# If-Then Statements and Deductive Reasoning

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• #106
Anonymous
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What are some creative ways of teaching/explaining this?

• #483
Anonymous
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I tell the story of how when I was little there was this commercial with Michael Jordan eating Wheaties. So I went grocery shopping with my mom and begged for her to buy me Wheaties, which she gladly did. The cereal was disgusting, but I ate it because I thought I could be like Mike. Instead of using the conditional statement: If you are Michael Jordan, then you eat Wheaties, I was duped into believing the converse: “If you eat Wheaties, then you will be Michael Jordan.” This is how commercials fool little kids, by advertising the converse statement.

Others:

-If you drink Pepsi, then you will be Britney Spears.

-If you buy Kobe Bryant’s shoes, then you will play like Kobe.

-If you buy Justin Bieber’s hair product, then girls will go bonkers.

• #497
Anonymous
Inactive

When explaining the difference between Inductive and Deductive reasoning, I like to point out that Inductive reasoning is what the police officers and detectives have to be good at. When they interrogate suspects, they’re looking for cues that they’re lying or hiding something. Through their experience they may have picked up that anytime a person looks to his right when asked a question, that person is lying. While a no-hesitation answer with eye contact could signal they’re telling the truth. All these conjectures/conclusions are based on their observations over time. (Of course, it’s worth pointing out that the cop can’t convict someone based on his inductive “hunches”; he needs facts and evidence (deductive proof) to convict someone)

Meanwhile, Deductive reasoning is something Lawyers have to be good at. They can’t walk into a courtroom and say, “I think my client is innocent because he seems like a cool guy.” They have to provide facts and evidence–“My client is innocent because he was in Phoenix on the day of the crime. We have bank statements that he withdrew money from a certain bank and video serveillance that he was at the bank that day. So he couldn’t have been at the murder scene in New York.”