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Contextualisation of critical thinking in sub-Saharan Africa

A systematic integrative review

Cultural norms affect the efficacy of critical thinking instruction. In several sub-Saharan African countries, governments have publicly declared critical thinking skills to be a major educational priority to increase global economic competitiveness. However, many schools and education systems have not taken action to translate the stated government policies into revised curricula, pedagogies and assessment frameworks. Faced with these challenges, the overall objective of the study is to analyse, by means of an integrative systematic review, how the concept, implementation and assessment of critical thinking has been contextualized in sub-Saharan Africa. Of the 51 documents that met the inclusion criteria, a total of 5 categories, 95 codes, and 1,075 quotes were analysed. The findings highlight that researchers and practitioners apply western concepts of critical thinking to the sub-Saharan context without questioning its actual transferability. Moreover, the analysis shows that there is a lack of familiarity with adaptation strategies of assessment tools and teaching methods in sub-Saharan Africa.

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