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Course Design Guide
HUM/111 Version 6

Course Design Guide
College of Humanities
HUM/111 Version 6
Critical and Creative Thinking
Copyright © 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009 by University of Phoenix. All rights reserved.

Course Description
This course focuses on developing the critical and creative thinking skills necessary to analyze and solve problems, make decisions, implement strategies, and formulate well-supported points of view on key academic, social, and professional issues. The principles of creative thinking are essential to critical thinking skills.
Students will learn how to evaluate their ideas and how to communicate their points of view persuasively.
Policies
Faculty and students/learners will be held responsible for understanding and adhering to all policies contained within the following two documents:



University policies: You must be logged into the student website to view this document.
Instructor policies: This document is posted in the Course Materials forum.

University policies are subject to change. Be sure to read the policies at the beginning of each class. Policies may be slightly different depending on the modality in which you attend class. If you have recently changed modalities, read the policies governing your current class modality.
Course Materials
Ruggiero, V. R. (2012). The art of thinking: A guide to critical and creative thought (10th ed.). New York, NY:
Longman.
Paul, R., & Elder, L. (2008). The thinker’s guide for conscientious citizens on how to detect media bias & propaganda in national and world news. Dillon Beach, CA: Foundation for Critical Thinking.
Paul, R., & Elder, L. (2008). The thinker’s guide to fallacies: The art of mental trickery and manipulation. Dillon
Beach, CA: Foundation for Critical Thinking.
All electronic materials are available on the student website.

Week One: Developing and Establishing a Foundation for Thinking
Details
Objectives

1.1 Describe critical thinking.
1.2 Identify your state of development in critical thinking.
1.3 Identify strategies to develop and improve your thinking.

Course
Preparation

Read the course description and objectives.
Read the instructor’s biography and post your own.

Reading

Read Ch. 1 of The Art of Thinking.

Due

Points

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Reading

Read this week’s Electronic Reserve Readings.

DQs &
Participation

Respond to the weekly discussion questions. Participate in class discussion. Post nongraded activities. In order to earn full points students must post at least six messages over the course of the week.
These messages must be spread out over at least three days. Your
DQ responses and nongraded activities will count toward your six posts. All
Week

Nongraded
Activities and
Preparation
Warm-Up
Exercises

Reasoning is a key component of critical thinking. Without being able to reason, all other critical thinking processes are impossible. As you begin the process of recognizing and developing your own thinking, you should begin with exercises in reasoning.

All
Week

30

Review the warm-up exercises at the end of Ch. 1 of The Art of
Thinking.
Choose one warm-up exercise from the chapter.
Write a 100- to 150-word response to the warm-up exercise.
Submit the exercise to the appropriate thread in the Main Forum for discussion. Doing so will count as a participation post. Feel free to comment on your peers’ postings as well since they are part of this week’s discussion.
Nongraded
Activities and
Preparation
Applications

Recognizing flaws in thinking will enable you to listen critically to dialogue, read critically, and effectively evaluate statements made by others. To help improve this skill, the application section in Ch. 1 provides exercises.

All
Week

Complete Application 1.3 at the end of Ch. 1 of The Art of Thinking.
Write a 100- to 150-word response to the application.
Submit the exercise to the appropriate thread in the Main Forum for discussion. Doing so will count as a participation post. Feel free to comment on your peers’ postings as well since they are part of this week’s discussion.
Individual
What Kind of
Thinker Are You?

Resource: Week One Electronic Reserve Readings
Review the following articles by Linda Elder and Richard Paul:




“Critical Thinking: A Stage Theory of Critical Thinking”
“Critical Thinking: Nine Strategies for Everyday Life, Part I”
“Critical Thinking: Nine Strategies for Everyday Life, Part II”

According to Elder and Paul, people progress through six stages during their development as critical thinkers. It takes commitment and selfanalysis to develop into a master thinker.
Complete the Stages of Critical Thinking worksheet located on the student website.

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Review your findings and write a short summary describing your thinking patterns and goals to help you develop stronger critical thinking skills.

Week Two: The Perception Process and Evaluating Thinking
Details

Due

Points

30

Objectives

2.1 Identify perceptual blocks that hinder thinking.
2.2 Compare methods for overcoming perceptual blocks that hinder thinking. 2.3 Explain how thought processes are changed or manipulated by perception. Reading

Read Ch. 3 of The Art of Thinking.

