Last week, without further explanation, my "Critical Thinking" professor wrote on the board:
X wins in the mud.
The track is muddy.
X will win.
He then called this INDUCTIVE reasoning. I thought that this was DEDUCTIVE reasoning, but he got pretty upset when I suggested that and stuck to my guns. His reasoning was that the first statement here must have come from an inductive process, such as seeing "X win in the mud" several times, and that this means the whole thing is induction.
Well, it seems to me that deduction can start with a premise based on induction, and that is often the case. For example, "All men are mortal" is a premise based on induction, but it happens to be the start of one of the most famous deductive syllogisms of all time:
All men are mortal.
Socrates is a man.
Therefore, Socrates is mortal.
Am I right? What could I be missing? Help!
Hi again, Disgruntled.
Of course you are right.
The three propositions together form a deduction, even if the premises are inductive - the major being based on generalization from experience and the minor on experience.
But it is also somewhat correct to view the conclusion as induced, insofar as it is based on induced premises. All knowledge is essentially induced, deduction being one of the tools of induction. Maybe that is what the professor meant.