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Learning outcomes and critical thinking – good intentions in conflict
University of Borås, Faculty of Librarianship, Information, Education and IT.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-4005-310X
School of Public Administration, University of Gothenburg.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-0787-1880
2018 (English)In: Studies in Higher Education, ISSN 0307-5079, E-ISSN 1470-174XArticle in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The notion of critical thinking and its theoretical complexity are used as a case for an epistemological critique of the model of intended learning outcomes. The conclusion is that three problems of learning outcomes, previously discussed in the literature, become even more challenging when seen in the light of critical thinking. The first problem concerns interpretations, as the use of learning outcomes is dependent on advanced but implicit interpretative frameworks. The second is the problem of educational goals that cannot be expressed through learning outcomes, and the third is the risk that learning outcomes may establish a ceiling for student ambitions. It is argued that the example of critical thinking shows the seriousness of the epistemological critique of learning outcomes and how the use of learning outcomes can divert teachers’ and students’ attention away from important goals.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2018.
Keywords [en]
Critical thinking, learning outcomes, purposes of education, student experience, curriculum
National Category
Educational Sciences
Research subject
Teacher Education and Education Work
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hb:diva-14764DOI: 10.1080/03075079.2018.1486813Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85048742355OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hb-14764DiVA, id: diva2:1233314
Available from: 2018-07-17 Created: 2018-07-17 Last updated: 2018-07-30Bibliographically approved

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Erikson, Martin GErikson, Malgorzata
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CiteExportLink to record
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  • apa
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