Critical Thinking: Definitions and Assessments January 3, 2013 By: Maryellen Weimer, PhD in Educational Assessment Despite almost universal agreement that critical thinking needs to be taught in college, now perhaps more than ever before, there is much less agreement on definitions and dimensions. “Critical thinking can include the thinker’s dispositions and orientations; a range of specific analytical, evaluative, and problem-solving skills; contextual influences; use of multiple perspectives; awareness of one’s own assumptions; capacities for metacognition; or a specific set of thinking processes or tasks.” (p. 127)
197 Educational YouTube Channels You Should Know About 197 Educational YouTube Channels You Should Know About If you don’t have a YouTube channel as an education provider, there’s a good chance you’re behind the times. Nearly every major educational institution in the world now hosts its own collection of videos featuring news, lectures, tutorials, and open courseware. Just as many individuals have their own channel, curating their expertise in a series of broadcasted lessons. Questions of Priority By Leo Babauta Of all the things you’re working on right now, or hope to work on soon … which is the single most important? What’s your priority? Now let me ask you these two simple questions:
How Children Learn: A World Tour of Class Portraits - Maria Popova A lens on the environments in which we educate the generations around the globe. Since 2004, Julian Germain has been capturing the inner lives of schools around the world, from England to Nigeria to Qatar, in his large-scale photographs of schoolchildren in class. Classroom Portraits (public library) is part Where Children Sleep, part Bureaucratics, part What I Eat: Around the World in 80 Diets part something else entirely -- a poignant lens on a system-phenomenon that is both global in reach and strikingly local in degree of peculiarity, revealed through more than 450 portraits of schoolchildren from 20 countries.
For Students, Why the Question is More Important Than the Answer Thinkstock In a traditional classroom, the teacher is the center of attention, the owner of knowledge and information. Teachers often ask questions of their students to gauge comprehension, but it’s a passive model that relies on students to absorb information they need to reproduce on tests.
A Taxonomy of Reflection: A Model for Critical Thinking My approach to staff development (and teaching) borrows from the thinking of Donald Finkel who believed that teaching should be thought of as “providing experience, provoking reflection.” He goes on to write, … to reflectively experience is to make connections within the details of the work of the problem, to see it through the lens of abstraction or theory, to generate one’s own questions about it, to take more active and conscious control over understanding. ~ From Teaching With Your Mouth Shut Over the last few years I’ve led many teachers and administrators on classroom walkthroughs designed to foster a collegial conversation about teaching and learning. The walkthroughs served as roving Socratic seminars and a catalyst for reflection.
The Daily Questions: How to Fully Engage Yourself in Life and Work Source: PicJumbo. Asking active questions changes everything. Simple, yet misunderstood, active questions can change our behaviour because they reveal (1) where we are succeeding and (2) where we need further improvement. The Tools Early-Stage Startups Actually Need to Understand Their Customers After 18 months of struggling to get traction with two product ideas, Segment started its turnaround. What followed was a two-year stretch of growth from four to 60 people, thousands of new customers and $44 million over several rounds of financing. What was the trigger for such a significant inflection point? In the lead up to the sea change, Co-founder and CEO Peter Reinhardt and the team at Segment started to heavily lean into qualitative feedback tools like live chat widget Olark. It was embedded on each page and everyone from the newest hire to the co-founders were constantly learning from everyone using their product. It’s hard to pin all this momentum on tools, but knowing how to leverage them is at the core of Segment’s business.
Progression in Creativity: developing new forms of assessment Posted on 24 Apr, 2012 Authors: Ellen Spencer, Bill Lucas and Guy Claxton Institution: Centre for Real World Learning, University of Winchester Full reference: Spencer, E., Lucas, B. and Claxton, G. (2012). Teaching Questioning Skills to Arm Students for Learning - Work in Progress In the earliest part of my career, I wrote full procedural lesson plans that spelled out to the letter the questions I would ask AND the answers I considered correct. When the students didn't provide the proscribed answer, I asked helper questions until I elicited the appropriate response. Man, did I have it wrong! This is the battle we fight. It demands our full attention. And if we are going to go to battle, we should appropriately arm our learners.
6 Steps to Help Students Find Order in Their Thinking Like magic, the fish turn into birds and then back into fish. M.C. Escher's tessellations have a way of grabbing your attention and forcing your mind to make sense of the impossible figures on the paper.
The ONE Thing: How to Get Things Done Using The Focusing Question Source: PicJumbo. On June 23, 1885, Andrew Carnegie stood before a room of wide-eyed students at Curry Commercial College and addressed the audience. “‘Don’t put all your eggs in one basket’ is all wrong” he said.  Carnegie, then 49 years old, was at his peak of success: his company, the Carnegie Steel Company, was the largest and most profitable company in the world. “I tell you ‘put all your eggs in one basket, and then watch that basket’” counselled Carnegie, “Look round you and take notice; men who do that do not often fail”.
An Entrepreneur's Guide to Compliance Understanding your role in compliance and staying ahead of federal regulations is challenging, but it’s infinitely preferable to the fines and other costs associated with non-compliance. Creating a culture of compliance in your organization, even if it’s just you, isn’t something that you can deal with in the future, or assume is the domain of only larger organizations. In the current business climate, every organization, regardless of size, is held accountable for compliance, and regulators are examining compliance plans and policies more closely than ever.
Enhancing Education: The 5 E's The 5 E's is an instructional model based on the constructivist approach to learning, which says that learners build or construct new ideas on top of their old ideas. The 5 E's can be used with students of all ages, including adults. Each of the 5 E's describes a phase of learning, and each phase begins with the letter "E": Engage, Explore, Explain, Elaborate, and Evaluate. The 5 E's allows students and teachers to experience common activities, to use and build on prior knowledge and experience, to construct meaning, and to continually assess their understanding of a concept. Engage: This phase of the 5 E's starts the process. An "engage" activity should do the following: