Habits of Mind and the purposes of a university education

Today’s Chronicle of Higher Education includes a good article about a structured, defined approach to helping students develop intellectual virtues or habits of mind:

…the real value of a college education is how it affects the way students think and act, ideally for years after they graduate. Shape your students’ underlying attitudes and intellectual characteristics, the theory goes, and a lifetime of deep and lasting learning will follow.

These characteristics go by different names, like intellectual virtues or habits of mind. And they originate in several disciplines, including education, philosophy, and psychology. They all boil down to an emphasis on underlying traits: curiosity, open-mindedness, and intellectual courage, thoroughness, and humility.

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