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Webinar Q&A Sessions

Participate in webinar Q&A sessions with our internationally recognized Fellows and Scholars.

See below for upcoming webinars. Some are free to the general public, while others are exclusive to members of the Center for Critical Thinking Community Online. (If you are brand new, a 30-day free trial is available for this membership website.)

Typically, our webinar announcements provide optional activities for you to complete ahead of time in the Community Online. These will be relevant to the topic at hand; although the activities are not madatory, the new understandings you gain by completing them will help you to ask more refined questions at each webinar.

Please note that these sessions are recorded for later viewing by members of the Community Online, and some clips may be posted on other platforms. If you do not want your person or voice recorded, you can submit your questions via text chat.

 

 "Thank you for your discussion this evening. It has helped me to see the beauty of the framework you have created."

"Thank you for this sharing session. It is an eye-opening session for me."

"Thank you for your amazing insights!"

"This has been very informative and educational . . . Thank you for all the information."

" . . . thank you for the engaging webinar. It was very well-structured and informative. . . . I am very impressed by your perspectives."

"Thank you very much for your . . . generosity and insight here . . . yet again! Super class."

"Thank you for a wonderful webinar today. It was definitely thought provoking."

"Thank you . . . I appreciate the work you do and answering our questions!"

" . . . always engaging . . . I look forward to learning from you in more sessions. Thank you!"


Upcoming Webinar Q&A Sessions

Open Critical Thinking Q&A: March 2024

Led by Dr. Linda Elder

Friday, March 8th, 2024




1:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time

(10:00 a.m. PST)

Open to All!

The meeting link will arrive with your registration confirmation email.

What are your questions?

Together we ponder or answer them.

In our regular question-and-answer webinars, led by one of our Fellows or Scholars, we open the floor to your questions about critical thinking and its unlimited applications to human life. Join us in this forum where you can ask deep and probing questions as well as basic questions of clarification on the theory and application of critical thinking. Some questions we will be able to answer easily; those that do not lend themselves to definitive answers, we will explore with you.

Thinking is driven by questions. The quality of your thinking is determined by the quality of the questions you ask. Fruitful questions, when properly addressed, lead to knowledge. Knowledge leads to important understandings. Important understandings, when actively employed by the mind, can lead to increasingly more fulfilling, satisfying, and joyful lives.

The quality of the questions you ask and pursue every day - at work or in personal life - largely determines the quality of your life.

Similarly, in instruction, the quality of student learning can be largely captured in the questions students ask in our classes and as they go out into the world (not on how much information they have memorized).

Despite these insights, emphasis on questions in thinking is mainly missing from human conversations, relationships, and societies. The role of questions in thinking is rarely discussed in human life. Theory about questions is still in its infancy. While Socrates believed the most effective way to teach was through questioning, 2,400 years later, his insights seem to be little valued. Each of us needs to improve our ability to ask productive and rewarding questions.

Bring your questions on critical thinking to this session, whatever they may be.

Please note that our webinars are recorded for later viewing by members of The Center for Critical Thinking Community Online, and some clips may also be posted on other platforms. If you do not want your person or voice recorded, you can submit your questions via text chat.


How Your Thinking Can Imprison You or Free You

Led by Dr. Gerald Nosich

Wednesday, March 13th, 2024




Open to All!

2:00 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time
(11:00 a.m. PDT)

 Duration: 60 Minutes

The meeting link will arrive with your registration confirmation email.

 

Whatever you are doing right now is strongly influenced by the way you are thinking. Whatever emotions you feel are strongly influenced by your thinking. Whatever you want – all your desires – are strongly influenced by your thinking. If your thinking is unrealistic, it will lead you to many disappointments. If your thinking is overly pessimistic, it will deny you due recognition of the many things in which you should rejoice.

Since few people realize the powerful role that thinking plays in their lives, few gain significant command of it. Many people are frequently victims of their thinking; that is, they are hurt rather than helped by it. On the other hand, those who have cultivated the tools of critical thinking within themselves have learned to leverage their minds as a means of creating opportunities, managing their emotional states, and clearing obstacles where others feel discouraged, upset, and stymied.

This Webinar Q&A will discuss how you can use the tools of critical thinking to enhance your freedom by generating important questions, revealing useful possibilities, maintaining appropriate emotions, and determining reasonable solutions. Because the webinar partially depends upon your questions as participants, we recommend completing as many of the following activities as you can beforehand. These require an account in The Center for Critical Thinking Community Online, where a 30-day free trial is available for new users. You are not required to complete the activities to join the webinar, but doing so can be highly useful for your and others’ learning.

1. Read pages 4-13 in The Thinker’s Guide to the Human Mind.

2. Complete the activity “Understanding the Relationships Between Thinking, Feeling, and Emotions.”

3. Read pages 8-9 in The Thinker’s Guide to Asking Essential Questions.

4. Read pages 12, 14, and 19-21 in The Miniature Guide to Critical Thinking Concepts & Tools.

Please note that our webinars are recorded for later viewing by members of The Center for Critical Thinking Community Online, and some clips may also be posted on other platforms. If you do not want your person or voice recorded, you can submit your questions via text chat.




Archived Webinar Q&A Sessions

Strategies for Intervening in Your Own Worst Thinking and Behavior

Led by Dr. Linda Elder

Wednesday, February 28th, 2024


View Recording


1:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time
(10:00 a.m. PST)

 Duration: 60 Minutes

 

Most people have little sense that within each of us are significant self-sabotaging thoughts and behaviors, and that many of these are habitual. We therefore tend to have limited understanding of how these pitfalls affect our learning, work and lives.

