We organized a critical thinking course in the end of November 2017. It was our first course so we announced it as a testing one. We wanted to make test runs of exercises and lectures topic, also test overall organization of the course. The course was free of charge for participants, but we often asked for feedback about every part of the course. Unfortunately not all participants were disciplined enough to give all feedback we asked for. Anyway we found twelve people who wanted to test our course. However after several sessions some people had dropped out, as we expected. We assumed they wanted something different from the course.
The course had six 2.5 hour sessions and two 5 hour sessions. Shorter sessions were conducted at Sunday evenings, and longer sessions were conducted on New Year holidays at mornings. We also made short breaks from time to time when we finished a topic or an exercise.
The overall feedback was positive, people said the course could improve their life. They also gave many useful suggestions how to improve different aspects of the course: syllabus, organization, venue. We had even implemented some of these suggestions during the course.
For us it was very useful experience. Before the course we had only syllabus and a plan how to conduct the course. After it we had got more solid understanding about many parts of this complex system. For example we could understand human interactions during the study process better, we became more proficient in lecturing and giving exercises, we better understood the next steps in developing the syllabus.
As a main conclusion from the course we decided to analyze the feedback, improve the syllabus and organize another course with new people.