This handbook is about thinking. More specifically, it is about theoretical frameworks and classificatory systems developed since the Second World War to help educators understand the processes and products of thinking and learning.
By setting out the ideas and beliefs of various system builders it raises questions about human nature and the nature of knowledge. However, it is far from comprehensive in its treatment of philosophical issues, since the starting point for our work was a brief from the Learning and Skills Research Centre (LSRC), based in London, to evaluate thinking skills taxonomies which may be relevant in post-16 education and training. Our main purpose is practical, so we are more interested in how frameworks can be used than in theoretical elegance.
Everyone involved in education and training needs to talk about thinking and learning. Frameworks for thinking can provide shared understandings which can help improve the quality of instructional design, course and lesson planning, teaching, learning and assessment. We therefore believe that this handbook will be useful for practitioners, students and academics as well as for policy-makers and others wanting to find out more about certain frameworks.
leads and contributes to a number of research projects in the Centre for Learning and Teaching at the University of Newcastle upon Tyne (UK). As Reader in Applied Psychology, he was responsible for the postgraduate training in educational psychology for 21 years and since 1997 has initiated and managed several large-scale projects in educational and health contexts, working with voluntary bodies and public policy and research organisations. His publications include learning and assessment materials for use by children and adults, Open University course units and papers on: informatics; emotional intelligence; literacy and ICT; and constructs of teaching and learning. In 2002 he and his colleagues were funded by the national Learning and Skills Research Centre to evaluate theories of thinking skills -work which led to an ESRC-funded series of seminars and to the present handbook.
is a Senior Lecturer in Education at the University of Newcastle upon Tyne. Her research focuses on the role of enquiry in pedagogy and professional learning, with a particular interest in the potential of thinking skills interventions to provide stimulus and support for teacher change. As part of her work in the Centre for Learning and Teaching, she has lectured to networks of teachers and researchers interested in thinking skills and professional development in Hong Kong, Singapore, the Netherlands and Peru as well as across the UK. She is also involved in Initial Teacher Education and remains focused on the daily realities of teaching and learning in classrooms.
is a Professor of Education at the University of Durham. Formerly a teacher in mainstream and special schools, he subsequently practised as an educational (school) psychologist before entering higher education. His research and publication interests include: achievement motivation, the treatment of children’s disorders, cognitive education and dynamic assessment, and teachers’ skills of behaviour management. From 2003-2005 he was President of the International Association for Cognitive Education and Psychology, and is an Affiliate of the Centre for the Psychology of Abilities, Competencies, and Expertise at Yale University.
is a Senior Lecturer in post-compulsory Education in the School of Education and Lifelong Learning at the University of Sunderland (UK). Through her research, Maggie has explored models of reflection in relation to the social, cultural and psychological realities of helping student teachers to think critically and creatively about their practice. Her research includes an evaluation of ‘thinking skills’ interventions in schools and colleges across the North East of England. She is also involved in an evaluation of the impact of post-compulsory educational policy upon teaching, learning and assessment, especially in relation to adult literacy and numeracy.
is a Senior Lecturer at Newcastle University and is Director of the Centre for Learning and Teaching. His research interests are in the area of developing children’s thinking, 1CT and mathematics in primary education. He has written a number of books on developing thinking and on the effective use of iCT in primary schools.
is a Senior Lecturer at Newcastle University with responsibility for initial teacher education. Educated in the USA and the UK her first degree was in librarianship and information science with further postgraduate study in business management. During her career, she has worked for local government in an advisory capacity supporting the use of ICT to improve teaching and learning. She is currently a member of the Centre for Teaching and Learning with research interests in e-learning and teaching for thinking.
is an Emeritus Professor of Education at Newcastle University and a Professorial Fellow at Durham University. His research interests include the nature of understanding and how its thinking processes can be supported. He has published widely and his work has been translated into other languages.
1 The nature of thinking and thinking skills
2 Lists, inventories, groups, taxonomies and frameworks
3 Frameworks dealing with instructional design
4 Frameworks dealing with productive thinking
5 Frameworks dealing with cognitive structure and/or development
6 Seven ‘all-embracing’ frameworks
7 Moving from understanding to productive thinking: implications for practice
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