Fostering Critical Thinking Skills in ESL Reading Comprehension Through Solo Questions
Malaysian students lacked the necessary skills to analyze reading texts to attain deep understanding as they became accustomed to recalling and recognizing skills only. Thus, the goal of this research is to examine the feasibility of SOLO (Structured of Observed Learning Outcomes) Taxonomy as the framework for designing questions that could foster higher order thinking skills in English as Second Language (ESL) reading comprehension. The methods comprised of pretests and posttests and concept maps. The results recorded students’ improved performance in utilizing the reading comprehension strategies that demonstrated their abilities to think more critically. It was also discovered that the students needed more support to progress from multistructural level of thinking to relational level as they were inclined to remain consistent than reaching closure in providing their responses to SOLO questions. Thus, the major implication of this study is the need to maximize multistructural level by getting students to familiarize themselves with the process of generating ideas and exploring them. It was implied that lower level thinking responses might serve as early positive signs of critical thinking skills.
Key Words- SOLO, Unistructural, Multistructural, Relational, Extended Abstract, ESL