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Research and resources
Under 50 students
Over 50 students
Out of class activity
Media and Technology
Commentary: Science is a Verb
Most non-majors take only a handful of science courses, usually in lecture format. Having realized that, this teacher now has his students DO science in class whenever he can.
Commentary: Introducing Complexity
What a few teachers have learned about moving students out of dualistic, right-wrong thinking.
Commentary: Engaging Students in Mid-Reflection
Calling attention to good thinking as it is happening can support students' growth into their own new perspectives.
Commentary: Managing Rebellion's Role in Creative Thought
This teacher promotes rebellion as a virtue in creative thought, and must manage the situation when one of his students "rebels" against his testing format.
Commentary: Reasoning through Value Conflicts
One teacher tackles emotional topics by illuminating the logics underlying the conflict generating the emotion.
Commentary: Introducing Causal Skepticism
Some ways to get students thinking about the quality of causal inferences and how to detect intellectual "cheap shots."
Commentary: An Inquiry-Based Creative Problem Solving Course
A concise description of how an "inquiry" course can be organized, with a unique culminating presentation format.
Teaching Tip: Reflective Listening
Insist upon critical thinking by probing deeper into a student's responses. This video shows one teacher helping her students learn this powerful engagement strategy to become counselors.
Teaching Tip: Low-Stakes Assessments Early and Often
Challenging our own assumptions about our students can help us better meet them where they are and give us the feedback we need to prevent frustration.
Teaching Tip: Choosing or Writing Good Cases
Practical design suggestions for what to include in your case and how to structure it.
Teaching Tip: Moving among Evidence-Based Approaches
Critical thinkers adjust their approach as the nature of the problem is revealed. Teaching students to "switch gears" can help them generate increasingly effective solutions.
Teaching Tip: Generating Many Solutions
Students can assume all problems have one "right" answer. This teacher confronts his students with the reality of their own divergent thinking, and only then asks them to synthesize a "best" answer.
Teaching Tip: Setting a Tone for Engaged Discussion
You do not have much time to set students' expectations for engagement. Three teachers share how they do it.
Teaching Tip: Creating a Course Conducive to Synthesis
How one teacher gets his students comfortable with ideas, mixing ideas, and creating new ideas.
Teaching Tip: Helping Students Contextualize their Opinions
Opening students' eyes to many perspectives on an emotional issue can be tricky. Here's how one teacher does it.
Teaching Tip: Drawing Students into an Ethical Case
Ethical discussions are difficult, but this teacher taps into an acute sensibility that students already possess.
Teaching Tip: Helping Students Think like your Field
How students think about "learning" when they arrive on campus, and what you can do in the classroom to help them think like a junior colleague.
Teaching Tip: Turning Causal Conclusions around
Develop students' intellectual flexibility by having them build cases for a cause-effect hypothesis, then have them probe other hypotheses and the weaknesses of their own arguments.
Teaching Tip: Modeling Flexibility of Thought for your Students
How two teachers build flexibility into their own classroom behavior and syllabus, allowing for thinking-on-the-fly and instructionally relevant tangents.
Teaching Tip: The Importance of Personalizing Critical Thinking
Inspire independent thought by connecting characteristics of historical thinkers to students' own lives.
Activity: Facilitating a Case Discussion
Cases are excellent springboards into engaged discussion. A few moves on your part can help students make the most of that conversation.
Activity: Collaborative Editing
To be a good writer, you must be a good editor. Here's how one teacher helps his students learn both skills at once.
Activity: Modeling How to Receive Criticism
Open students up to receiving criticism by showing them how you respond when you are criticized yourself.
Activity: Living an Ethical Case - The "Tragedy of the Classroom"
Telling a resource-depletion story pales in comparison to making students live it, with real grade points attached. Here's how one teacher does it.