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Critical Thinking Essay

critical thinking essay

Example #1

Critical thinking is the intellectually disciplined process of actively and skillfully conceptualizing, applying, analyzing, synthesizing, and/or evaluating information gathered from, or generated by, observation, experience, reflection, reasoning, or communication, as a guide to belief and action. In its exemplary form, it is based on universal intellectual values that transcend subject matter divisions: clarity, accuracy, precision, consistency, relevance, sound evidence, good reasons, depth, breadth, and fairness.

It entails the examination of those structures or elements of thought implicit in all reasoning: purpose, problem, or question-at-issue, assumptions, concepts, empirical grounding; reasoning leading to conclusions, implications, and consequences, objections from alternative viewpoints, and frame of reference. Critical thinking in being responsive to the variable subject matter, issues, and purposes is incorporated into a family of interwoven modes of thinking.

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According to Ballard & Clanchy, in broad terms, being critical means making careful or exact judgments. The critical thinker, therefore, is someone who approaches the material with the ultimate intention of judgment its worth or value, and who arrives at this point of judgment through a process of systematic analysis and questioning. (Ballard, B. & Clanchy, J. 1998, p.65) As a simple way for me to define critical thinking.

I think critical thinking can be seen as having two components:

1) a set of skills to process and generate information and beliefs, and 2) the habit, based on intellectual commitment, of using those skills to guide behavior. It is thus to be contrasted with: 1) the mere acquisition and retention of information alone because it involves a particular way in which information is sought and treated;

2) the mere possession of a set of skills because it involves the continual use of them; and

3) the mere use of those skills without acceptance of their results. This theory was enlightened by Kurfiss, he stated, critical thinking has been defined in many ways: the ability to weigh evidence, examine arguments and construct rational bases for beliefs.

A great deal of work has gone into establishing a theoretical basis for studying critical thinking, and there are vast quantities of research addressing teaching and learning critical thinking in college (Kurfiss, 1988). We include critical thinking not only the ability to reason and construct arguments but to examine one s reasoning processes to evaluate their appropriateness and effectiveness. This aspect is what makes critical thinking more than just problem-solving.

It is not enough to be able to apply problem-solving strategies to a particular problem, however, complex they might be; a truly critical thinker must be able to choose appropriate strategies and even create new ones when necessary. Hence, according to Ballard & Clanchy, Critical thinking, therefore, involves systematic analysis:

  1. based on a questioning attitude to the material being analyzed and the methods being used;
  2.  governed by the overall purpose of reaching a judgment (Ballard, B. & Clanchy, J. 1998, p. 67).

In dealing with the most complex problems, we are not likely to find one right answer but must weigh options for problem solutions based on our understanding of their potential consequences. In a discussion of critical thinking, King & Kitchener distinguished between critical thinking and decision-making on this basis, that decision-making requires both critical thinking skills and consideration of values.

We can identify options through critical thinking but must reflect on our values to decide which option is best. Personal, social, and cultural values initiate and inform the decision-making process from beginning to end (King & Kitchener, 1994). Moreover, critical thinking in relation to tertiary study, it consists first, in analysis:

  1. reducing a complex matter to its simple elements
  2. examining the relationships between them. Then, in adopting a critical attitude towards those elements: 1) questioning their meaning; 2) evaluating the evidence for them;
  3. making judgments about their value or importance. Finally, in presenting those judgments in a persuasive and reasoned argument (Ballard, B. & Clanchy, J. 1998, p.75).

Now, let look at the relationship between epistemology and critical thinking. 1) How do we view knowledge? Theories of developing reflective judgment (King & Kitchener, 1994) address individuals’ beliefs or assumptions about the source of knowledge. And the meaning of truth developmental models describes the process by which students move from absolutist, authority-derived views of knowledge, to relativist, subjectively-derived views, to constructivist views where the self is the source of knowledge.

But where this knowledge and the processes that produced it is subject to external validation and critique. Students at the lower levels of intellectual development may have difficulty participating in, or learning from, inquiry-oriented or reflective activities since they either do not see what can be learned from them or how such knowledge can be evaluated critically. 2) What knowledge is important? Traditionally, the instructor decides what students need to learn.

Though there may be good reasons behind these choices, they can often appear arbitrary to students. Problem-based learning allows students to identify the information and skills they need to learn to solve specific problems. Since most of the problems we deal with in our class are complex, ill-defined, and without a clear right answer, students may also disagree on which information is relevant and valuable in addressing the problem.

