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Social Studies

Critical Thinking and Politics

This one-time course will define and examine critical thinking and then use these concepts to help understand our current political environment.
Dr. Matthew Hall
26 total reviews for this teacher
6 reviews for this class
Completed by 35 learners
year old learners
US Grade Level
learners per class


Charged upfront
Meets once
45 minute class

Available times

Table of available sections


Class Experience

This class is taught in English.
Students will learn what is meant by "critical thinking." They will learn about "internal" vs. "external" critical thinking.  Students will learn about concepts such as echo chambers, logical fallacies, and confirmation bias, and how they apply to contemporary politics.
I developed and taught Critical Thinking and Politics to university undergraduates for two semesters. 
45 minutes per week in class, and maybe some time outside of class.
We will be discussing politics, which is by definition contentious. I do have extensive experience navigating political discussions in a respectful manner but we will also be frankly examining contemporary politics. I will not, however, be taking sides or determining who is right or wrong on any particular topic. This course is therefore entirely non-partisan.  Students are expected to be respectful of their fellow learners at all times, even when they disagree strongly. Students should avoid inflammatory language as well as personal comments. I will remind students every class. I will step in immediately if any discussion becomes disrespectful or confrontational and will, as needed, mute microphones or remove students.

The focus of the class will be on how to make ourselves -- as individuals -- better critical thinkers by learning to recognize and avoid many of the pitfalls that can lead us as humans to make mistakes. We do this via an interdisciplinary approach that utilizes logic (from philosophy), risk management (business and economics), human psychology, and the scientific method generally. 
The following books provide the source material for this one-time class:
Weaponized Lies: How to Think Critically in the Post-Truth Era, Daniel J. Levitin
You Are Not So Smart, David McRaney
Everything's an Argument, Lunsford, et al
The Death of Expertise, Tom Nichols
Risk: The Science and Politics of Fear, Daniel Gardner
But What if We're Wrong, Chuck Klosterman
Lies, Damned Lies and Science, Sherry Seethaler


Dr. Matthew Hall
Lives in the United States
Lifelong Educator
26 total reviews
69 completed classes

About Me

Hi there!! I have been teaching most of my adult life in one form or another. I taught political science courses to undergrads for several years at Old Dominion University here in Norfolk, Virginia. My classes here are intended to help provide... 
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