Free «Deductive vs. Inductive Reasoning» Essay Sample

Deductive and inductive reasoning are strategies pursued in providing explanations or justifications for particular phenomena. The reasons that determine the utilization of either strategy are essentially based on the premises provided by an author or a scientist. The first difference between deductive and inductive reasoning is the fact that a deductive argument guarantees that the conclusion provided is valid. On the other hand, inductive reasoning does not necessarily provide guarantee that the conclusion stated is accurate. This implies that in deductive reasoning, the reasons must be statistically or reasonably approved, while inductive reasoning provides a rationale based on the author’s perspective. To illustrate this, we can use measure probabilities percentages or fractions. Hence, the probability of a coin flipping could be ½ or 50%. Deductive reasoning has the probability of a coin flipping on either side that equals 1, which ensures that the conclusion is valid (Cogan 55). The probability in inductive reasoning is 0.5 or 50%, which brings some doubt regarding validity of the conclusion.

The second difference is the fact that deductive reasoning relies on a specific individual situation to provide a generalization while inductive reasoning relies on several reasons to provide the generalization. For instance, in deductive reasoning an author would state that “Socrates was mortal; Sappho was mortal; Cleopatra was mortal; therefore, all people are mortal” (Yuen, Terao, and Schmidt). This instance shows how the premises are based on specific examples provided. On the other hand, an inductive reasoning example would be “We are all mortal regardless of whom we are”. In this case, there are no specific examples provided; hence, the author is free to provide several supporting premises. Finally, in deductive reasoning, the conclusion made will rely solely on the information or evidence provided while in inductive reasoning the conclusion may result in new information being added to validate the argument.


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