Being able to evaluate information based on its source and its relationship to a problem, as well as being able to search it out in a textbook or in the primary literature, are necessary skills for making effective decisions. This, according to Arons (1998), is the difference between declarative knowledge (understanding where knowledge comes from) and operant knowledge (how).

He also notes that operative knowledge involves the capacity to use, transform, or recognize the relevance of declarative knowledge in new situations, that is, the transfer of learning. Another teaching strategy is noted by Kurfiss (1987) and Gainen (1992), who identify problem-solving or cooperative controversy as a mode of helping to develop critical thinking.

Some specific strategies identified by Kurfiss include the use of 1) controversy, such as through debate or by raising controversial questions for discussion; 2) informal/formal writing assignments or short essay examination questions that involve reasoning skills and the ability to organize and articulate knowledge; and 3) student-to-student dialogue in which students may work in teams on complex problems, guided by a decisions model.

On the other hand, in an interview, I conducted with Miss Louey on May 18, 1998. She said critical thinking really means 1) identifying issue or task that u need to be done; 2) analyzing gathering & looking for all the piece of information that u need, and 3) decision & judgment what is real/fact that they can do something on it, & what is not really that we can t do anything. As the most important critical thinking skills for her is talking with people because talking with people can get a lot of views and get a lot of facts.

She can then put all information into the one issue, & to identify the evidence. Also, she advised how to approach critical thinking skills: 1) questioning why we do it, why is not working anymore, what is the real direction that we should take; 2) analyzing, and 3) decision making & judgment. I agree with her because we can t just do a thing without any thought, without making any judgments. We need to get all pieces of useful information to do a must decision.

Just like, when you get any problem, the first thing we should do is to think about what the problem is. If we don t know or understand the problem, we can t do anything. Then, find out the solution ask anyone, or search for all related information. Finally, make a decision (judgment) on all pieces of information. And, according to De Bono s notes, the more information we get the better must it be for our decisions and our actions (Edward, B. 1987, p.26).

Moreover, Christine also mentioned we need to develop critical thinking skills to keep up with the constant change in our life. I think that really true because everything can change in the moment. So do our knowledge? Therefore, we all need to keep learning in this constantly changing environment, as learning must be a lifelong process.

To focus their attention on the following: 1) create a climate of curiosity and questioning; 2) prevent assumptions and speculations from being used as the basis for actions without verification; 3) require evaluation of interventions; 4) engage in dialogue to develop divergent thinking; 5) create and maintain an open environment that does not become undisciplined; 6) provide for feedback; 7) design objectives that focus on process rather than content; 8) be involved with internships, and 9) design evaluations that reflect higher-order problem solving (Doney et al 1993, p.298).

Actually, all the above-mentioned can prove critical thinking skills are important for both study and business. Particularly, for the point of life-long learning. As Doney puts in, accounting educators must prepare future professionals by developing life-long learning skills that focus on the ability to think critically, that is, to understand, apply and adapt concepts and principles in a variety of contexts and circumstances.

This approach to accounting education abandons the traditional focus on memorizing professional standards and requires students to develop the motivation, ability, and value to continue to learn beyond their formal educational environment. As the accounting profession continues to evolve along with the changing field of information technology, the teaching of critical thinking skills is a direct response to the need of accountants in their strategic roles of advisors to decisionmakers in organizations that are facing greater competition and becoming more global in scope (Doney et al 1993, p.297).

However, student and the professional worker will have their different way to use critical thinking skills to approach problems & both of them can be best acquired. As a student, Arons (1985) suggested that the development of higher cognitive processes is facilitated by raising questions when studying somebody of material or approaching a problem. Specifically, questions such as what do we know? How do we know? What do we accept or believe? And what is the evidence for are suggested.

As a professional worker, in order to design effective solutions for business problems, we must first analyze and understand the problem. Systems analysis includes the first three stages in our five-step model, during which we identify the problem, gather information about it, and make a decision about the best solution. The best solution is not always the ideal solution, since the ideal may be too expensive or too difficult considering present resources.

The final two steps encompass systems design: designing the logical and physical specifications of the solution and implementing this solution. Feedback from each step, and from the post-implementation evaluation, helps us judge the effectiveness of the solution: has it solved the problem it was intended to solve? (Laudon & Laudon 1995, p.322).

