Critical Thinking Students

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Essay 2 topic:

A critical student is one who ‘does not accept information without first examining it from different angles or perspectives.’ Discuss this definition in relation to the critical thinking expected of university students in essay writing. Incorporate relevant readings in your discussion.

In the changing landscape of the Australian education system, it can be difficult to ascertain what is expected of university students in essay writing. Indeed expectations can vary from institution to institution and even tutor to tutor, however the one commonality is the expectation of critical thinking in students. In this essay, I will argue that in universities, critical thinking is not only encouraged of university students in essay writing, but is also expected. I will explore what it means to be critical in ones thinking, discuss the expectations of students in essay writing and will provide alternative learning methods to illustrate other viewpoints. In order to achieve this, I will draw upon relevant readings to support my thesis. The word ‘critical’ is to describe “that which is urgent, serious, crucial or of fundamental importance” (Craig 1994, 54). In relation to essay writing, to be critical in ones thinking is to “question the phenomenon of study rather than simply accept and repeat the facts” (Craig 1994, 54). Warren (1995) provides some context to these definitions in her essay ‘The critical self’. She defines critical thinking as a reflective and reasonable thought process that dictates our decisions on what we do or believe (2). She refers to her teaching experiences and at the lack of the critical thinking abilities in her students at that time. Through these experiences and subsequent teachings on philosophy and specifically critical thinking, she draws conclusions that students like to think in this way and consequently their self-esteem improves as they are able to develop these skills (1). Her strong conviction that “critical thinking...
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