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The confirmation bias, another type of error, is our tendency to place too much faith in materials that support our own beliefs and attitudes, seeking out such materials and avoiding those that challenge us.The self-serving bias is our tendency to view our own activities positively and interpret ambiguous data in a way that suits our own purposes.The recorded history of critical thinking goes back to Socrates, in ancient Greece.
These are all acceptable conclusions, but they still don’t define what critical thinking really is.
However, if you look closely you’ll see a common thread among them: they all support the notion that thinking critically requires discipline.
Nevertheless, it remains one of the most beneficial skills we can impart to our learners.
Though it’s a universal concept all of us are aware of, a multitude of differing definitions, views, and opinions circulate on what critical thinking actually is.
So here’s a question: what do think critical thinking means?
What we want is for you to be able to reflect independently on the exploration we’re about to take on critical thinking, and decide what it means for yourself. “Critical thinking is the intellectually disciplined process of actively and skillfully conceptualizing, applying, analyzing, synthesizing, and/or evaluating information gathered from, or generated by, observation, experience, reflection, reasoning, or communication, as a guide to belief and action.”—“Critical thinking is a widely accepted educational goal.
The first area to explore is our own cognitive processes to understand the ways in which we tend to err.
Cognitive biases are tendencies in our thought processes that lead us to make irrational decisions.
It’s about improving thinking by analyzing, assessing, and reconstructing how we think.
It’s also thinking in a self-regulated and self-corrective manner—essentially, thinking on purpose.