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However, most research on the transfer of skills suggests that the latter definition, critical thinking as a domain-specific ability, is more accurate (1).
Or that I can think critically about software or computer programs (outside of turning it off and on again, I’m pretty useless).
Or that I can think critically about any number of things outside of my very specific areas of training and experiences.
What they will expect, though, is for you to be able to think; to know how to make connections between ideas and evaluate information critically.
And now that I’m in college, my professors often mention that the ability to think through and solve difficult problems matters more in the “real world” than specific content.
To avoid this, continually go back to the basic questions you asked when you set out to solve the problem.
Here are a few key basic question you can ask when approaching any problem: The above saying holds true when you’re thinking through a problem.
First, it’s helpful to distinguish between two possible definitions of critical thinking.
We can think of critical thinking as a general, non-domain specific, skill.
In this view critical thinking is specific to an area of expertise and can be developed and applied within a specific range of situations and scenarios. People can therefore be good at critical thinking in one domain, but bad in others.
I suspect that when most people refer to critical thinking, and the need to improve critical thinking within schools, they are referring to the former definition of critical thinking as a general ability.