Critical Thinking and Decision-Making.

Essay by matiaUniversity, Bachelor'sA+, April 2003

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Critical Thinking and Decision Making Relationship


What is critical thinking?

The Penguin Dictionary of Psychology defines critical thinking as "a cognitive strategy consisting largely of continual checking and testing of possible solutions to guide one's work. Critical thinking is often contrasted with creative thinking in that the latter leads to new insights and solutions while the former functions to test existing ideas and solutions for flaws or errors." I feel that to think critically is to view something from as many different directions as possible. You must be able to analyze a situation or something you are reading before reacting to it. You must be able to identify ambiguous statements and value assumptions. Incorrect or inconclusive assumptions must be identified and dissected to make sense of any argument. Asking the right questions is very important in the process of critical thinking. The text, Readings in Critical Thinking defines critical thinking as the "awareness of a set of interrelated critical questions, the ability to ask and answer critical questions at appropriate times, and the desire to actively use the critical questions."

What is decision-making?

The Penguin Dictionary of Psychology defines decision-making as "the processes by which individuals, or groups and organizations, decide actions or determine policies. Obviously, decision-making covers a wide area, involving virtually the whole of human action. Sociologists, psychologists and political scientists, among others, have been interested in decision making in different ways, though there are overlapping interests. These perspectives include: formal analysis of the decision strategies of actors in competitive situations; analysis of decision-making behavior in the dynamics of small groups; studies of organizations; studies of access to political decision-making." Decision-making is the process in which a person or group identifies the best solution to a problem. According to our text, Readings in Critical Thinking, "day-to-day...