*You can analyze your own assumptions in the same way that you analyze others’.After writing a draft of your argument, go through the main points and try to spot the claims you make, or those you imply, that you do not try to prove. Once you have identified your assumptions you will want some strategies for dealing with them.*

To keep things simple, I’ll usually refer to “assumptions.” But most of the time, when talking about assumptions I’m talking about the special subset of assumptions called premises—the ones that are needed to prove the thesis.

Assumptions can be either explicit (directly stated) or implicit (not directly stated but implied).

Use a variety of thinking tools to improve critical thinking 4.

Identify types of argument, and bias within arguments, in order to better evaluate the strength of arguments 5.

They are not bad; they are, on the contrary, essential.

If you tried to prove every point you would never finish, because every proof would depend on another point or points, which would have to be proved, and so on to infinity.

Here, in the Elements of Thought, we look at Assumptions as beliefs upon which we base the logic of what is being reasoned about.

Assumptions can be Presuppositions, what we accept without proof but believe to be true.

This handout discusses different types of assumptions and gives examples.

But first, a definition: All arguments—all attempts to prove something—require assumptions.

## Comments Assumptions Critical Thinking

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