Socrates, the early Greek philosopher and teacher, believed that disciplined and thoughtful questioning enabled the student to logically examine and validate ideas. Using Socrates’ approach, the instructor feigns ignorance of the topic in order to engage in dialogue with the students. By using Socratic questioning, instructors promote independent, higher-level thinking in their students, giving them ownership of what they are learning through discussion, debate, evaluation, and analysis of material.
Tips for Using Socratic Questioning:
- Plan significant questions to provide meaning and direction
- Draw as many students as possible into the discussion
- Allow at least thirty seconds for students to respond
- Follow up on students’ responses
- Periodically summarize in writing key points that have been discussed
Types and Examples of Socratic questions
|Probing questions||· What would be an example?
|Implication and consequences questions||
|Viewpoint and perspective questions||
|Questioning the question||