Development of critical thinking for medical students in chemistry course

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


Placing emphasis on high level of responsibility, professionalism and tendency for improvement is expected from medical students. A continuous flow of information puts medical students in front of a choice between the already known and the new. It is therefore necessary to think flexibly and to be ready to verify information and admit mistakes - it is necessary to be able to think critically. While studying chemistry in Riga Stadiņš University, students have an opportunity to use critical thinking methods for certain purposes - investigation of laws of nature. Development of critical thinking therefore is an integral component rather than the goal of medical education. A complex education method with linked didactic methods was developed - the goals are development of critical thinking during practical work, development of study process organization skills, and critical analysis of information, situation modelling, self-assessment and self-dependence. In order for used didactic methods to work, levels of student qualification were taken in consideration and students were offered an opportunity to evaluate their work themselves. By adapting different forms of studying to each topic of theoretic course and practical work, it was possible to find the most effective as proven by student questionnaires. As research shows, the most effective didactic methods are: • special assignments where students have to verify given facts; • situations where students are directed towards intensified analysis of conditions of assignment; • mastering of science-based research principles which include promotion of theories, practical testing, result analysis, and conclusion drawing.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)237-242
Number of pages6
JournalResearch for Rural Development
Publication statusPublished - 2010
Event16th Annual International Scientific Conference - Research for Rural Development 2010 - Jelgava, Latvia
Duration: 19 May 201021 May 2010
Conference number: 16


  • Critical thinking
  • Didactic methods
  • Reflection
  • Study process

Field of Science*

  • 5.3 Educational sciences

Publication Type*

  • 3.1. Articles or chapters in proceedings/scientific books indexed in Web of Science and/or Scopus database


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