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Probability and Rationality 2017

This is a DRAFT syllabus!

Last updated 6/9/17.

Please contact me if you can't find the reading materials.

Lecture slides on Blackboard. Contact me if you don't have access. 

You should come to class with (at least) two questions regarding the readings (at least one philosophical question and at least one formal/technical question). And, you should always be prepared to discuss the readings in class. The starred reading is essential. 

More readings: http://joelvelasco.net/teaching/3865/index.htm, especially for earlier parts of this course. 

1.        Probability Calculus and Introduction

Do exercise sheet attached below. Look at the rest of my lecture slides for expectation. Don't be worried if you're struggling with it! We'll go through this stuff again.

Hacking, An Introduction to Probability and InductiveLogic, chs 4-6 [very friendly introduction]

Skyrms Choice and Chance ch. VI

Strevens Notes on Baysean Confirmation Theory, just the start of it

Hajek SEP Interpretations of Probability sections 1&2

2.        Interpretations of Probability

* Hajek SEP Interpretations of Probability (don't worry about 3.1&3.2)

Strevens Probability and Chance

Propensity: Gillies Varieties of Propensity

Frequentism: Hajek. “Mises Redux. Redux.”

Pettigrew Probability in Bloomsbury Companion to Philosophical Logic

3.        Dutch Book Theorem

Jeffrey Subjective Probability the Real Thing. ch.1 Probability Primer.

* Vineberg, Susan (2001) ‘The Notion of Consistency for Partial Belief’ Philosophical Studies 102: 281-296.

Vineberg, Susan (2011) ‘Dutch Book arguments’ Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, Zalta, Edward N. (ed.)

Armendt, Brad (1993) ‘Dutch Books, Additivity, and Utility Theory’ Philosophical Topics 21(1):1-20

Howson, Colin (1997) ‘The Logic of Induction’ Philosophy of Science 62(2):268-90.

Hájek, Alan (2005) ‘Scotching Dutch Books’ Philosophical Perspectives 19:140-151.

Anna Mahtani (2015) ‘Dutch Books, Coherence, and Logical Consistency’ Noûs 49(3):522-537.

4.        Accuracy

* Joyce, James M. (1998) ‘A Non-Pragmatic Vindication of Probabilism’ Philosophy of Science 65(4):575-603.

Maher, Patrick (2002) ‘Joyce’s Argument for Probabilism’ Philosophy of Science 69(1):73-81.

Easwaran, Kenneth and Branden Fitelson (2012) ‘An ‘evidentialist’ worry about Joyce’s argument for Probabilism’ Dialectica 66(3):425-433.

Pettigrew, Richard (2013) ‘Accuracy and Evidence’ Dialectica 67(4): 579-96.

Pettigrew, Richard ‘Epistemic Utility Arguments for Probabilism’ SEP

Pettigrew, Richard  ‘Introduction’ to Accuracy and the Laws of Credence

5.        Decision theory

Weatherson Decision Theory

Joyce (1999) The Foundations of Causal Decision Theory ch 1&2.

Von Neumen Morgenstern

6.        Representation Theorems

Savage. Foundations of Statistics. Page 1-40

Liu, Yang. Elements of Bayesian Decision Theory http://yliu.net/wp-content/uploads/SEP.pdf Chapter II Savage’s Subjectivism. For more technical details of Savage’s system

7.        Problems for Expected Utility

Buahak Risk and Tradeoffs

Kannermahn and Tversky Prospect Theory


8.        Act state dependence

Lewis (1981) "Causal Decision Theory"

Jeffrey (1983) The Logic of Decision

Joyce (1999) The Foundations of Causal Decision Theory

9.        What are credences?

Eriksson and Hajek (2007) "What are Degrees of Belief"

Suppes 1994


Konek Comparative Credence.

10.        Imprecise probabilities

Joyce "How Probabilities Reflect Evidence"

Bradley SEP Imprecise Probabilities



11.      Revision

Catrin Campbell-Moore,
26 Sep 2017, 04:02