Josh Lanyon said and I quote, “If there was any life skill everyone on the planet needed, it was the ability to think with critical objectivity. This should create a bigger picture of how important and necessary it is to be a critical thinker. A person that doesn’t think critically can’t differentiate between fake and genuine news. Just imagine yourself not being able to differentiate between what is genuine and fake. I wonder how your life will look like. Every day of our life comes with a new set of problems. Hence, critical thinking skills are indispensable to meet up daily life demands. This article will take you through all you need to know about critical thinking.
At the end of reading this article, readers should be able to understand what critical thinking means, understand the key features of critical thinkers, identify top critical thinking skills, and finally, understand the six thinking hats.
WHAT IS CRITICAL THINKING?
Critical thinking is the ability to engage in any reflective and independent thinking. It is the capacity or ability to think plainly and reasonably, understanding the coherent association between thoughts (that is connections between ideas). Critical thinkers often ask a question related to why? What if? Why not? One thing that makes critical thinking very relevant is that it helps you decide what to believe in. Critical thinking permits you to comprehend and address a circumstance dependent on all available facts and data. When utilizing these skills, you will sort and arrange facts, information, and other data to define an issue and create a reasonable solution. It is very important to note that 90% of employers employ people with the ability to thinking critically ( problem solvers). The underlying element or tool for problem-solving is critical thinking. That’s why Voltaire said, “No problem can withstand the assault of sustained thinking”.
However, it is important to note that no one thinks critically at all times. For example, when our reasoning is clouded or affected by Joy, anger, or grief.
FEATURES OF CRITICAL THINKERS.
- Observation: critical thinkers can observe the behavior of others, problems, etc. Observation consists of four-stage and they include attention, retention, reproduction, and reinforcement.
- Curiosity: critical thinkers has a strong urge to know or learn something.
- Introspective: they examine or observe their thinking process ( they think about how they think).
- Able to infer: they can draw a relevant and valid conclusion.
- Evaluation: critical thinkers analyze, examine, compare, judge, and build up the validity of the proof.
- They are willing to challenge the status quo.
- Critical thinkers are open-minded.
- They ask questions a lot.
- They are analytical thinkers: analytical thinking examines the various part of something to comprehend or clarify it. Such thinking decides how parts fit all together and perceive Inclinations, for example, bias or profoundly held qualities and convictions that may cloud a thought or argument.
CRITICAL THINKING SKILLS
- Observation: people who observe can easily identify problems, understand why something may be an issue, and may even anticipate when a problem may occur before it does.
- Analysis: once the problem has been identified, then comes an analysis of the problem (the ability to process and examine the structure of the problem).
- Interpretation: the ability to conclude or explain the meaning of the problem processed.
- Inference: the ability to draw a relevant conclusion.
- Explanation: explaining or communicating your finding with others.
- Open-mindedness: according to the Cambridge English dictionary, open-mindedness is the quality of being willing to consider ideas and opinions that are new and different from yours.
- Problem-solving: the ability to find a solution to unexpected problems.
SIX THINKING HATS
The six thinking hats were Identified by Edward de Bono in 1985. These six thinking hats include:
- White hat: this thinking hat focus on the information at hand. You look at the data you have, break down past trends, and see what you can learn from it.
- Red hat: it focuses on feelings, intuition, and emotions. You look at problems using your emotions and intuition.
- Black hat: wearing a black hat, you look at a choice possible negative results. It attempts to perceive the reasons why it probably won’t work. This is very important because it highlights possible weaknesses in a plan.
- Yellow hat: yellow hat focuses on the positive view of a decision. It is the idealistic perspective that encourages you to see all advantages of a choice and incentive in it. It helps you to keep going when everything looks desolate and difficult.
- Green hat: this focuses on creativity. It is where you create imaginative answers to a problem.
- Blue hat: this manages the thinking process. It is usually called a process control hat because it’s the mechanism that ensures the six thinking hats.
The six thinking hats can help you consider problems, decisions, or opportunities, maximize productivity, stimulate innovation, view problems from a different perspective, etc.
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