Topics Map > Active Learning > Analysis & Critical Thinking

Analysis and Critical Thinking

Active learning

This KB document is part of a larger collection of documents on active learning. More Active Learning documents

Analysis and critical thinking active learning approaches that can be used in the classroom. Use the links below to see documents on how to implement each approach.

Active Learning
Analysis and Critical Thinking

Analysis and Critical Thinking activities assess students' skills at breaking down information, questions, or problems to understand and solve them more fully. Using these approaches, instructors can measure how well students interpret or analyze information and arrive at an informed decision or judgment.

Approach Description Outcome
Analytic Memo Students write a one- or two-page analysis of a problem or issue. Analyzing assigned problems using discipline-specific methods.
Categorizing Grid Students sort subordinate terms into the correct categories on a grid. Determining whether, how, and to what extent students understand what information goes together with other information reveals the implicit rules students use to categorize information.
Content, Form, and Function Students analyze the what(content), how (form), and why(function) of a particular message. Separating and analyzing a piece of course content's informational message, form, and communicative function.
Defining Features Students categorize concepts according to the presence of (+) or absence of (–) critical defining features. Developing skills in categorizing information based on a given set of critical defining features.
Pro and Con Grid Students follow a decision-making process by reviewing an issue, creating a list of pro and con arguments, and deciding based on analysis of those points. Helping students move beyond their first reactions to an issue by looking at it from different perspectives and weighing the value of competing claims.


Angelo, Thomas A., and K. Patricia Cross. Classroom Assessment Techniques: a Handbook for College Teachers. Jossey-Bass, 1993. pp. 159-180.

Keywordscritical thinking, analysis, active learningDoc ID104157
OwnerTimmo D.GroupInstructional Resources
Created2020-07-20 12:37:38Updated2023-12-22 12:30:32
SitesCenter for Teaching, Learning & Mentoring
Feedback  0   0