Personally, I think critical thinking skills can be best acquired for my study or work, anytime. For instance, by reading critically, I need to have constantly thought as what point is the author trying to make? , instead of just trying to memorize what I m reading. Especially in writing essays, I need to gather all pieces of information (do more research or ask for anyone else), then, to analyze & judge them. As critical thinkers can pinpoint specifically where opposing arguments or views contradict each other, distinguishing the contradictions from compatible beliefs, thus focusing our analyzes of conflicting views.

To think critically, I must be able to tell the difference between those facts, which are relevant to an issue and those which are not. Also, I must pay attention to relevant facts and do not let irrelevant considerations affect my conclusions. Whether or not something is relevant is often unclear, relevance must often be argued. Critical thinking of any kind is never universal in any individual; everyone is subject to episodes of undisciplined or irrational thought.

Its quality is therefore usually a matter of degree and dependent on, among other things, the quality and depth of experience in a given domain of thinking or with respect to a particular class of questions. No one is a critical thinker through-and-through, but only to such-and-such a degree, with such-and-such insights and blind spots, subject to such-and-such tendencies towards self-delusion.

American Association of Higher Education Bulletin, 39, pp.12-14. Appendix – Transcript of 5 minutes of interview questions how do you acquire critical thinking skills for work? AnswerI don t really, how do you acquire critical thinking skills for work, how do you develop critical thinking skills. I m not sure about what actually ask there, but I think that as an individual, you have to develop questioning attitudes. You don t just accept everything, it is, you question why it is that way? , and you try to find out why is that way. And after you do that, when thinks, when you can see that things are not right.

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Like with the enrolment process, we’ve been doing it the same way for a number of years but it’s not right anymore. Our clients needed are changed, we have to respond. So, you have to question, you know, why are we doing it this way now? , it’s not the right way anymore. But as I said before, I found that talking with people is very important. Eventually, you have to make judgments yourself. But by talking with people, you get a lot of views, you get a lot of facts, you get a lot of thought put into the one issue.

And I think that very important for me because it helps me in identifying all the evidence and the though. And it helps me in analyzing everything as well. If I have a big, like this enrolment process, I will always think one person in particular that I found helps me a lot of think through the issues. We sit there for quite some time talking about why we do it? , why is not working anymore? , what is the idea? , what could we do?, what is each one of the things is the real direction we should take?

And we, I guess, we share all our thoughts and we are then in a better position to make a very good judgment about at all. So, how to acquire critical thinking skills, I think you have to be questioning, you have to be analytical, you have to be willing to research and looking at things. You have to, you don t accept things for the way they are. You question why they are that way? I could show them things of way are of developing other people’s critical thinking skills along a line that we’ve talked about.

I mean as a teacher, I could think of ways of encouraging students to become more critical thinking. In accounting, Im an accounting teacher, and in accounting, everything there is ways of doing things but there are different ways of doing things as well. So we as an accounting teacher, you have to be aware of being able to present a number of different ways. But not too much information cause it confuses students. So, I think, you have to encourage people to think about why it is the way that it is, and what other way was possible.

And traditional teaching is that you know, student all sitting in the row and you tell them all the information. you give then all the information but I found that teamwork now works very very well. Students get together & they talk about the issue among themselves. And I see that working here at work as well. As I mentioned before, we structured the center here in teams, all the teachers are working teams. And we encourage that all the decisions are made by the teams, not by the head of the center or not by me.

We just provide input on our thought, but the teams we say they just made the decision. And when teamwork as a team, not one person makes the decision but the whole team makes the decision. And I think that the team approach brings it out critical thinking skill in at work because they all have to input into the final judgment and therefore they all express their opinion.

They all bring their own piece of information, they all analyze the information and then they come out with the final judgment. And I think that has been a very good strategy to bring along critical thinking skills in a work environment like this. But its encourage critical thinking skill, but what I think critical thinking skills bring out the judgment. But I think that what encourages someone or a team of people to do the same things again to think all through the issue again, is for there to be support for the judgment was made.

The management, I guess, I saw myself in that role how close the head of the center is the final decision making person. But if you going to encourage teams in critical thinking then you have to accept the judgment that is made by the teams. You just have to accept them, and if they were not good judgments, it has to go back to the team and the team re-think the whole thing again. And that encourages them to think even more questioner in the future.

