ERIC Number: ED206519
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1981-Feb-27
Ethics and Critical Thinking Throughout the Curriculum.
Delattre, Edwin J.
This paper stresses the importance of inculcating students with intellectual and moral values so that they will become men and women "whose heads are not empty and whose chests are not hollow." Central characteristics of students who have internalized the values of ethics and critical thinking are that they take living seriously, bring thoughtfully reasoned conviction to the conduct of personal and professional affairs, seek to serve ideals beyond their own personal gratification, and strive constantly to improve themselves. Educators can incorporate ethics and critical thinking into the curriculum in a variety of ways, including focusing attention on the purposes and method of argument (i.e., stressing that argument is a method of discourse in which claims are supported by evidence); showing students how to do deductive demonstration and confirmation and falsification of hypotheses; introducing students to logic; involving students in writing assignments stressing reason; cautioning students against simplistic dogmatism (the assertion that nothing needs to be thought about because everything is already known); pointing out the pitfalls of absolute relativism (the belief that nothing is genuinely right or wrong); and exposing students to lessons in which ethics and critical thinking as well as their opposites are in practice. Among the numerous literary works suggested as good examples of positive or negative thought and/or action are "Faithful Ruslan," by Georgii Vladimov; "A Man for All Seasons," by Thomas Moore; and "The Apology," by Socrates. (DB)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the National Assocation of Independent Schools (Boston, MA, February 27, 1981).