Critical, Creative and Productive Thinking Skills

Article excerpt

While the terminology can vary, it is generally agreed by experts in the Critical Thinking School that there are six core skills that one needs to master.1. INTERPRETATION refers to the ability to understand and clearly and accurately explain the meaning and importance of data, details and decisions without personal bias or the undue influence of others.2. ANALYSIS refers to the ability to identify the similarities and differences between factors relevant to a situation, having critically examined all pertinent aspects objectively.3. EVALUATION refers to the ability to assess the credibility and dependability of assertions, arguments or claims made about a problem, circumstance or situation.4. INFERENCE refers to the ability to identify and isolate those factors that are crucial to making a judgment and drawing a conclusion by weighing up the evidence and considering the alternatives.5. EXPLANATION refers to the ability to present in an understandable way, the conclusion made about an issue using rational, persuasive argument and evidence to underpin one’s point of view.6. SELF-REGULATION refers to the ability to discipline oneself in one’s thinking processes, applying self-correction, introspection in relation to the techniques being used to arrive at one’s conclusion about an issue.TEN KEY CHARACTERISTICS OF CRITICAL THINKING1. ACCURACY. The information a person is considering and evaluating must be accurate, factual, true and evidential.2. CREDIBILITY. The data under discussion must be credible, believable, objective, consistent, justifiable and rational.3. SPECIFIC. The statements made and the various arguments advanced should be specific, clear, precise and complete.4. IMPARTIALITY. The information provided must be impartial, without prejudice, unbiased, neutral and free of strongly-held, personal beliefs.5. RELEVANCE. The data used to make conclusions must be relevant and significant to the issue under consideration.6. SUBSTANCE. The details relied upon to make a conclusion should be the result of broad, in-depth investigation, inquiry, research and all-encompassing study.7. CONSISTENCY. The conclusion reached about an issue must be such that others assessing and evaluating similar data would arrive at a like judgment.8. RELIABILITY. The evidence supporting a point of view being expressed must be reliable, dependable and trustworthy.9. LOGICAL. The information presented in support of one’s argument must be logical, sequential, and progressive leading to the ultimate conclusion. …