link rel="shortcut icon" href="favicon.ico" Critical Thinking By Example Critical Thinking By Example
Critical Thinking By Example

 Home
 

Note: Internet Explorer 9 has trouble rendering the quizzes. I am investigating the problem, in the meantime I suggest using another browser. Sorry for the inconvenience.

As the name suggests, this is a site devoted to critical thinking. Individuals who want to sharpen their critical thinking skills will find much that is useful. High school, college and university teachers are welcome to use this site to assist with their teaching. Those writing the GRE or LSAT may find material that is useful. And it is all for a very affordable price: it is absolutely free.

The term 'Critical Thinking' is used in a number of ways in academia; on this site it is used in the sense of evaluating the goodness of arguments. The approach here is to treat it as a subbranch of philosophy.

The fact that critical thinking is primarily a skill, as opposed to a body of knowledge, is often acknowledged; but its implications are not always well thought out. Swimming is a skill. Imagine swimming instructors taught novices this way: a fifteen week introductory swimming course has students learning the theoretical aspects of swimming in a classroom for fourteen weeks. Only on the last week do students even get wet in the pool. If this were how swimming was taught to the uninitiated, the number of deaths by drowning would be much higher. Swimming is a skill that is best learnt by practice. In my view, the same is true of critical thinking. Students master the skill best by lots and lots of practice. Many critical thinking textbooks have chapters that are about 20 pages long, with one or two pages of practice examples. Students nod their heads as they read the theory believing they have mastered the relevant concepts. Often they find as they attempt the few examples that they haven't mastered the relevant concepts, but, alas, they have also exhausted their means to practice. This website hopes (but probably won't quite succeed) to reverse the percentages: my aim is to scrunch the theory for each chapter into a few pages, and offer lots of quizzes to practice. (Eventually I hope to have more than 1000 quiz questions on this site). In my experience teaching thousands of students critical thinking, the best way for the novice to learn critical thinking is to jump into the pool and practice with quizzes.

The 'table of contents' tab on the left provides a brief summary of the learning goals of each chapter. The chapters are meant to be tackled sequentially, but instructors may want to explore some other possibilities.

Using this site is very straightforward. Read the few pages of theory for each chapter and then try the chapter quizzes. The quizzes are set for a "Pass" of 90%. When you pass two quizzes for any chapter you should feel confident that you have mastered the material and move on to the next chapter.  

d
d

d


Home