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Main 38th Conference Page

The 38th Annual International Conference on
Critical Thinking

...The World's Longest-Running Critical Thinking Conference

July 16 - July 20, 2018

at the DoubleTree Hotel in Rohnert Park, CA  

Register Now!

Conference Theme:

Critical Thinking Throughout Education and  Across the Professions in Every Classroom, Every Boardroom, Every Business, Every Government, in Every Country Around the World

 

Types of Conference Sessions 

Focal Sessions

Focal Sessions are led by Fellows and Visiting Scholars of the Foundation for Critical Thinking. These sessions are 'focal' because they focus on the very foundations, or the central ideas, in a rich conception of critical thinking. Each Focal Session targets one or more essential concepts or sets of principles in critical thinking, often in connection with essential applications of critical thinking. These sessions are scheduled concurrently, with 3-4 choices in each Focal Session 'time slot.' Therefore, when you register for the conference online, you will be asked to select one session for each slot.

You may read full descriptions of the various Focal Session choices here .

Plenary Sessions

This is a new type of session at the Annual International Conference. One Plenary Session occurs at a time, led by a Senior Fellow of the Foundation for Critical Thinking, and all participants are invited and encouraged to attend.  As with Focal Sessions, each Plenary Session deals with the foundations of critical thinking, as well as one or more important contextualizations of these foundations. These sessions focus on critical thinking  principles  applicable across teaching and learning, all fields of work, and indeed throughout human life. They are essential to living the examined life; therefore, all participants should find them enriching and enlightening. 

Concurrent Sessions

Concurrent Sessions are conducted by conference participants whose presentation proposals have been approved by Fellows of the Foundation for Critical Thinking (see 'Call for Proposals' above). These are presentations in which faculty, educational administrators, professionals, government and military instructors and leaders, and advanced students share their experiences in bringing critical thinking into the teaching and learning process, into daily decision-making, and across the organization or department. Concurrent presenters may share their research in critical thinking, or their developed theory and application of critical thinking. All Concurrent Sessions are expected to be couched in a rich conception of critical thinking.

There are typically 4-6 of these sessions scheduled during each Concurrent Session block. You will receive a copy of the Concurrent Session program at the conference, and will be free to choose whichever sessions you would like to attend. The program will also appear on this website as proposals are approved.

Roundtable Discussions

Like Concurrent Sessions, Roundtable Discussions are conducted by conference participants whose presentation proposals have been approved by Fellows of the Foundation for Critical Thinking. However, these discussions are held in circles, and are more discourse-based than other session types. Each Discussion leader will begin with a 5-10 minute presentation, which will then open into a dialogue among everyone in the circle, with the Roundtable presenter taking a Socratic questioning role in leading the discussion. All Roundtable Discussions are expected to be couched in a rich conception of critical thinking.  (In some instances, two or more Roundtable Discussions may be combined; in such cases, each Discussion leader will take turns presenting before the dialogue begins, and will take turns leading the dialogue.) 

All Roundtable Discussions take place concurrently. Participants are free to attend whichever ones they wish, and can move between discussions after initial presentations have been made.  You will receive a copy of the Roundtable program at the conference, and this program will also appear on this website as proposals are approved.

Conference Rates

If Paid by June 16, 2018
Price Per Person

2-Day Option

Monday, July 16 - Tuesday, July 17

  • 1 person - $540
  • 2 - 3 people - $515
  • 4 - 6 people - $490
  • 7 or more - $400

5-Day Option

Monday, July 16 - Friday, July 20

  • 1 person - $890
  • 2 - 3 people - $860
  • 4 - 6 people - $830
  • 7 or more - $725
If Paid AFTER June 16, 2018
Price Per Person

2-Day Option

Monday, July 16 - Tuesday, July 17

  • 1 person - $575
  • 2 - 3 people - $550
  • 4 - 6 people - $525
  • 7 or more - $435

5-Day Option

Monday, July 16 - Friday, July 20

  • 1 person - $925
  • 2 - 3 people - $895
  • 4 - 6 people - $865
  • 7 or more - $760

Hotel

The DoubleTree Hotel in Sonoma Wine Country


One Doubletree Drive
Rohnert Park, California 94928
+1-707-584-5466

See our main Hotel Information Page here .

