Critical Thinking

Communication Skills

Critical Thinking is
Reasonable, reflective, responsible, and skillful thinking focused on deciding what to believe or do. Correct thinking in the pursuit of relevant or reliable knowledge.

A learned ability used to
Think for one¶s self Make responsible and reliable decisions Ask questions Pose new answers to challenge status quo Investigate problems

Critical thinkers and society
Followers of authority vs. critical thinkers Intolerant attitude

µCritical¶: common connotation
Analytical thinking Synthesis, evaluation, and reconstruction in addition to analysis

A Critical Thinker
uses evidence skillfully and impartially organizes thoughts and articulates them concisely and coherently suspends judgment in the absence of sufficient evidence to support a decision

understands the difference between reasoning and rationalizing attempts to anticipate the probable consequences of alternative actions understands the idea of degrees of belief

applies problem-solving techniques in domains other than those in which learned can strip a verbal argument of irrelevancies and phrase it in its essential terms

is sensitive to the difference between the validity of a belief and the intensity with which it is held is aware of the fact that one's understanding is always limited, often much more so than would be apparent to one with a non-inquiring attitude

recognizes the fallibility of one's own opinions the probability of bias in those opinions the danger of weighting evidence according to personal preferences

Requirements for Critical Thinking
Interpretation Analysis Evaluation Inference Explanation Self-regulation

Assignment 1
Besides the Declaration of Independence and the Bible, King cites "the American dream" as a source for his own dream. What is the American dream? Discuss this concept with friends and family members and then write a composite definition for this commonly used term. Near the end of his speech, King names many different states. Why do you think he did this?

Listening Skills
³We were given two ears but only one mouth. This is because God knew that listening was twice as hard as talking.´

Communication myth
Listening and hearing are the same.

Are you one of them?
Good listeners listen with their faces. Good listeners maintain eye-contact. Good listeners react to the speaker.

Real listening: an active process
Hearing Understanding Judging

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