It is about being an active learner rather than a passive recipient of information.Critical thinkers rigorously question ideas and assumptions rather than accepting them at face value.
Critical thinking is the ability to think clearly and rationally, understanding the logical connection between ideas.
Critical thinking has been the subject of much debate and thought since the time of early Greek philosophers such as Plato and Socrates and has continued to be a subject of discussion into the modern age, for example the ability to recognise fake news.
Before utilising a statistic, quotation or piece of research to reinforce their argument in an assignment or discussion, students should check the source carefully to ensure that it was produced by a reliable source.
That source needs to be based on solid evidence and should not suffer from research bias.
In this week’s blog we discuss what critical thinking is, how it applies to the workplace and how to develop this crucial skill.
Critical thinking is not just being critical in the typical, negative sense of the word; there are many definitions but according to Beyer (1995), critical thinking means ‘making clear, reasoned judgments’.This skill is essential for students working on assignments and performing research.It’s also an invaluable skill in many workplace scenarios.Many people considering undergraduate or postgraduate study focus their attention only on the subject-specific skills that they will develop, e.g.they assume that a law degree will only help them to progress in a legal-related role.By researching the competition and their practices, assessing what is successful, these employees can help their company spot opportunities for growth, expansion or product development.Getting ahead of market trends before anyone else gives the company a valuable edge in the marketplace.However, this is not the case; while it’s true that a law course covers many law-related topics, it will also develop your general communication, presentation, writing, analytical and critical thinking skills.These skills can then be used in the workplace in many ways, depending on the industry.A more complex model for critical thinking that is relevant for physical education and involves using the socio-ecological perspective can be found in Gillespie and Culpan (2000), pages 84–96.Critical thinking is a core academic skill that teaches undergraduate and postgraduate students to question or reflect on their own knowledge and information presented to them.