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Critical Thinking: What It Is and Why It Is Necessary Essay example

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Critical thinking is associated with various methods and the definition will vary. A business student will look at critical thinking differently from a psychology student. The definition has changed quite a bit over the years; it can be simple and direct, as looking at a situation and asking specific questions and coming up with a conclusion. Educator Diane Halpern’s definition, “Critical thinking is the use of those cognitive skills or strategies that increase the probability of a positive outcome.” Critical thinking is used to describe thinking that is purposeful, reasoned, and is goal directed - the kind of thinking involved in problem solving, formulating inferences, calculating likelihoods, and making decisions. Critical thinking also involves evaluating the thinking process - the reasoning and factors considered before making a decision. Critical thinking is sometimes called directed thinking because it focuses on a desired outcome (Petress, 2004, p. 463).
People are not born critical thinkers nor do they inherit critical thinking skills; critical thinking is something that comes along as they evolve. Critical thinking skills are problem solving skills that seem to go deeper, examining the ins and outs of a certain situation. One is always processing information and debating certain situations, this is part of the critical thinking process. Critical thinking consists of processes and actions:
1. Analyzing tasks
2. Identifying assumptions
3. Analyzing and classifying
4. Making comparisons
5. Problem solving
6. Analyzing tasks
7. Questioning and challenging ideas
8. Observing facts, comparing them ...


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... 2009, from http://www.pearson.ch/Business/Management.com
References

Paul, R. & Elder, L. (2004). Critical Thinking: Nine Strategies for Everyday Life, Part I.
Journal of Developmental Education, 24(1), 40-41. Retrieved January 28, 2009, from ProQuest database.
Perle, S. (2004). Critical Thinking and Technique Systems. Journal of the American Chiropractic Association, 41(2), 26-27. Retrieved February 4, 2009 from ProQuest database.
Petress, K. (2004). Critical Thinking: An Extended Definition, pp. 461-466.
Retrieved February 5, 2009, from EBSCOhost database.
Rudd, R. (2007). Defining critical thinking. Techniques: Connecting Education and Careers, pp. 46-49. Retrieved February 5, 2009, from EBSCOhost database.
Schafersman, S. D. January 1991: An Introduction to Critical Thinking.

http://www.freeinquiry.com/critical-thinking.html


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