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Incorporating critical thinking into an engineering undergraduate learning environment


Adair, D and Jaeger, M, Incorporating critical thinking into an engineering undergraduate learning environment, International Journal of Higher Education, 5, (2) pp. 23-39. ISSN 1927-6044 (2016) [Refereed Article]


Copyright Statement

Copyright 2016 the authors. Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution License 3.0

DOI: doi:10.5430/ijhe.v5n2p23


Critical thinking extends to all aspects of professional engineering, especially in technical development, and, since the introduction of the ABET 2000 criteria, there has been an increased emphasis in engineering education on the development of critical thinking skills. What is hoped for is that the students obtain critical thinking skills to complement their abundant logical thinking skills. Critical thinking is a developmental skill that cannot be taught simply by traditional methods, i.e., step-by-step instruction followed by repetitive skills, as used for logical thinking skills. The research and development reported here is concerned with outlining how students first can be alerted to what critical thinking is, and how critical thinking can be nurtured through practical experience with appropriate guidance and reinforcement. The module ‘Introduction to Fluid Mechanics’ has been selected to demonstrate how formal critical thinking components may be introduced with the development of principles of logic and an obligatory problem solving procedure. A method of assessment during various phases of critical thinking, i.e., initial design or set-up, testing of method or prototype, and evaluation of the results, of open-ended assignments in engineering for each year of the undergraduate course has been developed.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:critical thinking, undergraduate, learning environment, assessment
Research Division:Engineering
Research Group:Other engineering
Research Field:Other engineering not elsewhere classified
Objective Division:Education and Training
Objective Group:Learner and learning
Objective Field:Learner and learning not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:Adair, D (Dr Desmond Adair)
UTAS Author:Jaeger, M (Dr Martin Jaeger)
ID Code:122575
Year Published:2016
Deposited By:Engineering
Deposited On:2017-11-19
Last Modified:2018-01-15
Downloads:138 View Download Statistics

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