And maybe that they didn’t gather all the information that they need to make a good judgment. So they could learn from that experience, ask all the people, everybody involved, not just some perhaps. So, how do you acquire critical skills for work, I keep coming back to this, and I really think that you need to identify what is required or what other skills of critical thinking and to develop strategies to make sure you put yourself in a situation where you are critically thinking.

And the decision can be a big one, or the reasons for critical thinking can be a large one or can be a very small one. You know, just thinking through the issues of organizing a social culture and, you know, a couple of you sit down and think through what is it that you have to do, to organize that social culture. So, I think it encourages you must have a very questioning approach.

A willingness to know more than, or research what more than, what is in front of you. And I think our life-style along is forcing us to be more critical thinking because I feel that everything changing so quickly, everything around us is changing. When I started at work 22 years ago was very different from the way is now. And every year something is happening around me to change everything, a lot of things around me. And I think that s the environment we having now of constant change, technology, the way we teach, the way we teach now is not the way that I taught 20 years ago.

The approaches to teaching are changing because it is a constant change. We have to know how to, we have to develop the skill to be able to keep up with that change and I think that s where critical thinking is very very important because it teaches us, it gives us the skill to be constantly learning and how to go about learning.

And I often don t know a lot of the facts and the evidence and the thinking approach behind something and you have to be, and that means I just don t have the knowledge and the skill. So I ve to go and get it, I ve to go and get the knowledge, and I ve to develop the skill as well, and I ve to do that as well. I think that life is moving us so long as particularly the work-life where we have to be questioning things.


Example #2

Critical thinking would be important to the well being of our society for many reasons except for the fact that hardly anyone ever uses it. If people used critical thinking all the time society would be a very different place. People would actually think about what they were going to say and what it means before they said it. It would prevent a lot of conflicts because people would stop themselves from saying ignorant and offensive things.

Also, people would not be as easily influenced by the media and other people’s opinions because they would think about the message behind them. Society as a whole is so quick to believe what the media and/or people of authority have to say that they hardly ever take the time to consider other options. People would be much more likely to form their own opinions and stick to them with information and facts to back it up.

I think that people in society would get along better if they took the time to use critical thinking. Even though almost nothing but positive things would come out of everyone thinking critically it will never happen because of the way society is. People are much more likely to follow someone else’s opinion than to take the time to come up with their own.


Example #3

In the corporate environment, critical decisions must be made, sometimes quickly, whether because of changes in market conditions, corporate profits, or corporate performances. The decision-making process is vital to good management in today’s work environment. This paper will examine the relationship between critical thinking and the decision-making process, explain what the textbook authors believe, and relate how both apply to today’s workplace.

Critical thinking involves the ability to weigh evidence, examine arguments, and construct rational bases for generally accepted beliefs. In order to establish a theoretical basis for studying critical thinking, a great quantity of research has been done. Critical thinking is not only the ability to reason and construct arguments but also the ability to examine the reasoning processes involved and being able to evaluate their appropriateness and effectiveness.

This judgment aspect is what makes critical thinking more than just problem-solving. It is not sufficient to be able to apply problem-solving strategies to a particular problem; a true critical thinker must be able to choose appropriate strategies and even create new ones when necessary.

In dealing with the most complex problems in today’s work environment, there may be more than one good answer to a problem. The question then becomes one of picking the best answer; this is called decision-making. Weighing the consequences of these possible solutions based on our understanding of their potential outcomes is the job of the manager.

A good manager does not distinguish between “critical thinking” and “decision-making” when working. He uses both to arrive at a solution. It is only when analyzing how to come to a specific decision that he must employ critical thinking skills so that he does not allow personal prejudices, emotions, or stress to affect his thinking processes.

According to the authors of Whatever It Takes The Realities of Managerial Decision Making, the six steps to critical thinking and decision making are:

  1.  a problem is defined and isolated
  2. information is gathered
  3. alternatives are set forth
  4. an end is established
  5. means are created to achieve the end
  6. a choice is made.

The authors say when applied in today’s business environment, the six steps are mostly ineffective because? executive decision-making is not a series of single linear acts.? It is the interference of many other factors (such as murky information, poor information input, and multiple problems intersecting) that makes a scientific study of real-life decision-making difficult. (McCall & Kaplan, 1990, pg xvii-xviii) Therefore, the authors suggest a case study and specific dissection of past decisions is the best way to learn how to make future decisions.

In my field of work (currently training of teaching personnel), decisions must be made as to time management, the importance of curriculum vs. methodology, and allocation of skill acquisition importance. In addition, two corporations are my superiors; each with different hierarchies as to who tells me which jobs should be done.

