Master of Arts (M.A.)
This action research investigates how Socratic seminars can foster a classroom environment whereby students are challenged to exhibit habits of mind but also feel comfortable enough to share their thoughts. The curriculum was built around the Expository Reading and Writing Course (ERWC) template and modules developed by a task force of CSU professors to prepare high school students for college-level course work. After reading non-fiction texts and completing various pre-reading and reading activities to prepare for the conversations, 18 senior English students engaged in four Socratic seminars. Using qualitative and quantitative research methods, I analyzed classroom observation notes, student evaluation rubrics, interview transcripts, student surveys, and student writing samples. The findings revealed that as the students engaged in dialogue, they enjoyed being in command of their learning and believed they gained in critical thinking from the Socratic method of teaching.
Bernasconi, Loretta E., "Socratic seminars : fostering an environment of critical thinking and self-confidence in the classroom" (2010). Capstone Projects and Theses. 432.