DQs &
Participation

Respond to the weekly discussion questions. Participate in class discussion. Post nongraded activities. In order to earn full points students must post at least six messages over the course of the week.
These messages must be spread out over at least three days. Your
DQ responses and nongraded activities will count toward your six posts. All
Week

Nongraded
Activities and
Preparation
Warm-Up
Exercises

Thinking is something we all do, often without realizing we are doing it.
Critical thinking, though, is a purposeful and deliberate skill. The warmup exercises in the text will prepare you to move from just thinking to thinking critically.

All
Week

Review the warm-up exercises at the end of Ch. 3 of The Art of
Thinking.
Choose one warm-up exercise from the chapter.
Write a 100- to 150-word response to the warm-up exercise.
Submit the exercise to the appropriate thread in the Main Forum for discussion. Doing so will count as a participation post. Feel free to comment on your peers’ postings as well since they are part of this week’s discussion.
Nongraded
Activities and
Preparation
Means of
Persuasion

Read the “Habits That Hinder Thinking” section in Ch. 3 of The Art of
Thinking.
Use your favorite Internet search engine to find videos of commercials for luxury cars.
Watch, read, and listen to the information presented in the commercials. Consider how these commercials target habits that hinder thinking as a means of persuasion.

All
Week

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Write a 100- to 150-word summary of your findings.
Submit the exercise to the appropriate thread in the Main Forum for discussion. Doing so will count as a participation post. Feel free to comment on your peers’ postings as well since they are part of this week’s discussion.
Individual
To Drill or Not to
Drill?

Many people are debating how to best meet energy needs in the United
States. Some argue that the country must decrease its dependence on oil and invest in alternative sources of energy, such as wind and solar power. Others argue that changing to new power sources is unnecessary and expensive. They state that the United States should search for oil in Alaska, the Gulf Coast, and other currently unexplored areas within the country.

Day 7

50

Due

Points

Review two articles in the Opposing Viewpoints in Context database in the University Library. Read one for promoting renewable energy and one opposed to renewable energy.
Write a 350- to 700-word essay in which you do the following:





Summarize the issue.
State your position on the issue.
Explain the perceptual blocks and habits that hinder your thinking when looking at the opposing view and defending your own view.
Describe what you can do to overcome those perceptual blocks and habits that are hindering your thinking and explain how your thought processes can be manipulated by perception.

Note. Your paper is not meant to be an opinion paper on renewable energy. Instead, it is meant to be about the habits that hinder your thinking and how you can overcome perceptual blocks.
Format your essay consistent with Associate Level Writing Style
Handbook guidelines.
The following resources may be of assistance when writing this paper:




Opposing Viewpoints in Context – Renewable Energy
Associate Level Writing Style Handbook
Grammar and Writing Guides: Grammar Mechanics: Commas

Week Three: Critical Reading, Listening, and Viewing
Details
Objectives

3.1 Clarify the importance of making distinctions in critical evaluation.
3.2 Compare strategies for critical reading, listening, and viewing.
3.3 Use techniques to detect bias and propaganda.

Reading

Read Ch. 4 of The Art of Thinking.

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Reading

Read The Thinker’s Guide for Conscientious Citizens on How to Detect
Media Bias & Propaganda In National and World News located on the student website.

Reading

Read this week’s Electronic Reserve Readings.

DQs &
Participation

Respond to the weekly discussion questions. Participate in class discussion. Post nongraded activities. In order to earn full points students must post at least six messages over the course of the week.
These messages must be spread out over at least three days. Your
DQ responses and nongraded activities will count toward your six posts. All
Week

Nongraded
Activities and
Preparation
Applications

This week you read about critical thinking and how it applies to reading, listening, and viewing.

All
Week

30

Complete Application 4.3 at the end of Ch. 4 of The Art of Thinking, evaluating the letter using the information learned in this chapter.
Write a 100- to 150-word response to the application.
Submit the exercise to the appropriate thread in the Main Forum for discussion. Doing so will count as a participation post. Feel free to comment on your peers’ postings as well since they are part of this week’s discussion.

Nongraded
Activities and
Preparation
Issues for
Extended
Analysis

Read “Issue for Extended Analysis” at the end of Ch. 4 of The Art of
Thinking.

All
Week

Follow the strategies for critical reading from Ch. 4 of The Art of
Thinking and analyze what you have read.
Write a brief summary of your findings.
Submit the exercise to the appropriate thread in the Main Forum for discussion. Doing so will count as a participation post. Feel free to comment on your peers’ postings as well since they are part of this week’s discussion.

