Pub. date: 2009 | Online Pub. Date: December 16, 2008 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412963992 | Print ISBN: 9781412906784 | Online ISBN: 9781412963992| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Carmen L. McCrink & Teri D. Melton
Critical thinking may be defined as the art of continuous questioning and analysis of two sides of an argument, problem, or context. Furthermore, the ability to think critically requires human beings to embrace a world free of orthodox views and/or sectarian, social norms, in a continuous effort to search for the essence of truth and expand the knowledge base. Critical thinking is an imperative for a cohesive social order as well as the development of an interdependent global focus. As such, it is a priority for educational reform ventures at all levels—from K-12 through postsecondary institutions—that attempt to foster higher order thinking skills in students and provide them with a holistic framework for discerning information in all terrains of scientific inquiry and sociopolitical agendas, toward the advancement of civilization. Thus, the critical thinking objective, vis-à-vis methods of teaching, is for students to become engaged in a critical dimension—one where analysis, ...