Academic journal article Educational Research Quarterly

Think Pair Share: A Teaching Learning Strategy to Enhance Students' Critical Thinking

Academic journal article Educational Research Quarterly

Think Pair Share: A Teaching Learning Strategy to Enhance Students' Critical Thinking

Article excerpt

This study investigated the change in critical thinking (CT) skills of baccalaureate nursing students who wen educated using a Think-Pair-Share (TPS) or an equivalent Non-Think-Pair-Share (Non-TPS) teaching method Critical thinking has been an essential outcome of nursing students to prepare them to provide effective and safe quality care for patients. Think-Pair-Share is a cooperative discussion strategy that provides students with adequate time to think in order to increase their quality of responses. Students become actively involved in thinking about the concepts presented in their discussion. Ninety one students participated in this study. Forty six (50%) of the participants were included in the control group (Non-TPS) and 45 (50%) were included in the experimental group (TPS). The participants were sophomore-level generic accelerated baccalaureate nursing students enrolled in the same Health Assessment nursing course. The HESI critical thinking test was the tool used before (Pretest) and after (posttest) the course to collect data about student's CT skills. The study used a quasi experimental design. The independent sample t test and Mann-Whitney test were used to analyse the data. Findings revealed a significant increase in CT over time, throughout the 17-week course, with the use of TPS teaching/ learning strategy. The results suggest that TPS is an effective strategy to foster CT of nursing students and could be used by educators to foster learners' CT in their courses. The study has significant implications on education, nursing practice, and research.


Critical thinking (CT) is an essential quality that is crucial in nursing students in order to prepare them to provide safe and appropriate patient care in a variety of settings (Riddell, 2007). Colleges of nursing have strived to address the need for developing CT in nursing students by making it one of the essential outcomes and core competencies for nurses in the 21st century, as identified by the National League for Nursing Accreditation Commission (NLNAC, 2005). To refine CT in classroom, many techniques may be used including active and cooperative learning. Critical thinking is promoted by active learning strategies because of their cognitive triggering processes (Nelson, 2006). In effect, active learning processes and CT development are closely related. Students who are actively engaged in guided discussions and group work are more likely to develop CT skills (Nelson, 2006). Nurse educators are challenged to make use of teaching strategies that provide nursing students with the opportunity to foster their CT skills. One method that educators might use to promote learners' CT is Think-PairShare (TPS).

Think-Pair-Share is a cooperative discussion strategy that was first developed by Professor Frank Lyman and bis colleagues at the University of Maryland in 1981. It has been adopted by many writers in the field of cooperative learning since then. It gets its name from the three stages of student action, with an emphasis on what students are to be doing at each of those stages (Marzano & Pickering, 2005). This teachmgJearning strategy works in three phases: (1) Think. The teacher provokes students' thinking with a question, prompt, or observation. The students should take a few minutes just to THINK about the question; (2) Pair. Using a partner or a desk-mate, students PAIR up to talk about the answer each came up with. They compare their mental or written notes and identify the answers they think are best, most convincing, or most unique; (3) Share. After students talk in pairs for a few minutes, the~teacher calls~for pairs to SHARE their thinking with the rest of the class (Robertson, 2006).


The purpose of this study was to explore the effect of ThinkPak -Share, as a teaching-learning strategy on the CT skills of baccalaureate nursing students in their Health Assessment course. The study strived to answer the following research question: Does Think-Pair-Share teaching-learning strategy have an impact on the CT skills of nursing students in generic accelerated baccalaureate program throughout their Health Assessment course? …

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