It is important to deeply explore and probe the patterns of thinking and acting that impede our functionality. For instance, it is important to see that all people tend towards intellectual arrogance, and that this tendency impedes learning, working, teaching, and living. It is important to see that all people frequently fail to persevere through difficulties when learning complex ideas or solving difficult problems – and that this tendency can have drastic implications for not only us as individuals, but for the wellbeing of society and earth at large. It is important, in short, to understand the often-unconscious problems in thinking experienced by all humans that lead to self-defeating attitudes and behaviors. We can then use these understandings to uncover and actively intervene in our own dysfunctional patterns of thought to live more happy and free lives.

This Webinar Q&A will focus on practical ways of intervening in our flawed thoughts and behaviors. Because it partially depends upon your questions as participants, we recommend completing as many of the following activities as you can beforehand. These require an account in The Center for Critical Thinking Community Online, where a 30-day free trial is available for new users. You are not required to complete the activities to join the webinar, but doing so can be highly useful for your and others’ learning.

1. On pages 23 & 24 of A Glossary to Critical Thinking Terms & Concepts, read the entry for egocentricity.

2. On page 67 of A Glossary of Critical Thinking Terms & Concepts, read the entry on sociocentricity.

3. Read the one-page article, “Natural Egocentric Dispositions.”

4. Read about intellectual virtues on pages 24-26 of The Miniature Guide to Critical Thinking Concepts & Tools.

5. Complete the activity, “Distinguish Intellectual Humility from Intellectual Arrogance.” (Be sure to read the text at the top of the page first.)

When completing this activity, use examples from your own thinking, rather than hypothetical thinking or thinking by other people.

6. Complete the activity, “When Have You Been Intellectually Autonomous? When Have You Lacked Intellectual Autonomy?” (Be sure to read the text at the top of the page first.)


Critical Thinking in Everyday Life

Led by Dr. Gerald Nosich

Thursday, January 25th, 2024


View Recording


2:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time
(11:00 a.m. PST)

 Duration: 60 Minutes

 

Gaining command of your life requires, first and foremost, gaining command of the thinking that commands your life. Using explicit concepts in critical thinking helps you gain control of your reasoning, emotions, and desires, and realize all of which you are capable as a unique person.

When it comes to effectiveness in daily life, we cannot overstate the importance of 1) learning the explicit tools of critical thinking; 2) using them to understand your immediate circumstances, the trajectory of your life, and the complex and rapidly-changing world we live in; and 3) forging the best path forward for self-fulfillment and achievement at the highest level of which you are capable.

This webinar will discuss practical ways of leveraging critical thinking insights and tools in day-to-day pursuits. Dr. Nosich will then respond to your questions on the topic.

Because this webinar Q&A partially depends upon your questions as participants, we recommend completing as many of the following activities as you can beforehand. These require an account in The Center for Critical Thinking Community Online, where a 30-day free trial is available for new users. You are not required to complete the activities to join the webinar, but doing so can be highly useful for your and others’ learning.

1. Read pages 10-13 in The Thinker's Guide to the Human Mind.

2. Read pages 12, 14, 30, and 19-21 in The Miniature Guide to Critical Thinking Concepts & Tools.

3. Watch “Using the Tools of Critical Thinking for Effective Decision-Making.”

For those who wish to delve deeper into the concepts discussed in this webinar, we recommend the following activities:

3. Complete the activity “Analyze the Logic of a Problem or Issue,” focusing on a challenge you are currently facing. Be sure to read the text at the top of the page first.

4. Complete the activity, “Target Significance in Thinking.” Be sure to read the text at the top of the page first.


How Society Determines or Influences Most of What We Do

Led by Dr. Linda Elder

Wednesday, January 3rd, 2024


View Recording Here


1:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time
(10:00 a.m. PST)

 Duration: 60 Minutes

 

Human life entails membership in multiple human groups, such as one’s family, peer group, profession, and religion. We begin participating in at least some of these groups before we are even aware of ourselves as living beings, with each group imposing some level of conformity on us as a condition of acceptance. For most people, compliance with group rules is largely automatic and unreflective. Conformity of thought and behavior is the rule in humans, with independence the rare exception.

Society can be conceptualized as a sort of “super-group” under whose umbrella other groups exist. As such, regardless of your family, friends, subculture, and so forth, you are influenced in nearly all of your behaviors by the society in which you live. This webinar will explore the extent of said influence, illuminate important examples thereof, and discuss how you can begin recognizing and relieving this societal pressure so as to act more independently – wherever doing so makes sense.

Because this webinar Q&A partially depends upon your questions as participants, we recommend completing as many of the following activities as you can beforehand. These require an account in The Center for Critical Thinking Community Online, where a 30-day free trial is available for new users. You are not required to complete the activities to join the webinar, but doing so can be highly useful for your and others’ learning.

1. On page 67 of A Glossary of Critical Thinking Terms & Concepts, read the entry on sociocentricity.

2. Watch the video, “Human Sociocentricity & Critical Thinking – Part 1.”

3. Watch the video, “Human Sociocentricity & Critical Thinking – Part 2.”

For those who wish to delve deeper into the concepts discussed in this webinar, we recommend the following activities:

4. Complete the activity, “Identify the Impact of Group Influence.”

5. Complete the activity, “Distinguish Between Reasonable and Unreasonable Ideas Within a Group.”


Webinar Q&A Archives from Previous Years