This chapter sets out a case for the deliberate, overt and continuous teaching of critical thinking skills throughout a student’s learning journey, and for their learning of these skills to be linked to issues they will encounter in the world of work. The arguments address how this approach will both lead to enhanced learning and outcomes in their studies and will fit them to enter the workplace with a mind-set and skills that will increase their effectiveness. The chapter looks at the particular skills that can be taught and where they might be addressed in the curriculum. It provides a structure against which to teach critical thinking and suggests the types of exercises that might fit within this structure. The author acknowledges the leadership and coordination skills necessary on the part of teaching staff to ensure students recognise the value of critical thinking at an early stage in their studies and are given opportunities to become increasingly sophisticated thinkers.
This chapter focuses on peer assessment, an activity in which students, or groups of students, rate and provide feedback on the work of their fellow students. The author demonstrates how this can contribute towards the development of desirable behavioural and critical skills needed in the workplace; making judgements; communicating constructively and co-operating with others. Practising peer assessment will also refine a student’s critical approach to their own work, reflecting upon feedback they have been given, learning from others’ approaches and reinforcing their own subject knowledge. The chapter provides an overview of the many forms that peer assessment could take, how it can be used in both formative and summative assessment, and how it can work with groups and individuals alike. The need to invest time in preparing students is also addressed. The author discusses how peer assessment plays a role in assessment for learning, particularly when linked with a problem-based approach.