Individual
Detecting Media
Bias

Use your favorite Internet search engine to find a recent headline news story in one of the following areas: local or national politics, economics, or business news.
Write a 350- to 700-word paper clarifying the importance of making critical evaluations of news stories. Use the following questions to help develop your paper:







Was the reporting of the news story clear and accurate, with sufficient depth and breadth?
Were some facts reported while others were ignored?
Did the story consider alternative perspectives and worldviews?
Were there any questionable assumptions implicit in the story?
Were any implications ignored while others were emphasized?
Why is it important to make distinctions when undertaking a critical

Day 7

50

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evaluation?
How would you evaluate this story if it were on the television news versus reading it online? What about on the radio?

Format your paper consistent with Associate Level Writing Style
Handbook guidelines.
The following resources may be of assistance when writing this paper:




Associate Level Writing Style Handbook
The Writing Process – Placing Words on Paper
Common Errors in English

Week Four: Creative Thinking
Details

Due

Points

30

Objectives

4.1 Evaluate strategies to promote creative thinking and curiosity.
4.2 Explain key methods for producing ideas.

Reading

Read Ch. 5 of The Art of Thinking.

Reading

Read Ch. 9 of The Art of Thinking.

Reading

Read this week’s Electronic Reserve Readings.

DQs &
Participation

Respond to the weekly discussion questions. Participate in class discussion. Post nongraded activities. In order to earn full points students must post at least six messages over the course of the week.
These messages must be spread out over at least three days. Your
DQ responses and nongraded activities will count toward your six posts. All
Week

Nongraded
Activities and
Preparation
Applications

Practice promoting creative thinking by determining potential solutions to problems facing our society today.

All
Week

Complete the following applications at the end of Ch. 5 & 9 of The Art of Thinking:



Ch. 5 – Application 5.1
Ch. 9 – Application 9.8

Write a 100- to 150-word response to the applications.
Submit the exercise to the appropriate thread in the Main Forum for discussion. Doing so will count as a participation post. Feel free to comment on your peers’ postings as well since they are part of this week’s discussion.
Individual
Creative Thinking

Resources: Ch. 5 & 9 of The Art of Thinking and the Detecting Media
Bias assignment from Week Three

Day 7

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Suppose you are a newspaper columnist who will address a local or national political issue in the next editorial blog of your newspaper’s website. Locate an article on your topic using the University Library.
Write a 150- to 200-word answer to each of the following questions:


How might you use the strategies for applying creativity to problems and issues in addressing this topic?



How might you use the strategies for promoting curiosity in addressing this topic? Why do you think these strategies might be effective? 

How might you use the various methods for producing ideas to eliminate the bias from the original article and still present a factual and persuasive case?

Format your responses consistent with Associate Level Writing Style
Handbook guidelines.
The following resource may be of assistance when writing this paper:


Grammar Girl: Sentence Fragments

Week Five: Problem Identification
Details

Due

Points

30

Objectives

5.1 Distinguish problems from issues.
5.2 Describe how to express problems and issues.

Reading

Read Ch. 7 of The Art of Thinking.

Reading

Read Ch. 8 of The Art of Thinking.

DQs &
Participation

Respond to the weekly discussion questions. Participate in class discussion. Post nongraded activities. In order to earn full points students must post at least six messages over the course of the week. These messages must be spread out over at least three days. Your DQ responses and nongraded activities will count toward your six posts.

All
Week

Nongraded
Activities and
Preparation
Applications

The first step in being able to reach a resolution is expressing problems and issues. The following exercises provide an opportunity to apply what you have learned about problems and issues and practice the steps listed in the readings.

All
Week

Complete the following applications at the end of Ch. 7 & 8 of
The Art of Thinking:

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Ch. 7 – Application 7.3
Ch. 8 – Application 8.2

Write a 100- to 150-word response to the applications.
Submit the exercise to the appropriate thread in the Main
Forum for discussion. Doing so will count as a participation post. Feel free to comment on your peers’ postings as well since they are part of this week’s discussion.
Individual
Problem-Solving
Process, Part I

Knowing how to distinguish, identify, and clearly express the problem or issue is the first part of problem solving.

Day 7

80

Write a 350- to 700-word paper in which you identify both a problem and an issue that are affecting your life. Examples of situations could include working for an unfair boss, relationship problems, behaviors of coworkers, financial challenges, social situations, political trends, having a fear of being laid off, considering ending an unhappy relationship, experiencing behavior problems with children, or being on academic probation. Use the following prompts to develop your paper:


Clearly state both the problem and issue.



