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Combatting Aliens with Critical Thinking

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  1. Combatting Aliens with Critical Thinking Dr. Michael Earle &Dr. Janice Thiel

  2. Outline • Background Deer, and Terry, and Snakes, Oh my! • Activity • Discussion

  3. Deer Story

  4. Three teenagers were seriously injured in a car accident when swerving to avoid a deer on a two-lane road near a small, rural town in Florida. The residents of the town have seen more and more deer enter the town’s populated areas over recent years. Local law enforcement has been called numerous times this year to remove the animals from backyards and neighborhood streets, and one deer even caused considerable damage as it entered a restaurant in town. The mayor has been charged by the city leaders to keep the town residents safe. Local crops have even been damaged by the animals. Some long time residents have requested that the hunting season and catch limits be extended in order to reduce the deer population. One city leader even proposed that the city purchase electronic devices to deter the deer from entering populated areas. Health concerns have recently been elevated as three deer carcasses were found at the edge of town and local law enforcement suspect that the animals had been poisoned.

  5. Three teenagers were seriously injured in a car accident when swerving to avoid a deer on a two-lane road near a small, rural town in Florida. The residents of the town have seen more and more deer enter the town’s populated areas over recent years. Local law enforcement has been called numerous times this year to remove the animals from backyards and neighborhood streets, and one deer even caused considerable damage as it entered a restaurant in town. The mayor has been charged by the city leaders to keep the town residents safe. Local crops have even been damaged by the animals. Some long time residents have requested that the hunting season and catch limits be extended in order to reduce the deer population. One city leader even proposed that the city purchase electronic devices to deter the deer from entering populated areas. Health concerns have recently been elevated as three deer carcasses were found at the edge of town and local law enforcement suspect that the animals had been poisoned.

  6. Terry and the Undecided Major

  7. Terry is finishing his first year of college. He is completely undecided about his major. When asked what he might want to pursue for a career, he responds, “I have no idea.” One of his instructors suggested that Terry complete the career interest inventories that are offered to SPC students. The instructor suggested that after he completes the inventories, then he can take some classes in the fields that relate to his interests. Terry is skeptical because he has heard that these career tests are baloney! He heard that they ask you several silly questions and then based on your answers they pinpoint what career you should choose for the rest of your life. His parents suggest that he drop out of college, get a job, and when he decides what he wants to do for a career, he can go back to college. They explained that if he stays in college, taking various classes won’t help him decide on a career. They believe that people need to actually work before they know what career they will want to do for the rest of their lives.

  8. Terry is finishing his first year of college. He is completely undecided about his major. When asked what he might want to pursue for a career, he responds, “I have no idea.” One of his instructors suggested that Terry complete the career interest inventories that are offered to SPC students. The instructor suggested that after he completes the inventories, then he can take some classes in the fields that relate to his interests. Terry is skeptical because he has heard that these career tests are baloney! He heard that they ask you several silly questions and then based on your answers they pinpoint what career you should choose for the rest of your life. His parents suggest that he drop out of college, get a job, and when he decides what he wants to do for a career, he can go back to college. They explained that if he stays in college, taking various classes won’t help him decide on a career. They believe that people need to actually work before they know what career they will want to do for the rest of their lives.

  9. Terry Reflection Sample • This exercise or process has taught us that better decision making could lead to finding a job or choosing an occupation for which will benefit each and everyone of us. We believe that it’s too soon to for Terry to know what his future would be at his age, therefore we advise him to try different new things before he settles for the one he wants. He should spend some time outside school throughout the semester and he may find his calling. Exploring all his available options and consequences will help him make the best decision.

  10. Communication

  11. Analysis

  12. Problem Solving

  13. Evaluation

  14. Synthesis

  15. Reflection

  16. Snakes in the ‘Glades

  17. Activity • Read Snakes in the ‘Glades scenario • Discuss & Write Your Notes on the Worksheet • Communication: Define the problem in your own words. • Analysis: Compare & contrast the available solutions within the scenario. • Problem Solving: Select one of the available solutions and defend it as your chosen solution. • Evaluation: Identify the weaknesses of your chosen solution. • Synthesis: Suggest ways to improve/strengthen your chosen solution (may use information not contained within the scenario). • Reflection: Reflect on your own thought process after completing the assignment. • What did you learn from this process? • What would you do differently next time to improve?

  18. Snakes Reflection Sample • We learned that there are often many solutions to a given problem. In problem solving you must consider what the best option is given the scenario. Then consider the possible outcomes based on the decision that was made. There may be a few drawbacks to any decision, but you must make the choice based on which option does the most good with the least harm.

  19. Discussion