Document Type


Publication Date

Fall 2007


A number of commentators have observed the decline of the Socratic method. This is unfortunate as the Socratic method can be an effective teaching tool. But this article recognizes that the Socratic method can be monochromatic. This article argues that the Socratic method should not be conceived simply as a method to teach analytic skills. Rather, once learned, it can be a concrete analytic tool for the students to use without the help of professors. In other words, it is an end to itself rather than a means. To do this, we can adopt George Polya's heuristic for teaching mathematical problem solving.