Innovative Teaching Strategies in Nursing and Related Health Professions

Essay by chris6878University, Bachelor'sA, July 2010

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�PAGE � �PAGE �7� Running Head: Debate as a Teaching Strategy

Innovative Teaching Strategies in Nursing and Related Health Professions

Debate as a Teaching Strategy


This paper will demonstrate the benefits of debate as a teaching tool. Debate is useful in the classroom because it caters to all types of learners. Critical thinking, communication skills and public speaking are essential skills that can be developed with debate. The instructor takes on a new role as the facilitator. Finally this paper will specify how debate should flow in the classroom and the potential barriers and overall benefits.

Debate is at the epicenter of a democratic society. The ability to persuade another person to coincide with personal beliefs requires critical thinking and critical communication skills. Debate, according to Merriam-Webster online dictionary, is a regulated discussion of a proposition between two matched sides. (Merriam-Webster online dictionary, 2010) Debate can be a powerful teaching tool, as well as, an enlightening experience for the student.

Prejudices and misconceptions can hinder productive critical thinking in the classroom and can create an unprofessional environment in the clinical setting. Debating enables students to break down the barriers of prejudices while maintaining original sentiments on a particular subject. Students are required to take an active role in research that obligates them to analyze all possible angles of a particular subject. The fact that the student must present well researched factual based information to defend his or her point of view, forces the student to re-evaluate any preconceived notions and take notice of opposing views.

Debate helps to develop good communication skills in the work place. Misunderstandings in communication can cause frustration; good communication skills can reduce conflict. According to Mind Tools journal, "communication is only successful when both the sender and the receiver understand the...