What grading criteria are used? What are the learning outcomes of each course? For more on understanding the task see - Answering assignment questions. Read strategically Look at the title, abstract, summary, introduction, and conclusion of your readings to decide whether you need to read all of the text, only some of it, or whether you can skip it altogether. For more on critical reading strategies see - Effective reading. Make notes as you read Make notes as you read, using your own words.
Always note the source of the text: by whom, where and when it was published. Write down any questions you have, or possible problems with the writer's ideas. For more on note-making see - Notemaking written text. Work with classmates to discuss ideas You should always write your own assignments, but you can improve your understanding by discussing ideas and information with your peers and your tutors.
For more information see - Group work. Write regularly about your own ideas Write regularly about your own ideas, thoughts and feelings on a topic. Writing helps you clarify your thinking in terms of relevance, reasoning, and accuracy. Some professional courses may also require reflective writing assignments, such as built environment, education, engineering, medicine and social work. For more on reflective writing see - Reflective writing. Find your voice Express your ideas and do not be afraid to take risks.
The best assignments show original thought, even if your ideas differ from the marker's ideas. Remember to support your views with valid reasons and solid evidence. For more on analysing and evaluating texts see - Some general criteria for evaluating texts. Example from a student essay Here is an example paragraph from the body of a student's essay reproduced with permission. What questions can I expect?
Questions are very likely to be based on the Watson and Glaser Critical Thinking Appraisal model, which contains five sections specially designed to find out how good an individual is at reasoning analytically and logically. The five sections are: Arguments: In the argument section you are tested on your ability to distinguish between arguments that are strong and arguments that are weak.
For an argument to be strong, it must be both important and directly related to the question. An argument is weak if it is not directly related to the question, of minor importance, or it confuses correlation with causation which is incorrectly assuming that just because two things are related, they are the cause of each other. Assumptions: An assumption is something we take for granted. Question: And finally, what about collaborative learning?
Paul: Collaborative learning is desirable only if grounded in disciplined critical thinking. Without critical thinking, collaborative learning is likely to become collaborative mis-learning. It is collective bad thinking in which the bad thinking being shared becomes validated.
Remember, gossip is a form of collaborative learning; peer group indoctrination is a form of collaborative learning; mass hysteria is a form of speed collaborative learning mass learning of a most undesirable kind. We learn prejudices collaboratively, social hates and fears collaboratively, stereotypes and narrowness of mind, collaboratively. So there are a lot of important educational goals deeply tied into critical thinking just as critical thinking is deeply tied into them.
Basically the problem in the schools is that we separate things, treat them in isolation and mistreat them as a result. What can teachers do to "kindle" this spark and keep it alive in education? Paul: First of all, we kill the child's curiosity, her desire to question deeply, by superficial didactic instruction. Young children continually ask why. Why this and why that? And why this other thing?
But we soon shut that curiosity down with glib answers, answers to fend off rather than to respond to the logic of the question. In every field of knowledge, every answer generates more questions, so that the more we know the more we recognize we don't know.
It is only people who have little knowledge who take their knowledge to be complete and entire. If we thought deeply about almost any of the answers which we glibly give to children, we would recognize that we don't really have a satisfactory answer to most of their questions.
Many of our answers are no more than a repetition of what we as children heard from adults. We pass on the misconceptions of our parents and those of their parents. We say what we heard, not what we know. We rarely join the quest with our children. We rarely admit our ignorance, even to ourselves. Why does rain fall from the sky? Why is snow cold? What is electricity and how does it go through the wire? Why are people bad? Why does evil exist? Why is there war?
Why did my dog have to die? Why do flowers bloom? Do we really have good answers to these questions? Question: How does curiosity fit in with critical thinking? Paul: To flourish, curiosity must evolve into disciplined inquiry and reflection.
Left to itself it will soar like a kite without a tail, that is, right into the ground! Intellectual curiosity is an important trait of mind, but it requires a family of other traits to fulfill it. It requires intellectual humility, intellectual courage, intellectual integrity, intellectual perseverance, and faith in reason. After all, intellectual curiosity is not a thing in itself — valuable in itself and for itself.
It is valuable because it can lead to knowledge, understanding, and insight; because it can help broaden, deepen, sharpen our minds, making us better, more humane, more richly endowed persons. To reach these ends, the mind must be more than curious, it must be willing to work, willing to suffer through confusion and frustration, willing to face limitations and overcome obstacles, open to the views of others, and willing to entertain ideas that many people find threatening.
That is, there is no point in our trying to model and encourage curiosity, if we are not willing to foster an environment in which the minds of our students can learn the value and pain of hard intellectual work. We do our students a disservice if we imply that all we need is unbridled curiosity, that with it alone knowledge comes to us with blissful ease in an atmosphere of fun, fun, fun. What good is curiosity if we don't know what to do next or how to satisfy it?
We can create the environment necessary to the discipline, power, joy, and work of critical thinking only by modeling it before and with our students. They must see our minds at work. Our minds must stimulate theirs with questions and yet further question; questions that probe information and experience; questions that call for reasons and evidence; questions that lead students to examine interpretations and conclusions, pursuing their basis in fact and experience; questions that help students to discover their assumptions, questions that stimulate students to follow out the implications of their thought, to test their ideas, to take their ideas apart, to challenge their ideas, to take their ideas seriously.
It is in the totality of this intellectually rigorous atmosphere that natural curiosity thrives. Question: It is important for our students to be productive members of the work-force. How can schools better prepare students to meet these challenges?
How does your timeline and due dates affect your research? Keep in mind that you need to follow a schedule.
Why does evil exist?
These tests are used in graduate, professional, and managerial recruitment. Keep in mind that you need to follow a schedule. Third, what is mis-assessed is mis-taught.
Evaluation However the combination of contemporary art and historical evidence to create a new means of engaging with history assumes that anyone can empathise with the Barracks' "colourful past". Questions are very likely to be based on the Watson and Glaser Critical Thinking Appraisal model, which contains five sections specially designed to find out how good an individual is at reasoning analytically and logically. Always note the source of the text: by whom, where and when it was published.
What are the learning outcomes of each course? This process of research, evaluation, reflection and feedback is like a conversation, and your university courses are an opportunity for you to join in. Question: Could you explain briefly why this is so? What have you been told, or read about, this topic? Evaluation However the combination of contemporary art and historical evidence to create a new means of engaging with history assumes that anyone can empathise with the Barracks' "colourful past".
Question: Could this possibly be a rare mistake, not representative of teacher knowledge? Working out what you do not know is also an important part of critical thinking.