Structured Inquiry for Masters Students: A `Philosophical` Approach

David A Banks
InSITE 2002  •  Volume 2  •  2002
Feedback from three Masters courses in which students were required to produce assessments in the form of a ‘balanced argument’ suggested that a significant number of students found this to be an extremely difficult task. It would appear that they had not previously developed the ability to present a balanced and critical view of a topic, instead being more used to presenting a single, uncritical view that typically supported their own view of the issue at hand. Given the rapid growth and availability of information in general the ability to critically reflect on the value of data, information or argument is a skill that increasingly needs to be developed in order that sensible interpretations are applied to that information. This paper outlines an approach based upon the work of two philosophers that will be tested in future versions of the courses to help students explore and develop these skills.
teaching, philosophy, information systems, critical reflection, inquiry
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