Critical Thinking

Posted by: | Posted on: January 15, 2009

You are engaging in process of critical thinking when –in response to issue questions — you weigh evidence, analyze points of view and perspectives, and evaluate the consequences of a decision. Critical thinking requires you to make reasoned judgement about issues by considering evidence and using clear CRITERIA to guide your decisions.

An effective critical thinker:

  • consider all relevant evidence
  • develops criteria for making reasoned judgments
  • make judgments on the basis of these criteria
  • works on developing the character traits, or habits of mind that promote effective decision making

You make choices every day — at school, at home, with friends, and at work. You may, for example, need to decide wheter to join an after-school activity, whether to support a friend in school elections, or how to plan your courses for the year.

Using criteria to guide your decisions will help you succeed in school. But the benefits of using criteria to guide your decisions go wel beyond the social studies classroom. Developing effective criteria will ensure that you make the most effective choices when faced with challenges in all aspects of your life.

Derived from Margaret Hoogeveen 2008. Understanding Nationalism. McGraw-Hill Ryerson Publishing.

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