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Perceptions of Portuguese university teachers about critical thinking educational practices


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Paper presented at the 1st International Conference on Technology and Innovation in Learning, Teaching and Education (TECH-EDU 2018), June 20-22, 2018, Thessaloniki, Greece.

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Perceptions of Portuguese university teachers about critical thinking educational practices

  1. 1. Perceptions of Portuguese university teachers about critical thinking educational practices Felicidade Morais, Helena Silva, Gonçalo Cruz, Daniela Pedrosa, Rita Payan-Carreira, Caroline Dominguez & Maria M. Nascimento
  2. 2. How CT is being fostered in Portuguese HEI?
  3. 3. Any account of the place of critical thinking in higher education needs to make sense, for example, of [...] the role of education in leading to individual and collective socio- political activism, the place of critical thinking in educating for citizenship, the role of critical thinking in relation to creativity, and so on. M. Davies, “A Model of Critical Thinking in Higher Education” CT is a major asset for graduates’ employability and successful integration in society CRITHINKEDU_O1, 2018
  4. 4. Facione 1990
  5. 5. Interviewed teachers (IT) Engineering / STEM Social Sciences Biomedical Sciences How can CT be promoted in HE? What type of interventions, teaching strategies, and evaluation methods are being used to promote CT? What challenges and limitations teachers have to face in CT instruction? Methodology-Interviews
  6. 6. Methodology-Analysis Analysis’ stages - Decontextualization - Recontextualization - Coding in pre-established categories - Description of results and quotes
  7. 7. Results&Discussion Question 1 – CT notion I understand it more by achieving a mental process that allows me to make better decisions, that allows me to solve problems, in a way that takes into account the perspectives of all, the various arguments, after a careful analysis and a comparison/analysis of the evidence, etc. Therefore, if this also requires working on self-confidence, curiosity, etc. Question 2 – CT aims 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 Others Analysis Self-regulation Evaluation Explanation Inference Interpretation Skills (n=21) 0 1 2 3 Self-confidence Motivation Systematicity Inquisitiveness Dispositions (n=4) Other skills Argumentation Decision making Synthesis Adaptability Group work Creative thinking Questioning
  8. 8. Results&Discussion Question 3 – Educational practices to foster CT Question 4 – Learning materials Overall Approach Infusion Immersion Type of intervention / Teaching Strategies n.º of quotes Lecture discussions (argumentation) 6 Authentic situations 5 Dialogue 5 Self study 5 Problem solving (inquiry) 4 Questioning 3 Group work 2 Role-playing 2 Self and peer assessment 2 Context-based learning 1 Cooperative Learning 1 Flipped classroom 1 Online peer review 1 Examples ArguQuest digital tool Articles / papers / videos / presentations Cards with generic questions Conceptual maps Hypothetical situations/cases Paper sheets Problem situations / cases Questions Rubrics for self or peer-assessment Socrative mobile app Templates to FRISCO grid and SWOT framework Written reports and oral presentation recordings
  9. 9. Results&Discussion Question 5 – Assessment methods We strive to give feedback during the process, to be formative rather than summative. (Interviewee)
  10. 10. Results&Discussion Question 6 – CT Challenges Question 7 – Barriers Critical thinking requires energy, and this energy is not much sought in our educational system and process. (…) So one of the main challenges is that the development of CT gives teachers work, but also gives students work, and this, to take students from inertia, to pull them to question, to argue, etc. (...) The very barrier is the teacher, because a teacher who is not trained or sensitized to CT, he/she will hardly develop it. (Interviewee) - CT as institutional priority - Institutional culture - Lack of University-Business cooperation in the curricula
  11. 11. Concluding…
  12. 12. Q U E S T I O N S ? This work was supported by the Critical Thinking Across the European Higher Education Curricula - CRITHINKEDU project, reference number 2016-1-PT01-KA203-022808, funded by the European Commission/EACEA, through the ERASMUS+ Programme. More information, please visit