Are you one of the 9 out of 10 people out there who could do with a brain boost?
A lot of the above problems really boil down to you being able to think more logically and rationally and being able to present your point across in a clear and convincing way.
That's where improving your critical thinking skills is important.
Simply put, critical thinking skills help you think better and smarter.
Developing your critical thinking skills is not as hard as you might think. In this, one of the comprehensively structured courses in critical thinking, we provide you with a simple and fun way to do just that.
Warning - this is not your typical dry academic course in logic and philosophy! We take some elements of logic and philosophy, but are more interested in getting people to apply those ideas in in the real-world.
Boost your brainpower in just a few days!
How? I explain in very simple terms each key step in the critical thinking process that is designed to build up your confidence as a critical thinker.
You'll learn quickly and effectively with easy-to-digest videos that cover basic concepts along with practical examples. What can be better than spending less than 5 minutes each day picking up a new critical thinking concept or idea?
You will be using your portfolio of critical skills in no time!
And because the videos are small digestible chunks and easily indexed, you can quickly review and remind yourself of what you have learned. I've specifically designed the course in this way so it's like having your own personal library on tap at any time - and remember, you get lifetime access for only US$49!
Critical thinking is the ability to think clearly and rationally
Because of their large unusual geometrical patterns, “croppies” believe that crop circles were created by UFOs and alien beings
The are many situations where thinking critically will be important
If we don't think critically we effectively become robots that just follow instructions!
There is a significant difference between a critical thinking process and a non-critical thinking process.
A critical thinking process requires rigor and discipline.
Critical thinking involves learning “how” to think rather than “what” to think
There are many benefits to critical thinking including the ability to solve problems more quickly and ask relevant questions
Critical thinking involves thinking logically about problems
Critical thinking involves creating a sound and believable argument, or evaluating whether an argument is such
We may not all be at the same level of Albert Einstein but we can learn from how other critical thinkers think.
A problem is something that requires a solution, decision or response
People only tend to act on problems when they feel a sense of ownership
Individuals might be aware of a problem but choose to ignore it
An unspecified or anonymous source is used as part of an argument, usually with the intent of adding credibility to the argument by providing an imagined authority for a piece of evidence
Correlation, can be viewed as “co-relation”, or a relationship between two things that happen at the same time
Causation is when one thing causes another thing, or a cause-and-effect relationship
False precision gives the illusion of precision to make an argument appear stronger than it really is
Indicators are keywords used to identify the conclusion or premises in an argument
A complex argument is more difficult to analyse than a simple one
Critical thinkers are not put-off by complex arguments; a complex argument may take longer to analyse but the basic process is the same
In an "appeal to flattery" fallacy flattery is used in an attempt to gain support
A strong argument is one where the premises are reasonable and the conclusions reasonably follow from the premises
A weak argument is one where one or more premises are unreasonable, or when the conclusion does not reasonably follow from the premises
Bias distorts our perspective and affects our judgment, often subconsciously without us realising it
What do these statements have in common?
Prejudice is a pre-concieved judgement towards an individual or group of individuals based on unfounded beliefs or attitudes
Prejudice often results in negative feelings, sterotyping, rejection or discrimination
The main purpose of evidence is either to
1)Support a claim that we are making
2)Evaluate whether a claim can be believed
The Kipling method advocates
6 critical kinds of question, namely, what, why, when, how, where and who.
The idea of the 5 whys is to dig deeper to understand the root cause of a problem and understand why a problem is happening in the first place
Socrates was a famous philosopher and educator who taught by asking questions; he defined six main types of question
A questioning strategy is about asking questions in a thoughtfuland purposeful manner to arrive at a point of decision-making in an efficient manner
Base-rate fallacy is where a judgment is made that disregards existing information on probability and instead takes into account irrelevant information
A tool for evaluating the quality of information sources - originally designed for academic use
The fallacy of anecdotal evidence is where generalisations are made on the basis of anecdotal, and often insufficient, evidence
A non-credible witness is someone we doubt
In legal terms, a credible witness is one whose testimony can be believed
If we meet someone for the first time, or are doing business with another company for the first time, how do we establish the credibility of the individual or the organisation?
Facts can be verified through observation or an established point of reference such as a book or acknowledged expert
Opinions can only be evaluated not verified
An observation is made by gathering data from sight, smell, touch or other senses
An inference is a conclusion one derives based on a set of assumptions
Anchoring is the tendency to rely on past reference, an “anchor” when making a decision
A logical fallacy is an error in reasoning
The use of a person or institution of authority, stature or repute as a premise to support a conclusion
A claim that something is true because many other people also alledgedly believe its true
An appeal to motive calls into question the motive of a person or organisation regardless of however tenuous or unlikely the actual motive may be
In an appeal to ridicule, an argument is responded to as if it so absurd, ridiculous or comical to the extent that it not deserving of any serious merit or attention
There are many different kinds of irrelevant appeal
Ad hominem is an attack on the person making an argument rather than the argument itself
False dilemna is a false choice – it involves portraying situations as a choice between black or white
The use of exaggerated and improbable consequences
Deliberately introducing or highlighting favourable or unfavourable information in order to make a certain impression
The qualities of one thing are automatically assumed in another thing through a tenuous or insignificant association
A red herring involves the introduction of an unrelated topic into a discussionin order to mislead or deflect attention
Attacking a “strawman”, or a distorted or exaggerated version of someone’s argument, rather than the actual argument itself
You decide whether the conclusion actually follows from the stated premises and evidence
In deductive reasoning one applies applies a general theory to specific examples
In inductive reasoning one uses specific examples to make a general theory
A sound argument is one where the argument is valid, and the premises are believable
An unsound argument is there the argument is valid, but where the premises are unbelievable
In the real-world, we are less likely to be concerned with whether an argument is valid or invalid, but rather with how strong or weak an argument is
3 machines (A, B and C) are able to produce 3,000 widgets per day
How long will it take 4 machines (A, B, C and D) to produce 12,000 widgets?
When someone makes an argument they may not explicitly mention things they believe to be true but which are relevant to the argument
These beliefs are known as assumptions
There are 3 types of assumption: stated, hidden and obvious
The probability that A and B are simultaneously true, is always less than or equal to the probability that A is true - if you break this rule you have fallen prey to the conjunction fallacy
We need to need check assumptions and decide whether they are acceptable or warranted.
A warranted assumption meets at least one of the following criteria:
Critical thinking involves challenging the assumptions made in an argument.
What assumptions are being made?
Why are those assumptions being made?
How reasonable are the assumptions? Are they warranted?
How can we verify the assumptions?
Are the assumptions too simplistic?
In what situations would the assumptions not hold true?
Ethical reasoning is reasoning about right or wrong human conduct, and what is fair, responsible and just
Founded by two former business school Deans, ThinkSchool helps students and professionals develop their cognitive and collaborative skills within the shortest time possible.
We do this by drawing upon a diverse network of talented educators for content and using learning specialists to optimise the content into distinct learning units.
Our courses consist of short, to-the-point videos that makes it easy for learners to locate, digest and review learning concepts covered in the course. Learning has never been so efficient and fun!