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A high grade in an A’level in Ethics and Philosophy may be a good indicator of critical thinking as intelligence is identifiably linked to critical thinking (Mc Peck, 2016, p.35).Race (2014) argues in the end, it is the development of study skills, such as critical thinking that will align with academic success.
It is acknowledged that some subjects naturally have more of a tendency towards developing critical thinking such as Ethics and Philosophy, and perhaps entry requirements for student programmes should consider requesting specific subjects that nurture critical thinking.
However, dependent on the quality of teaching the student has previously experienced, there is no guarantee that an applicant has good critical thinking skills if they have for example studied an A’level in Ethics and Philosophy.
Therefore, it is important for higher education providers to ensure they support and develop students’ knowledge and skills in order for them to thrive, such as critical thinking skills.
Student engagement is an important issue in acquiring critical thinking skills; this can be influenced by many factors.
Students work hard and can often be disappointed when they do not achieve the high grades which they expect.
This in turn can affect their mental health (Moon, 2009, p.163-4).
A critical thinker is an individual who will question what s/he hears or reads, and in addition, has the understanding to be able to achieve an outcome through questioning (Mc Peck, 2016, p.32; Brookfield, 2012, p.9).
Critical thinking is a key concept well established within higher education (Moon, 2008, p.6).
The NSS requests the views of undergraduate final year students (National Student Survey, 2018a).
The NSS can affect recruitment as it provides future applicants with a view of the programme that considers a variety of elements including teaching, assessment and feedback and academic support (National Student Survey, 2018b). It can change future education for new students, wielding current students with a role of power and influence (Morgan, 2012, p.148).