Presentation on theme: "Critical Thinking Course Introduction and Lesson 1"— Presentation transcript:
1 Critical Thinking Course Introduction and Lesson 1 Course ObjectivesAfter successfully completing this course, you will be able toIdentify the characteristics of critical thinkingApply critical thinking skills to the analysis of daily life, work, and academic issuesEvaluate arguments in terms of truth, validity, and soundnessObjectively analyze complex issues through multiple perspectivesSynthesize data (e.g., testimony, arguments, written or visual presentations) into well-informed conclusions supported by sound reasonsApply rhetorical principles to present conclusions in written form
2 Why Is Critical Thinking Important? Critical thinking is a foundation for effective decision making.The skills learned in critical thinking are useful in all areas of life.The ability to make decisions and to process and present ideas effectively plays a role in how successful you will be in your personal, educational, and work life.Understanding and being able to use metacognitive strategies can improve your thinking and decision-making processes.
3 Important Note about Saving Your Work As you work through this course, make sure to keep copies of all your course work (including assignments and discussion posts). These materials will be necessary for a course-end reflective activity in Lesson 10.
4 Critical Thinking: Lesson 1 Lesson 1 ObjectivesReview the school catalog and course expectationsIdentify the characteristics of critical thinkingIdentify the basic components of any writing assignment and the qualities of thoughtful writingApply metacognitive strategies to thinking, reading, and writing processes
5 Qualities of a Critical Thinker Critical thinkers are able toArticulate their ideas clearly and persuasively in writingUnderstand and evaluate what they readDiscuss ideas in an informed, productive fashionBased on your own experience, what do you think are the characteristics of a critical thinker? Do you know anyone who fits this description?
6 Qualities of a Thoughtful Writer A thoughtful writer isCuriousOpen-mindedKnowledgeableCreativeTake a minute to think about the qualities of a thoughtful writer. What does it mean to be curious, for example, or open-minded?
7 The Thinking-Writing Model In this course, you’ll practice working with a model for engaging in critical thinking and translating that model into a writing process (see Figure 1.1 in the text). The process begins with asking questions: What is the purpose of this communication? What is the subject? Who is the audience? Who is the writer? What is the writer’s perspective?
8 The Thinking-Writing Model Once these questions have been answered, you can proceed to the writing process, which consists of these elements (see pp and for detailed explanations of each):Generating ideasDefining a focusDraftingOrganizingRevisingProofreadingCollaboration
9 Rhetoric and the Writing Situation Writing always occurs in a situation that consists ofThe purpose for writingThe writer’s intended audienceThe subject to be written aboutThe writer him or herself
10 Rhetoric and the Writing Situation These ideas come from the study of rhetoric, that is, the principles developed in ancient times for speaking and writing effectively. Rhetoric is the art of inventing or discovering your ideas, arranging them in the most persuasive way, and then expressing them in suitable language in order to have the desired effect on their audiences.
11 Active Reading Strategies To read actively is to work at deciphering the many layers of a text. An active reader has a dictionary at hand, along with annotating tools, plenty of time, and the will to jot down questions and comments on the printed page.
12 Active Reading Strategies Annotation is the process of making notes directly in a written work and is a crucial part of active reading. Methods for annotating include the following:Underline and number key pointsCircle key words and draw lines to show relationships—for example, between a main idea and facts that support that ideaUse question marks to indicate parts that you do not understandComment on the author’s ideas or language or writing techniquesNote connections with your life or with other textsSummarizing is another key skill associated with active reading. When you summarize a text, you use your own words to briefly and succinctly restate the author’s main point.
13 Critical Reading Strategies After reading actively in order to understand the content of a text, a thoughtful reader looks at it again, this time to read it critically. As a critical reader, you will analyze the text and evaluate its ideas and methods of presenting them.
14 Critical Reading Strategies Asking questions is crucial to critical reading. One set of questions is based on the writing components we addressed earlier:What is the purpose of the selection, and how is the author trying to achieve it?Who is the intended audience, and what assumptions is the writer making about the audience?What is the subject of the selection?Who is the writer, and what perspective does he or she bring to the writing selection?Other categories of useful questions include:Questions of interpretation, in which you look for relationships among ideasQuestions of analysis, in which you consider the reasoning behind a piece of writing and the relationship of the parts to the whole
15 Metacognitive Strategies Metacognition refers to the act of thinking about the thinking process.Expert readers also engage in metacognition while they are reading. They are aware of their thinking process as they are reading, and they use this awareness to improve their thinking.
16 Metacognitive Strategies Metacognition can be expressed as a variety of questions:Goals: What are my goals in reading?Comprehension: How well do I understand what I am reading?Anticipation: What events are going to take place after the ones I am reading about?Author’s purpose: What is the author’s point of view? How does it affect the information the author selected and how it is presented?Evaluation: Is this information accurate? What evidence and reasons does the author provide to support his or her perspective?
17 Types of MeaningLinguists believe that a person’s understanding of the meaning of a word depends on his or her interpretation of four different types of meaning:Semantic or denotative meaningPerceptual meaningSyntactic meaningPragmatic meaning
18 Types of MeaningSemantic meaning (or denotation) expresses the relationship between a linguistic event (speaking or writing) and a nonlinguistic event (an object, idea, or feeling). Perceptual meaning (or connotation) refers to the relationship between a linguistic event and an individual’s consciousness, or personal thoughts and feelings based on previous experiences and past associations.
19 Types of MeaningSyntactic meaning is the relationship of a word to other words in a sentence. Pragmatic meaning (or situational meaning) is the relationship of a word to the situational context in which the word is presented to the reader.
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