Blog Post: Critical Thinking and the State of Education Today (Part 8 of 8 - “Conclusion”)

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May 17, 2021 • 38d ago
Critical Thinking and the State of Education Today (Part 8 of 8 - “Conclusion”)

{"ops":[{"insert":"This article was published in the Winter 1996 issue of Sonoma State University’s Inquiry: Critical Thinking Across the Disciplines (vol. 16, no. 2) and was titled, “Critical Thinking and the State of Education Today.” The piece was divided into eight sections:\n\n“Understanding Substantive Critical Thinking / Avoiding the Growing List of Counterfeits”"},{"attributes":{"list":"bullet"},"insert":"\n"},{"insert":"“No One Definition But A Common Core of Meaning”"},{"attributes":{"list":"bullet"},"insert":"\n"},{"insert":"“A Brief History of the Idea of Critical Thinking”"},{"attributes":{"list":"bullet"},"insert":"\n"},{"insert":"“The State of the Field Today: Three Waves of Research, With Little Sense of History”"},{"attributes":{"list":"bullet"},"insert":"\n"},{"insert":"“The First Wave of Critical Thinking Research & Practice / 1970-1996 / Formal & Informal Logic Courses”"},{"attributes":{"list":"bullet"},"insert":"\n"},{"insert":"“The Second Wave of Critical Thinking Research & Practice / 1980-1996 / Critical Thinking Across the Curriculum Across the Grades”"},{"attributes":{"list":"bullet"},"insert":"\n"},{"insert":"“The Third Wave of Critical Thinking Research & Practice / 1985- / Depth & Comprehensiveness in Theory & Practice”"},{"attributes":{"list":"bullet"},"insert":"\n"},{"insert":"“Conclusion”"},{"attributes":{"list":"bullet"},"insert":"\n"},{"insert":"\nThe eighth, and last, of these sections appear below.\n\n \n"},{"attributes":{"bold":true},"insert":"Conclusion"},{"insert":"\nThough it is now generally recognized that the art of thinking critically is a major missing link in education today, and that effective communication and problem-solving skills, as well as mastery of content require critical thinking; and though it is now generally conceded that the ability to think critically becomes more and more important to success in life as the pace of change continues to accelerate and as complexity and interdependence continue to intensify; and though it is also generally understood that some major changes in instruction will have to take place to shift the overarching emphasis of student learning from rote memorization to effective critical thinking (as the primary tool of learning) – it does not follow that university educators are well informed about the core meaning of critical thinking, nor even (ironically) that all of those working in the field of critical thinking studies have a clear sense of the core concept or of its history.\n \nIn fact, if my analysis and perspective are sound, the last 30 or so years of research into critical thinking is quite \"imperfect\" and reflects a very basic need which has not yet been significantly recognized or taken up by the bulk of those involved in research in critical thinking. The question, \"How can we who work in the field of critical thinking studies develop a keener sense of the history of the concept, a fuller sense of the need to integrate insights from multiple disciplines (without losing coherence or rigor), and a more effective way of communicating advanced work in the field to those concerned with classroom instruction?\" is still a vital, unanswered question. The Center for Critical Thinking, the National Council for Excellence in Critical Thinking, and the Sonoma conference tradition are committed to comprehensiveness and rigor in the field. Future events, however, will judge whether or not critical thinking studies emerge as a vibrant, positive, and unifying influence in education in the near future, or whether it fades into a cacophony of specialist voices and awaits re-discovery by some future generation of broad-minded, interdisciplinary thinkers.\n \n"},{"attributes":{"bold":true},"insert":"References"},{"insert":"\nEnnis, Robert H. (1985) Goals For A Critical Thinking/Reasoning Curriculum,\" Illinois Critical Thinking Project, University of Illinois, Champaign.\n \nEsterle, John, & Cluman, D. (1993) Critical Thinkers Think About Critical Thinking. The Whitman Institute, San Francisco, CA.\n \nLipman, Matthew (March, 1988) “Critical Thinking and the Use of Criteria,\" Inquiry. Institute For Critical Thinking, Montclair State University, Upper Montclair, N.).\n \nPaul, Richard W, EIder, L, & BartelI, T. (in press), Teachers of Teachers: Examining Preparation for Critical Thinking. California Commission on Teacher Credentialing,. Sacramento California.\n \nSumner, William C. (1979) Folkways. Ayer Co., Salem, NH.\n"}]}


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