Critical Thinking in Asynchronous Discussions

Greg Walker, International Journal of Instructional Technology, Distance Learning, Jun 21, 2005
Commentary by Stephen Downes

The bulk of this essay is devoted to a description of various strategies that can be employed to introduce critical thinking into online discussions. In a sense, these are all common sense strategies - "Higher level cognitive and affective questions encourage learners to interpret, analyze, evaluate, infer, explain and self regulate." But I think most of all what is required is an attitude, one that is not necessarily taught so much as demonstrated by faculty and advisors, staff that, as the author notes, need to have a good grounding in critical thinking in order to pass it along.
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