Respond to each classmate with 150 words or more
After reading the article “How to Develop Critical Thinking”, for this discussion post I chose 3 key principles: analysis, evidence, and argument.
Analysis is the breakdown of what you have read. Analysis is important because it is a series of key elements in the information presented. One advantage of analysis is it helps us to distinguish, categorize, and organize specific information. Another advantage is that it also allows us to present the information in a useful manner. We must examine all information provided in order to understand and interpret it. To comprehend information presented we must identify an argument’s assertions, conclusions, and assumptions through analysis. One disadvantage of analysis is that information can be incorrectly categorized and organized if we are not reading the information comprehensively. Another disadvantage is that a thorough analysis of information is very time-consuming. Analysis plays a significant part in critical thinking because without it, we do not have the ability to accurately break down the information presented. Seah et al. (2019), stated: “people who engage in critical thinking are able to see beyond the obvious, and examine and analyse all aspects of the argument while simultaneously ‘thinking outside the box’ for alternate solutions or perspectives”.
Evidence is the means by which we use valid information to support an argument. There are three ways you can use evidence to support an argument. The first is to use case studies to support an argument. Case studies aim to examine issues and provide a more in-depth understanding of the subject. Second, statistics provide quantitative data from a study that can also be used to support an argument. Third, examples provide the reader with an illustration of what is claimed as true in an argument. Assertions that are made should be supported by evidence to sustain validity in an argument. The evidence fully relies on professional judgement from both the writer’s and the reader’s perspective. One advantage of providing evidence is that it helps sustain validity in an argument. One disadvantage is that the evidence may not be accurate or credible. Not all evidence is valid or credible. With valid and credible evidence, the argument becomes more valuable and useful to the reader.
The argument is the development of assertions and organizing them in sequential order (“How to Develop”, 2021). This key principle is fundamental in critical thinking. Arguments should not use reasons that contradict one another. Only relevant information will be used in the argument. An argument should always contain a conclusion along with at least one premise. One advantage of this key principle is that arguments contain declarative statements that provide the reader with reliable information. This means that the information contained in the argument is true. One disadvantage of argument is that it is not always presented in standard form. For this reason, the reader must comprehensively read the information and determine which statement is the intended conclusion.
In conclusion, each of these key principles plays a significant role in developing effective critical thinking skills. Effective critical thinking requires the application and collective utilization of all eight of the principles in the article (“How to Develop”, 2021). Critical thinking is important in our personal life, ministry, and most importantly our careers. It can provide an efficient way to examine information and not take what we read at face value. The bible tells us this in Proverbs 14:15 “The simple believeth every word; but the prudent man looketh well to his going.”
Throughout my academic and professional career, critical thinking has always been a very daunting skill to master. I am continually trying to improve upon and engage in critical thought daily. I enjoy looking for ways to challenge myself and do it so that it does not cease progress and impair my confidence and dedication to the task at hand. After reading, How to Develop Critical Thinking skills, I wanted to focus on critical principles criticism and objectivity. Both principals have their connection to human emotion. It is essential to show why that connection exists and why we should do our best to refrain from making those connections regarding critical thinking.
Criticism can be a sore area for most people because of the emotional attachments we have to the work we create. It is easy to accept someone’s critique of our work (predominantly negative reviews) as an extension of our character (Forsberg, 2019). It is essential to keep in mind that criticism looks at both the strengths and weaknesses. When giving constructive criticism, after stating an issue or concern, be sure to offer a possible solution to the problem. Criticism should always be welcomed and not feared because it is a helpful tool used to make needed improvements.
Objectivity means to relate information as is, separate from any personal views or opinions. Similar to criticism, objectivity can be difficult to achieve because we are emotional beings and are naturally drawn to certain subjects rather than others. Objectivity is important when thinking critically because decisions should be made based on facts and not opinions. According to another article published in Educational Philosophy & Theory, objectivity has become more skewed due to media’s heavy influence (Jackson, 2017). This article suggests that the media is aiding to defile the public’s perception to suit their personal agendas. Although there has been some controversy on whether or not outside sources should unknowingly influence society, cultural relativism is valued throughout the world.
Personally, these are two factors I plan to improve on throughout this year. I am always open to ways I can do my job more efficiently, but I still struggle with not taking things personals when it involves something I am really passionate about. In turn, taking things too personally could lead to making subjective decisions which never my intention. During these times, it is a good practice to remind myself of my strengths, achievements and understand that with constructive criticism comes growth.
All things considered, critical thinking encompasses many vital elements that can be used to create our own inferences successfully. As mentioned, always be cautious not to get too emotionally attached when giving and accepting criticism and making commentary or reviewing other’s works. Remember that criticism is just a means to more personal growth and thinking objectively allows others to receive unbiased information.