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Important pillars of critical thinking 2023

pillars of critical thinking


Critical thinking skills are more crucial than ever in the fast-paced, information-rich world of today. In order to think critically, we must analyse, evaluate, and improve our method of thinking in addition to simply taking in information. At its foundation, critical thinking is making sure we comprehend concepts effectively, make logical arguments, and make informed decisions. Examining the foundations of critical thinking:

1. Clarity:

pillars of critical thinking
pillars of critical thinking

It is essential to have a firm understanding of the statement or subject at hand before beginning any type of analysis or debate. Clarifying questions or paraphrasing to guarantee comprehension is always important since misunderstandings frequently result from a lack of clarity.

An illustration might be, “I think the policy’s clause about remote working is restrictive,” as opposed to just expressing, “I don’t like that policy.”

2. Precision:


Statements that are unclear might cause misunderstanding. Be as precise as possible when speaking, making sure that your points are clear and concise.

As an illustration, instead of just expressing “Pollution is bad,” focus on the problem by mentioning that “Air pollution in urban areas can aggravate respiratory conditions.”

3. Accuracy:

pillars of critical thinking
pillars of critical thinking

The correctness of information determines its quality. Check the truth of any statement before accepting or distributing it. When accuracy is neglected, false information may spread quickly.

A claim like “The Eiffel Tower is in London” is an example of a false statement. Paris is the location of the tower.


4. Relevance:

Always consider the applicability of the information being provided during a conversation or debate. Debates that get off topic tend to be fruitless. pillars of critical thinking

Example: Mentioning a celebrity’s recent vacation in a discussion on renewable energy is irrelevant and off-topic.

5. Depth:

Shallow judgements might result from a cursory comprehension of a subject. Explore topics in more depth to uncover all of their complexities and subtleties.

The statement “Cybersecurity is essential” is insufficient. The importance of it should be explored, along with the effects that data breaches have on both businesses and people.

6. Breadth:

pillars of critical thinking
pillars of critical thinking

While breadth emphasises the value of examining several perspectives or diving deeply into a topic, depth emphasises going deep. pillars of critical thinking

For instance, it is wise to analyse how a policy change may affect diverse groups, including companies, families, the environment, and various socioeconomic levels.

7. Logic:


An argument may be exact, correct, and clear, yet it may still be illogical. Making ensuring that there are no logical conflicts and that the concepts flow smoothly is crucial.

Using the example that “All physicians are tall. She is a tall sister. Therefore, it is illogical to say, “My sister is a doctor.”

8. Fairness:


Everyone holds prejudices. However, it’s crucial to approach circumstances and disputes with an open mind and be prepared to listen to opposing ideas if you want to engage in true critical thinking. pillars of critical thinking

For instance, before criticising a new local ordinance, it is advisable to hear both its proponents and opponents in order to have a full understanding of the issue.

9. facts-Based:

pillars of critical thinking
pillars of critical thinking

Thoughtful analysis requires facts, but opinions and sentiments have their place. Always draw conclusions from solid evidence and reputable sources.

It is more beneficial to provide a reliable report that demonstrates the growth in electric car sales rather than simply feeling that “more people are driving electric cars.” pillars of critical thinking

10. Self-awareness:


A critical thinker is aware of their own prejudices, feelings, and presumptions. This knowledge, together with regular reflection and an openness to criticism, may greatly improve one’s ability to think.

It’s important to realise that prejudice has to be addressed if you tend to oppose a suggestion only because it’s put out by someone with whom you personally disagree.

11. Healthy scepticism:


It is essential to retain a healthy degree of scepticism in this day of disinformation. Always check the credibility, sources, and motivations of the material you come across.

Example: Before embracing a rumour claiming that a certain cuisine might cure cancer, it is important to look into the veracity of the claim and its sources. pillars of critical thinking

12. Open-mindedness:

Being open-minded entails being responsive to new ideas and prepared to alter one’s position in response to convincing facts or a convincing argument.

Even if you’ve always thought that traditional classrooms are best, it’s a good idea to have an open mind to studies that demonstrates the benefits of online learning.

pillars of critical thinking
pillars of critical thinking

These critical thinking pillars must be followed in order to successfully navigate our complicated environment. Adopting them promotes teamwork, personal development, and understanding in addition to helping with decision-making.  pillars of critical thinking

principles of critical thinking


In order to make wise judgements and successfully solve issues, critical thinking is a cognitive process that involves analysing, evaluating, and synthesising data and arguments. This approach is governed by a number of critical thinking fundamentals, including:

Clarity: Critical thinkers attempt to communicate in a precise and clear manner. They communicate using clear, unambiguous language. To prevent misunderstandings, they strive to comprehend and articulate concepts and arguments clearly.

correctness: Critical thinkers place a high emphasis on the correctness of both the material they consume and their own reasoning. They evaluate the dependability and credibility of sources and cite proof to back up their assertions. They refrain from making assertions that are unfounded or based on incorrect data.

Critical thinkers search for logical coherence in both their own views and the arguments they come across. They avoid inconsistencies and recognise when opposing viewpoints are present in an argument.

Precision entails being particular and refraining from making generalisations or ambiguous remarks. To make sure that their ideas are well stated, critical thinkers are precise in both their language use and their reasoning.

Depth: Critical thinkers delve into the underlying causes of problems. They make an effort to comprehend the underlying presumptions, prejudices, and complexity that might affect arguments and judgements. They refrain from thinking inanely or superficially.

Breadth: Critical thinkers take into account many opinions and perspectives. They are receptive to other viewpoints and eager to investigate a variety of sources and arguments before drawing their own judgements.

Logic: The foundation of critical thinking is logic. Critical thinkers evaluate arguments for their consistency with logic and spot logical errors. To arrive at reasonable conclusions, they use inductive and deductive thinking.

Fairness: Critical thinkers enter conversations and disagreements with an open mind and a dedication to fairness. They take into account all pertinent information and viewpoints, including those that could contradict their own. They steer clear of preconceptions and biases that might skew judgement. pillars of critical thinking

pillars of critical thinking
pillars of critical thinking

Problem-solving skills are honed via critical thinking. They divide complicated problems into smaller, more manageable components, discover viable solutions, and critically assess each answer. They are open to modifying and updating their ideas as more data becomes available.

Reflectiveness: Critical thinkers examine their own thought processes through self-reflection. They are open to learning from their errors and are willing to acknowledge when they are unsure or incorrect.

Curiosity: Critical thinkers have a strong sense of curiosity and frequently ask questions to learn more about the world. They are curious and actively seek out new knowledge. pillars of critical thinking

Independence: Critical thinkers possess this quality. They don’t follow trends in opinion or take facts at face value. They independently assess the arguments and the data and reach their own conclusions.

To build strong critical thinking abilities, these concepts should be used in conjunction with one another since they are interrelated. Through repetition and dedication to intellectual pursuits, critical thinking is a talent that can be developed and enhanced through time.

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