gms | German Medical Science

4th Research in Medical Education (RIME) Symposium 2015

19.03-21.03.2015, München

Scientific reasoning and argumentation – a general key competence?

Meeting Abstract

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  • corresponding author presenting/speaker Ingo Kollar - Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München, Dept. of Psychology, Munich Center of the Learning Sciences, München, Germany

4th Research in Medical Education (RIME) Symposium 2015. München, 19.-21.03.2015. Düsseldorf: German Medical Science GMS Publishing House; 2015. DocKN5

doi: 10.3205/15rime05, urn:nbn:de:0183-15rime059

Veröffentlicht: 12. März 2015

© 2015 Kollar.
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The ability to reason, argue and act on scientific grounds is important in a number of everyday and professional contexts. In the medical context, for example, doctors need to ground their reasoning process in scientific (bio-)medical knowledge to arrive at adequate diagnoses and treatment decisions. In a similar way, competent high school teachers design classroom instruction in accordance with theoretical approaches and empirical evidence from research on learning and instruction, rather than on pure intuition. To what extent professionals approach problems from their professional practice on scientific grounds may partially depend on their internal problem-solving scripts (i.e. their expectation of how a typical problem-solving process in their domain looks like). Such internal scripts can be assumed to differ between experts and novices within a domain, both with respect to the kinds of activities experts and novices regard as typical for a problem-solving process, and with respect to the quality of these activities. For example, while a competent teacher may view the search for instructional theories or concepts as a necessary step of his or her lesson planning, the internal problem solving script of a less experienced teacher may not include such a step. In the medical context, both doctors and students may regard the search for (bio-)medical concepts as a necessary step in the diagnostic process, but experienced doctors may perform this search at a higher quality level. In my talk, I will present and discuss a generic theoretical model of the scientific reasoning and argumentation process that holds some promise when it comes to the identification of the “scientificness” of experts’ and novices’ internal problem solving scripts and apply it to the medical context. Then, I will discuss to what extent this model can also be used to conceptualize the scientific quality of internal problem-solving scripts in other disciplines and lay out at what points domain expertise is crucial for the analysis of problem-solving scripts within a certain domain. In the final part of my talk, I will derive implications for the design of instruction targeted at the facilitation of scientific reasoning and argumentation, both within and beyond the medical discipline.