The Principles of Critical Thinking
Everyone thinks, but most of us do not question our own thinking. Many times, our thinking can be distorted, uninformed, prejudiced, and biased, which can have an adverse effect on all aspects of our life. Critical thinking can help us change our way of thinking by looking at a problem or subject in a new light. The principles of critical thinking can be applied to any question that you face in life. Here are the basic principles of critical thinking.
1. Are There Any Ideas that are Above Your Critical Thinking?
There is the chance that there will be ideas that are above critical thinking and testing. These ideas are self-evident. Ethics and religion are two examples of these ideas. Morals and ethics are seen as universal truths, so most people accept them as fact because they are unable to be tested using empirical testing.
2. The Quality of the Evidence
When we are looking at the results of testing that is done, we need to question the quality of the evidence that supports the results. This can be difficult at times because we all interpret things differently, which is why we should take the time to understand the testing and the results. This allows us to make decisions about what the results are to us.
3. The Qualifications of the Experts Who Are Supporting This Idea
Looking at the testing and the results is just the start of the information that you should be checking. The experts who did the testing and come up with the conclusions can also affect the trustworthiness of the information. This does not mean that you should become closed minded to some people’s testing and experiences, but you should always look for the logical answer to a question.
A great example is a doctor telling a person that they need medical treatments. Many people ask the doctor questions about why they need the treatments and may get a second opinion about the treatment. This allows us to make an informed decision about if we want the treatment, and if there are other treatments that we could have instead.
Questioning an expert can provide us with information about how they got to their conclusion. This information can help us make decisions about if we are going to trust their information and their testing.
4. Keep an Open Mind
It can be easy to close yourself off to other possibilities because you believe that your way or idea is the only right one. This way of thinking can make some ideas or tasks impossible. However, they may still be possible if you become more open to new ideas and tests.
You should still question everything that you hear or see. However, you should open yourself up to learning new information. Good critical thinkers are comfortable being skeptical and are cynical of information that is not proven.
The principles of critical thinking can help remove the biases that we all have about a specific topic or problem. Most times, these biases can blind us to a better solution to a problem or make us unable to connect with other people.