The purpose of this activity is to discuss the cognitive development stages of critical thinking.  You will review the stages and determine your own place within it.

In Chapter 1 of your textbook, as presented in  Highlights carefully review the three stages of cognitive development in college students.  Examine the levels that Sheese and Radovanovic say represent our cognitive development.  Take notes on how these stages might be applied to developing your own critical thinking strategies.  This assignment will be an integral component of your 4-part project for this course. This activity aligns with module outcome 1. These questions are adapted from  Stop & Assess Activities.


Highlights of Cognitive Development in College Students

Keep the following materials in mind as you participate in this module’s discussion activities.

Stage 1: Dualism

· There are right and wrong answers. Authorities know the right answers.

Transition to Stage 2

· There are some uncertainties and different opinions, but these are temporary.

Stage 2: Relativism

· When the authorities don’t have the right answers, everyone has a right to his or her own opinion; there are no right or wrong answers.

Transition to Stage 3

· All thinking is contextual and relative but not equally valid.

Stage 3: Commitment

· I should not just blindly follow or oppose authority. I need to orient myself in an uncertain world and make a decision or commitment.

Answer  the following discussion questions:

1. Most college students do not make the transition to the third, or commitment, stage of cognitive development. Why do you think this is so? Discuss ways in which the college curriculum in general might be restructured to encourage cognitive growth in students.

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