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Critical thinking is the objective analysis of facts to form a judgment. The earliest documentation of critical thinking are the teachings of Socrates recorded by Plato. Socrates established the fact that one cannot depend upon those in «authority» to have sound knowledge and insight. He demonstrated that persons may have power and high position and yet be deeply confused and irrational. He established the importance of seeking evidence, closely examining reasoning and assumptions, analyzing basic concepts, and tracing out implications not only of what is said but of what is done as well. His method of questioning critical analysis of a journal article now known as «Socratic questioning» and is the best known critical thinking teaching strategy. Socrates set the agenda for the tradition of critical thinking, namely, to reflectively question common beliefs and explanations, carefully distinguishing beliefs that are reasonable and logical from those that—however appealing to our native egocentrism, however much they serve our vested interests, however comfortable or comforting they may be—lack adequate evidence or rational foundation to warrant belief.
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Critical thinking was described by Richard W. The «first wave» of critical thinking is often referred to as a ‘critical analysis’ that is clear, rational thinking involving critique. Thinking about one’s thinking in a manner designed to organize and clarify, raise the efficiency of, and recognize errors and biases in one’s own thinking. Critical thinking is inward-directed with the intent of maximizing the rationality of the thinker. Contemporary critical thinking scholars have expanded these traditional definitions to include qualities, concepts, and processes such as creativity, imagination, discovery, reflection, empathy, connecting knowing, feminist theory, subjectivity, ambiguity, and inconclusiveness. Some definitions of critical thinking exclude these subjective practices.
This section needs additional citations for verification. This section may require cleanup to meet Wikipedia’s quality standards. The specific problem is: Poor grammar. Please help improve this section if you can. The ability to reason logically is a fundamental skill of rational agents, hence the study of the form of correct argumentation is relevant to the study of critical thinking. First wave» logical thinking consisted of understanding the connections between two concepts or points in thought. It followed a philosophy where the thinker was removed from the train of thought and the connections and the analysis of the connect was devoid of any bias of the thinker.
Walters summarizes logicism as «the unwarranted assumption that good thinking is reducible to logical thinking». There are three types of logical reasoning Informally, two kinds of logical reasoning can be distinguished in addition to formal deduction: induction and abduction. Deduction is the conclusion of a drawn from the structure of an argument’s premises, by use of rules of inference formally those of propositional calculus. X is human and all humans have a face so X has a face.
Induction is drawing a conclusion from a pattern that is guaranteed by the strictness of the structure to which it applies. The sum of even integers is even. Abduction is drawing a conclusion using a heuristic that is likely, but not inevitable given some foreknowledge. I observe sheep in a field, and they appear white from my viewing angle, so sheep are white.
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Reading the paper out loud can dissertion meaning you notice holes in your reasoning, digressions, and unclear prose.