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Critical thinking is a catchall phrase used to describe the ability of students to think for themselves, to reason well, and to approach problems and issues in a systematic and logical manner. The following resources offer suggestions for designing assignments that strengthen critical thinking.
-Tim van Gelder from the University of Melbourne offers some guidelines for teaching critical thinking based on key ideas from cognitive science in his article Teaching critical thinking: Some lessons from cognitive science.
-The IDEA Center at Kansas State University offers information on designing assignments and learning environments that enhance thinking skills.
TLA Handouts on Teaching for Critical Thinking:
- Definitions of critical thinking
- Argument mapping allows students to see the underlying structure of an argument.
- Creating cognitive dissonance to help students question their pre-existing or intuitive ideas.
- Scaffolding assignments so that they gradually increase in cognitive complexity.
- Teaching for transfer to help students understand their critical thinking process.
- Critical thinking Internet resources and selected bibliography.
Bean, J.C. (2001). Engaging ideas: The professor's guide to integrating writing, critical thinking, and active learning in the classroom. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.
- Research and resources on critical thinking