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12/08/2014

Winthrop Praised for Its Integration of Critical Thinking Throughout Its Curriculum

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 In announcing Winthrop’s formal selection as an affiliated institution, foundation President Linda Elder wrote that Winthrop is taking the lead “in a way that no other university has done to present, in advancing a fair-minded conception of critical thinking throughout the intellectual community.”
 For the past decade, Winthrop has placed critical thinking at the heart of its liberal arts education.

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Amanda Hiner
ROCK HILL, SOUTH CAROLINA – Winthrop University is one of only eight U.S. institutions recently cited as a model program by the Critical Thinking Foundation due to the institution’s integration of critical thinking across its curriculum.

Linda Elder, president and co-founder of the Berkeley, California, foundation, said her organization is gratified by Winthrop’s work. In announcing Winthrop’s formal selection as an affiliated institution, she wrote that Winthrop is taking the lead “in a way that no other university has done to present, in advancing a fair-minded conception of critical thinking throughout the intellectual community.”

Winthrop is listed prominently on the foundation’s web site.

For the past decade, Winthrop has placed critical thinking at the heart of its liberal arts education. Winthrop students take CRTW 201: “Critical Reading, Thinking, and Writing,” a rigorous, writing-intensive course with instruction in fundamental components of academic research and advanced composition. It focuses on critical reading strategies and the close analysis of claims and evidence in non-fiction prose texts.

The course, which is devoted to the Paulian model of critical thinking, has had pervasive, transformative effects at Winthrop. It has created an academic environment where every student is trained in the intellectual strategies of critical thinking and is encouraged to develop the intellectual habits and values of the strong-sense, Socratic critical thinker. Winthrop students are equipped to become thoughtful, responsible and fair-minded ethical citizens.

Amanda Hiner, a Winthrop assistant professor of English and coordinator of its critical reading, thinking and writing program, will talk about Winthrop’s efforts as a focal session speaker at the foundation’s 35th international conference set for July 25-30 in Berkeley. The conference theme is “Cultivating World Justice and Freedom of Thought Through Educational and Social Reform.”

For more information, contact Judy Longshaw, news and media services manager, at 803/323-2404 or e-mail her at longshawj@winthrop.edu.

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