Classroom debates : a tool to enhance critical thinking in science
Tawil, Martin A.
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The purpose of this study is to examine the effects of debating on the perception of students' critical thinking disposition. The participants were members in one of my Cornerstone Classes at Florida SouthWestern State College that was randomly selected. The data collected during this study were student surveys, student interviews, researcher observations, and pre and post of the California Critical Thinking Disposition Inventory. The researcher provided explicit instruction, conducted a pre-post California Critical Thinking Disposition Inventory, and facilitated two debates. The data collected included pre and post California Critical Thinking Disposition Inventory (CCTDI) test, observations, course evaluation, survey, and interviews. The overall results of the study showed that students benefited from the exercise of debating particularly when debating opposing points of view. Students' disposition to be critical thinkers improved as a result of debating. Debating, regardless of the topic, help enhance students' overall open-mindedness, inquisitiveness, analyticity, systematicity, and confidence of reasoning.