Critical thinking: What is it?
Critical thinking is the process of recognizing and resolving issues through information collecting, evaluation of evidence, pattern recognition, and logical reasoning. Writing critically involves posing the correct queries and challenging the conventional wisdom that no longer serves as an acceptable response. Ultimately, it involves identifying workable—and frequently novel—solutions.
Thinking is a natural process. It just happens; you do not have to make it so. But there are other ways you may make it happen. Think either positively or badly, for instance. Both rational judgment and "heart" thinking are valid modes of thought. Additionally, you could think logically, tactically, quantitatively, and scientifically. These are only a few of the numerous ways the mind might handle ideas.
What types of thought processes do you employ? When and why do you utilise them?
It is your responsibility as a college student to challenge and develop your thinking abilities. Critical thinking is among these abilities' most crucial components. Because it applies to almost all jobs, circumstances, themes, vocations, surroundings, problems, and opportunities, critical thinking is crucial. It is not limited to a specific subject.
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Writing critically is a critical process in and of itself.
Let's imagine you ask one of your staff members to draft a report with recommendations. She is to consider whether your business should switch the supplier of the paper used by your copy machines, printers, and paper publications in this report. Either sticking with the current vendor or picking a new one will be advised by the report.
How should this author continue? Critical thinking has a role in this.
First, we recommend the report writer think about these two important aspects:
1. Who will read the report?
2. What is the report's purpose?
The writer is not thinking critically if her sole options are "my boss" and "to assist my employer in selecting a paper vendor." For starters, the report will probably be seen by several people, including the CEO, CFO, COO, Chief Procurement Officer, and possibly some department heads who use a lot of paper.
The report's goal may also be a little more complicated: for instance, it might serve as a template for recommendations about other vendors in the future. If that happens, the recommendation will undoubtedly affect the work of many other people in the workplace (for example, anyone who must make copies on cheap but subpar paper, if that is the recommendation).
Of course, the document also serves the objective of winning the writer's supervisor over with her dependability, thoroughness, and intelligence.
To enhance and improve critical thinking in writing tasks, ask the following seven questions.
- What details ought to be mentioned? Of course, there are costs involved and paper quality to consider, but what about payment plans, customer support, warranties, vendor histories and reputations, recycling practices, and other factors? What facts are important and what don't they?
- What resources should the writer look to for information? Is the Internet a vendor's sales team? Fellow workers? The thoughts of other businesses like the author's own?
- How much technical sophistication should the report presume its audience possesses? Can a writer.
- What is the most effective approach to conveying information? Should pricing information, for instance, be displayed in tables, charts, or paragraph form? Should references from other businesses regarding potential vendors be offered in paragraphs or in bulleted lists?
- What format should the report take? A written document depends on its organisation to successfully transmit information, much like code needs to be organised to run correctly or an engineering design needs its component components to fit together perfectly.
- What should the design look like? While essential, words are not the only component of communication. The style, formatting, and visual components of the design can help to support, reinforce, and contextualise the writing.
- What kind of language sophistication and tone should the document use? Additionally, the audience must be considered. What will they comprehend, value, and react to?
- These can be difficult questions, and only someone skilled in critical thought is able to pose and respond to them. You may have also noticed that none of these questions include commas, active verbs, parallel construction, sentence fragments, or subject-verb agreement.
- Any document should have good syntax, punctuation, and a persuasive style, but the critical thought that goes into it is considerably more crucial. If the content and design of a document are not appropriate to the task—if they do not make the document convincing and usable for its audience and purpose—then even the greatest grammar and the most stylish writing are not much use.