ERIC Number: ED397869
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1996-Jun
Questioning Critical Thinking: Funny Faces in a Familiar Mirror.
Ashby, W. Allen
Although college mission statements related to promoting a sense of responsibility in students, fostering the desire to learn, and promoting critical thinking sound good, few people actually think about what the words mean or help teachers understand what practices might actually achieve those goals. Thinking skills taught in classrooms can vary from rote thinking, or learning to follow steps; right thinking, or learning to get the right answers; expressive thinking, or undertaking creative and independent activities; to critical thinking, or developing analytical intellectual powers. Ultimately, critical thinking will only occur if there is a critical question in front of the classroom. Critical questions exist when an issue is felt to be real by everyone in the class, students state their positions and give sufficient evidence to make their perspectives clear, there is a desire for dialogue, students can clearly state opposing viewpoints and realize that closure is not going to be possible, and connections can be made to dissimilar situations. To ensure that critical questions exist in the class, teachers might concentrate lectures into a set of questions, with at least one being critical, and write them on the board before class, hand them out to students, or have students ask questions individually. Contains 21 references. (BCY)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Princeton Univ., NJ. Mid-Career Fellowship Program.
Note: In its: Issues of Education at Community Colleges: Essays by Fellows in the Mid-Career Fellowship Program at Princeton University; see JC 950 341.