Kritiskt tänkande i klassrummet En studie av didaktiska val och manifesterat kritiskt tänkande i samhällskunskaps- och filosofiundervisning
Sammanfattning: Developing students’ ability to think critically is an important goal of Swedish upper secondary school education. The aim of this thesis is to describe and analyse critical thinking at the classroom level from a didactic perspective. Using participant observation and interviews, two groups of students and their two course teachers are being studied during two months. The groups study philosophy and social studies respectively. The thesis explores in what way critical thinking is manifested in the classroom and how the teachers view critical thinking in relation to their teaching. Didactic decisions and challenges are identified and discussed.The findings show that critical thinking is manifested in the classroom dialogue. Focus, relevance and precision are distinctive qualities of critical discussions. The teachers use different strategies to scaffold critical thinking, such as developing what the students say, questioning assumptions and supporting with distinctions. Some of the challenges facing the teachers are finding ways of assisting students to be independent in their thinking, disputing what they say without being perceived as biased and creating the right atmosphere in the group allowing for critical thinking to take place. It’s concluded that critical thinking at the classroom level is a highly complex phenomenon that involves more than just thinking skills which is the dominant view among researchers in the field.
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