Critical and Liberatory Methods of Inquiry

School of Consciousness and Transformation PARW 6047 2.00

This required course for MA students in Women, Gender, Spirituality and Social Justice (WGS) is also recommended to PhD students who wish to refresh or strengthen their critical thinking skills and introductory-level understanding of graduate methodologies. Students learn how to grasp the essence of a text, and how to crystallize, conceptualize, and distill the key ideas and main intent in their own writing. Critical-thinking exercises strengthen academic skills for analyzing text, for constructing well-designed and cogent research papers, and for engaging in dialogue and debate regarding ideas and beliefs. Various means for developing well-substantiated lines of thinking and reasoning will be enhanced, along with the ability to discern patterns of faulty reasoning. Students learn about the differences in worldviews and methodologies among the humanities, social sciences, and physical sciences and reflect on what it means to develop an interdisciplinary approach to research. Traditional research methodologies will be introduced along with recent schools of thought, including feminism and women's spirituality, integralism, critical theory, postmodernism, indigenous and postcolonial scholarship, queer theory, and participatory research.

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