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Examining the Relationship between a Structured Reading Framework and Students' Critical Thinking Ability within an Argument-Based Inquiry Approach

  • Received : 2012.10.16
  • Accepted : 2013.01.09
  • Published : 2013.05.31

Abstract

This study examined how a Structured Reading Framework (SRF) is related to improving students' critical thinking ability in an argument-based inquiry approach, called the Science Writing Heuristic (SWH) approach. A total of 75 $8^{th}$ graders participated in the study, with 34 in the control group and 41 in the treatment group. The gains in critical thinking skills were compared between two groups, and relationships among the components of the reading framework and the critical thinking skills were explored at the group level. Result indicates that the treatment group who used the SRF had larger gains in critical thinking scores than control group who used the Original Reading Framework (ORF). In addition, results show that the correlations between Reading Framework (RF) components and critical thinking scores are statistically significant in the treatment group, while no correlations exist in the control group. It appears that using the SRF have an impact on developing students' critical thinking ability by providing a scaffold to assist argumentation practice.

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