Click here to register in our room block for discounted rates!
Or call +1-707-584-5466 and ask for a room in the Critical Thinking room block!
Group Name: 38th International Critical Thinking Education Reform
Arrival Date:
July 15, 2018
Departure Date:
July 20, 2018

Click here to see transportation options and directions.

Focal Session Presenters: 

Dr. Linda Elder

Dr. Linda Elder is an educational psychologist and international authority on critical thinking. She is President and Senior Fellow at the Foundation for Critical Thinking. Dr. Elder has taught psychology and critical thinking at the college level, and has given presentations to more than 50,000 educators and leaders. She has coauthored four books, including 30 Days to Better Thinking and Better Living and Critical Thinking: Tools for Taking Charge of Your Professional and Personal Life. She has also coauthored 24 Thinker's Guides on critical thinking. Concerned with understanding and illuminating the relationship between thinking and affect, and the barriers to critical thinking, Dr. Elder has placed these issues at the center of her thinking and work.

Dr. Gerald Nosich

Dr. Gerald Nosich is a prominent authority on critical thinking and Senior Fellow at the Foundation for Critical Thinking; he has given more than 150 national and international workshops on the subject. He has worked with the U.S. Department of Education on a project for the National Assessment of Higher Order Thinking skills, has served as the Assistant Director of the Center for Critical Thinking, and has been featured as a Noted Scholar at the University of British Columbia. He is Professor Emeritus at SUNY Buffalo State and the University of New Orleans. He is the author of two books, including Learning to Think Things Through: A Guide to Critical Thinking Across the Curriculum .

Dr. Brian Barnes

Dr. Brian Barnes holds a Ph.D. in Interdisciplinary Humanities and an MA in Philosophy from the University of Louisville. Barnes is a veteran of the US Army, along with other non-academic careers, and currently teaches face-to-face and online classes at several universities in traditional philosophy topics, along with courses in sustainability, critical thinking, and Japanese sword practice. He has co-authored articles examining critical thinking strategies and tactics for the National Teaching and Learning Forum and is the author of the textbook,  The Central Question: Critical Engagement with Business Ethics (2013). Barnes co-hosts the weekly radio show, Critical Thinking for Everyone!, on 106.5 Forward Radio in Louisville, and he also created the critical thinking comic book series, Adventures in Critical Thinking . Dr. Barnes is a Scholar of the Foundation for Critical Thinking and a direct student of Dr. Richard Paul.

Ms. Carmen Polka

Carmen Polka has worked diligently to infuse critical thinking into her classroom instruction, curriculum, and assessment for more than fifteen years. Focused on transforming education through implementation of quality instructional practices, Ms. Polka instigated and co-authored the writing of the Colorado Academic State Standards targeting research and reasoning based on the Paul-Elder framework. As a leader and critical thinking expert in her district, she led professional development and coached K-12 teachers to effectively utilize the Paulian theory. Ms. Polka is a Doctoral candidate in the Educational Leadership and Policy Studies program at the University of Northern Colorado. In addition, she is a licensed principal, elementary teacher, and K-12 Special Education teacher.

Dr. Paul Bankes

For more than 10 years, Dr. Bankes has played an important leadership role in fostering the Paulian conception of critical thinking in instruction across his district. As a principal, he led the implementation of this critical thinking approach to achieve state-recognized levels of achievement in three different Title I schools - a high school, a middle school, and an elementary school. He helped author the reasoning portion of the Colorado Academic Standards that are based on the Paul-Elder framework. In addition to his administrative experience, Dr. Bankes has taught courses at the college level in critical thinking and served as an elementary teacher.

