Critical Thinking for Problem Solving Approach

The Current Situation

Critical Thinking ranks among the most in-demand skills for job candidates, but unfortunately the educational institutions don’t prepare candidates well to be exceptional thinkers, and employers struggle at developing such skills in existing employees.

According to a survey done by HBR (of 63,924 managers and 14,167 recent graduates), 60% of the managers feel that critical thinking is the number one soft skill new graduates are lacking.

A Wall Street Journal analysis of standardized test scores given to freshmen and seniors at 200 colleges found: the average graduate from some of the most prestigious universities shows little or no improvement in critical thinking over four years.

Why This Program is Important ?

  1. Thinking is the most fundamental skill- your happiness and your success depend upon it.
  2. ‘Thinking is the ultimate human resource’, yet most people make no efforts to improve.
  3. Critical thinking tools shows us how to streamline our minds to see and evaluate the unexplored possible solutions. The results will prove amazingly effective
  4. Is thinking a matter of intelligence or a skill that can be taught deliberately? Research shows that even as little as seven hours’ instruction in thinking can have a significant effect on thinking of participants. Only knowledge is not good enough – in order to survive & thrive in a complex world we need to be equipped with the essential critical thinking skills
  5. In today’s rapidly changing world, only judgement & argument can no longer solve the problem or move us forward. We need to switch from judgement to creative thinking
  6. Critical thinking is all about freeing up your imagination. Through a series of special techniques, in groups or working alone, it shows how to be mindful of the fallacies of the human mind and stimulate the mind to think in new and exciting ways.
  7. A critical thinker looks at the problem from a variety of angles and offers solutions that are as ingenious as they are effective. This technique will help you in becoming a formidable thinker in your own right! Today’s world demands clear & constructive thinking : the ability to make decisions , to plan initiatives and be creative.
  8. Do you know that the great majority of people’s thinking goes on without them being aware of it? Although sometimes quick & efficient, in certain circumstances it can rush people to wrong conclusions. The trouble is that automatic & well- established ways of thinking can stop you from seeing new possibilities or avoiding pitfalls.
  9. The human brain doesn’t like information gaps, and so people tend to jump at the first solution that looks good rather than take the time to examine all the data, especially in a world where they receive more information every day than they have time to assimilate.
  10. The problem with fast thinking is that often it means people don’t solve the right problem – they solve the easy problem
  11. Critical Thinking is a domain-general thinking skill. The ability to think clearly and rationally and solve problems systematically is an asset for any career.
  12. Critical Thinking enhances language , comprehension and presentation skills.
  13. Critical Thinking promotes creativity. Critical thinking plays a crucial role in evaluating new ideas, selecting the best ones and modifying them if necessary
  14. A good critical thinker knows how to separate facts from opinions, how to examine an issue from all sides, how to make rational inferences and how to withhold personal judgment or biases.
  15. The critical thinker remains calm and knows when he is right. Critical thinkers approach everything with a healthy amount of scepticism.
  16. Critical thinkers consider all options before they act. Critical thinkers embody the phrase “work smarter, not harder.” They are masters of efficiency.
  17. A critical thinker has the self-awareness to know the difference between a rational thought based on careful consideration and an emotional response based on personal bias. Emotion is the enemy of reason. By understanding your own perspective, you can also consider the perspective of others and come to a conclusion based on fact, not feelings.

‘The mere formulation of a problem is far more often essential than its solution, to raise new questions, new possibilities, to regards old problems from a new angle requires creative imagination’-  Einstein

What is Critical Thinking

Critical Thinking is the ability to analyse the way one  thinks and presents evidence for their  ideas, rather than simply accepting the personal reasoning as sufficient proof.

Critical thinking is about looking more closely at everything, not only factual claims but also at the way in which people arrive at their views & ideas

Critical thinking is about a range of skills and understandings, including an ability to play with words, a sensitivity to context, feelings & emotions and the kind of open mindedness that allows you to make creative leaps & gain insights.

Critical thinking is about actively questioning not only the conclusions of what you’re reading or hearing, but also the assumptions -be they open or hidden-and the overall frame of reference.

Critical thinkers approach an issue without preconceived assumptions, let alone prejudices, towards certain solutions

To create Creative, successful &  sustainable solutions Critical thinking must be the central theme of all the following steps :

Critical Thinking for Problem Solving Approach

Topics Covered

  1. Entering the exciting world of critical thinking
  2. Spotting how the brain likes to think
  3. Evaluating what you read, hear & think
  4. Developing critical thinking skills
    1. Reading between the lines
    2. Challenging people’s rationality
    3. Logic
    4. Questioning, challenging arguments, methods, ideas & findings
    5. Reason, analyze and then argue
  5. Take the arguments completely apart & reassemble them
  6. Prototyping
  7. Brain storming
  8. Thinking logically or instinctively: Evolution & consciousness

Jumping to conclusions: The cost of fast thinking

  1. The journey from Data to knowledge
  2. Reason by Analogy
  3. Insight & creative imagination
  4. Investigating inventiveness & imagination
  5. Sort, Select, Amplify, generate – Using design skills to see new solutions
  6. The six thinking hats
  7. The EQ of thinking

The Bloom’s Pyramid

Stage of the pyramid Steps Involved Level
Evaluation Celebrate and Recognize Creative Thinking
Synthesis Implement Solution and Measure Success
Analysis Confirm Root Causes

Identify and Select Best Solution

Application Identify Root Causes

Plan and Collect Data

Analyse Data

Comprehension Understand the Process

Evaluate,

Identify and Remove Waste

Critical Thinking
Knowledge Identify and Define Problem

Practice Your Skills

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