I'd Like to Teach the World to Think: Mind Genomics, Big Mind, and Encouraging Youth

I'd Like to Teach the World to Think: Mind Genomics, Big Mind, and Encouraging Youth

Howard Moskowitz (Big Mind Institute of Education and Messaging, USA), Jyotsna (National Skill Development Corporation, India), Andi Sciacca (Big Mind Institute of Education and Messaging, USA) and Andrew Lester (Big Mind Institute for Education and Messaging, USA)
Copyright: © 2018 |Pages: 36
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-4038-0.ch003
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At the time of this writing, 2017, there is noticeable reduction in the perceived ability of people to think critically. Both the popular press and the scientific/professional literature recognize this worldwide drop. This chapter presents the use of experimental design of ideas, conjoint measurement, originally a tool used in marketing, as a tool to inspire creative thinking. The chapter presents the approach and application of conjoint measurement as a tool for discovery, and then delineates a new computer APP, Big Mind, as user friendly to enhance critical thinking. Big Mind embodies conjoint measurement to help researchers study topics, uncover new substantive findings, and learn to think critically as an outcome from the process.
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A greater percent of the world’s population is educated, year after year. At the same time, pundits and professionals alike are lamenting the loss of critical thinking (e.g., Schurman,2013, but many others in the popular, non- academic press). And so, we face a quandary. Our young people today, those of school age, are digital natives, playing increasingly complex, often competitive video games with an enviable ability and with concentration and perseverance, behavior seems not to appear when otherwise needed for schooling. Yet these same young people do not read much, have limited attention span, and worst of all, appear to have lost the ability to think critically, or at least the ability to focus, perhaps because they live in a world of instant messaging and tweeting. The world, filled as it is with increasingly competent ‘tech-savviness’ is losing that fundamental ability to think through a complex problem, a problem which lacks entertainment value but might be the kind of problem to be later faced in one’s life or one’s profession.

This chapter is not going to be a eulogy on thinking, but rather will present the authors’ approach to encouraging critical thinking by turning the young person into an experimenter, albeit an experimenter with ideas. The chapter is, in fact, a description of an ongoing project begun some years ago, the Mind Genomics project, to create a new science of the mind. The Mind Genomics that was created in the 1990’s has evolved into a tool by which to stimulate critical thinking, as well as a tool to create a corpus of knowledge about what we think.

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