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Issues in Educational Research, 2021, Vol 31(3), 834-853.
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Critical thinking and inclusive practice: A qualitative study of Spanish primary school teachers' perceptions

Cecilia Latorre-Cosculluela, Verónica Sierra-Sánchez, Sandra Vázquez-Toledo and Julia Royo-Ardid
University of Zaragoza, Spain

As one of the most necessary skills of the 21st century for problem solving, critical thinking should be taught and included in the curriculum of those schools in which inclusivity towards all their students is a priority. From this perspective, this study presents the educational implications for the teaching and evaluation of this skill. In addition, teachers' perceptions regarding the teaching methods used, evaluation techniques and limitations that they encounter at the moment of enhancing the critical thinking of their students are analysed. A descriptive-comprehensive research with a qualitative approach was adopted, with data collected from interviews with 10 primary education teachers in the Spanish educational system. The analysis suggests that, although there is some knowledge on the part of teachers about critical thinking skills, most of them are not able to respond to this learning need. They highlight the technique of joint discussion and interactions between teams as among the effective tools for fostering critical thinking skills. Notably, these teachers have referred to the existence of certain relationships between critical thinking and equitable and quality education.
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Authors: Cecilia Latorre-Cosculluela is a Doctor in Educational Sciences and assistant professor in the Didactics and School Organization Area of the University of Zaragoza, Spain. She holds a Masters in Advanced Studies on Language, Communication and its Pathologies, and graduated for teaching in Early Childhood Education. She is a member of the research group "Education and Diversity" and her lines of research focus on educational inclusion and the use of active learning methodologies in the university classroom.
ORCID: http://orcid.org/0000-0002-6083-8759
Email: clatorre@unizar.es

Verónica Sierra-Sánchez is in Research Staff in Training, University of Zaragoza, Spain, enrolled in the PhD program in the field of Education Sciences. She is a graduate in Primary Education, and holds a Masters in Advanced Studies on Language, Communication and its Pathologies. Her training career has focused on the study of the influence of individual personality traits and their integral development, as well as the use of active methodologies and 21st century skills.
ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-7861-2400
Email: vsierra@unizar.es

Sandra Vázquez-Toledo is Senior Lecturar in Education in the Department of Educational Sciences at the University of Zaragoza, Spain. She hold a PhD in Educational Sciences and has published widely in many local and international educational journals in the field of education. Her research interests include educative innovation, active learning methodologies, soft skills and educational leardship.
ORCID: http://orcid.org/0000-0003-2206-2299
Email: svaztol@unizar.es

Julia Royo-Ardid is a teacher of Primary Education with the specialty of therapeutic pedagogy. Her research has focused on the study of critical thinking as a transversal competence and the way to encourage it from the stage of primary education. In addition, her research has taken as a reference the educational inclusion of the most vulnerable students in schools.
Email: juliaroyo19@gmail.com

Please cite as: Latorre-Cosculluela, C., Sierra-Sánchez, V., Sandra Vázquez-Toledo. S. & Royo-Ardid, J. (2021). Critical thinking and inclusive practice: A qualitative study of Spanish primary school teachers' perceptions. Issues in Educational Research, 31(3), 834-853. http://www.iier.org.au/iier31/latorre-cosculluela.pdf

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