Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Critical Thinking

I think that I have finally created a definition of Critical Thinking that seems to work in the context of a class blog discussion. It's certainly different from the definitions that I surveyed in other contexts.

Critical Thinking in a class blog discussion demonstrates an understanding of the text, the ability to draw conclusions or ask good questions about it, and the ability to engage the ideas of other students or to make connections to previous knowledge, other texts, contexts, or ideas.

I've actually thought about this definition so much that I'm having serious internal debates about the placement of the words "and" and "or." I can't find a combination that I'm perfectly happy with. I think the second "or" should be an "and" . . . maybe. I also think this a sign that I have thought about this too much and need fresh insight.


Natalie said...

Jason, I'm curious as to WHY a definition of critical thinking is different for a class blog than it is for other contexts - like a class discussion. This statement would be a definate red flag for me as a teacher reading your research. In my mind the process of critical thinking is very much the same from context to context so I'd need a more in depth discussion of the WHY it's different here. I also have some suggestions on your definition - it seems that the wording "critical thinking in a class blog discussion demonstrates..." should at least read "critical thinking in a class blog discussion is..."

Also, since you asked for outside insight I'm including a suggestion for the definition that seems clearer to me at any rate. Insight for you to take or leave :)

The following is my definition of critical thinking built on my interpretation of what you've presented in SI. "Critical thinking in a class blog is demonstrated by the ability to design questions or post conclusions that require a connection to previous knowledge, other texts, contexts, or ideas articulated in a previous post."

Glad to see you're doing so much deep thinking, keep up the good work.

rambandgeek said...

I would definitely make the second or an and. Seems to me like those are two different skills and both are important.