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The topics in the textbook are presented in a logical and clear fashion.The structure of the chapters are such that it is not necessary to have to follow the chapters in their sequential order, and coverage of material can be adapted to individual instructor's preferences.
However, the terms are clearly and thoroughly explained within the text, and the index is very thorough. The exercises are excellent and would be very helpful for students to internalize correct critical thinking practices.
Because of the logical arrangement of the text and the many sub-sections, additional material should be very easy to add. I anticipate that a diligent student could learn all of the material in the text with little additional instruction. The text did not confuse terms or use inconsistent terminology, which is very important in a logic text.
The text covers all the relevant technical aspects of introductory logic and critical thinking, and covers them well.
A separate glossary would be quite helpful to students.
I intend to adopt Van Cleave's textbook for a Critical Thinking class I am teaching at the Community College level.
I believe that it will help me facilitate student-learning, and will be a good resource to build additional classroom activities from the materials it provides.
Chapter 2 also covers a number of formal methods of evaluating arguments, such as Venn Diagrams and Propositional logic and the four basic truth functional connectives, but to my mind, it is much more thorough in its treatment of Informal Logic and Critical Thinking skills, than it is of formal logic.
I also appreciated that Van Cleave’s book includes exercises with answers and an index, but there is no glossary; which I personally do not find detracts from the book's comprehensiveness.
While the book is admirably comprehensive, its extensive details within a few short chapters may feel overwhelming to students.
The author tackles an impressive breadth of concepts in Chapter 1, 2, 3, and 4, which leads to 50-plus-page chapters...