The Impacts of Collaborative Learning on Developing Critical Thinking in English Classroom: A Study among High School Students in Two Private Schools in Abu Dhabi

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The British University in Dubai (BUiD)
Schools in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) shifted from following traditional teaching system to using technologically-advanced classrooms. Subsequently, by the time the students start their new learning experiences, they need to adapt different forms of learning processes, such as adapting higher educational learning system, and sharpening their thinking skills. Critical thinking skills are essential factors that can be engraved in the learner at any point of the educational hierarchy. Thus, it is better clenched in students at the tertiary stage as they become more mentally matured to overcome challenges. Also, students’ thinking skills need to be sharpened early by providing them learning strategies which promote them to think why and how, instead of only asking what. Additionally, the study concludes that students need to acquire 21st century thinking skills in English classroom integrated with technology as they enter the working life of society. This thinking process helps the students to think critically, and acquire the knowledge meaningfully when they encounter it in real life situations. Therefore, the purpose of this study is to understand how collaborative learning develops students’ critical thinking skills in English classroom among high school students in two private schools in Abu Dhabi. In addition, the conducted research used mixed method approach (quantitative and qualitative methods) which is suitable for this research as it would answer the main research question and would increase the validity of the research (Creswell, 2003). As a result, the study will contribute in increasing the abilities of students who would use their critical thinking skills effectively in English classroom through collaborative learning in future and promoting shared responsibilities within students and teachers by developing effective communication skills.
United Arab Emirates (UAE), collaborative learning, English classroom, critical thinking, high school students, private schools, educational hierarchy, communication skills