critical thinking theory in education
The following example of an instructional objective relates to a lesson topic of work motivation and constitutes only a part of the 90-minute lesson. Albeit important, the cognitive objective is set aside for now and the focus is on the affective objective. Employing the ABCD model, an instructional objective could be formulated in the following way:
Julkaisija: Oulun ammattikorkeakoulu, Oamk
From what critical thinking is to how to incorporate it into everyday lessons, we examine the essentials of this fundamental intellectual skill below.
Since children learn in different ways and can come from vastly different backgrounds, it’s essential that future elementary school teachers receive an education that helps them effectively reach various types of students so they can learn to think critically and meet the challenges of living in a diverse, complex world.
Critical thinking is a central concept in educational reforms that call for schools to place a greater emphasis on skills that are used in all subject areas and that students can apply in all educational, career, and civic settings throughout their lives. It’s also a central concept in reforms that question how teachers have traditionally taught and what students should be learning—notably, the 21st century skills movement, which broadly calls on schools to create academic programs and learning experiences that equip students with the most essential and in-demand knowledge, skills, and dispositions they will need to be successful in higher-education programs and modern workplaces. As higher education and job requirements become competitive, complex, and technical, proponents argue, students will need skills such as critical thinking to successfully navigate the modern world, excel in challenging careers, and process increasingly complex information.
Critical thinking is a term used by educators to describe forms of learning, thought, and analysis that go beyond the memorization and recall of information and facts. In common usage, critical thinking is an umbrella term that may be applied to many different forms of learning acquisition or to a wide variety of thought processes. In its most basic expression, critical thinking occurs when students are analyzing, evaluating, interpreting, or synthesizing information and applying creative thought to form an argument, solve a problem, or reach a conclusion.
It is common ground in debates about the generality or subject-specificity of critical thinking dispositions and abilities that critical thinking about any topic requires background knowledge about the topic. For example, the most sophisticated understanding of the principles of hypothetico-deductive reasoning is of no help unless accompanied by some knowledge of what might be plausible explanations of some phenomenon under investigation.
Disorder: A man finds his rooms on his return to them in disorder with his belongings thrown about, thinks at first of burglary as an explanation, then thinks of mischievous children as being an alternative explanation, then looks to see whether valuables are missing, and discovers that they are (1910: 82–83; 1933: 166–168).
The techniques I’ve described above — explicit instruction on critical-thinking principles and techniques, deliberate practice opportunities that put those techniques to work, encouraging transfer between domains, and inspiring students to practice thinking critically on their own — all represent high-leverage critical-thinking practices applicable to any domain. Such practices can be applied to focused content areas, highlighting the fact that integrating critical-thinking practices into the curriculum does not need to crowd out other activities college instructors have used for years.
While people continue to be debate the role of elements such as creativity in the critical-thinking process, there is a general consensus, going back to the earliest definitions of the term, that the concept includes three interconnecting elements: knowledge (for example, knowledge of one or more logical systems), skills (such as skills in applying that logical system to construct and analyze arguments) and dispositions (such as the willingness to apply critical-thinking principles, rather than fall back on existing unexamined beliefs, or simply believe what you’re told by authority figures).