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Probability without Tears

Teaching Philosophy 46 (1):65-84 (2023)

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  1. Probability.Darrell Patrick Rowbottom - 2015 - Polity.
    When a doctor tells you there’s a one percent chance that an operation will result in your death, or a scientist claims that his theory is probably true, what exactly does that mean? Understanding probability is clearly very important, if we are to make good theoretical and practical choices. In this engaging and highly accessible introduction to the philosophy of probability, Darrell Rowbottom takes the reader on a journey through all the major interpretations of probability, with reference to real–world situations. (...)
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  • Putting logic in its place: formal constraints on rational belief.David Phiroze Christensen - 2004 - New York: Oxford University Press.
    What role, if any, does formal logic play in characterizing epistemically rational belief? Traditionally, belief is seen in a binary way - either one believes a proposition, or one doesn't. Given this picture, it is attractive to impose certain deductive constraints on rational belief: that one's beliefs be logically consistent, and that one believe the logical consequences of one's beliefs. A less popular picture sees belief as a graded phenomenon.
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  • Logic in analytic philosophy: a quantitative analysis.Guido Bonino, Paolo Maffezioli & Paolo Tripodi - 2020 - Synthese 198 (11):10991-11028.
    Using quantitative methods, we investigate the role of logic in analytic philosophy from 1941 to 2010. In particular, a corpus of five journals publishing analytic philosophy is assessed and evaluated against three main criteria: the presence of logic, its role and level of technical sophistication. The analysis reveals that logic is not present at all in nearly three-quarters of the corpus, the instrumental role of logic prevails over the non-instrumental ones, and the level of technical sophistication increases in time, although (...)
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  • The Oxford Handbook of Probability and Philosophy.Alan Hájek & Christopher Hitchcock (eds.) - 2016 - Oxford: Oxford University Press.
    Probability theory is a key tool of the physical, mathematical, and social sciences. It has also been playing an increasingly significant role in philosophy: in epistemology, philosophy of science, ethics, social philosophy, philosophy of religion, and elsewhere. This Handbook encapsulates and furthers the influence of philosophy on probability, and of probability on philosophy. Nearly forty articles summarise the state of play and present new insights in various areas of research at the intersection of these two fields. The articles will be (...)
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  • The Misinformation Age: How False Beliefs Spread.Cailin O'Connor & James Owen Weatherall - 2019 - New Haven, CT, USA: Yale University Press.
    "Why should we care about having true beliefs? And why do demonstrably false beliefs persist and spread despite consequences for the people who hold them? Philosophers of science Cailin O’Connor and James Weatherall argue that social factors, rather than individual psychology, are what’s essential to understanding the spread and persistence of false belief. It might seem that there’s an obvious reason that true beliefs matter: false beliefs will hurt you. But if that’s right, then why is it irrelevant to many (...)
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  • The Rational Mind.Scott Sturgeon - 2020 - Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.
    Scott Sturgeon presents an original account of mental states and their dynamics. He develops a detailed story of coarse- and fine-grained mental states, a novel perspective on how they fit together, an engaging theory of the rational transitions between them, and a fresh view of how formal methods can advance our understanding in this area. In doing so, he addresses a deep four-way divide in literature on epistemic rationality. Formal epistemology is done in specialized languages--often seeming a lot more like (...)
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  • Bayesian Philosophy of Science.Jan Sprenger & Stephan Hartmann - 2019 - Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press.
    How should we reason in science? Jan Sprenger and Stephan Hartmann offer a refreshing take on classical topics in philosophy of science, using a single key concept to explain and to elucidate manifold aspects of scientific reasoning. They present good arguments and good inferences as being characterized by their effect on our rational degrees of belief. Refuting the view that there is no place for subjective attitudes in 'objective science', Sprenger and Hartmann explain the value of convincing evidence in terms (...)
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  • The Open Handbook of Formal Epistemology.Richard Pettigrew & Jonathan Weisberg (eds.) - 2019 - PhilPapers Foundation.
    In formal epistemology, we use mathematical methods to explore the questions of epistemology and rational choice. What can we know? What should we believe and how strongly? How should we act based on our beliefs and values? We begin by modelling phenomena like knowledge, belief, and desire using mathematical machinery, just as a biologist might model the fluctuations of a pair of competing populations, or a physicist might model the turbulence of a fluid passing through a small aperture. Then, we (...)
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  • The Handbook of Rationality.Markus Knauff & Wolfgang Spohn (eds.) - 2021 - London: MIT Press.
    The first reference on rationality that integrates accounts from psychology and philosophy, covering descriptive and normative theories from both disciplines. Both analytic philosophy and cognitive psychology have made dramatic advances in understanding rationality, but there has been little interaction between the disciplines. This volume offers the first integrated overview of the state of the art in the psychology and philosophy of rationality. Written by leading experts from both disciplines, The Handbook of Rationality covers the main normative and descriptive theories of (...)
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  • A Critical Introduction to Formal epistemology.Darren Bradley - 2015 - London: Bloomsbury.
    Formal methods are changing how epistemology is being studied and understood. A Critical Introduction to Formal Epistemology introduces the types of formal theories being used and explains how they are shaping the subject. Beginning with the basics of probability and Bayesianism, it shows how representing degrees of belief using probabilities informs central debates in epistemology. As well as discussing induction, the paradox of confirmation and the main challenges to Bayesianism, this comprehensive overview covers objective chance, peer disagreement, the concept of (...)
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  • The Relationship Between Math Anxiety and Math Performance: A Meta-Analytic Investigation.Jing Zhang, Nan Zhao & Qi Ping Kong - 2019 - Frontiers in Psychology 10.
    Math anxiety (MA) has been suggested to decrease the math performance of students. However, it remains unclear what factors moderate this relationship. The purpose of this study was to analyze the link between MA and math performance. Studies that explored the relationship between MA and math performance, conducted from 2000 to 2019 (84 samples, N = 8680), were identified and statistically integrated with a meta-analysis method. The results indicated a robust negative correlation between MA and math performance. Furthermore, regarding the (...)
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  • Math Anxiety Is Related to Some, but Not All, Experiences with Math.Krystle O'Leary, Cheryll L. Fitzpatrick & Darcy Hallett - 2017 - Frontiers in Psychology 8.
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  • Changing use of formal methods in philosophy: late 2000s vs. late 2010s.Samuel C. Fletcher, Joshua Knobe, Gregory Wheeler & Brian Allan Woodcock - 2021 - Synthese 199 (5-6):14555-14576.
    Traditionally, logic has been the dominant formal method within philosophy. Are logical methods still dominant today, or have the types of formal methods used in philosophy changed in recent times? To address this question, we coded a sample of philosophy papers from the late 2000s and from the late 2010s for the formal methods they used. The results indicate that the proportion of papers using logical methods remained more or less constant over that time period but the proportion of papers (...)
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  • An Introduction to Probability and Inductive Logic.Ian Hacking - 2001 - New York: Cambridge University Press.
    This is an introductory 2001 textbook on probability and induction written by one of the world's foremost philosophers of science. The book has been designed to offer maximal accessibility to the widest range of students and assumes no formal training in elementary symbolic logic. It offers a comprehensive course covering all basic definitions of induction and probability, and considers such topics as decision theory, Bayesianism, frequency ideas, and the philosophical problem of induction. The key features of this book are a (...)
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