The effect of instructing critical thinking through debate on the EFL learners’ reading comprehension

Maryam Danaye Tous, Abdorreza Tahriri, Sara Haghighi


The purpose of this study was to examine the effect of instruction through debate on the male and female EFL learners’ reading comprehension, and to examine the difference between male and female EFL learners’ perception towards instructing critical thinking (CT) through debate. 88 learners, out of 120, were selected through convenience sampling method. Using a quantitative research method with experimental pre-and post-tests design, this study consisted of 44 participants in the experimental group and 44 participants in the control group. The experimental group received some treatment in the form of “the Meeting-House Debate” strategy, while the control group received no such treatment. After one month and a half treatment of experimental group, both groups participated in the post-test. Data analysis was done using descriptive and inferential statistics procedures. Findings showed that the debate strategy had statistically significant effect on the students’ reading comprehension. Also, results revealed that there was no significant difference between male and female EFL learners’ perception towards instructing CT through debate. It was concluded that instructing CT skills through debate strategy resulted in better understanding of reading texts.


reading comprehension; critical thinking; critical thinker; debate technique

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ISSN 1527-9316