Each person thinks because it is human nature to do so. Although, critical thinking requires special education and ultimate approach. People who can think critically have more chances to achieve success in life and bring more profit to the society. However, it is sometimes unclear what does it mean to think critically and which critical thinking tools exist. People who think critically question the authority, look at a problem from different points of view, seek new solutions to the persistent problems, can perform self-evaluate adequately. What about critical thinking tools in the article below, those are numerous means to learn or teach critical thinking.
First of all, it should be stated that critical thinking tools can fulfill different tasks. For example, there are tools which are determined to help people remember, understand, apply knowledge, analyze, evaluate, or create. All of them are independent goals and should be viewed in detail but separately.
The ability to remember is crucial in the modern society. Those who own the information, own the world, everyone knows this saying. The ability to remember implies recognizing, identifying, retrieving, listing, and describing the information. Today torrents of information are numerous and huge. It is important to present certain data the way it would be easy to remember. For instance, bullet-pointing, bookmarking, googling, highlighting, and social networking will help in this case. The tools which can be used are YouTube, Clarisketch, EdTED and so forth.
Tools and Their Functions
The ability to understand data is even more valuable. It implies such processes as explaining, interpreting, summarizing, classifying, comparing, paraphrasing. Understanding is an integral part of critical thinking. Only if people understand the information, they can question it and use it for their purposes. Among the available tools, it is possible to mention MindNode, Mindmaple, Twitter.
Another important issue is the evaluation of the information. People should have their subjective opinions about the data they perceive each day. There are such phenomena as false information, ambiguity, info-wars between companies, or even countries. People must know how to evaluate the data without being influenced by anyone. Evaluation implies judging, critiquing, checking, monitoring, detecting.
Applying information is also a crucial facility. This process consists of implementing, using, doing, and carrying out. Information is a resource which can be used to get new resources or just gain profit. It is crucial to know how to apply data and use it for beneficial purposes. Edublogs and Weebly are perfect tools for that.
The analysis of information gives means to use, understand, and apply it. Without analyzing, the process of critical thinking is impossible. Linking, validating, reverse-engineering, calculating are commonly used to analyze data.
Finally, critical thinking requires the ability to create, which consists of making, planning, designing, producing, constructing, inventing. People can – and should – respond to the information they have perceived from the external world. Filming, programming, publishing, blogging, video blogging, animating – they are all used for self-expression.
To conclude, it is necessary to state that critical thinking tools are obligatory to teach people how to use information as a source. In the modern society, critical thinking is a part of success. People should not follow common ideas and points of view; they should make decisions on their own. This article tries to give general notions about the issue and provides the information needed.
Brookfield, S. D. (2011). Teaching for Critical Thinking: Tools and Techniques to Help Students Question Their Assumptions. John Wiley & Sons.
Dwyer, C. P., Hogan, M. J., & Stewart, I. (2014). An integrated critical thinking framework for the 21st century. Thinking Skills and Creativity, 12, 43-52. doi:10.1016/j.tsc.2013.12.004
Lau, J. Y. (2011). An Introduction to Critical Thinking and Creativity: Think More, Think Better. John Wiley & Sons.
McPeck, J. E. (2016). Teaching Critical Thinking: Dialogue and Dialectic. S.l.: Routledge.
Smith, J. C. (2017). Critical Thinking: Pseudoscience and the Paranormal. John Wiley & Sons.