INVESTIGATING TEACHERS’ PERCEPTIONS OF THEIR OWN PRACTICES TO IMPROVE STUDENTS’ CRITICAL THINKING IN SECONDARY SCHOOLS IN SAUDI ARABIA

Keywords: Critical thinking ability, Teaching practices, Students, Secondary schools

Abstract

This study aims to investigate teachers’ perceptions of strategies they adopt to help their learners develop their critical thinking skills and how coherent their classroom practices are with their perceptions. The study was conducted with teachers in secondary schools in Saudi Arabia. Primary data in the form of questionnaire results, classroom observation notes and interviews was gathered to attain this goal. A total of three all-male schools participated in the study with 82 teachers completing the questionnaire, and 12 teachers (four from each school) being interviewed and observed during their classroom work. The findings suggest that positing open-ended questions to the class, focusing on performance tasks, and comparing and contrasting different perspectives were the most beneficial teaching strategies to foster students’ critical thinking skills. The findings also highlight that these capabilities are affected not only by the teaching practices, but also by other factors related to the broader academic environment, such as school resources. The results of the present study may help secondary teachers to select and implement teaching strategies and consider factors that may lead to an improvement in students’ critical thinking skills. While this study focuses exclusively on teachers working in the secondary schools in Saudi Arabia, some of the findings can be potentially transferable to other similar educational contexts.

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Published
2018-12-20
How to Cite
Almulla, M. (2018). INVESTIGATING TEACHERS’ PERCEPTIONS OF THEIR OWN PRACTICES TO IMPROVE STUDENTS’ CRITICAL THINKING IN SECONDARY SCHOOLS IN SAUDI ARABIA. International Journal of Cognitive Research in Science, Engineering and Education (IJCRSEE), 6(3), 15-27. https://doi.org/10.5937/ijcrsee1803015A