Teaching Higher Order Thinking To Psychology Students

in Skill
High school and college level psychology students are required to learn higher order thinking skills and strategies, which enable them to analyze, reason, and problem solve in the world of psychology and psychological research. Higher order thinking skills differ from conventional learning processes in several distinct ways.

First, higher order thinking skills require students to think beyond the basic regurgitation of knowledge that many educational forms ask for. Instead of asking for the capitol city of Belgium, students are asked to analyze psychology test results from students in Brussels. They may be asked to predict scholastic and career outlook for the testers, or they may join into a discussion on how the historical significance of Belgium has impacted teenagers in that country.

Bloom's Taxonomy of Learning can be rather daunting to teach, since there are so many things to deal with. A somewhat easier version to teach is a collapsed version of the Marzano Model for Higher Order Thinking Skills, created by North Carolina Department of Public Instructions. In this model, you can focus on teaching seven main sills rather than the original eight skills and thinking patterns. This model focuses on helping psychology students develop higher thinking skills in the following areas: teaching application skills (helping students learn to apply knowledge to the situation, even when it may not seem to be directly related to the task at hand), teaching organizing skills (including learning how to classify groups, comparing similarities and differences), teaching analysis skills (which including learning to classify and identify individual components of a whole and determining relationships and identifying patterns), learning how to assimilate new knowledge (such as learning how to combine new procedures, fresh material, and new raw information with information and knowledge that they already know), teaching evaluation skills (which requires students to create criteria for evaluation, fact checking, research methods and tests results, and assessing the quality and accuracy of knowledge), generation skills (which helps students learn how to logically infer, predict, and elaborate on ideas or knowledge that they already know to be true), and integration and synthesis skills (which teaches students how to summarize and edit through large quantities of information to find the main point or the most important materials, as well as learning how to create new information by combine old knowledge with new material).

This model of teaching higher order thinking skills is an effective approach that simplifies some of the more complicated materials into concise and meaningful theories that can be brought to the classroom.
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Art Gib has 1 articles online


GLN Consulting is an independent, online consulting service for teachers of psychology to help improve higher order thinking. They offer a service that teachers of psychology are unlikely to find anywhere else. (http://www.glnconsulting.info)

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Teaching Higher Order Thinking To Psychology Students

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This article was published on 2010/11/05