When I began work on the first edition of A Concise Introduction to Logic 37 years ago, I envisioned a textbook that would cover the basics of logic in a readily comprehensible and easily accessible fashion. I wanted to produce a text that I would enjoy using in my own classes. For the first draft, I relied, of necessity, on my own inevitably limited experience teaching logic. But since that time, I received literally thousands of comments and suggestions for revision from instructors using the book. Over subsequent editions, I incorporated into the text a great many of these suggestions. The end result is a book that is vastly better than it would otherwise have been.
I want to take this opportunity to thank everyone who adopted this book and especially those who offered suggestions for new editions. I feel that a partnership has been formed that includes all of us. I know that it takes a lot of effort to think through and type up a review, and I want all of you to know that I read and carefully considered every single one of those reviews. Whenever I was unable to include a proposed revision in the forthcoming edition, I kept it in mind for a future edition and made every effort to find a place for it there. Please be assured that I always welcome comments from instructors, either by email or through formal reviews, and I always take them seriously. I look forward to sustaining our partnership indefinitely into the future.
One comment that always appears in the reviews relates to the problem that instructors face in making logic relevant to the students. I tried to address this issue in many ways over the years by creating exercises that relate to real life topics, and including biographical sketches of important logicians and dialogue exercises about current issues such as gun control, GMO foods, plagiarism, and whether kids make parents happy. For the thirteenth edition, my new coauthor, Lori Watson, wrote a short piece, “Why Study Logic?” that appears at the beginning of the book. Lori’s other contributions are referenced in the preface to this edition.
One feature of the book that I particularly like is the treatment of the Aristotelian-Boolean distinction and existential import. I think this book is the only one that makes complete sense of these topics. In regard to the history of this subject, there is a supplement in MindTap called “Existential Import: Historical Background.” Also, in the new edition, I included a subsection in Section 4.3 called “Note on Boole, Venn, and Existential Import.” Among other things, this subsection addresses the question often raised by students about why there is a type of logic that deals with things that do not exist.
This new edition will help you further engage with students through the fully digital and immersive MindTap version of the text. MindTap provides a chapter-based Learning Path that students follow as they work their way through courses aided by a variety of engaging activities. This includes Aplia assignments build around the text content, Learning Logic tutorials, “Truth Trees” and “Critical Thinking and Writing” guides, author videos that illuminate difficult topics, quizzes, and a full interactive eBook. In addition, students can access the new Living Logic simulation, which connects complex principles of logic to every day scenarios that students can relate to.
I hope that instructors who choose to adopt the new edition, or its digital counterpart, find it at least as useful as its predecessor. Keep in mind that I am always available to receive comments and answer questions.