California Critical Thinking Disposition Inventory (CCTDI)

The California Critical Thinking Disposition Inventory is the premier tool for surveying the dispositional aspects of critical thinking. The CCTDI is specifically designed to measure the disposition to engage problems and make decisions using critical thinking. One must be disposed to think critically as well as have the skills to do so. The CCTDI is designed for use with the general adult population. 

CCTDI Purpose

The CCTDI measures the "willing" dimension in the expression "willing and able" to think critically. High scores on the California Critical Thinking Disposition Inventory are positively correlated with a strong desire to apply one's critical thinking skills in decision making and problem solving, with leadership, with ego resilience, and with the capacity to benefit from educational training and psychological counseling.  

  • The CCTDI is based on the expert consensus characterization of the "ideal critical thinker" articulated in the APA Delphi Report.
    • The CCTDI is calibrated for use with the general adult population including workers and working professionals at all levels and students in grades 10 and above, including undergraduates, technical and professional school students, and graduate students.
    • In English or one of its many authorized translations, the CCTDI has been used to gather information about job and program applicants, to inform academic advising and personnel training programs, and in projects such as learning outcomes assessment, program evaluation, accreditation self-studies and psychological research.

CCTDI Overview

The CCTDI invites respondents to indicate the degree to which they agree or disagree with statements expressing familiar opinions, beliefs, values, expectations and perceptions that relate to the reflective formation of reasoned judgments.

Items use no technical vocabulary or critical thinking jargon.  Initially developed and validated in a post-secondary school population, the CCTDI has subsequently been demonstrated to perform well in secondary school students, the general public, graduate students and working professionals in the United States and in more than 40 countries around the world.

The CCTDI is administered with a generous preset time limit of 30 minutes. Most test takers easily complete it in less than 20 minutes.

Scales Reported

The CCTDI measures seven  attributes that influence an individual’s capacity to learn and to effectively apply critical thinking skills: the disposition toward truth-seeking or bias, toward open-mindedness or intolerance, toward anticipating possible consequences or being heedless of them, toward proceeding in a systematic or unsystematic way, toward being confident in the powers of reasoning or mistrustful of thinking, toward being inquisitive or resistant to learning, and toward mature and nuanced judgment or toward rigid simplistic thinking. 

Test Administration

Insight Assessment offers a full service assessment solution, providing the industry’s most complete and cost-effective array of flexible testing options including app and browser based online administration as well as the traditional paper and pencil method. Secure, encrypted online testing is available 24x7x365 on our multilingual delivery options.  An in-app tutorial makes navigation easy. Tests are available directly at your site or multiple sites, at test centers or to individuals. Clients are able to select and offer their test takers one or more of the testing methods which are suitable for their specific test environments and needs. Insight Assessment testing specialists will work directly with your in-house technology representative during set-up to ensure a smooth solution.

Recommended Companion Assessments

Engaging problems and making decisions using critical thinking involves both skills and habits of mind. For a complete assessment of a test taker's critical thinking, it is recommended both skills and dispositions be measured. Using companion assessments results in a comprehensive measurement of whether a test taker is ‘willing and able’ to think well.

 The CCTDI can be taken in conjunction with multiple Insight Assessment skills test instruments including the college level California Critical Thinking Skills Test (CCTST) . Our client relations specialists will help you determine the optimal skills assessment for your objectives.

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