What process do you use to distinguish between problems and issues? How do you know which is the problem and which is the issue?



How would you express the problem and the issue? Refer to the “Expressing Issues” and “Expressing Problems” sections of Ch. 7 of The Art of Thinking to determine how to express the problem or issue.



What is the difference between how you express these two?
Why is there a difference?

Format your paper consistent with Associate Level Writing Style
Handbook guidelines.
The following resources may be of assistance when writing this paper: 


Writing Wizard – Writing a Five-Paragraph Essay
APA Reference and Citation Examples

Week Six: Problem-Solving Processes
Details

Due

Points

8

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Objectives

6.1 Identify sources of information when investigating a problem or issue.
6.2 Compare the steps in refining solutions to a problem and resolutions of issues.

Reading

Read Ch. 11 of The Art of Thinking.

Reading

Read Ch. 13 of The Art of Thinking.

DQs &
Participation

Respond to the weekly discussion questions. Participate in class discussion. Post nongraded activities. In order to earn full points students must post at least six messages over the course of the week. These messages must be spread out over at least three days. Your DQ responses and nongraded activities will count toward your six posts.

All Week

Nongraded
Activities and
Preparation
Applications

One of the major benefits of thinking critically is the ability to resolve problems and issues, or at least be able to help identify steps in that resolution process. Practice applying these skills by completing the application exercises below.

All Week

30

Complete the following applications at the end of Ch. 11 & 13 of
The Art of Thinking.



Ch. 11 – Application 11.4
Ch. 13 – Application 13.6

Write a 100- to 150-word response to the applications.
Submit the exercise to the appropriate thread in the Main
Forum for discussion. Doing so will count as a participation post. Feel free to comment on your peers’ postings as well since they are part of this week’s discussion.
Individual
Problem-Solving
Process, Part II

Resource: Problem-Solving Process, Part I from Week Five
Write a 350- to 700-word paper in which you do the following:



Describe how you will investigate the problem and issue identified in Part I.
Attempt to resolve these issues by creating potential solutions. Use the following questions to develop your paper and help you create a solution


Describe how you are going to conduct the research necessary to solve the problem and issue? What sources of information will you use?



How will you work out the details of your solution to your problem? How will you refine your solution so that it can withstand other people’s criticism?

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How will you decide what action should be taken, and how will you recognize and overcome difficulties?

Format your paper consistent with Associate Level Writing Style
Handbook guidelines.
The following resources may be of assistance when writing this paper: 


Thesis Generator
®
Microsoft Word Formatting Tutorial

Week Seven: The Role of Questioning and Criticism
Details

Due

Points

30

Objectives

7.1 Explain types of questions that lead to critical thinking.
7.2 Apply strategies to foster criticism in problem solving.

Reading

Read Ch. 10 of The Art of Thinking.

Reading

Read this week’s Electronic Reserve Readings.

DQs &
Participation

Respond to the weekly discussion questions. Participate in class discussion. Post nongraded activities. In order to earn full points students must post at least six messages over the course of the week. These messages must be spread out over at least three days. Your DQ responses and nongraded activities will count toward your six posts.

All Week

Nongraded
Activities and
Preparation
Applications

Complete Application 10.7 at the end of Ch. 10 of The Art of
Thinking.

All Week

Write a 100- to 150-word response to the application.
Submit the exercise to the appropriate thread in the Main
Forum for discussion. Doing so will count as a participation post. Feel free to comment on your peers’ postings as well since they are part of this week’s discussion.

Individual
Questioning and
Investigation

Resource: Ch. 10 of The Art of Thinking
Suppose you live in a new suburban community that combines all the amenities and benefits of a close, small community with the benefits of living near the big city. Some years pass and several children and adults in the community start developing extensive and similar illnesses. You think this is clearly not a case of genetics, and you become suspicious that something has gone wrong in the development planning and execution of your community.
Write a 350- to 700-word paper where you reflect on the type of

Day 7

60

10

Course Design Guide
HUM/111 Version 6 research needed to solve this problem. Answer the following questions in your paper:


What types of questions would you ask?



Who would you talk to?



What type of research would you conduct?



How can you overcome the obstacles to critical thinking?



Explain what strategies you would have applied, if actually investigating the problem, to help foster critical thinking and to help lead you to the root cause of the illnesses.



