Critical Thinking in Foreign Language Acquisition: A Study of the Italian Language Teaching


  • Luca De Mori
  • Anong Wisessuwan
  • Chalong Tubsree


Critical thinking, Reasoning, Problem solving, Foreign language acquisition, Foreign language teaching


          Critical thinking is one of the most sought after abilities for students in their learning institutions and workers in their work places. One of the subjects in which critical thinking skills might be developed is foreign language acquisition. According to existing literature, critical thinking might help learners to improve their knowledge of the target language. The main purpose of this research was to investigate the reactions of a group of advanced students at a major Thai university who experienced the introduction of critical thinking strategies in foreign language acquisition. In this particular study the target language was Italian. The paradigm of this research was social constructivism and the research approach was qualitative. The strategy of inquiry was phenomenology. The informants were 11 advanced students of Italian at Chulalongkorn University and 3 of their lecturers. In order to be selected for this research they had to satisfy a number of predetermined requirements. Each of them gave his/her written consent to one-to-one, in depth interviews providing their insight on the matter under study. All informants signed a consent form before the interview. To protect their privacy they asked not to reveal their identity. The findings confirmed those of the existing literature: using critical thinking in foreign language acquisition, although it proved to be a difficult task for some students who had never previously experienced it, has been found to be effective and useful by most students and by all the lecturers to improve learners’ skills, both in the target language and in critical thinking. Students and lecturers also agreed that critical thinking should be more widely used in Thailand for the positive effects it has on both skills.

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