Goal 2: Critical Thinking

Goal: To develop thinkers who are able to unify factual, creative, rational, and value sensitive modes of thought. Critical thinking will be taught and used throughout the liberal education curriculum in order to develop students' awareness of their own thinking and problem-solving procedures. To integrate new skills into their customary ways of thinking, students must be actively engaged in practicing thinking skills and applying them to open-ended problems.

LEP Objective: Identify, analyze, and critically evaluate reasoning in a variety of domains in order to develop well founded beliefs and engage in rational and effective action.  Students can meet this requirement through 1 approved course or experience.

Students will be able to:

  1. Gather factual information and apply it to a given problem in a manner that is relevant, clear, comprehensive, and conscious of possible bias in the information selected.

  2. Imagine and seek out a variety of possible goals, assumptions, interpretations, or perspectives which can give alternative meanings or solutions to given situations or problems

  3. Analyze the logical connections among the facts, goals, and implicit assumptions relevant to a problem or claim; generate and evaluate implications that follow from them.

  4. Recognize and articulate the value assumptions which underlie and affect decisions, interpretations, analyses, and evaluations made by ourselves and others.

Consistent with LEP Student Learning Outcomes, students will also demonstrate their ability to:

  • Distinguish between discourse that contains reasoning and that which does not.

  • Distinguish between different types of reasoning.

  • Analyze arguments, distinguishing premises and conclusions.

  • Evaluate inductive and deductive reasoning.

  • Apply basic logical techniques.

  • Identify and avoid fallacies.

Requirements  (1 course)

course (3): Concepts of Stars and the Universe, 3 Cr.
course (6): Rhetoric in Popular Culture, 3 Cr.
course: Argumentation and Advocacy, 3 Cr.
course (6): Rhetoric in Popular Culture, 3 Cr.
course (10):  Introduction to Environmental Engineering, 3 Cr.
course: Consumer Health, 3 Cr.
course: Critical Thinking in Academic Research, 3 Cr.
course: Critical Reasoning, 3 Cr.
course (4), Symbolic Logic, 3 Cr.
course: Introduction to Political and Legal Reasoning, 3 Cr.
course: Critical Reasoning: Issues and Events in American Politics, 3 Cr.