Applying Critical Thinking Processes To Professional Practice

Applying Critical Thinking Processes To Professional Practice-19
While teaching problem-solving skills is important to the process of learning how to use critical thinking skills, in the absence of other learning activities it may not be enough.Sternberg, Ennis, and Lipman assert that critical thinking skills are not a fixed entity but a form of intelligence that can be taught.

While teaching problem-solving skills is important to the process of learning how to use critical thinking skills, in the absence of other learning activities it may not be enough.Sternberg, Ennis, and Lipman assert that critical thinking skills are not a fixed entity but a form of intelligence that can be taught.The ability to develop critical thinking skills may be likened to Piaget's concrete and formal operations.

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Simpson and Courtneay point out that critical thinking processes require active argumentation, initiative, reasoning, envisioning and analyzing complex alternatives, and making contingency-related value judgment.

Brookfield asserts that identifying and challenging assumptions and analyzing assumptions for validity are essential to critical thinking skills.

Lipman, like Sternberg, does not specify a "how to" approach.

However, he makes clear distinctions between ordinary thinking and critical thinking.

It is important to remember that Piaget's stages of cognitive development are also linked to intellectual potential and environmental experiences.

If the learning environment is crucial to the development of critical thinking skills, what instructional strategies can be used to promote critical thinking?Despite differences of opinion, many researchers agree that critical thinking is "Purposeful, self-regulatory judgment which results in interpretation, analysis, evaluation, and inference, as well as explanation of the evidential, conceptual, methodological, criteriological or contextual considerations upon which judgment is based.Critical thinking is also regarded as intellectually engaged, skillful, and responsible thinking that facilitates good judgment because it requires the application of assumptions, knowledge, competence, and the ability to challenge one's own thinking.Tasks that stress right answers or truth telling or use objectively scored tests are generally removed from real-world relevance.Thus, it is particularly important that all aspects of dental educational curriculum stress real-world practice, the importance of oral health care, and the relationship of overall oral health care to systemic health by teaching students how to use critical thinking skills.Critical thinking requires the use of self-correction and monitoring to judge the rationality of thinking as well as reflexivity.When using critical thinking, individuals step back and reflect on the quality of that thinking.When students engage in CTS, they have an opportunity to examine tacitly held knowledge of one another, make knowledge and think explicitly, respond to questions and comments, and clarify their thinking processes.Several researchers stated the types of instructional strategies that may be used to promote students' critical thinking skills.For example, strategies of inquiry are contingent upon the problem being investigated and the targeted concepts, so it is essential that they be integrated with the associated processes of inquiry in order for students to see how new knowledge evolves.If the goal is for students to use critical thinking skills, then the following opportunities should constitute the majority of learning activities: a) Engaging in problem-based learning b) Analyzing case-based scenarios c) Engaging in debates, role-play, argument mapping, thinking aloud, and simulation among others The benefit of engaging students in learning experiences that utilize critical thinking skills is the public nature of their thinking.

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