The process of thinking about something, in a rational manner, so as to draw valid conclusions, is known as Reasoning. It is a daily activity that we use to make decisions, which involves the construction of thoughts and converting them into a proposition to give reasons on why we have opted for a particular alternative over the other.
Reasoning (logic) can take two forms – inductive reasoning or deductive reasoning. The former follows a particular flow or behaviour so as to make inferences, whereas the latter uses available information, facts or premises to arrive at a conclusion. These two logics are exactly opposite to each other. Still, they are often juxtaposed due to lack of adequate information. In this article, we are going to tell you the basic differences between inductive and deductive reasoning, which will help you to understand them better.
Content: Inductive Reasoning Vs Deductive Reasoning
|Basis for Comparison||Inductive Reasoning||Deductive Reasoning|
|Meaning||Inductive Reasoning connotes the argument in which the premises give reasons in support of the probable truth of the conjecture.||Deductive reasoning is the fundamental form of valid reasoning, wherein the premises give guarantee of the truth of conjecture.|
|Approach||Bottom-up approach||Top-down approach|
|Based on||Patterns or trend||Facts, truths and rules|
|Process||Observation > Pattern > Tentative Hypothesis > Theory||Theory > Hypothesis > Observation > Confirmation|
|Argument||May or may not be strong.||May or may not be valid.|
|Structure||Goes from specific to general||Goes from general to specific|
|Draws inferences with||Certainity||Probability|
Definition of Inductive Reasoning
In research, inductive reasoning alludes to the logical process, in which specific instances or situations are observed or analysed to establish general principles. In this process, the multiple propositions are believed to provide strong evidence, for the truth of the conclusion. It is used to develop an understanding, on the basis of observing regularities, to ascertain how something works.
These are uncertain arguments; that describes the extent to which the conclusions drawn on the basis of premises, are credible.
In inductive reasoning, there are certain possibilities that the conclusion drawn can be false, even if the all the assumptions are true. The reasoning vests on experience and observations that support the apparent truth of the conclusion. Further, the argument can be strong or weak, as it only describes the likelihood of the inference, to be true.
Definition of Deductive Reasoning
Deductive Reasoning means a form of logic in which specific inferences are drawn from multiple premises (general statements). It establishes the relationship between the proposition and conclusion. When all the proposed statements are true, then the rules of deduction are applied and the result obtained is inevitably true.
Deductive logic is based on the fundamental law of reasoning, i.e. if X then Y. It implies the direct application of available information or facts, to come up with new information or facts. In this, the researcher takes into account a theory and generates a hypothesis, which can be tested, after that the observation are recorded, which leads to particular data, which is nothing but the confirmation of validity.
Key Differences Between Inductive and Deductive Reasoning
The points provided below, clarifies the difference between inductive and deductive reasoning in detail:
- The argument in which the premises give reasons in support of the probable truth of the conjecture is inductive reasoning. The elementary form of valid reasoning, wherein the proposition provide the guarantee of the truth of conjecture, is deductive reasoning.
- While inductive reasoning uses the bottom-up approach, deductive reasoning uses a top-down approach.
- The initial point of inductive reasoning is the conclusion. On the other hand, deductive reasoning starts with premises.
- The basis of inductive reasoning is behaviour or pattern. Conversely, deductive reasoning depends on facts and rules.
- Inductive reasoning begins with a small observation, that determines the pattern and develops a theory by working on related issues and establish the hypothesis. In contrast, deductive reasoning begins with a general statement, i.e. theory which is turned to the hypothesis, and then some evidence or observations are examined to reach the final conclusion.
- In inductive reasoning, the argument supporting the conclusion, may or may not be strong. On the contrary, in deductive reasoning, the argument can be proved valid or invalid.
- Inductive reasoning moves from specific to general. Unlike, deductive reasoning moves from general to particular.
- In inductive reasoning, the inferences drawn are probabilistic. As opposed, in deductive reasoning, the generalisation made are necessarily true, if the premises are correct.
To sum up, inductive and deductive reasoning are the two kinds of logic, which are used in the field of research to develop the hypothesis, so as to arrive at a conclusion, on the basis of information, which is believed to be true. Inductive reasoning considers events for making the generalization. In contrast, deductive reasoning takes general statements as a base to arrive at an particular conclusion.