In any classroom, engaging students in rigorous discussion and debate can be difficult. In my own discipline of Women’s Studies, I have found that students can be wary of challenging one another or presenting opposing viewpoints. While agreement is not inherently negative, I have noticed that opposing viewpoints and controversy are often bypassed or overlooked for the sake of agreement. An unintended consequence of this is the silencing of difference, which can be one of the most effective learning tools in any classroom. For this reason, I have developed a class activity that necessitates debate and a consideration of opposing viewpoints. In this paper, I explain how to organize and run a class moot, and offer an outline of the workshop I developed to help give you the tools to adapt and carry out this exercise with your own classes.
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"A Moot Point: Encouraging discussion and debate in the Arts and Humanities classroom,"
Teaching Innovation Projects:
2, Article 4.
Available at: http://ir.lib.uwo.ca/tips/vol1/iss2/4