In my exploration of the previous section on critical thinking and silence, I tumbled down a rabbit hole. I was struck by a comment made by Elon Musk that he tries to be less wrong every day, a mindset and approach that Physics (and Science) has taught him.
This took me in two distinct directions, what might this mean for (1) the science of learning and assessment; (2) feedback and critique.
When we think of assessment in education, broadly speaking, we (teachers) are attempting to identify what a student understands and can do, and plan the next steps to progress learning.
But, importantly, do we assume those assessments are right? What would happen if we began with the assumption that our assessments are wrong?
The other path I pondered on was the dynamic of feedback. You may have picked up that feedback is a topic I am always trying to learn more about.
The assumption of right or wrong is a useful addition to our understanding about why some people are so ineffective at receiving feedback.
Assuming you are right might be a motivating force, sustaining the enormous effort that conducting scientific work requires. But it also makes it easy to construe criticisms as personal attacks, and for scientific arguments to devolve into personal battles. Beginning, instead, from the assumption you are wrong, a criticism is easier to construe as a helpful pointer, a constructive suggestion for how to be less wrong — a goal that your critic presumably shares.
What could you say, to invite critique, that frames your open disposition and your readiness to listen to constructive suggestions?