EdMedia Commons Archive

Has College Become Too Easy?

Has College Become Too Easy?

Clarence Page, in a sidebar to his recent suggestion of a college-level GED, wonders if critical thinking – “the brain’s investigative reporter” – is getting the workout it deserves on college campuses.

“…We do have tests [to measure critical thinking skills]. For example, the Collegiate Learning Assessment, launched in 2000, gives a 90-minute essay test to freshmen and seniors that aims to measure gains in critical thinking and communication skills.

However, recent studies of CLA results reveal another major problem, not so much in the testing of critical thinking as in how little critical thinking is being taught.

(For more on the College Learning Assessment, see Daniel de Vise’s recent WaPo piece)

EWA’s Kim Clark talked to Richard Arum, whose Academically Adrift Page references in his piece, at last year’s National Seminar:

Page’s column is the latest in a long line of reflections on what students are actually learning when they enter college. Do you think his concern is justified? And what do you think of the CLA as a means to measure critical thinking?


This post originally appeared on EWA’s now-defunct online community, EdMedia Commons. Old content from EMC will appear in the Ed Beat archives.