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ERIC Number: EJ835084
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Pages: 16
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 46
ISSN: ISSN-1547-9714
Teaching High School Students Applied Logical Reasoning
Bouhnik, Dan; Giat, Yahel
Journal of Information Technology Education, v8 p1-16 2009
The rapid changes in information technology in recent years have rendered current high school curricula unable to cope with student needs. In consequence, students do not possess the proper skills required in today's information era. Specifically, many students lack the skills to search efficiently for information. Moreover, even when abundant information is available to them, students are unable to critically read, analyze, and evaluate it. To address these problems we developed a high school course designed to provide students with applied logical tools. The course was developed for two different student groups: social sciences-oriented students and exact sciences-oriented students. It is composed of several parts whose contents depend on the students' orientation. This course is part of a broader program whose purpose is a comprehensive study and understanding of logical and concept-based systems. The course was taught to three high school student groups with different academic orientation and age. Two of the groups majored in social sciences and the third group majored in exact sciences. Of the two social sciences groups, one was composed of senior students and the second of junior students. To assess the effectiveness of the course, we gave each group an exam testing their critical reasoning skills. This exam was administered in the first week of the course. The groups were given a similar exam at the end of the course. In addition, after the completion of the course the students were asked to fill in a questionnaire about the course and its effect on them. The purpose of the pre-course and post-course exams was to examine the objective change in the assessment of students' skills. The purpose of the questionnaire was to test overall satisfaction and the students' subjective assessment of the change in their skill. The results of this initial examination were very encouraging. We found a significant improvement in the students' critical reading skills. In addition, students felt they had better analytical and critical skills. They reported a change in their reading behavior with most students reporting a more critical and logical approach and a better ability to understand underlying assumptions and separate opinion from fact. We believe this paper makes three important contributions. First, the course we describe is novel in adapting university level courses in applied logic for high school students. Secondly, it is modular enough to allow exact sciences-oriented students to combine critical reading with computer and mathematical topics. Thirdly, we report our experience of teaching this course in the high school level and find that this course improved skills essential to the students and that students responded positively to it. (Contains 4 tables.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education; High Schools; Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Israel