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  • Logic Learning
    Fake news, echo chambers, polarisation and cognate phenomena are widespread in our day and age. There are, broadly speaking, two ways to counter them. One is topdown and involves legislation or the intervention of private organisations in order to stem the flow of bias and misinformation. The other is bottom-up and involves bolstering the natural abilities of individuals to detect and avoid bias and misinformation. Arguably, the most effective way to achieve the latter is through the enhancement of critical reasoning skills. How best to enchance those skills is what our recently funded TIER1 project seeks to fathom. It combines the expertise of philosophers, psychologists and data scientists from Northeastern's College of Science as well the New College of the Humanities (NCH) in a bid to understand how one core subset of critical reasoning skills, namely logical skills, can best be enhanced. To be exact, we aim to experimentally study: (i) the way people learn logical reasoning skills, (ii) how their learning strategies evolve over time and (iii) the optimal way to acquire such skills. To address these aims we intend to deploy machine-learning to identify patterns of learning behaviour as well as to intelligently adapt content delivery to test subjects. We hope that our research will shed light on which pedagogical approaches are best suited to improve, among other things, reasoning performance, efficiency in learning, and recall of specific content taught. In sum, the project aspires to meet a truly global challenge: how to improve the adoption, cultivation and retention of critical reasoning skills.