Author’s Notes

I like questions that are hiding in plain site. I call these kinds of questions — QHIPS (Questions Hiding in Plain Site!). These are not uncommon questions: We all get them from time to time. Here’s a QHIP that gave birth to The Little Blue Reasoning Book.

When you ask someone to name the most important skill that one can acquire from going to school, the likely answer: To learn how to think. So the QHIP becomes: “Where is the course in school (or even the compulsory workshop) that teaches a person to think?”

The answer is that reasoning and/or thinking skills are not taught in school. Educators might say that these skills are acquired indirectly from studying various disciplines. Is this the most effective way to learn the most important skills we need to acquire from school or self-study? After all, with the possible exception of our ability to read, no other single skill is arguably more important than our ability to reason. Reasoning skills help us make sense of the world. Such skills help us to make better decisions, tackle opportunities, evaluate claims, and solve problems.

This book was created to answer the question: “What are examples of classic reasoning skills and how can I hone my reasoning skills in the shortest possible time frame?”

The primary target audience for this book is the everyday student – high school, college, or university. A secondary audience includes laypersons and working professionals. A tertiary audience includes those preparing to take tests, particularly standardized exams such as the SAT, ACT, GMAT, GRE, and LSAT.