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Calidad en la educación

versión On-line ISSN 0718-4565

Resumen

LARRAIN, Antonia et al. University and argumentation skills' development in Chile: an exploratory and comparative study. Calidad en la educación [online]. 2015, n.43, pp.201-228. ISSN 0718-4565.  http://dx.doi.org/10.4067/S0718-45652015000200007.

Argumentation skills play an important role in higher education. Empirical evidence shows that higher education students have better argumentation skills than their peers without university studies. However, it is still unknown whether this is a product of higher education or self-selection. The goal of this study was to explore written argumentation skills development in chilean tertiary education, in order to contribute to the body of knowledge on the relationship between argumentation and higher education (university and vocational training). The written argumentation skills of 336 tertiary education students, from university and vocational training programs, were evaluated. The sample was comprised of five different programs from two chilean institutions, and of two cohorts, evaluated at the beginning and end of the school year. Descriptive, correlational and covariance analyses were run. Results show that the participants are less skilled at formulating counter-arguments that in general, they significantly improve in the sub-aspects of acceptability and soundness; and when controlled for age and academic performance, university students improve significantly more than technical students, over the course of one year. Finally, results show that university students’ improvement is greater for those that have below average performance on the standardized test required for university admission in Chile (PSU). The implications for chilean higher education is discussed.

Palabras clave : higher education; argumentation; cognitive development.

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