Critical Thinking (CRIT)

CRIT 501  Introduction to Critical Inquiry  (4 Credits)  

Introduction to Critical Inquiry provides the foundation for an informed and meaningful college experience through the cultivation of intellectual curiosity. Through the study of media and popular culture and the completion of short writing assignments, students learn how to develop and scale a personally-motivated research question, refine their topic, determine effective search strategies for finding credible and appropriate information, and learning to recognize bias and logical fallacies. Important aspects of the research process are learning how to analyze different types of argument and to evaluate information sources from a variety of venues. Critical Inquiry fosters the self-awareness and intellectual perspective that are the hallmarks of well-educated persons and lifelong, engaged students in the twenty-first century.

Prerequisite(s): ENG 500 The Writing Process.

View Course Outcomes:

  1. Discuss the importance of intellectual curiosity and its relationship to their own thinking and learning process within the Granite State College academic community.
  2. Become more aware of their own thinking process and explore consistent methods for approaching critical inquiry.
  3. Recognize different types of argument and learn how to decipher and respond to logical fallacies.
  4. Learn how to develop and scale a personally-motivated research question, refine a topic, and determine effective search strategies for finding credible information sources appropriate to college learning.
  5. Distinguish among the modes of summary, opinion, and analysis.
  6. Responsibly and ethically document research with concern for academic integrity and the conventions of citation.
  7. Examine the ways the internet and other digital technology challenges current laws of copyright, free speech, and privacy.
  8. Understand complex relationships among ideas and take an informed position through engagement with civic discourse.

CRIT 602  Advanced Critical Analysis and Strategic Thinking  (4 Credits)  

Advanced Critical Analysis and Strategic Thinking is a course in recognizing multiple contexts for the study of a college major. Students identify and analyze factors outside of higher education that have an impact on the professional practice and academic study within their chosen field. Students use inductive reasoning techniques and research skills to access relevant information to strategize best practices for beginning their study of the major, preparing for professional advancement, or transitioning to graduate study.

Prerequisite(s): ENG 500 The Writing Process and CRIT 501 Introduction to Critical inquiry or equivalents. Computer proficiency is expected.

View Course Outcomes:

  1. Gain an awareness and understanding of various contexts for their chosen field of study and its associated professions, and identifies potential gaps in own knowledge.
  2. Apply the standard conventions of formal and informal academic discourse.
  3. Determine information needed to develop a critical inquiry question, and compare and evaluate relevant information based on selected validity criteria.
  4. Evaluate the educational and professional significance of research findings through the presentation of information using formal and informal approaches to written communication.
  5. Employ a full range of intellectual and practical strategies to enhance academic and professional advancement.
  6. Engage with other students in ways that facilitate discussion about and use positive communication strategies within the course’s community of practice.

CRIT 603  Critical Inquiry in Prior Learning Assessment  (4 Credits)  

This course is designed for adults who have identified prior experiential learning equivalent to outstanding degree requirements through a systematic process of goal-setting and self-assessment in the context of degree-planning. Students use the conceptual framework of critical inquiry to demonstrate this learning in an eportfolio. For each course-equivalent credit request, the portfolio will identify the context for the student's learning in the subject matter, trace the progression of the learning over time, and explain how the learning is equivalent to a Granite State College degree requirement. The student will demonstrate mastery of each learning outcome for the credit request and integrate the learning outcomes in a relevant personal case study in decision-making. Two credit requests that meet the criteria to be submitted to Academic Affairs for evaluation are required to pass CRIT 603.

Prerequisite(s): Full admission into a GSC degree program, CRIT 602 Advanced Critical Analysis and Strategic Thinking and an approved prior learning plan. NOTE: Students within 16 credits of their projected degree completion date are not eligible to take CRIT 603.

View Course Outcomes:

  1. Evaluate their experiential learning in the context of higher education.
  2. Demonstrate an understanding of the role of information literacy in fostering lifelong learning.
  3. Support assertions of college-level content and skill mastery with arguments that are clear, precise, logical, and carefully qualified.
  4. Analyze and evaluate the value and validity of supporting evidence for the credit requested.
  5. Organize, synthesize, and integrate the information needed to make the case for degree credit for experiential learning.