You are on page 1of 6

Norfolk State University Department of Interdisciplinary Studies INT 322 Approaches to Critical Analysis Spring, 2011 3 Credit Hour

r Course Online

Instructor: Denise Snowden Langley Office Location: BMH C104 Office Hours: MWF 9:30 A.M. 1:00 P.M. 3:00 P.M. 5:00 P.M. TTH 8:00 11:00 - (By appointment only) 11:00 A.M. 12:00 Noon 3:00 P.M. 5:00 P.M. (By appointment only) Office Phone: (757) 823-9490 Office Fax: (757) 823-8602 Email: dalangley@nsu.edu Pre-requisite: INT 308 Introduction to Interdisciplinary Studies (strongly recommended) Primary Methods of Instruction This class is an asynchronous online class. All class discussions, presentations, handouts, assignments and procedures for participating in this class are online. The information will employ critical thinking strategies. Therefore, the instructor will present and attempt to clearly state information for learners to critically reflect upon and review, at their own pace. A variety of writing activities will be employed to promote critical thinking. Consequently, it is imperative that students have working knowledge of the computer and blackboard applications, in order to be successful in this class. Please check course documents for Proctor Approval Application and frequently asked questions. Course Description Thinking is any mental activity that helps formulate or solve a problem, make a decision, or fulfill a desire to understand. It is a searching for answers, a reaching for meaning (Ruggiero, 2007). Therefore, it is the examination of how characteristic logical constructs are employed in reading, writing, and speech acts, modeling and application of modes of analysis that develop critical thinking skills and flexible orientation towards reading and writing.

What is Interdisciplinary Studies? An area of study that provides students with a broad background in many disciplines including social sciences, literature, biology, chemistry, the arts, mathematics and many other subjects. The field of critical thinking is of necessity to interdisciplinarity because the human mind is far too complex to understand itself in any one dimensional way. Course Rationale Critical thinking is the cornerstone of higher education as well as the hallmark of an educated person. Therefore, it is rational to say that the thinking process is such an integral part of who we are as people. The prospect of expanding students thinking implies that expanding who they are as human is basis enough for offering the course. Introducing students to critical thinking is needed in higher education because it fosters sophisticated intellectual and language abilities. This course will allow students to apply their evolving thinking abilities to a variety of life experiences.

Course Goals/ Learning Outcomes Students will be able to think critically and acquire the concept of reading as a thinking activity. Students will understand the reciprocal relationship between thought and language, between the process of thinking and the process of writing. Students will explore and discover ideas, both individually and in dialogue with others. Students will be able to exhibit their thoughts and critical thinking patterns in the form of essays. Students will be able to understand the organizational structures and thinking patterns that writers use to create and express meaning, such as classification, definition casual and process analysis and argumentation. Students will be able to solve problems and make the best choices in their academic, professional, and personal lives. Students will participate in open class discussions as to develop interest in certain issues and develop the ability to think.

Students will be able to solve problems, analyze issues, recognize different perspectives, recognize inferences and judgments and evaluate and construct arguments in written and oral form.

Course Materials/Require Textbook/Supplementary Reading Ruggiero, V. R. (2007). The art of thinking: a guide to critical and creative thought, (10th Ed.) Pearson and Longman, New York. Supplementary Reading Please refer to website: http://www.criticalthinking.org Barnet, S., & Bedau, H. (2007). Critical Thinking, Reading, and Writing: A Brief Guide to Argument. New York: Bedford/St. Martin's Press. Browne, M. N., & Keeley, S. M. (1998). Asking the Right Questions: A Guide to Critical Thinking. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice-Hall. McWhorter, K. T. (Ed.) (2008). Study and Critical Thinking Skills in College (6th ed.). New York: Pearson. Related University-Wide and Course Specific Requirements Students will practice four of the Commonwealth of Virginia-mandated competencies by participating in the following: Critical Thinking requires that students think actively, analyze issues, discuss ideas in an organized way, and support diverse perspectives with reasons and evidence. Writing skills: students will be able to exhibit their thoughts in the form of essays, following the model of the EWC. Technological literacy will be assessed when students submit assignments using the computer and various word-processing software. Oral Communication will be demonstrated during class participation and in group discussions and/or discussion boards, blogs or skype. Policy on Academic Integrity Students are expected to be truthful and to abide by a standard code of morals, ethics and integrity--this is to be displayed in class conduct and evident in course assignments, materials and presentations submitted by students. Plagiarism is defined as using other

