authority says it is.
  • The Gambler’s Fallacy:  Assuming that past frequency affects future outcomes in statistically independent phenomena.
  • The Bandwagon:  Assuming a claim is true because many or most other believe it.
  • Ambiguity:  Using language or linguistic structures with more than one meaning to mislead or misrepresent the truth.

For those work work in the lab doing science-y things, you’ll appreciate these even more.

 

logical-fallacy-burden-of-proof

 

logical-fallacy-arguing-from-fallacy

 

logical-fallacy-appeal-to-authority

 

logical-fallacy-the-gamblers-fallacy

 

logical-fallacy-bandwagon

 

logical-fallacy-ambiguity

 

Source:  The Upturned Microscope