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How Can I Design Critical Thinking into My Course?

Presenters: Linda B. Nilson, Ph.D., Director of Teaching Effectiveness and Innovation, Clemson University

This course is worth 1 hour (0.1 CEU) of professional development. A certificate of completion can be printed once the program has been completed.


About this Course


How can you incorporate critical thinking into your course design?

Critical thinking is an often misunderstood cognitive skill. Faculty might think they are teaching it when, in fact, they are not. The prevailing literature, which is fragmented and abstract, exacerbates the issue and can fail to explain how to apply and integrate critical thinking into a course of study.

How Can I Design Critical Thinking into My Course? helps faculty define critical thinking when designing or redesigning courses, and identify the type of content conducive to practicing critical thinking. This 20-Minute Mentor presents both general critical thinking skills and discipline-specific student learning outcomes.


The presenter presents this video and gives questions for you to answer to help incorporate critical thinking into your course design.

After watching the 20-Minute Mentor, you will be able to:

· Explain what critical thinking is (and is not)

· Identify the course content suitable for teaching critical thinking

· Write assessable critical thinking student learning outcomes that are compatible with and make sense in your discipline

· Integrate critical thinking into the design of your new or existing courses


How Can I Design Critical Thinking into My Course? examines how critical thinking can be incorporated into a wide variety of disciplines. Learn to assess what content lends itself to critical-thinking-based learning outcomes and how to use practical tools for building or rebuilding your courses to achieve those outcomes.

The presenter presents a brief overview of the differing critical thinking perspectives and the common threads among them. Through this 20-Minute Mentor, you will learn to:

· Resist getting confused or discouraged by the different critical thinking frameworks in the literature

· Trust in and proceed from the points of overlap/agreement among the different frameworks

· Identify course content that makes claims that may or may not be valid, complete, or the best possible; this content is most suitable for teaching critical thinking

· Follow the best practices for formulating good (assessable) student learning outcomes in writing critical thinking outcomes

Adapt the discipline-relevant outcomes provided to your own courses