Fall 2020 - PHIL 110 D100

Introduction to Logic and Reasoning (3)

Class Number: 3913

Delivery Method: Remote


  • Course Times + Location:

    Sep 9 – Dec 8, 2020: Mon, Wed, 11:30 a.m.–12:20 p.m.

  • Exam Times + Location:

    Dec 15, 2020
    Tue, 8:30–11:30 a.m.



The aim of this course is to familiarize students with fundamental techniques of correct reasoning. Special attention is given to the methods of logic in particular, and to their role in the discovery of truth not only within science and philosophy but within all forms of rational enquiry. Open to all students. Quantitative.


This course introduces students to the logic of good reasoning. We focus on the main elements of deductive logic, which is primarily concerned with correctly deducing a conclusion from given premises, or what is often called “valid inference” or “logical consequence”. We begin with propositional logic, where we focus on the logical properties of whole sentences and arguments built with them. We then proceed to develop a proof system—a system of deduction—for this, i.e., a way of deriving logical consequences from given sentences as a starting point. We end the course by looking at elements of first-order logic, which contains quantifiers and variables, and which gives a correspondingly more complex means of expression and system of deduction.

An introductory study of logic provides excellent preparation for intellectual work in many other disciplines. Students from all faculties will benefit from learning various methods of sound reasoning—methods that prize precision, clarity, rigor, practice, and patience. Students in this course should expect to develop an enhanced ability to engage in disciplined argument and to write in an organized and focused way.

This course assumes no prior knowledge of logic, and is intended for all students, whether or not they are planning further study in philosophy.

See a course presentation on YouTube: PHIL 110 Fall 2020


PHIL 110 may be applied towards the Certificate in Liberal Arts and the Quantitative Requirement. It is also a required course for the Philosophy Major.

By the end of the course, students will be able to:

  1. Assess the quality of an argument using formal methods
  2. Appreciate the general principles of good reasoning  
  3. Determine the validity of an argument in terms of its logical form
  4. Symbolize English arguments using logical notation introduced in the course
  5. Translate sentences expressed in logical notation into English
  6. Demonstrate an understanding of basic logical concepts (truth-functions, validity, soundness, deduction and quantification)


  • Five quizzes (first two: 10% each; last three: 15% each) 65%
  • Final exam 25%
  • Attendance and participation in tutorials 10%


Course and tutorial  delivery: remote, synchronous. Online presence is required during scheduled lecture and tutorial time.



Remote learning for this semester requires a computer or tablet, camera, microphone, and internet access. Headsets are advisable but not necessary. Students have access to free Office 365 or Adobe Creative Cloud found here https://www.sfu.ca/itservices/remote-study-work-resources.html. If students do not have reliable access, they should inform their instructor and contact the IT desk to see if a loaner computer can be arranged. There is one computer lab on campus for limited access. Classes will be conducted on Zoom. It is recommended that students use broadband wired or wireless (3G or 4G/LTE) internet connection, with bandwidth of at least 1.5Mbps (upload and download).


Richard T. W. Arthur (2016). An Introduction to Logic: Using Natural Deduction, Real Arguments, a Little History and Some Humour, 2nd edition. Broadview Press. ISBN: 9781554813322
E-copies of the textbook are available to rent or purchase through VitalSource.

Department Undergraduate Notes:

Thinking of a Philosophy Major or Minor? The Concentration in Law and Philosophy? The Certificate in Ethics? The Philosophy and Methodology of Science Certificate?
Contact the PHIL Advisor at philmgr@sfu.ca   More details on our website: SFU Philosophy

Registrar Notes:


SFU’s Academic Integrity web site http://www.sfu.ca/students/academicintegrity.html is filled with information on what is meant by academic dishonesty, where you can find resources to help with your studies and the consequences of cheating.  Check out the site for more information and videos that help explain the issues in plain English.

Each student is responsible for his or her conduct as it affects the University community.  Academic dishonesty, in whatever form, is ultimately destructive of the values of the University. Furthermore, it is unfair and discouraging to the majority of students who pursue their studies honestly. Scholarly integrity is required of all members of the University. http://www.sfu.ca/policies/gazette/student/s10-01.html


Teaching at SFU in fall 2020 will be conducted primarily through remote methods. There will be in-person course components in a few exceptional cases where this is fundamental to the educational goals of the course. Such course components will be clearly identified at registration, as will course components that will be “live” (synchronous) vs. at your own pace (asynchronous). Enrollment acknowledges that remote study may entail different modes of learning, interaction with your instructor, and ways of getting feedback on your work than may be the case for in-person classes. To ensure you can access all course materials, we recommend you have access to a computer with a microphone and camera, and the internet. In some cases your instructor may use Zoom or other means requiring a camera and microphone to invigilate exams. If proctoring software will be used, this will be confirmed in the first week of class.

Students with hidden or visible disabilities who believe they may need class or exam accommodations, including in the current context of remote learning, are encouraged to register with the SFU Centre for Accessible Learning (caladmin@sfu.ca or 778-782-3112).