*** The below are publicly published comments and are not endorsements of Mindvax or Mindvax's products by these entities. Mindvax has no relationship with them, but we do kindly ask that you support them because we believe in their efforts to improve education. ***
"Several studies suggest [current] education is detrimental to critical thinking. As students progress through their degrees, they get better at supporting their own arguments..."
"Moreover, we no longer have confidence that our daughter will receive the quality of education necessary to further her development into a critically thinking, responsible, enlightened, and civic-minded adult."
"Our children should be taught critical thinking, not Critical Race Theory."
Nonpartisan organization established to support parents, caregivers, and community organizations in their advocacy for quality K-12 education.
"We support the basic principle that students should be Free to Learn
Free to ask questions
Free to develop individual thoughts and opinions
Free to think critically of ideas and concepts
Free to achieve"
Article: In the Era of AI, Students Need Critical Thinking Skills
"Critical thinking skill is not only necessary in the workplace, but also in everyday life. In an age full of false information and algorithms that do not rely on users’ input, thinking critically is key to achieving better use of digital resources. We need to train our students to get ready for the challenge ahead of them."
Both content knowledge and critical thinking skills should be part of a good education. It is not an either/or question. Students require both to become truly educated.
Content knowledge is simply what you know. It is facts, figures, historical dates and events, scientific constructs, economic principles etc. A content-rich curriculum sets the foundation. Courses, which teach history with dates, science with universal laws, philosophy, economics, theology and literature are necessary components. Learning a second language and playing a sport/instrument are also integral to content knowledge because one has to learn rules and how to apply them.
Critical thinking is a multidisciplinary approach to analyzing information using content knowledge as your epistemic reservoir. Critical thinking usually involves multiple cognitive activities. It is: 1) analyzing what something means within a specific context, 2) solving problems in new, never-before-seen situations and 3) developing logical arguments to explain and increase the utility of one's content knowledge.
The functional distinction between content knowledge and critical thinking is that content knowledge helps students pass written tests, perform defined tasks and sound educated. However, content knowledge alone does not save them from indoctrination.
It is critical thinking that saves students from indoctrination because they can ascertain when information they are told: 1) contains a false equivalence, 2) fails a proper cost-benefit analysis, 3) uses fabricated premises to justify a conclusion, 4) presents a hypothesis based on confounding variables and 5) when an argument is not an argument at all, but only a supposition. These are just five of the hundreds of ways that critical thinking stops indoctrination in its tracks.
If a school or teacher says that learning content knowledge is the main purpose of education, they are selling students short. It also holds true if someone says critical thinking is the main purpose of education, they too are selling students short. One without the other is missing an important aspect of education.
This is why our homepage states "A Good Education Must Include Critical Thinking." It says "include" because students require both content knowledge and critical thinking to emerge as confident, analytical adults who are naturally resistant to indoctrination.