12 Characteristics of Strong Critical Thinkers

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Strong critical thinkers demonstrate the following characteristics:

  • inquisitiveness with regard to a wide range of issues
  • concern to become and remain well-informed
  • attentive to opportunities to use critical thinking
  • self-confidence in one’s own abilities to reason
  • open-mindedness regarding divergent world views
  • flexibility in considering alternatives and opinions
  • alertness to likely future events in order to anticipate their consequences
  • understanding of the opinions of other people
  • fair-mindedness in appraising reasoning
  • honesty in facing one’s own biases, prejudices, stereotypes, or egocentric tendencies
  • prudence in suspending, making or altering judgments
  • willingness to reconsider and revise views where honest reflection suggests that change is warranted

(Based on the APA Expert Consensus Delphi Report description of strong critical thinkers.)

Critical thinking skills and mindset characteristics

No society, local or global, can sustain itself and flourish without its members learning to apply their thinking skills.

Good critical thinking is a process that requires strong cognitive skills as well as positive mindset characteristics.  Critical thinking skills such as analysis, evaluation, deduction, induction and numeracy are important. But equally important, to individuals as well as teams, are the characteristics that provide motivation to apply such skills to reach a goal. Individuals can have experience and skills but not choose to use them when making decisions. Problem-solvers and decision-makers must be willing and able to think well.

Fortunately, although reasoning and problem-solving are complex processes, it is possible to analyze, measure and improve critical thinking skills and mindset .  Insight Assessment offers free teaching and learning tools in our Resource library.

Critical thinking training and measurement tools

Valuing, assessing and training thinking skills and mindset characteristics pays off for individuals, groups, companies, organizations and for society.  Improving critical thinking is an important focus in the classroom and in the workplace.  Measurement of skills is often the first step in the improvement process.

Insight Assessment offers more than 30 years of evaluating the critical thinking skills and the reasoning mindset of students, employees, managers, and leaders.  All assessment tools  are proven, secure and accessible globally on laptops, tablets and mobile phones across technology platforms.

Insight Assessment test instruments are calibrated to objectively measure the skills and mindset attributes characteristic of strong critical thinkers.  Our validated group and individual reports provide comprehensive analysis of strengths and weaknesses in essential aspects of good thinking. Our assessments deliver objective and relevant results with analytics you can trust.  We provide:

  • A comprehensive array of academic assessments are calibrated to measure the thinking skills and mindset characteristics of  students from K-12 through post-graduate school.
  • INSIGHT Business Assessments are tailored to every level of employee responsibility (Executive, Professional, and Staff), giving you concrete data needed for remote workforce decisions.  Specializations include Business, Health Science, Defense  & Engineering and Law.
  • Mini-Courses:  Mindset Boosters, Skill Builders, Deep Dives, and approved Continuing Education Unit Packs all focused on specific aspects of reasoning, decision-making, and leadership. 100% online. Available for individuals to purchase directly from our Store at Insight Basecamp, and to organizations for bulk rates.  Strengthen your critical thinking in as little as one hour.

Call us at 650-697-5628 or contact us today. We will show you the benefits of incorporating the assessment of critical thinking skills and mindset characteristics into your programs.

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