Communities Resolving Our Problems: the basic idea
[SUP: Sharing Problems] [THINK: Guidance] [LEAP: Solving Problems]

Thinking Skills: Critical


Critical thinking is the mental process used to make a decision or address the problem of judging what to believe or what to do. Effective critical thinking requires the use of probing questions that lead to the collection and weighing of sufficient factual evidence from which a conclusion is reached. This phrase is synonymous with "reflective thinking" as defined by the "father" of modern critical thinking, John Dewey (Dewey, 1910; Fisher, 2001), and is as ancient as the history of reasoning and philosophy that can be found in any culture.

Numerous writings, research and resources support this effort.


School Programs

Selected Web Sites

Critical Thinking
Tim van Gelder's Critical Thinking on the Web
A directory of quality online resources
The Fundamentals of Critical Reading and Effective Writing shows you how to recognize what a text says , what a text does, and what a text means by analyzing choices of content , language, and structure. It shows you what to look for , and how to think about what you find.
Foundation for Critical Thinking
Critical Thinking Web "This educational web site provides over 100 free online tutorials on critical thinking, logic, scientific reasoning, creativity, and other aspects of thinking skills."

Critique of Web Information and more

Evaluation of information sources
pointers to criteria for evaluating information resources, particularly those on the Internet
Evaluating Web Resources -Widener University/Wolfgram Memorial Library
As the world's first global vanity press, anyone can and probably will place anything on the Internet. Consequently, the need for critical evaluation is even greater in the Information Age.

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly: 5 Evaluation Criteria


Other Web Sites

Maryland Community College Consortium for Teaching Reasoning
This site is maintained by Professor Bill Peirce, Prince George's Community College, which among other features "promotes the teaching of reasoning, critical thinking, and problem solving across the curriculum."

Software Examples

IMMEX Project, NSF (National Science Foundation) Supported
"Teachers need tools to look inside their students' heads while they solve problems." IMMEX (Interactive Multi-Media Exercises) is a Windows-based software system which allows the rapid construction of computer-based problem-solving experiences in many disciplines without the need for formal software programming. Additional software using artificial neural networks, make the evaluation of students in this problem-solving format perhaps easier than more traditional multiple choice questions."
Software for visualizing thought, providing easier decision making and better critical thinking.
Business and Grant Proposal Module by IdeaFisher Systems, Inc.
"Assists in identifying important issues, maintaining focus, planning, developing, writing, evaluating and presenting. Includes more than 300 questions that aid user in critical thinking" and is but one of many modules that support different thinking activities.

Email Conferences

Selected Book Titles

Page author: Houghton