Critical Thinking

Developing the Skills for Successful Thinking

© iStockphoto/joecicak

How often do you think about how you think?

For most people, the answer is "not very often".

And yet every day we each make decisions, generate ideas, draw conclusions, evaluate other people's opinions and so on.

These are things that often need careful thought.

Even when using tools and techniques to help with this, we tend to think about specific techniques of 'decision making' or 'idea generation' rather than the wider process of thinking. These techniques are very helpful, but sometimes things can fall between the cracks: If you use an incorrect assumption when you evaluate something, your final conclusion may be flawed. If you allow your emotions to cloud your analysis, you risk making a biased decision. If you don't have all the facts, you may miss the best solution. And if you unthinkingly accept what you hear or read from other people, you risk being manipulated.

That's where critical thinking comes in.

Critical thinking is the discipline of

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