Increasing the Critical Thinking of TESOL Students in Asynchronous Online Discussions

ID: 55184 Type: Full Paper
  1. Esther Smidt, West Chester University, United States
  2. Timothy Kochem, Iowa State University, United States
  3. Emily Dachroeden, West Chester University, United States

Thursday, July 11 2:30 PM-3:00 PM Location: Room 123 View on map

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Abstract: Although asynchronous discussion has become ubiquitous in online learning, ensuring the practice of higher order thinking skills in this medium can be challenging. Therefore, using the Community of Inquiry framework (Garrison, Anderson, & Archer, 2000), this study investigates the presence of higher order thinking in the discussion threads of a TESOL course. The discussions were analyzed using the Community of Inquiry framework, the Practical Inquiry Model, and content analysis. Through this analysis, we identified a number of common themes: (1) the effectiveness of the self-labeling of posts in terms of the implementation of cognitive phases, (2) a general progression of comfort between student-student interactions, and (3) the effects of time and experience on collaborative learning. These insights provide an infrastructure for educators to further develop the use of higher order thinking skills in discussion board forums.


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