Module Information

Module Identifier
EL10120
Module Title
Critical Thinking and Writing
Academic Year
2017/2018
Co-ordinator
Semester
Semester 1
Reading List
Other Staff

Course Delivery

Delivery Type Delivery length / details
Lecture 10 x 1 Hour Lectures
Seminar 10 x 1 Hour Seminars
 

Assessment

Assessment Type Assessment length / details Proportion
Semester Assessment Assessed by a 1500-word assignment on "Ways of Thinking (Modern Languages)"  30%
Semester Assessment Assessed by a 1500-word assignment on "Ways of Understanding the Past (History/Welsh History)"  35%
Semester Assessment Assessed by a 1500-word assignment on "Ways of Seeing (Art/Media)"  35%
Supplementary Assessment Resubmit failed assessment "Ways of Thinking"  30%
Supplementary Assessment Resubmit failed assessment "Ways of Understanding the Past "  35%
Supplementary Assessment Resubmit failed assessment "Ways of Seeing"  35%

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this module students should be able to:

(1) Identify different forms of argument and evidence, and valid conclusions arising from them, and have made significant progress towards using them effectively in writing.
(2) Demonstrate a grasp of the purposes of investigating of the past, and have made significant progress in written work towards balancing the perspectives of experiential, historiographical, and postmemorial approaches.
(3) Demonstrate an awareness of some of the advantages and problems of using visual material as evidence, and have made significant progress in written work in using such material evidentially.

Aims

The objective of this module is to develop students’ critical thinking and writing, essential to any degree but especially important for students of a Liberal Arts Scheme. To achieve this, it considers, in broad terms, how to present an argument, how to assemble and order evidence and data, and how to move from these to establishing valid and significant conclusions. It then builds on this foundation to consider one specific area of enquiry (that of understanding the past), and one specific method of enquiry (that of using visual evidence).

To introduce students to the types, stages, and processes of Critical Thinking.

To introduce students to the work of selected critical thinkers and their texts.

To develop students’ critical thinking and writing skills.

Brief description

This module is divided into three stages of three weeks each, which will build upon one another. Stage 1 introduces students to three key aspects of critical thinking and writing. Stage 2 builds on this in the context of how we learn about, and from, the past, and Stage 3 considers the nature and scope of visual elements in perceiving, recording, and constructing our social world.

The module will be taught as a one-hour lecture/presentation per week, with a linked weekly seminar/workshop. Students will undertake a significant number of hours of independent study each week, developing their critical thinking.

For students registered for BA Liberal Arts, this module forms the first half of the first year core course. It is followed in semester two by EL10220 Language in the Modern World.

Content

Weekly Programme: in weeks 1 - 9 inclusive there will be two hours contact time per week, the first hour being a lecture-style presentation, and the second being tutor-guided discussion and/or workshop tasks which help students to engage actively with the material. The two hours of contact time in week 10 will be devoted to an open forum and discussion.

Indicative list of weekly sessions and department delivering each stage of the module:

Stage 1: Ways of Thinking (Modern Languages)
1. Dialectics - the process of presenting an argument
2. Analysis - varieties of evidence and data
3. Synthesis - goals and conclusions

Stage 2: Ways of Understanding the Past (History /Welsh History)
4. What is history? - the methods and purposes of historical investigation
5. Memory and Evidence - the testimony of experience and historiography
6. Postmemory - inherited, collective, and generational notions of the past

Stage 3: Ways of Seeing (Art/Media)
7. Ways of Seeing - is seeing believing?
8. Reading Images - how media mediate social reality
9. Points of View - presenting an argument visually
10. Overview forum and discussion

Module Skills

Skills Type Skills details
Application of Number N/A
Communication will be developed in written work and discussion work
Improving own Learning and Performance will be developed as a result of feedback and response
Information Technology will be developed in related study and research work
Personal Development and Career planning Personal development in writing, thinking and arguing
Problem solving will be developed in relation to assessment tasks and questions
Research skills will be developed in the written assessments
Subject Specific Skills Reasoning, interpreting evidence, and constructing a logical argument in written and oral form
Team work will be developed in small-group seminar activities

Notes

This module is at CQFW Level 4