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ERIC Number: ED422791
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1998-Jun
Pages: 15
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Learning of Argumentation in Face-to-Face and E-Mail Environments.
Marttunen, Miika; Laurinen, Leena
This article describes a teaching experiment in Finland to develop critical thinking and argumentation skills in a university course using both face-to-face and e-mail settings. Subjects (n=49) were advanced students of education and three faculty members. All students received two lectures on argumentation and packages of argumentative writings from periodicals, newspapers, and other sources on such controversial topics as sex roles and equality in education, discipline problems, the compulsory teaching of Swedish, and physical punishment in child rearing. All students were taught four different methods of argumentation free debate, problem-solving discussion, role play, and panel discussion. For 10 weeks half the students engaged in face-to-face seminar discussions; the remaining students participated by exchanging e-mail messages. E-mail students were required to write at least three messages a week that demonstrated their own well-grounded arguments and included critical comments of other students' positions. Preliminary results comparing the four different methods found that face-to-face discussions evoked the most counterargumentation. Comparison of face-to-face with e-mail environments found that e-mail discussions were more structured and included more argumentative opinions and counterargumentation. Teachers found it easier to give feedback in the e-mail environment. However, unlike face-to-face discussion, e-mail does not develop oral argumentation skills. Results suggest the value of a combined approach. (Contains 11 references.) (DB)
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Finland