Critical Thinking Essay

Submitted By jonesy722
Words: 649
Pages: 3

In doing the research for this paper it became clear to me that critical thinking should be an overarching theme in every interaction and/or decision I am faced with in my life. Without the ability to think critically I would have been simply unable to even write this paper. However, critical thinking isn’t just crucial at the colligate level or in school, it’s a skill used by professional and successful individuals every day to interpret problems and make informed decisions. There is an overwhelming amount of information and study on the idea of “critical thinking” and many different ways, in which it has been interpreted, although, the one I thought summed it up nicely from an article with many such academic definitions of the term was that it “is the use of those cognitive skills or strategies that increase the probability of a positive outcome” (Halpern, 1996)(Petress). The reason I liked this definition is because it alludes to the skills or strategies involved in the actual process of critical thinking and to the nature of the desired outcomes as well. Given that I aspire to be prosperous and thriving in my future, the mere concept of critical thinking should be the cornerstone of my development. As I found in a keynote address at the 27th annual international conference on critical thinking, by Richard Paul, who is in fact Director of Research and Professional Development at the Center for Critical Thinking, “Critical thinking, if somehow it became generalized in the world, would produce a new and very different world, a world which increasingly is not only in our interest but is necessary to our survival” (Paul). My disposition on critical thinking could not be more accurate summed up then in this quote. While his quote is broader and with regard to the general populous as a whole, I feel it parallels exactly how my understanding of critical thinking will not only benefit my future but that of others as well. Both my personal and professional life regularly presents opportunities to utilize critical thinking and I would be remiss in my duties as a potentially extraordinary human being if I failed to do so. For instance, I am regularly faced with seemingly simple decisions to go to work, school, or with obligations and commitments to my family and friends, however, in critically analyzing these scenarios and every other obstacle I may encounter going forward, I can increase the probability of a positive outcome as aforementioned. Even in