We Should Teach All Students, in Every Discipline, to Think Like Scientists
For many, knowledge about the natural world is superseded by personal beliefs. Wisdom across disciplinary and political divides is needed to help bridge this gap. This is where institutions of higher education can provide vital support. Educating global citizens is one of the most important charges to universities, and the best way we can transcend ideology is to teach our students, regardless of their majors, to think like scientists. From American history to urban studies, we have an obligation to challenge them to be inquisitive about the world, to weigh the quality and objectivity of data presented to them, and to change their minds when confronted with contrary evidence.
Likewise, STEM majors’ college experience must be integrated into a broader model of liberal education to prepare them to think critically and imaginatively about the world and to understand different viewpoints. It is imperative for the next generation of leaders in science to be aware of the psychological, social and cultural factors that affect how people understand and use information. More.
We hear not a word of that from Dr. Salovey, unless it is this: “Likewise, STEM majors’ college experience must be integrated into a broader model of liberal education to prepare them to think critically and imaginatively about the world and to understand different viewpoints.” Realistically, today, that would mean valuing witchcraft and astrology to the same extent as science.
“We Should Teach All Students, in Every Discipline, to Think Like Scientists”? In the general collapse of disciplined thinking in the liberal arts, what will really happen is, science teachers and students will be intellectually equated with Bret Weinstein’s rioting students at Evergreen State. Only the ones of whom it can be said that there is no real difference can survive that.
See also: At Quillette: Who will the Evergreen mob (targeted biology teacher recently) target next?