My decisions, therefore, must not only be politically correct but must be ones that make the most people happy. When three different departments from three different divisions ask me to begin a project, someone has to be told to wait. It is at times like these that critical thinking becomes important to justify my decisions when responding to their requests. Critical thinking is used both to justify my decisions and to clarify my thinking.


Example #4

Critical thinking is taking the information that you receive from the media or any source of information, and analyzing it to determine its value. By determining it’s valued, I mean differentiating between useful, cogent, information that will help you build your knowledge structures, and information that could be fallacious, and doesn’t have sufficient evidence or support to be cogent. Information is the key element in developing knowledge structures.

Information can help an individual, but only if he is able to differentiate between useful information and useless information. Critical thinking embodies media literacy, cogent reasoning, and the development of knowledge structures. A critical thinker takes an active role in processing the information that he receives to determine its value, while somebody who isn’t a critical thinker passively receives information without questioning its value.

What is valuable information? Valuable information is information that can help you. Since the information that is false or not true will not help you, it is important to have the skills necessary to judge what is true and factual and what is false and fallacious. The media feeds us a massive quantity of information every day. A critical thinker is able to filter out the ‘noise’ or useless information and record important facts which will prove useful or helpful.

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The media gives people information that is most often manipulative and often fallacious. What is the purpose of giving false information? Usually to sell you something, or make money off of you. How one receives this information, and what power it has over somebody depends on how media literate he or she is, and his or her critical thinking ability.

What is media literacy? Media literacy is an aspect that will greatly improve your critical thinking ability. It is the ability to perceive what information you are being presented with, the ability to interpret that information, and the ability to see an issue from multiple perspectives. The more media literate you are the more you will understand how the media is trying to influence you with its information.

The influence the media has on you is based on how much you know. The more you know, the more you will be able to make an educated decision. This is why people should care about critical thinking. Knowing how the media is trying to influence you to give you power. It gives you the power to use the media effectively. Using the media effectively means finding useful information and using it to your advantage.

That is the core of critical thinking. Analyzing information and then using the useful information to your advantage so that you can make decisions that are based on cogent and not fallacious reasoning. The more you become critical thinking the more you use the media to your advantage rather than them using you to their advantage.


Example #5

Every day people are faced with numerous decisions to make and problems to solve. Decision-making and problem solving is very core in many aspects of life, yet some decision making can be very difficult to accomplish. Critical thinking is an important skill to acquire, by obtaining this skill; a person will be able to make appropriate decisions.

What is critical thinking? According to the reading, critical thinking is “reacting with a systematic evaluation of what you have read or heard.” It is important for a person to think critically in order to better understand a certain situation. Critical thinking skills allow people to see all sides of an issue, look for creative alternatives, approaches to problems, and make well thought out decisions.

When a person understands what the writer or speaker is trying to convey, they are able to agree or disagree with the writer or speaker because they have the knowledge to make their decision. The skills an individual needs to obtain in order to think critically is first, consider the importance of the issue. Once the issue is important to the individual, they can begin searching for more information by asking important questions pertaining to the issue and reflecting on the answers.

Asking the right questions gives a person more specific information about the issue. Once they identifying the correct facts they will be able to think collaboratively on different ways to proceed. With this understanding, the individual can reach an opinion base on the available information and arrive at a conclusion. A critical thinker looks at all the options prior to making the final decision.

The purpose of critical thinking is to achieve understanding, evaluate viewpoints, and solve problems. In order for a person to be a good critical thinker, they must be able to identify the issue, ask thought-provoking questions, find new solutions, be a good listener.


Example #6

The concepts of critical thinking and creative thinking are both gaining increasing importance in the world today. Critical thinking allows people to understand difficult concepts in a manner that is clearer and more defined. They can more readily understand those concepts if they employ critical thinking. In all portions of everyday life, a person is expected to make independent judgments.

Those judgments are based on experience and knowledge. Without the ability to think critically, every situation that a person comes across would have to be considered in isolation from all other situations. When a person encounters a problem that is a new one, he or she may be able to use critical thinking to solve those problems.

Critical thinking also helps in decision-making. Both problems solving and decision-making abilities are vital to a prosperous business. Persons who are critical thinkers can make a difference in the companies in which they are employed. Today’s corporations must first recognize that there is a real need for critical thinkers. It is important for both the top management down the line.

