Effectiveness of an Instructional Intervention in Developing Critical Thinking Skills - Role of Argument Mapping in Facilitating Learning of Critical Thinking Skills

Shumaila Mahmood


This paper is focused on how argument mapping (AM) software can be helpful for developing critical thinking (CT) skills of initial teacher educators. The study discusses the usefulness of argument mapping software for lessening the cognitive load of students. The main study is conducted to test the effectiveness of an instructional intervention for the development of critical thinking skills. The effectiveness includes an assessment of the implementation process as well. The instructional intervention is comprised of computer supported (audio-video lectures and argument mapping) and non-computer supported (Communities of Inquiry discussions and concept mapping on paper) learning materials thought to enhance the CT skills of initial teacher educators in a public teacher education university in Pakistan. The teaching programme based on seven principles has several elements for teaching critical thinking of which one is computer supported visual representation (argument mapping). In this paper, the focus is on participants’ accounts of the usefulness of visual representation (argument mapping) feature for the provision of critical thinking. The analysis shows the positive influence of computer-supported argument mapping in increasing student interest in learning CT. However, the belief that argument mapping increases critical thinking could not be determined in this study for design issues. Students found that AM help them lessening cognitive load while helping in structuring thoughts. The results from observations and interview responses are discussed for the implications of argument mapping in mainstream teaching at college/university level with regards to teaching critical thinking skills. The paper briefly discusses the possibility of placing cognitive load theory on instructional interventions explains a lot about complex learning environments, element interactivity and learning. Therefore, if rightly executed, visualization tools as part of teaching strategies for CT may increase the critical thinking skills.


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Paper Citation

in Harvard Style

Mahmood S. (2016). Effectiveness of an Instructional Intervention in Developing Critical Thinking Skills - Role of Argument Mapping in Facilitating Learning of Critical Thinking Skills . In Proceedings of the 8th International Conference on Computer Supported Education - Volume 1: CSEDU, ISBN 978-989-758-179-3, pages 330-336. DOI: 10.5220/0005798003300336

in Bibtex Style

author={Shumaila Mahmood},
title={Effectiveness of an Instructional Intervention in Developing Critical Thinking Skills - Role of Argument Mapping in Facilitating Learning of Critical Thinking Skills},
booktitle={Proceedings of the 8th International Conference on Computer Supported Education - Volume 1: CSEDU,},

in EndNote Style

JO - Proceedings of the 8th International Conference on Computer Supported Education - Volume 1: CSEDU,
TI - Effectiveness of an Instructional Intervention in Developing Critical Thinking Skills - Role of Argument Mapping in Facilitating Learning of Critical Thinking Skills
SN - 978-989-758-179-3
AU - Mahmood S.
PY - 2016
SP - 330
EP - 336
DO - 10.5220/0005798003300336