Thinking Critically and Understanding Empathically: Techniques for Teaching Adolescent Development.Report as inadecuate

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In an Adolescent Development course at the University of Wisconsin, La Crosse, activities are employed to encourage students to become active learners, to become critical consumers of information regarding adolescents, and to develop an empathetic understanding of adolescents and their experiences. One activity that promotes critical thinking skills involves an analysis of adolescent experience over three generations, with students interviewing individuals in different age groups and compiling reports of findings in small groups. In another activity, students critique professionally produced videos on adolescent experiences and adolescent sexuality, while other activities involve essays on adolescent sexuality and an end-of-term synthesis paper demonstrating overall knowledge and understanding of adolescents. The course also stresses the development of connected knowing, or the ability to understand and empathize with another point of view. Activities employed to promote connected knowing include asking students to reflect on personal experiences that relate to class materials, eliciting personal affective responses to test taking and to works of literature, and providing opportunities for personal interaction with individuals whose experiences reflect course content. A list of 10 teaching references including 2 films is attached. (MAB)

Descriptors: Active Learning, Adolescent Development, Classroom Techniques, Course Objectives, Critical Thinking, Empathy, Group Activities, Higher Education, Learning Activities, Psychology, Role of Education, Teaching Methods

Author: Johnson, Emily J.; Sullivan, Sara M.


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