What assumptions did you have to be aware of to ensure that they did not interfere with your critical analysis of the situation? Note. You are not meant to solve this problem. Instead, you should focus on the steps you would take to investigate the problem. Week Eight: Argument Analysis and Evaluation
Details

Due

Points

30

Objectives

8.1
8.2
8.3
8.4

Reading

Read Ch. 12 of The Art of Thinking.

Reading

Read The Thinker’s Guide to Fallacies: The Art of Mental
Trickery and Manipulation located on the student website.

Reading

Read this week’s Electronic Reserve Readings.

DQs &
Participation

Respond to the weekly discussion questions. Participate in class discussion. Post nongraded activities. In order to earn full points students must post at least six messages over the course of the week. These messages must be spread out over at least three days. Your DQ responses and nongraded activities will count toward your six posts.

All Week

Nongraded
Activities and
Preparation
Application

Evaluating arguments is one of the critical thinking skills you will likely use more than any other. It takes practice to be able to evaluate an argument effectively. Practice this skill by completing the following activity.

All Week

Explain how assumptions interfere with critical thinking.
Identify errors in reasoning.
Summarize the steps to evaluate arguments.
Identify fallacies used in written, oral, and visual arguments.

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Complete Application 12.1 at the end of Ch. 12 of The Art of
Thinking.
Write a 100- to 150-word response to the application.
Submit the exercise to the appropriate thread in the Main
Forum for discussion. Doing so will count as a participation post. Feel free to comment on your peers’ postings as well since they are part of this week’s discussion.
Individual
Assumptions and
Fallacies

Complete the Assumptions and Fallacies worksheet located on the student website.

Day 7

50

Individual
Evaluating Career
Choice Arguments

Imagine you are at a point in life where you must select a career. Evaluate the following arguments:

Day 7

100






Your mother: “You should consider a career in education. It is the best way to make a difference in the world.”
Your father: “You should consider a career in business. You will have infinite career options.”
Your best friend: “You should consider a career in information technology. No other degree concentration is as innovative.” Your grandmother: “You need to select a career you love and enjoy no matter the pay scale. If you love your work you will be happy.”
®

®

Create a 5- to 8-slide Microsoft PowerPoint presentation in which you evaluate the choice of a career from the above statements. Include the following:


Identify the two most compelling arguments that were presented. List one that had a logical error in it but which you still thought was important.



Were there any errors in truth with the arguments you selected? Describe what those errors were and what made them errors.



Were there any errors in validity with the arguments you selected? Describe what those errors were and what made them errors.



Revise the arguments to remove all errors. Restate them in a logically sound way.



Identify the steps you used in evaluating these arguments.
Will these steps work with all arguments? Why or why not?

Include detailed speaker notes to explain your slides.
Cite and reference any sourced material consistent with
Associate Level Writing Style Handbook guidelines.

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Week Nine: Communicating Your Ideas
Details

Due

Points

30

Objectives

9.1 Explain techniques to present ideas and persuade others effectively. 9.2 Recognize approaches to achieve effective writing and speaking.

Reading

Read Ch. 14 of The Art of Thinking.

Reading

Read this week’s Electronic Reserve Readings.

DQs &
Participation

Respond to the weekly discussion questions. Participate in class discussion. Post nongraded activities. In order to earn full points students must post at least six messages over the course of the week.
These messages must be spread out over at least three days. Your
DQ responses and nongraded activities will count toward your six posts. All
Week

Nongraded
Activities and
Preparation
Applications

Complete Application 14.1 at the end of Ch. 14 of The Art of Thinking.

All
Week

Write a 100- to 150-word response to the application.
Submit the exercise to the appropriate thread in the Main Forum for discussion. Doing so will count as a participation post. Feel free to comment on your peers’ postings as well since they are part of this week’s discussion.

Individual
Critical Thinking
Presentation

Review the “Are you a Critical Thinker” article from the Week One
Electronic Reserve Readings.

Day 7

150

Read the Critical Thinking Final Presentation document and complete one option.
The following resources may be of assistance when completing this assignment: 

®

®

Microsoft PowerPoint Tutorial:

Copyright
University of Phoenix® is a registered trademark of Apollo Group, Inc. in the United States and/or other countries.
Microsoft®, Windows®, and Windows NT® are registered trademarks of Microsoft Corporation in the United States and/or other countries.
All other company and product names are trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective companies. Use of these marks is not intended to imply endorsement, sponsorship, or affiliation.
Edited in accordance with University of Phoenix® editorial standards and practices.

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