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Analytical Reasoning What is good thinking? What is involved in good problem solving?

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Presentation on theme: "Analytical Reasoning What is good thinking? What is involved in good problem solving?"— Presentation transcript:

1 Analytical Reasoning What is good thinking? What is involved in good problem solving?

2 Good thinkers Develop logical, sequential pattern of working through complex material. Work persistently, believing they will find the answers. Draw on old knowledge to solve new problems. Relate, interpret, & integrate.

3 Poor thinkers Merely collect facts Unaware of relationships Cannot put old and new information together to draw conclusions No logical problem solving method.

4 Problem solving is a skill Good analytical reasoning is a skill that applies to all fields of study. The skills you develop by struggling through and figuring out a difficult mathematics problem are much the same ones used to struggle through and figure out a difficult literary passage, or solve a problem at the office. The act of thinking through complexities of biology make it easier to think through other kinds of complexities. Thinking is a skill that requires practice.

5 Beware of shortcuts Finding answers through help from others can solve immediate problems, but it doesn’t help you build the skill. Examples? Internet searches Copying instead of paraphrasing Classes to help you pass tests Teachers giving the answers Fill in the blank with prescribed words

6 Unsuccessful Students: 1. Have no method of attacking new material. 2. Misunderstand or skip directions. 3. Fail to keep goals in mind. 4. Are unable to apply knowledge to new situations. 5. Answers questions based on few clues. 6. Uses impressions and feelings to answer. 7. Careless, jumping from detail to detail. 8. Gives up easily and guesses.

7 Successful Students : 1. Solve problems systematically. 2. Read directions & know how to start reasoning. 3. Keep goals in mind. 4. Pull out key terms to simplify material. 5. Break problems into smaller sub-problems. 6. Apply relevant old knowledge. 7. Are persistent and careful. 8. Are active and aggressive in seeking meaning

8 Arthur Whimbley did a study : Poor college readers have two main features One-shot thinking Rather than extended, sequential understanding of the material An attitude of indifference Too willing to allow gaps of knowledge to exist Don’t care about knowing accurately Analytical reasoning skills can be learned through practice

9 Logical Problem Solving Skills Break Problems into Small Parts. Use Logic to Arrive at a Solution. Break Complex Word Problems into Sequential Steps for Solution.

10 Problem Solving Exercise Mary is shorter than Carol but taller than Kathy. Sue is taller than Mary but shorter than Carol. Which girl is tallest? Carol Mary Carol Mary Kathy Carol Sue Mary Kathy

11 Problem Solving Exercise George and Scott are the same age. Beth is younger than George, and Jack is older than Scott. Tom is older than Scott but younger than Jack. Who is the oldest? G = S J B J T B

12 Reading analytically How to Read Analytically Becoming an analytical reader is not about speed or the ability to memorize. You can analyze the text for elements like persuasiveness and evidence. You can use this information in your own writing But, it also helps you engage more with the text. you discover the finer details of a text You can save a lot of time and energy when having to sort through material for reports or papers.

13 An analytical reading approach Step 1: Come up with a plan first. Decide before you begin reading what you want to find out. Are you looking for quotes to use on a particular topic? Are you trying to find out what the author’s argument is? Write this down on a piece of paper to remind yourself. Step 2: Find the thesis and motive. Identify the main idea that the author will prove in the text and the reasons why they believe the claim is important. This will help you decide early on if the work will have the information you need.

14 An analytical reading approach Step 3: Use a highlighter as you read to note any important points. Highlight sentences that you can use as quotes. Also highlight any claims or assertions that the author makes so you can refer to them in your own writing. Step 4: Write in the margins. Any time you have a question about something the author wrote, put it in the margin directly beside it. If you have an idea or disagreement, write that down as well.

15 An analytical reading approach Step 5: Identify the evidence the author is using to support their argument. What proof do they have that agrees with their ideas? Do they use other people, or samples from other texts to prove their points? Step 6: Make a note of the things the author does not say. What are they ignoring? What are they assuming about the reader? Analyze their argument and language style.

16 An analytical reading approach Step 7: Finish by applying the material. Reading analytically means putting the material to the test. Does what the author suggest work when applied to other situations? Ask yourself how useful the information is overall.

17 Tips & Warnings Reading analytically takes more time than other ways of reading, so allow yourself more time than you normally would to get through material. If you do not want to mark up your text, make a photocopy of the material you’re reading. Choose different colored pens or highlighters to refer to different points you are interested in (e.g., blue for textual evidence, green for points you disagree with). If the material you are reading belongs to someone else, like a library or school, be sure to mark the photocopy and not the original!


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