Logic and philosophy of the science (2020/2021)

Course code
Name of lecturer
Massimiliano Badino
Massimiliano Badino
Number of ECTS credits allocated
Academic sector
Language of instruction
Sem. 2A dal Feb 15, 2021 al Apr 1, 2021.

Lesson timetable

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Learning outcomes

The course of Logic and Philosophy of Science aims to provide students with the knowledge of scientific thought and methodology of scientific research, in the wider context of Western philosophical tradition and its main conceptual lines, in particular within contemporary philosophical debate. At the end of the course, students will develop the following abilities: logical competences, reasoning, and solution to problems; capacity to comprehend philosophical texts; capacity to autonomously shape critical assessments on the topics taught during the course; capacity to communicate philosophical contents to specialists and non-specialists alike, and to continue their studies at a MAlevel; learning a correct modality of scientific writing and/or writing their dissertation.


The course is divided into three parts. In the first part we will explore the toolbox of logic: propositions and arguments. We will especially focus on what makes an argument a good one both in ordinary and in formalized language. The climax of the first part is Aristotle’s theory of syllogism. The second part will take us in the world of symbolic logic. We will introduce a more precise language and more subtle concepts such as meaning and reference. The student will learn how to use logical connectives and how to evaluate formal arguments by means of truth tables. Finally, the third part is dedicated to the calculus of predicates. We will open the black-box and enter the internal structure of a proposition. Toward the end of the course, the student will be able to follow more advance logical calculations such as natural deductions. These concepts will allow us to climb the Great Mountain: the demonstration of Gödel’s two incompleteness theorems and the appreciation of their deep philosophical meaning.

Reference books
Author Title Publisher Year ISBN Note
Irving M. Copi e Carl Cohen Introduzione alla logica Il Mulino 1999
Achille Varzi, John Nolt e Dennis Rohatyn Logica McGraw-Hill 2007
Francesco Berto Logica da zero a Gödel (Edizione 5) Laterza 2013

Assessment methods and criteria

As part of the examination, students are asked to write a short essay on the issues discussed in the lectures marked in red in the word version of the syllabus stored in moodle. The essay must be 3.000 words max and should be on at least one of the “assignment readings” of the chosen lecture. The English versions of the readings will be available in Moodle.
Guidelines for writing
• Use the template you find in Moodle.
• Structure your essay around one clearly formulated thesis.
• Argue carefully using textual evidence and conceptual analysis.
• Substantiate your claim by means of references.
• Pay special attention on the structure of your general argument: be careful that the reasons support your conclusion.

The final exam will take place in written as well as in oral form. However, the exam procedure may be changed in accord with the University's health regulation.