The Role of the Magnificent Reasoning Ability
Reasoning is a distinguishing ability that humans possess. It is associated with cognition, intellect, and thinking. We learn, and learn a lot in our schools and colleges. The idea is to acquire knowledge. This knowledge would be useless if we never apply or use it. This is where reasoning comes into play.Reasoning during schooling and graduation
Reasoning is essential in the progression of knowledge. Students are taught to infer information, data or premises and draw conclusions.
In Indian schools:
The latest CBSE’s mathematics’ syllabus lists mathematical reasoning as a part of the Class XI course structure. Students are taught mathematically acceptable statements. They are made to understand connecting words and phrases that help in solving mathematical problems.
For instance, usage of the following is taught related to mathematics as well as in relation to real life:
• The ‘if and only if condition”,
• “Implied by”,
• “There exists”
Students are taught to validate statements involving the above-mentioned connecting words. They are also told the difference between contradiction, converse, and contrapositive.
The reasoning section is mandatory to attempt in all government examinations and any other career-related entrance test. However, the Indian education curriculum does not have reasoning as a dedicated subject.
Almost all the examinations and entrances after graduation include a good chunk of reasoning. This is to test a candidate on accuracy and attention to detail. This helps determine a person’s ability for a role that one might take up later during their professional careers.
CAT, GRE, Banking and Civil Services, all examinations include a section called 'logical reasoning' along with ‘data interpretation’.
Verbal Reasoning makes for a separate section in the exams after graduation. Verbal, though the informal form of reasoning is tested to understand the reading and understanding skills of a person.
In the SSC examination Reasoning is clubbed with General Intelligence in one section.
The aim is to test some practical reasoning.
Verbal and non-verbal reasoning questions are included.
This is a section that includes questions on analogies, differences, and similarities, spatial orientation, space visualization, analysis, problem-solving, judgment, visual memory, figural classification, relationship concepts, arithmetical reasoning, arithmetic number series, coding and decoding, statement conclusion, decision making, observation, discrimination, relationship concepts, syllogistic reasoning, etc.
Children need to be taught reasoning dedicatedly in order to prepare them for their future careers. Here is a look at Reasoning’s contribution to brain development
For the brain to make a better connection between ideas, reasoning plays a crucial role. For the brain to have an ability to reach logical conclusions basis the information available, the skill of reasoning is needed.
During or after five years of age, a child develops his ability to reason. That general cognitive ability emerges in the brain and during any information retrieval process, the same is applied by the child.
Reasoning helps develop our brains' processing speed and working memory. It is believed that individuals with superior IQ have great reasoning aptitude. At the same time, practicing reasoning can help increase IQ levels.
Reasoning helps with some basic brain development like:
• Applying the gathered knowledge in different situations
• Ability to solve problems: drawing and arriving at conclusions
• Direction comprehension: Finding your way in or to a place that’s totally new. Reading and understanding maps.
• Patterns and relationships' identification: For instance, finding related words to a given topic.
• Diagrammatic representation of problems
• Tying older ideas with newer concepts
• Quickly complete time-based activities
• Generating new ideas out of similar old information
• Solve puzzles
• Gather data from visuals and pictures
Reasoning also helps in decision making
Reasoning is all cognitive work. It makes you understand that if X is greater than Y and Y is greater than Z, then X is greater than Z.
Reasoning helps you attempt 'fill in the blanks' questions. Judgment and reasoning are closely associated. Making decisions involves strategies that are efficient and lead you to the correct answers and solutions.
When reasoning and pragmatics interact, people get influenced by emotions. For instance, a financial decision might be motivated by the anxiety of the risk involved.
In such cases, prior and comprehensive information is needed in order to apply one's reasoning ability.
Reasoning can be divided into forms like:
• Logical: A precondition or a premise is given and we arrive at a conclusion
• Deductive: To determine the truth of a conclusion, solely on the basis of the given premise
• Inductive: Determines a rule that follows from the conclusion from a premise
• Abductive: After a given conclusion and a rule, this attempts to select a few premises
Intuitive and Verbal reasoning are considered more informal.
A practical approach to reasoning (outside India)
In the United States, reasoning forms an important part of the high school curriculum. A bit different from India, the approach is quite practical. The subject itself is called "Sense Making and Reasoning."
This is considered the most important for students for the purpose of learning mathematics besides, being the most effective means of learning it. They believe students can better understand and retain mathematics when the foundation is "reasoning."
Families and teachers believe that a child must learn reasoning skills to be well prepared for their lives ahead. This includes having mathematical competence. Students must be able to carry out mathematical procedures at the least.
They should be able to decide which mathematical procedures to choose in a particular situation or for a certain purpose. They are trained to be successful in a dynamic economy.
Students are taught reasoning in a manner that they are able to do the following.
• Problem analysis
• Strategy implementation
• Seeking connections
• Using those connections
• Finding and reflecting on a solution
Reasoning is like a habit. It moves your brain from one idea to another related idea. It is the way we understand sensory information from our environment. We are able to conceptualize all this information into categories like cause and effect, true or false, good or bad through the reasoning ability.
Logic and reason are sometimes used alternatively. Human reason needs much more than being able to associate two ideas. Reason and imagination rely on a similar process in the brain. Only reasoning can collect sensory data into something that makes sense.
The essence of reasoning is actually very simple - clarity.
Any information that is clear, organized and meaningful is a product if reasoning ability applied to its best.