peoples work as your own without crediting them, including, but not limited to: copying others notes, exams, essays, and information, quoting and paraphrasing others ideas without giving them credit and proper documentation; using information from the internet without properly citing sources, website (URL), author, date, etc. Plagiarism is a form of cheating and will result in an assignment grade of F and possibly an overall course grade of F. Students should follow the academic integrity policy of the University (see University catalog and Student Handbook) and the Department of Interdisciplinary Studies Student Handbook. Attendance Students are expected to engage in 15 weeks of learning. They are expected to participate in class online discussions, complete all assignments which may include reading course textbooks and any additional resources that may be assigned. Failure to submit all assignment, homework, tests, and meeting assigned deadlines will result in failure of course. All students are expected to check frequently for announcements and any posted assignments. Respect You will be exposed to a variety of viewpoints, values and opinions in college that will differ from your own. All students in this class should feel comfortable enough to participate actively and express their viewpoints and concerns. You are an important part of creating an atmosphere that makes that possible. Quizzes Quizzes may be given at any time during the course of the semester, based on assignments, handouts, assigned University activities and discussion boards. Submission of Assignments Assignments are due as scheduled. If you envision a problem, discuss with the instructor well in advance of due date. You will be allowed to make up assignments, if an official university excuse is provided for dates in question. Format for submitting assignments: Students are to type all assignments, using font sizes not smaller than 12 pitch and not larger than 14. All essays and other assignments will be typewritten on standard 8 by 11 inch white paper. Leave a margin of 1 inch around the paper; all assignments are to be doubled-spaced. Length of assignments may vary, depending on the assignment; if documentation or citations are required, please use the 6th Edition of the American Psychological Association Manual (APA). Further, students place their names, course current enrolled in, the date assignment is due, assignment number, and the instructors name on all assignments. An automatic deduction will take place, if omitted.

Grading Student performance and progress will be evaluated on the basis of homework, class participation, quizzes and test, debate/group performance (online discussions), papers, and final examination. Extra credit will be considered, if a student is borderline-failing. Grading Scale: A = 94 100 B- = 78 81 D+ = 62 65 A- = 90 93 C+ = 74 77 D = 58 61 B+ = 86 89 C = 70 73* D- = 54 57 B = 82 85 C- = 66 69 F = 0 53

THIS COURSE REQUIRES A MINIMUM GRADE OF C IN ORDER TO PASS, NOT A C-. Discussion Boards Quizzes Papers/Assignments and Weekly Activities Final Assignments Total 20% 20% 40% 20% 100%

The instructor reserves the right to revise the grading criteria as appropriate and will make reasonable attempts to notify students. NSU E-MAIL Policy Students should check their official MYNSU website and NSU Email addresses each day for vital information from the University, instructors, and/or classmates. Blackboard Instructions Students should go to the NSU homepage (www.nsu.edu) to log on to Blackboard. Click on the Blackboard indicator. Log-in instructions should appear on the screen that comes up. Contact me or the Office of Information Technology (OIT) immediately, if you have problems logging on. Policy on Disabilities In accordance with section 504 of the 1973 Rehabilitation Act and the American with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990, any student with a disability or who thinks he/she may have a disability to please make contact with the Supporting Students through Disability Services (SSDS) office. Location: Contact Person: L.B. Brooks Library, room 240, Assisted Tech Lab Marian E. Shepherd, Coordinator

Telephone: Email:

757 823-2014 mshepherd@nsu.edu

University Assessment Statement As part of NSUs commitment to provide the environment and resources needed for success, students may be required to participate in a number of university-wide assessment activities. The activities may include test, surveys, focus groups and interviews, and portfolio reviews. The primary purpose of the assessment activities is to determine the extent to which the Universitys programs and services maintain a high level of quality and meet the needs of students. Students will not be identified in the analysis of results. Unless indicated otherwise by the instructor, results from University assessment activities will not be computed in students grades. Course Disclaimer It is the students responsibility to read the syllabus. It is a contract between the instructor and the students regarding responsibilities and expectations. However, the instructor reserves the right to alter and/or change parts of the course at any time during the semester. It is the responsibility of the student to note any changes and/or amendments and make appropriate adjustments.