Phl 276 Sum 11 Test Two


1. This test will be held in class at the start of class on Tues. 02 August, 2011. The test period will be from 8:30 to 10:15 AM. No late or make-tests will be scheduled. There will be no exceptions. There just isn't time for them in a six-week class. We will continue with material after the test is over, so expect to spend the full class time.

2. The blue book you provided will be returned to you with appropriate identification. You may use a pencil or blue or black pen to complete the test. No notes, books, handouts, dictionaries, electronic devices, or any other materials of any kind may be used.

3. Do not write your name anywhere on your test. Please also “double-space” your answers, and write only on the front of the pages. (Don’t worry—you will have plenty of space.)

4. Your test answers should be your own work. Any detectable collaboration will be considered cheating. So will absences from the test longer than five minutes. Cheating will not be tolerated. In keeping with Marygrove College’s academic honesty policy, sanctions up to and including automatic failure of the course may be applied in cases of cheating.

5. This is NOT a research assignment. You are NOT to use outside sources. Usage of verbatim quotations from the textbook and paraphrasing of the textbook are to be used sparingly and kept under three lines per occurrence. If you must use quotations, know that all verbatim quotations must be enclosed in quotation marks. All such quotations, and any paraphrasing of material from the text, must be followed by an appropriate citation. The following simplified format may be used: ([author’s name], [page number from which the text is taken]). The following is an example of the minimally acceptable citation format:

For a verbatim quotation: “Of all the things which wisdom acquires to produce the blessedness of the complete life, far the greatest is the possession of friendship.” (Cahn & Markie, p. 183)

For paraphrasing: Epictetus says that friendship is the most important thing for a blessed life. (Cahn & Markie p. 183)

Failure to cite quoted or paraphrased works properly is plagiarism—the misrepresentation of other’s work as one’s own. Plagiarism will not be tolerated. In keeping with Marygrove College’s academic honesty policy, the first instance of plagiarism will merit a grade of “0” on the test and the notification of the student’s advisor. Repeated offenses will be met with more serious sanctions. Lecture material does not need to be followed by a citation.

6. Be sure that you address all parts of the question. Be efficient, clear, and thorough in your writing. Keep in mind that this is a test of your understanding of the material, not a solicitation of a manifesto of your own personal philosophy. Stay focused on simply and directly answering the questions.

7. Your answers should be substantive and your points should be supported with evidence (from the text), lecture material and independent argument. All technical philosophical terms (e.g. ‘psychological continuity’, ‘substance’, etc.) should be defined. Charts, graphs, and drawings should not be used. Your answer must be correct and clear. It need not be rhetorically pleasing. That said, basic issues such as grammar, spelling, and structure will all count towards your grade. Clear writing and clear thinking go hand in hand.

8. If you have any questions feel free to e-mail me at any time. I do not give provisional grades to test answers but I will answer questions about the test insofar as I can without conferring an unfair advantage on anyone.


On the day of the exam the instructor will return your blue book to you with your student number on the outside cover and a number between 1 and 3 on the inside. The number inside is the number of the question you will complete. You will notice that the questions below do not have numbers. This is so numbers may be assigned to them randomly on the day of the test. That way the question assigned to you will truly be the luck of the draw. Not even the instructor will know which of the three questions you will answer before the day of the test. You will be responsible for answering ONLY the question assigned to you. Do NOT answer the others. No extra credit of any kind will be given.

Below are the questions. These questions will not be altered in any way prior to the exam. They will occur exactly as they are written here. READ EACH QUESTION VERY CAREFULLY and break it into its composite parts before attempting to answer.

1. Explain the difference between a monotonic argument and a non-monotonic argument in as much detail as you can. Give an example of each.

2. Consider the following argument and answer the questions that follow:

There will be less incentive for people to buy government bonds if the US credit rating goes down. If there is less incentive for people to buy government bonds, they will eventually stop buying them and the economy will suffer. So if the US credit rating goes down, the economy will be in trouble.

a) Write the argument in standard form.
b) Is this argument valid or invalid?
c) Does this argument have a famous form? If so, what is it?

3. Given what you know about argument from authority, assess the following argument as thoroughly as you can.

Professor Cupidity is an expert theoretical physicist at a major research university. He says in his recent book that federal funding should not be used for religious charities because religion is based on the mistaken and absurd belief in God. Therefore, federal funding should not be given to religious charities.

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