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Singapore’s 21st Century education vision of Thinking Schools, Learning Nation has set the precedence for a change in mindset and teaching paradigm in our local schools and institutions of higher learning. In this issue, we bring to you a selection of articles by various educators, both local and foreign, on their experiences with the teaching of Thinking Skills.

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July 2002, Vol. 5 No. 4 Print Ready ArticlePrint-Ready
Thinking Skills in Education: Ideal and Real Academic Cultures
Dr Francis Adu-Febiri
Sociology Professor and Diversity Consultant
Camosun College and University of Victoria
Victoria, B.C., Canada
Thinking, that is, the ability to reason systematically with logic and evidence is a valuable human attribute. Thinking is learned and can help people become original, creative, and innovative problem-solvers. However, many educational systems do not systematically develop thinking skills in students. Continue reading

Fostering Thinking in Large-group Teaching and Small-group Tutorials
Associate Professor Agnes Chang Shook Cheong
Associate Dean/Post Graduate Diploma In Education
Psychological Studies Academic Group
National Institute Of Education, Nanyang Technological University
Undergraduates are assumed to be capable of creative and critical thinking, and problem-solving skills. With large classes of over a few hundred and over-crowded syllabuses, explicit teaching of thinking skills during lectures and tutorials is not considered a practical choice. Continue reading

Nurturing Thinking Skills
Dr Jan McNeil Mr Malkeet Singh
Lecturer, Centre for English Language Communication (CELC), National University of Singapore Biological Science and Mathematics Teacher,
Canberra Secondary School
Higher order thinking requires the manipulation of ideas and information in ways that derive new implications and meaning or modify existing ones. Through such processes as combining ideas and facts to hypothesise, generalise, synthesise, explain and arrive at interpretations or conclusions, students can be led to discover new meanings and solve problems. Continue reading

An Exercise in Thinking, Writing, and Rewriting
Professor Lee Gass
Department of Zoology,
University of British Columbia, Canada
2001 CASE Canadian Professor of the Year
Science teachers often complain about their students’ thinking and writing, but often do not know what to do to improve them. Here I describe an exercise that addresses both challenges at once with first year university students in a special programme. Continue reading