Faculty Publications

Title

Thinking skills: The question of generality

Document Type

Article

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Journal of Curriculum Studies

Volume

34

Issue

6

First Page

659

Last Page

678

Abstract

This paper examines the question of whether there are useful general thinking skills. It offers a working definition of 'thinking skill' and identifies ways in which this concept has been over-applied. Thinking skills, used across domains, are not inevitably weak as a result of the generality-power tradeoff. Admitting that thinking skills require domain-specific knowledge for their application, it is contended nonetheless that there are general thinking skills that involve substantial amounts of domain-independent knowledge. These skills usually address 'generic thinking tasks', common mental challenges that people face in many practical and intellectual endeavours, including the 'domain of practical affairs'. The educational implications of these findings are discussed. © 2002 Taylor & Francis Ltd.

Original Publication Date

12-1-2002

DOI of published version

10.1080/00220270110119905

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