I try to make my courses more than just a series of how-to sessions about comma placement -- I inject the concept of critical thinking. I am often saddled with the dreaded Freshman Composition course, the infamous English that all of you college grads had to take whether you liked it or not. You probably didn't; neither did I when I was an year-old frosh.
Translate this page from English Print Page Change Text Size: T T T CT Class Syllabus The Key Concept of the Course This course is entirely and exclusively concerned with the development of potential capacities that all of you have, even though you have not developed them, capacities in that part of your mind known as "your intellect".
One way to put this point is to say that most people are not in charge of their ideas and thinking. Most of their ideas have come into their minds without their having thought about it.
They unconsciously pick up what the people around them think. They unconsciously pick up what is on television or in the movies. They unconsciously absorb ideas from the family they were raised in.
They are the products, through and through, of forces they did not choose. They reflect those forces without understanding them. It is to think consciously and deliberately and skillfully in ways that transform oneself.
It is to develop a mind that is analogous to the body of a person that is physically fit.
It is like an excellent dancer who can perform any dance that can be choreographed. It is like a puppet that discovers the strings, and figures out how to gain control of the way they are pulled.
Whenever you are doing a task in or for the class, ask yourself, would an independent observer watching you closely conclude that you were engaged in "taking charge of your mind, of your ideas, of your thinking" or would such a person conclude that you were "merely going through the motions of formally doing an assignment", trying to get by with some rotely memorized formula or procedure?
The General Plan The class will focus on practice not on lecture. It will emphasize your figuring out things using your own mind, not memorizing what is in a textbook. On a typical class day you will be in small groups practicing "disciplined" thinking.
You will be regularly responsible for assessing your own work using criteria and standards discussed in class. If at any time in the semester you feel unsure about your "grade", you should request an assessment from the professor.
For every class day you will have a written assignment which involves "disciplined" thinking. Out of class you will enter disciplined reflections into in a journal, using a special format. Requirements All students must complete all of the following: Each of these must be computer - generated - so that you can easily revise them.
If your assignment for the day is not completed, then you are not prepared to do the "in-class" work of the day and you will be asked to leave. This is a mastery exam. All entries must be passed to pass the exam.
A Self-Evaluation, in which you "make a case" for receiving a particular grade using criteria provided in class and citing evidence from your work across the semester.
Consistent classroom attendance and active, skilled participation. Grading The class will not be graded on a curve.
It is theoretically possible for the whole class to get an A or an F. You will not be competing against each other and there will be every incentive to help each other improve. No letter grades will be given before the final grade - unless you make a specific request to the professor. You should focus on improving your performance, increasing your strengths and diminishing your weaknesses, not in looking for a grade.
You may miss two classes without receiving any formal penalty though it is clearly in your interest to attend every class and participate actively. Attendance is taken by way of "stamped in" class assignments. Since the final grade is not based on points and is not mathematically calculated, the above percentages are approximations to suggest emphasis, not precise figures.
In assigning your final grade the professor will lay all of your work out before him and match your work as a whole against the criteria passed out in class. You should read and re-read these criteria many times through-out the semester to ensure that you are clear about what you are striving to achieve.
Vague Thinking The "mortal sin" of the class is thinking that is vague, obscure, nebulous, blurred, confused, intangible, indefinite, imprecise, fuzzy, foggy, or indeterminate. If you learn nothing else in the class, learn to be clear, precise, definite, specific, concrete, distinct, and exact in what you say and write.
Reading Resource There is a book available to serve as a background reader for the concepts of the course.In the second half of the course, we will apply those concepts in familiar areas, to help you develop practical and useful logical and critical thinking skills.
We begin, in the first week, with an introduction to logical and critical thinking and common obstacles and fallacies. English Language Communication and Critical Thinking (Category A) - GE Approved Courses The following courses are approved to meet the General Education requirements indicated.
Please note the following in . Critical Thinking provides you with the skills to analyze and evaluate information. With these skills you are able to obtain the greatest amount of knowledge from a piece of data.
It provides the best chance of making the. Introduction to the process of critical thinking through the lens of race-based theories and selected historical and contemporary discourse of African Americans, Asian Americans, European Americans and Latinos on race relations and multiculturalism in American society.
Fortunately, critical thinking can be taught. Companies we've set on the right path report their return on critical thinking training as much as 17 times the investment. .
Fortunately, critical thinking can be taught. Companies we've set on the right path report their return on critical thinking training as much as 17 times the investment. Because when you think critically, you work smarter.