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Encouraging metacognition: Empowering students to 'think about thinking'

Workshop led by John Kirkman, Learning Development Adviser, University of Warwick

Empowering students to 'think about thinking' In much teaching and learning there is the opportunity to encourage 'metacognition' or to make use of 'metalanguage'. Metacognition is 'thinking about thinking' or 'knowing about knowing' and in this context meta-language is language used to describe the object of learning Meta-cognition provides learners with opportunities to gain new perspectives on the object of cognition and knowlege that is transferable to new contexts.

For example during a debate a student presents an argument and the student group are then encouraged to reflect on the argument that has just been made. They might then identify the 'grounds' or the 'rebuttal' (Toulmin, 1958). The student is encouraged to reflect upon the argument they made and why they made it. In doing so the students get insights into their thinking processes and how they might be adjusted in future.

In this workshop there will be opportunities to hear some more about metacognition and meta-language. There will be some examples provided from different subject area which will be explored and themes identified. Finally there will be an opportunity to reflect about how metacognition might be encouraged within the disciplines of the participants.

Date: Thursday 15th March 2018

Time: 10:00-12:00

Venue: Teaching Grid (Collaboration Area)

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John Kirkman

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