The Impact Of Higher Order Questioning Based On Commercial Tv Shows Upon The Critical Thinking Skills Of Fifth Grade Elementary School Children

Date of Award




Degree Name

Doctor of Education (Educat.D.)


Purpose. This study was developed to explore: (1) the effect of higher order questions based on commercial television programs upon the critical thinking skills of fifth graders. (2) whether the effect produced from a treatment of six questions was different from that produced from twelve questions. (3) whether the effect of questions based on drama programs was different from that based upon comedy programs.Research has acknowledged the pervasive nature of television in the lives of children. Yet, no studies have explored the way in which higher order thinking questions based on commercial television programs can effect the critical thinking skills of children.Procedure. There were 100 fifth graders randomly assigned to one of six groups. Two groups were asked 12 questions and two groups were asked six questions, following their viewing of a specific program. The questions asked were designed to stimulate higher order thinking skills. The remaining two groups were given assignments which required no stimulation of higher cognitive skills. Half of all the subjects viewed comedy programs and half viewed drama programs. The groups were visited for one hour per week for six weeks. The Ross Test of Higher Cognitive Processes was then administered. An analysis of variance with planned comparisons was performed.Findings. Based on three a priori comparisons, tested at the .05 level, the following was obtained: (1) A positive relationship exists between treatments and scores on the Ross Test when treatment groups were combined for analysis (p .05). (3) No difference exists between the performance of the groups based on the type of programs upon which questions were based (p > .05).Conclusions. The use of higher order questions, based on commercial television programs, has a positive effect upon the critical thinking skills of those tested. Parents and educators can use the motivating nature of television to help stimulate the cognitive skills of children through questioning.


Education, Elementary

Link to Full Text


Link to Full Text