ERIC Number: ED234053
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983-Apr-14
Reference Count: 0
Instructional Strategies for Constructive Controversies.
Petersen, Renee; Tiffany, Margaret
Constructive controversy has many benefits in the classroom. The benefits of constructive controversy, however, depend on the way the teacher structures the controversy, the skill level of the students, and the materials and resources available. The controversy model involves eight steps: (1) introducing the controversy; (2) assigning groups and perspectives; (3) learning perspectives and preparing arguments; (4) presenting positions; (5) the actual controversy; (6) perspective reversal; (7) open discussion; and (8) group report. The skills used in a constructive controversy are designed to keep communication channels open, bring out facts and ideas, enhance perspective taking, and make sure everyone participates in a cooperative atmosphere. The teacher needs to emphasize these skills continually through observation, intervention, and processing. Adapting a curriculum can be accomplished using almost any subject area which involves higher levels of thinking and has no simple or obvious solutions to the problem. A controversy curriculum can be designed for a single class or multiple sessions. Once the topic is selected, the teacher needs to organize materials, including a collection of general background information articles. To differentiate the controversy, the teacher writes a position statement which gives an overview of the controversy and specifically states the assigned role for each perspective. Depending on the teacher's objectives, there are many options for designing the group report. (JMK)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Teachers; Practitioners
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Constructive Controversy
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Convention of the American Educational Research Association (Montreal, Canada, April 11-15, 1983).