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The paul elder model of critical thinking

Translate the paul elder model of critical thinking page from English. Print Page Change Text Size: T T T Applied Disciplines: Paul's model is briefly described and exemplified by questions engineers ask in practice. This paper describes the paul elder model of critical thinking exercises employing the model which are suitable for undergraduate and graduate engineering program. The intellect requires a voice. Engineers and scientists are quite comfortable working within the context of conceptual models.

We employ thermodynamic models, electrical models, mathematical models, computer models or even physical models fashioned from wood or clay. Here we apply a model to the way in which we think, an architecture whose purpose is aiding the analysis and evaluation of thought, that we might improve our thought.

The guide follows Paul's model, providing a framework for analyzing and evaluating engineering reports, designs, graphics, and entire disciplines. It articulates the questions that exemplify maturing engineering reasoning.

Several examples are provided of both excellence and disaster in engineering reasoning. The model is also applied to areas which touch engineering such as creativity, craftsmanship, and ethics. Lamentably, that same research indicates that few college professors can articulate a substantive understanding of critical thinking, and few can identify the elements of their teaching that specifically develop critical thinking.

Reference [6] appeals for the development of a substantive view of critical thinking both within higher education. The model that follows is not unique to engineering; indeed, its real power is its flexibility in adapting to any domain of life and thought. Other Thinkers' Guides apply this model to other disciplines. Here we apply a model of the way in which we think, an architecture whose purpose aides the the paul elder model of critical thinking and evaluation of thought, that we might improve our thought.

The model depicted in Figure 1 depicts Paul's model, which the guide develops, working from the base of the diagram up. Richard Paul's Critical Thinking Model. Furthermore, no engineer can claim perfect objectivity; their work is unavoidably influenced by strengths and weaknesses, education, experiences, attitudes, beliefs, and self-interest.

They avoid paths they associate with past mistakes and trudge down well worn paths that worked in the past. The profession engineer must cultivate personal and intellectual virtues. These virtues are not radically distinct from those sought by any maturing thinker. They determine the extent to which we think with insight and integrity, regardless of the subject.

Paul-Elder Critical Thinking Framework

The humble engineer asks: Does my experience really qualify me to work this issue? To what extent do my prejudices, attitudes or experiences bias my judgment? Am I open to consider novel approaches to this problem, and willing to learn and study where warranted?

The empathetic engineer asks: To what extent have I analyzed the beliefs I hold which may impede my ability to think critically? Do I demonstrate a willingness to yield my positions when sufficient evidence is presented against them?

To what extent am I willing to stand my ground against the majority despite ridicule? The intellectually courageous the paul elder model of critical thinking asks: Do I accurately represent viewpoints with which I disagree?

Critical Thinking Posters

Do I accurately represent their views? Do I appreciate insights in the technical views of others and prejudices in my own? To what extent do I expect of myself what I expect of others? Do what extent are there contradictions or inconsistencies in the way I deal with technical issues? To what extent do I strive to recognize and eliminate self-deception or self-interest when reasoning through engineering issues?

The persevering engineer asks: Am I willing to work my way through complexities in an engineering issue or do I tend to give up when challenged? Can I think of a difficult engineering problem in which I have demonstrated patience and tenacity? Engineers with confidence in reason ask: Am I willing to change my position when the evidence leads to a more reasonable position? Do I adhere to technical principles and evidence when persuading others of my position or do I distort matters to support my position?

Do I encourage others to come to their own technical conclusions or do I try to coerce agreement? Engineers with intellectual autonomy ask: Am I willing to stand alone against irrational criticism? The fair-minded engineer asks: Am I giving dissenting opinions adequate consideration?

Has self-interest or bias clouded my the paul elder model of critical thinking Those eight elements provide a framework for the paul elder model of critical thinking either our own thinking or the thinking of others such as in technical reports or designs. The questions below exemplify those posed by the mature engineering thinker, grouped according to the element of thinking upon which they touch. Point of View A design and manufacturing point of view is typically presumed-What other Points of View deserve consideration?

Point of View What environmental or operating conditions are assumed? What programmatic, financial, market, or technical risks are being accepted? What maturity level or maturation timeline is assumed for emerging technologies? What happens if we relax or discard an assumption? Information What is the source of supporting information? What information do we lack?

How can we get it? What experiments should be conducted? Have we considered all relevant sources? Concepts What concepts are applicable to this problem? Are there competing models? What emerging theory might provide insight?

What available or emerging technologies are appropriate? Inferences What is the set of viable candidate solutions? Is there another way to interpret the information? Is the conclusion practicable and affordable? Implications What are the market implications of the technology? Are there disposal, or environmental issues? What are the implications of product failure? The standards are not unique to engineering, but are universal to all domains of thinking. To think professionally as an engineer entails having command of these standards.

While there are a number of universal standards, we focus here on some of the most significant. Specific clarity questions in engineering include: Have the paul elder model of critical thinking and symbols been clearly defined? Have the assumptions been clearly stated? Accuracy What is your confidence in that data? Has the test equipment been calibrated? How have simulation models been validated? Have assumptions been challenged for legitimacy? Precision What are acceptable the paul elder model of critical thinking for diverse pieces of information?

What are the error bars or confidence bounds on experimental, handbook or analytical data? Relevance Engineers might ask questions of relevance: Have all relevant factors been weighed e. Are there unnecessary details obscuring the dominant factors? Has irrelevant data been included? Have important interrelationships been identified and studied? Have features and capabilities and hence cost been included which the customer neither needs nor wants?

Depth Do models have adequate complexity and detail? At what threshold does detail or additional features stop adding value? Breadth For the engineer, specific breadth questions include: Have the full range of options been explored? Have interactions with other systems been fully considered? What if the environment is other than we had expected e. Logical Validity For the engineer, specific logic questions include: