The 4-Step Guide To Critical Thinking Skills

Do you know what critical thinking is? Do you know how to successfully incorporate it into your classroom? If you’re a student, do you know how to think critically about a particular topic, idea, or project? This handy visual is truly a must-have for both students and teachers (and probably some parents and administrators out there) looking to expand their understanding and learning. It’s a guide to critical thinking skills complete with four (count ‘em, 4!) steps accompanied by fill-in-the-blank questions designed to pique your interest and illustrate how each step works.

In other words, keep this visual chart from Enokson handy while tackling your next project (for a PBL classroom perhaps?) or assignment. In case you were curious, here are some of the key skills that a student and / or teacher must have in order to master critical thinking:

Step 1: Knowledge

Identification and recall of information is key here. Answer the basic questions (Who, What, Why, Where, etc.)

Step 2: Comprehension

Organize your thoughts, select the facts, choose the ideas. Be able to interpret and paraphrase what you’re reading and learning.

Step 3: Application

Be able to use facts, rules, and apply principles. You should be able to find out information, solve problems, and give an example. This shows a higher level of understanding.

Step 4: Analysis

This is where the true learning really shines. Separate the whole topic or story into components / parts and pick each of these apart. Examine and then infer. Keep going! Do this for everything you’re hoping to learn about. You may just surprise yourself!

critical thinking guide