Critical thinking concepts and tools 2009

But much of our thinking, left to itself, is biased, distorted, partial, uninformed or down-right prejudiced.

Yet the quality of our life and that of what we produce, make, or build depends precisely on the quality of our thought. Shoddy thinking is costly, both in money and in quality of life. Excellence in thought, however, must be systematically cultivated. Critical thinking is the art of analyzing and evaluating thinking with a view to improving it.

Critical thinking is self-directed, self-disciplined, self-monitored, and self-corrective thinking. It requires rigorous standards of excellence and mindful command of their use. It entails effective communication and problem-solving abilities and a commitment to overcoming our native egocentrism and sociocentrism. Concepts and Tools. Insofar as those assumptions might reasonably be questioned? Does the writer use questionable assumptions without addressing problems which might be inherent in those assumptions?

Intellectual humility depends on recognizing that one should not claim more than one actually knows. It does not imply spinelessness or submissiveness. This courage is connected with the recognition that ideas considered dangerous or absurd are sometimes rationally justified in whole or in part and that conclusions and beliefs inculcated in us are sometimes false or misleading. We need courage to be true to our own thinking in such circumstances.

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The penalties for nonconformity can be severe. This trait correlates with the ability to reconstruct accurately the viewpoints and reasoning of others and to reason from premises, assumptions, and ideas other than our own. This trait also correlates with the willingness to remember occasions when we were wrong in the past despite an intense conviction that we were right, and with the ability to imagine our being similarly deceived in a case-at-hand.

It entails a commitment to analyzing and evaluating beliefs on the basis of reason and evidence, to question when it is rational to question, to believe when it is rational to believe, and to conform when it is rational to conform. Is it a question with one definitive answer? Is it a question that calls for a subjective choice? Or does the question require you to consider competing points of view?

Recognize problems as obstacles to reaching your goals, achieving your purposes, or satisfying your needs. State each problem as clearly and precisely as you can. For example, what do you have to do to solve it? Concentrate your efforts on problems you can potentially solve. Actively seek that information. What can you do in the short term? In the long term? Recognize your limitations in terms of money, time, and power. Follow through on it. This may involve direct action or a carefully thought-through wait-and-see approach.

Be ready to revise your strategy if the situation requires it. Be prepared to change your analysis or statement of the problem, as more information about the problem becomes available.

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We do not naturally appreciate the point of view of others nor the limitations in our own point of view. We become explicitly aware of our egocentric thinking only if trained to do so. We do not naturally recognize our egocentric assumptions, the egocentric way we use information, the egocentric way we interpret data, the source of our egocentric concepts and ideas, the implications of our egocentric thought.

The miniature guide to critical thinking : concepts and tools

We do not naturally recognize our self-serving perspective. As humans we live with the unrealistic but confident sense that we have fundamentally figured out the way things actually are, and that we have done this objectively. Instead of using intellectual standards in thinking, we often use self-centered psychological standards to determine what to believe and what to reject. Here are the most commonly used psychological standards in human thinking. Sociocentric thinking is a hallmark of an uncritical society. Men educated in it cannot be stampeded by stump orators They are slow to believe.

Developing Critical Thinkers

They can hold things as possible or probable in all degrees, without certainty and without pain. They can wait for evidence and weigh evidence, uninfluenced by the emphasis or confidence with which assertions are made on one side or the other. They can resist appeals to their dearest prejudices and all kinds of cajolery. Education in the critical faculty is the only education of which it can be truly said that it makes good citizens.

But this capacity must be developed. It will be significantly developed only if critical societies emerge. If we want critical societies we must create them. Their modest cost enables instructors to require them of all students in addition to a textbook. Their compactness enables students to keep them at hand whenever they are working in or out of class. Their succinctness serves as a continual reminder of the most basic principles of critical thinking.

It provides the common denominator between all forms of analysis. It lays out the function of ethics, its main impediments, and its social counterfeits. Imminently practical for students. It focuses on the internal logic of the news as well as societal influences on the media. How to say something worth saying about something worth saying something about. It focuses on the intellectual skills inherent in the well-cultivated scientific thinker.

For faculty it provides a shared concept and vocabulary. For students it is a thinking supplement to any textbook for any engineering course.

Paul-Elder Critical Thinking Framework — University of Louisville Ideas To Action

Focuses on explaining basic critical thinking principles to young children using cartoon characters. It lays the foundation for the ideas found in the mini-guide How to Improve Student Learning. It cultivates student learning encouraged in the How to Study and Learn miniguide. Provides grading rubrics and outlines five levels of close reading and substantive writing.

He is Director of Research at the Center for Critical Thinking, and the Chair of the National Council for Excellence in Critical Thinking, author of over articles and seven books on critical thinking. Paul has given hundreds of workshops on critical thinking and made a series of eight critical thinking video programs for PBS. The Foundation for Critical Thinking www.

Elder has a special interest in the relation of thought and emotion, the cognitive and the affective, and has developed an original theory of the stages of critical thinking development.

She is a dynamic presenter with extensive experience in leading seminars on critical thinking.. Our customer support will gladly tell you whether there are any special offers at the moment, as well as make sure that you are receiving the best service our company can deliver. Homework for me One-stop solution for students in need of homework help. Order now Get a Quote. Why choose our homework help? Because we know exactly what matters most to you. Leave all papers to us and rest!

: Linda Elder: Books, Biography, Blog, Audiobooks

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