Critical, Creative and Productive Thinking

Manila Bulletin, September 23, 2009 | Go to article overview
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Critical, Creative and Productive Thinking


(Part l)In today’s information-intensive world, a valuable personal skill to master is the ability to think critically. This is a necessity whether one is a chief executive officer (CEO) of a major corporation, a platoon leader in the military, or a teacher in an early childhood teaching environment. This is known in the 4S Accelerated English Program as Critical, Constructive and Productive Thinking (CCPT).One part of the training offered by 4S-AEP is designed to achieve that objective for teachers, tutors and trainers. The goal is to impart the necessary abilities for an individual to be competent and confident at critically and constructively examining ideas, issues, processes, procedures, systems, objects and events in terms of their distinguishable elements, their unique constituencies and their general or common components. The purpose is for the person to be able to make informed, critical judgments about the trustworthiness, validity, relevance and value of the detail exchanged and discerned.A secondary objective of the Critical Thinking component of CCPT is to provide course participants with critical analytical, evaluation and assessment skills.These are skills that are essential to problem-solving and situational assessment that can be readily applied in other related cases through the process of skills transfer by which previously known, proven and acceptable solutions and approaches to similar problems in the past can be applied, in part or totally, to a present circumstance.CREATIVE PRODUCTIVE THINKINGCoupled with the art of critical thinking is the ability to think creatively. It is about creating, developing or generating new or original ideas. It allows for the thinker to critically and constructively consider a matter from “outside the box”, i.e. from different, even unusual aspects, adopting an innovative, often untried approach to problem solving, resulting in a novel, yet apt outcome.Productive thinking is also outcome-centered. It is about thinking smarter, better and often differently, eventually producing a result or outcome that will be the most beneficial and suitable as the solution to a problem, to meet a need, or to achieve an acceptable compromise in a competitive situation.In today’s world where competition dominates globally, nationally and locally in every aspect of life be it commerce, industry, politics, education, sport and other human-related activities, how one thinks is crucial.

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