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English

Core Writing Courses

Critical Reading, Thinking, And Writing (CRTW) 201

CRTW 201 focuses on critical reading, critical thinking, and deliberative/argumentative writing. The class builds on skills acquired in WRIT 101 and refined in HMXP 102. Successful critical thinking employs both inductive and deductive reasoning, draws upon primary and secondary resources for evidence and support, evaluates multiple viewpoints and methods, considers both the immediate and the long-term consequences of actions, avoids errors in logic and method, and recognizes the limitations that cultural experiences and individual temperaments place on our perceptions. In this course you will develop and strengthen your critical thinking skills through the analysis of extended works of mature prose and demonstrate those improved skills through both writing and speaking assignments.

While this course is predominantly a writing course, it uses critical reading and critical thinking as the springboards for the deliberative writing students produce. Critical thinking, as this course defines it, is the process used to identify a problem, discover the possible causes of the problem, consider various approaches to the problem, gather and evaluate opinions and evidence concerning the problem, develop strategies for solving the problem, and propose and defend a solution or partial solution to the problem. Along with reading and writing, it is one of the key tools by which you make the information you gain in your college education your own.

Requirement

Human beings are innate problem solvers; this course will encourage thought that is more deliberate, analytical, thorough, informed, and creative. Because critical thinking skills are a University-Level learning competency at Winthrop, CRTW was incorporated into the revised General Education program as a way to ensure that students have a solid foundation in critical skills as they move into advanced coursework in their majors. Students must earn a C- or better in this class to complete this requirement of the General Education Core.

Goals

These are the expected goals for all students taking CRTW 201:

  • To demonstrate that the complex process of critical thinking is a part of all we do and that the process relies on such skills as observing, listening, reading, and writing.

  • To use writing, reading, speaking, and critical thinking to foster intellectual growth in an academic environment.

  • To recognize critical thinking and problem solving strategies in different academic disciplines and for different audiences.

  • To evaluate arguments, evidence, and the contexts in which they appear.

  • To prepare for writing by carefully analyzing evidence.

  •  To plan, organize, and develop essays based on introspection, general observation, deliberation, research, and the critical reading of mature prose texts drawn from varied disciplines.

  • To recognize individual writing voices and learn how those voices can be adapted to fit different audiences and rhetorical situations.

  • To revise effectively by completely rethinking, restructuring, and rewriting essays.

  • To demonstrate improved oral communication skills in class discussions and small group activities.

Faculty should consult Dr. Amanda Hiner for a link to a password-protected site of faculty resources for teaching CRTW 201.

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