Critical Thinking among Post-Graduate Diploma in Education Students in Higher Education: Reality or Fuss?

  •  Bakadzi Moeti    
  •  Rabson Killion Mgawi    
  •  Waitshega Tefo Smitta Moalosi    


Critical thinking is recognised as an influential attribute to achieve quality learning and teaching in higher education institutions world over. This interpretive research study explored the critical thinking among PGDE students at the University of Botswana. The aim of the study was to identify factors contributing to the application of critical thinking among teacher trainees. Data was collected from Cohort 2015/16 PGDE students, through one on one interview with 59 students and 2 focus group discussions comprising five students in each focus group between April to June 2016. The findings revealed that the teacher trainees had a lower description of critical thinking during interviews, but refined during focus group discussions; however, the students were wide aware of factors influencing their inabilities to think critically during their training. These finding clearly indicated that most students were not applying critical thinking during their training. Through the interviews and focus group discussion, the study also identified strategies to promote the application of critical thinking in areas of programme content, teaching and assessment methods and techniques, programme logistics and personal attributes. The findings are instrumental to various key stakeholders. Specifically, the findings inform education institutions, teacher educators and students on how to promote critical thinking during teacher training. The study was qualitative, as such the findings will not be generalised. As such a similar study is recommended among the PGDE and other students but using quantitative and or mixed methods to allow inferences and generalisations.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
  • ISSN(Print): 1927-5250
  • ISSN(Online): 1927-5269
  • Started: 2012
  • Frequency: bimonthly

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