Faculty Focus recently posted an article that caught my attention that discusses the importance of teaching and demonstrating critical thinking to students. Students may be exposed to articles that talk about critical thinking but often they are different from each other or very abstract (Author). As a teacher, we need to be able to understand critical thinking ourselves as well as know how to teach it to our students (author).
Nilson (2014) believes that it takes time and practice to develop critical thinking skills and that students need to be exposed to challenging questions that require open-ended questions. These questions may ask why a student came to the reasons that they did or what are the pros and cons of an issues (Nilson, 2014). The article also states that students must get feedback during the learning process in order to refine their thinking, whether from a teacher or peers (Nilson, 2014). Teachers also need to practice critical thinking for their students by keeping an open mind to different viewpoints and questioning their own perspectives (Nilson, 2014).
Developing critical thinking skills is a critical component to information literacy. With all the information that is available to students they must be able to find information that relates to their need and identify credible sources (Grassian & Kaplowitz, 2009). Critical thinking skills will allow them to question information that they find and not just assume that everything that is published or printed is accurate. Critical thinking is not only important skills to have throughout school but also through life. Developing critical thinking in students will create more informed students and productive members of society (Grassian & Kaplowitz, 2009).
Grassian, E., & Kaplowitz, J. (2009). Information literacy instruction: Theory and practice (2nd ed.). New York: Neal-Schuman.
Nilson, L. (2014). Unlocking the mystery of critical thinking. Retrieved from http://www.facultyfocus.com/articles/instructional-design/unlocking-mystery-critical-thinking/