By Anne McLaughlin, Alicia McGill, and Matt Shipman
A recent study by North Carolina State University researchers finds that teaching critical thinking skills in a humanities course significantly reduces student beliefs in “pseudoscience” that is unsupported by facts.
“Given the national discussion of ‘fake news,’ it’s clear that critical thinking – and classes that teach critical thinking – are more important than ever,” says Anne McLaughlin, an associate professor of psychology at NC State and co-author of a paper describing the work.
“Fundamentally, we wanted to assess how intentional you have to be when teaching students critical thinking,” says Alicia McGill, an assistant professor of history at NC State and co-author of the paper. “We also wanted to explore how humanities classes can play a role and whether one can assess the extent to which critical thinking instruction actually results in improved critical thinking by students.
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