Overview of Sessions

Monday:

Early Morning

For all attendees

  • Opening Ceremony and Keynote Address Dr. Linda Elder and Dr. Gerald Nosich


Late Morning

Choose from the following Focal Sessions for Monday morning…

  • Teaching Students to Think Things Through: Higher Education… Dr. Gerald Nosich
  • Tools for Analysis in Business, Government, and Administration… Dr. Brian Barnes
  • Teaching K-12 Students to Take Command of Their Reasoning… Ms. Carmen Polka
  • Advanced Session:  Exploring Your Deeper Questions About the Theory and Application of Critical Thinking Dr. Linda Elder

Afternoon

Choose from the following Focal Sessions for Monday afternoon…

  • Fostering Intellectual Empathy as a Fundamental Intellectual Virtue… Ms. Carmen Polka and Ms. Rachael Collins
  • Intellectual Character as Essential to Development in Any Professional Field or Discipline… Dr. Paul Bankes
  • Advanced Session for Returning Delegates: Understanding Intellectual Virtues as a Constellation of Interrelated Character Traits… Dr. Brian Barnes

Tuesday:

Early Morning

Plenary Session (all attendees welcome)

  • Critical Thinking Standards for Assessing Thinking in All Fields of Study and Professions… Dr. Gerald Nosich


Late Morning

Choose from the following Focal Sessions for Tuesday morning…

  • Cultivating Evidence-Based Decision Making in Business and Government… Dr. Brian Barnes
  • Teaching Students and Professionals to Value Evidence and Reject False, Distorted Information… Dr. Gerald Nosich
  • How a Rich Conception of Critical Thinking is Essential to the Core Curriculum, or Indeed Any Curriculum, in K-12 Education… Ms. Carmen Polka
  • Advanced Session for Returning Delegates: Achieving a Deeper Understanding of Intellectual Standards Dr. Paul Bankes


Early Afternoon

Plenary Session (all attendees welcome)

  • Emancipating the Mind: Why 'Group Think' Is Such a Problem in the Professions, in Teaching and Learning, and Throughout Human Societies … Dr. Linda Elder

Late Afternoon

Choose from the following Focal Sessions for Tuesday afternoon…

  • Using Critical Thinking Tools in Problem Solving and Decision Making in Business, Government, and Administration … Dr. Brian Barnes
  • Natural Egocentric Pathologies of the Mind that Impede Critical Thinking in Every Professional Field and Throughout Human Life… Ms. Carmen Polka and Ms. Rachael Collins
  • Teaching Students How to Study and Learn Using the Tools of Critical Thinking… Dr. Paul Bankes
  • How Political Correctness is Impeding the Cultivation of Critical Thinking in Academia and in Human Societies Dr. Linda Elder

Wednesday:

Early Morning

Plenary Session (all attendees welcome)

  • Testing Our Students into Boredom: Calling for a Revolutionary, yet Classic, Approach to Assessment at All Levels Through Foundational Intellectual Tools Dr. Linda Elder


Late Morning:

Choose from the following Focal Sessions for Wednesday morning…

  • Teaching for Fundamental and Powerful Concepts in Your Discipline… Dr. Gerald Nosich
  • Close Reading as Essential to Deep Learning… Dr. Paul Bankes
  • Internalizing Critical Thinking Terms and Concepts as a Web of Understandings Dr. Brian Barnes


Early Afternoon:

Plenary Session (all attendees welcome)

  • Teaching Students to Ask Essential Questions Dr. Gerald Nosich


Late Afternoon:

Choose from the following Focal Sessions for Wednesday afternoon…

  • Substantive Writing as Primary Vehicle for Deep Learning Dr. Paul Bankes
  • Teaching Students to Distinguish Between Questions of Fact, Preference, and Judgment: Essential Tools in Learning Dr. Brian Barnes
  • Advanced Session: How Richard Paul Transformed our Conception of Critical Thinking - Going Deeper Dr. Linda Elder and Ms. Rachael Collins

Thursday:

Early Morning:

For all attendees

  • Concurrent Sessions : Choose at the conference.


Late Morning:

Plenary Session (all attendees welcome)

  • Thinking Conceptually as Well as Scientifically: Which Takes Precedence and Why? Going Beyond Superficial Approaches to Both Dr. Linda Elder


Early Afternoon

For all attendees

  • Roundtable Discussions : Choose at the conference.


Late Afternoon:

For all attendees

  • Concurrent Sessions Continue : Choose at the conference.

Friday:

Morning

Closing session for all attendees

  • Moving Forward: Developing a Beginning Plan and Initial Strategies for Bringing Critical Thinking into the Classroom and into Your Work on a Typical Day All Foundation Fellows and Visiting Scholars