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Developing learner's employability skill of critical thinking through collaborative online discussion at tertiary institution

Ali, M. F. and Tahir, L. M. and Zulkifli, N. N. (2017) Developing learner's employability skill of critical thinking through collaborative online discussion at tertiary institution. Journal of Theoretical and Applied Information Technology, 95 (24). pp. 6833-6845. ISSN 1992-8645


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Various studies reported that Malaysian students at tertiary institutions were lack of certain employability skills namely critical thinking. Lack of critical thinking skills is identified when the students are unable to perform tasks, especially those of problem solving. Consequently, the students who lacked this skill were unemployed upon their graduation. A drastic approach to overcome this issue must be addressed. Instead of blaming unemployed graduates, the tertiary institutions with e-learning technology were urged to play a significant role. Through online forum discussions, the students were taught to use Socratic questions (Paul, 1993) as this would help them to develop critical thinking skill when they look deeper into the viewpoints, perspectives and evidence in analysing the assumptions (Walker, 2005). This study adopts a mixed-method case study approach. The quantitative data derived from Watkins and Corry’s (2005) questionaires measures the students’ e-learning readiness and their usage of online forum discussions. The qualitative data derived from the transcripts of the students’ online discussions explains how the students develop their critical thinking using Socratic questions. The transcripts were analysed in two stages using (1), the Socratic Question Prompts and (2), a content analysis approach of the Interaction Analysis Model by Gunawardena et. al. (1997). The findings indicated that students' critical thinking skills could be developed from collaborative learning through online forums. The outcome could be used to propose the best practice for lecturers at higher learning institutions to promote students to think critically through collaborative online discussion.

Item Type:Article
Uncontrolled Keywords:Online discussions, Socratic questioning prompt
Subjects:L Education > LB Theory and practice of education > LB2300 Higher Education
ID Code:76637
Deposited By: Fazli Masari
Deposited On:31 May 2018 17:25
Last Modified:31 May 2018 17:25

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