Foundations Capstone: Analytical Thinking

Course Description

This course invites students to consider morally challenging personal and public issues about which decisions must inevitably be made.  Students will be asked to reflect upon their testimony and personal values, recognize the elements of decision-making, and refine their use of reasoning, faith, and empathy in order to make sound moral decisions.  Critical thinking skills, mutual respect, and a spirit of civic engagement lie at the heart of Foundations Capstone.  

Content and Topics

Topics range widely, but center on controversial issues that require moral judgment and sound decision-making.  All topics pertain to ethical dilemmas that individuals are apt to experience either in their personal or in their professional lives.  Content focused on deductive and inductive reasoning, errors of judgment, and careful use of language as it relates to the expression of reasoning and meaning forms the foundation of the course.  

Goals and objectives   

Students will value clear, strong reasoning   

    • Students will support positions on controversial issues with sustained, sequential reasoning and credible evidence.
    • Students will distinguish between principle-based and preference-based reasoning.
    • Students will consider the inevitability and learning potential of understanding when and why their reasoning goes wrong.   

Students will demonstrate awareness of obstacles that make clear thinking difficult.  

    • Students will consider "studying it out in your mind" as a distinct phase in the decision-making process.
    • Students will identify how their personal values, biases, experiences, and beliefs shape their moral reasoning.
    • Students will demonstrate increased ability to acknowledge, respect, and empathize with people with different cultural, religious, political, and/or social viewpoints.  

Students will recognize the inter-relatedness of reasoning, decision-making, disciple leadership, and family and civic engagement.  

    • Students will blend faith and reason in their decision-making.
    • Students will attend to language, context, stakeholders, alternative courses of action, evidence, and criteria for judgment when making decisions.
    • Students will articulate their reasoning in a way that promotes common ground, civility and respect, and mutually beneficial solutions to shared problems.  
Course Prerequisites
  • You must have earned at least 60 credit hours to register for this course.
  • Course Fee: $5
Semesters Taught

Winter,Spring, Fall

Course Lead

Andra Hansen
Andra Hansen