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Title: Citizenship education teachers' critical thinking in 'education for democratic citizenship' : the sociology of critical thinking
Author: Ververi, Olga
ISNI:       0000 0004 2727 5530
Awarding Body: University of Bristol
Current Institution: University of Bristol
Date of Award: 2012
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In this thesis I examine two citizenship education teachers' critical thinking in relation to the texts of "Education for Democratic Citizenship" (EDC) programme. I examine - how their critical thinking defines their teaching practice. Based on the relevant literature pertaining to the concept of critical thinking, I argue that critical thinking is an intersubjective and meaning making process which aims at the restoration of truth. I inform this view with the Critical Realist philosophy and its dialectics of truth according to which truth has a world reporting meaning and that knowledge comprises a 'truth-talk'. Hence, I view the EDC programme textbooks as a 'truth-talk' . about the social and political reality, having at its core the concept of citizenship. I regard the EDC programme textbooks as an 'interlocutor' within the educational process who holds a superior epistemological position in comparison to the teacher and exerts power on her. Based on case studies, I examine how two citizenship education teachers in Greece, interpret the EDC texts, process the meaning and proceed to critical thinking constructing their subjective versions of truth about the political and social reality. I record the way they structure and manage a discussion in the classroom and I conclude that their teaching practice is defined by their subjective versions of truth which are nevertheless objectively false. I emphasise the power relations in the classroom where teachers hold a superior position to the students and I conclude that teachers comprise the [mal 'truth-tellers'. I thus stress teachers' ethical obligation regarding what kind of 'truth' they import in the classroom. This involves both the EDC programme knowledge of citizenship - which I evaluate as a pseudo 'truth talk' - and their own 'truth-talk' consisting of knowledge, discourses, ideological, philosophical and theoretical trends which do not enable them to effectively restore the truth. Consequently, I argue that teachers should be in constant evaluation of their critical thinking processes and I suggest the concept of the 'Sociology of Critical Thinking'.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available