Critical thinking symposium

Teaching critical thinking in a post-truth world
Thursday, April 26, 2018

Critical thinking is one of the most important higher order skills acquired in a college education, but it is also one of the most difficult to define, teach, assess, and link to demonstrable behaviours. This celebration of teaching and learning welcomes presentations that discuss how MHC faculty are designing learning experiences to foster a skill students require more than ever.

For the purposes of this symposium, we are using the following definition:

We understand critical thinking to be purposeful, self-regulatory judgment explanation of the evidential, conceptual, methodological, criteriological, which results in interpretation, analysis, evaluation, and inference, as well as or contextual considerations upon which that judgment is based. CT is essential as a tool of inquiry. As such, CT is a liberating force in education and a powerful resource in one's personal and civic life. While not synonymous with good thinking, CT is a pervasive and self-rectifying human phenomenon. The ideal critical thinker is habitually inquisitive, well-informed, trustful of reason, open-minded, flexible, fair-minded in evaluation, honest in facing personal biases, prudent in making judgments, willing to reconsider, clear about issues, orderly in complex matters, diligent in seeking relevant information, reasonable in the selection of criteria, focused in inquiry, and persistent in seeking results which are as precise as the subject and the circumstances of inquiry permit. Thus, educating good critical thinkers means working toward this ideal. It combines developing CT skills with nurturing those dispositions which consistently yield useful insights and which are the basis of a rational and democratic society. (Facione, 1990, p. 2)

This broad and inclusive topic allows for faculty from all disciplines to showcase how they are equipping students to inquire, make judgments, and be prepared for life in a super-complex society.

Facione, P. A. (1990). Critical Thinking: A statement of expert consensus for purposes of educational assessment and instruction. Research findings and recommendations. American Philosophical Association


  • 20 minute presentations will be followed with 5 minutes for question and answer.
  • To submit a proposal, include your name, email, and the presentation title along with a 250 word description of the talk.
  • Submissions are due by February 28, 2018.
  • Presenters will be notified by March 15, 2018.

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