Critical thinking must be taught and built into the way the company or organization performs its business. In fact, companies and organizations must embrace the concept of critical thinking. Critical thinking can lead to a success story after success story. This type of impact gives any company or organization credibility.

According to Supon, one of the fundamental purposes of teaching critical thinking is to enhance the abilities of students to become critical thinkers. Corporate leaders, educational researchers, employers, and parents have continually pushed teachers to assist their students in the development of critical thinking ability.

Critical thinking is a skill that involved not only knowledge of the content by also concept formation and analysis, reasoning and drawing conclusions, recognizing and avoiding contradiction, and other essential cognitive activities? (Supon, 1998). There are proposed reasons for the emphasis that is currently on critical thinking. Many factors can be related to this emphasis.


Example #7 – The Importance of Critical Thinking in Our Daily Life

Critical thinking is a valuable tool that is used in every aspect of life. There is always a problem to be solved or an important decision to be made. Defining and understanding critical thinking can be helpful when it comes to figuring out a valuable solution to an issue. Critical thinking allows a person to make informed and valuable decisions.

According to Ehrhardt (2011), I can define critical thinking as figuring out a myriad of information and making an informed decision about the information. Another source defines critical thinking as thinking clearly and logically about an issue and methodically solving the problem. Finally, from our in-course textbook, Critical Thinking and Problem Solving (2011), I can define critical thinking as seeking information dissecting the information, and understanding it to be able to define its relevance or significance.

From what I can gather from all the resources about critical thinking is this. Critical thinking is a method that helps people see issues from all angles. Once all of the information that you have available has been evaluated you are able to find alternative approaches to solve a problem than what you may have initially thought. The ultimate goal of critical thinking is to gain a valuable understanding, figure out different points of view, and finally solve a problem.

There are many different things that come into play when discussing the definition of critical thinking. All of which are key components in becoming a good critical thinker. All in all to be a good critical thinker and to understand how critical thinking works you must learn the components of problem-solving, decision making, and reasoning just to say the least.

Critical thinking is used in every area of life and there is a greater understanding of it that is not often realized even when it is being used. In a lot of ways, the fact that we use critical thinking without even being aware of it can be very useful. Also, later gaining an understanding of how we can critically think brings the whole picture full circle, and makes our skills much more valuable.


Example #8

Having the ability to think critically, in all aspects, is an extremely important skill to possess for a multitude of reasons. It provides us with the ability to make independent decisions by creating understanding, solving problems, and evaluating varying viewpoints. More specifically, being able to evaluate an argument as cogent or not when presented with one. With these skills, you can expertly break down an argument and effectively prove that the counterpart’s reasoning to support their claims is not adequately justified. A way of doing this is to use the ARG conditions, which are the guidelines we will be using later in this essay.

ARG conditions are the basic elements that make up a cogent argument. The acronym stands for acceptable premises (A), the relevance of premises (R), and good grounds (G) (Govier, 2013). In basic terms, an acceptable premise means it is reasonable for the premise to be known to be true so that it’s “reasonable for those to whom the argument is addressed to believes” them (Govier, 2013, p. 87).

Using these ARG conditions, we’ll be breaking down three separate arguments to determine if they are acceptable as cogent while also analyzing if the second character’s response meets the argument put forth.

The first argument that will be discussed involves two characters and goes as follows… Jim: “A mediator should be completely neutral between the two parties in a dispute. If he or she is on the side of either party, the process will be unfair to the other party. In addition, the disadvantaged party will probably detect the lack of neutrality and then the mediation won’t work.

Neutrality is probably the most essential of all qualities for a mediator to have. And because the United States is the world’s only superpower, it will never be perceived as neutral. The idea that the United States can go in and mediate in the conflict between Israelis and Palestinians is completely stupid!” Roger: “I don’t think so. It’s the one country capable of bringing pressure on both sides, and that’s the most fundamental thing.”

Jim’s statement which discusses what it takes to be a mediator and who can and cannot be a mediator is acceptable and cogent. The premises that are given by Jim, such as “a mediator should be completely neutral between the two parties in a dispute” and “If he or she is on the side of either party, the process will be unfair to the other party”, are valid and reasonable.

They are acceptable on a basis of common knowledge as the purpose of a mediator is often quite specific therefore so are its qualities. We also know a mediator’s qualities, like the points mention by Jim, are accurate because any qualities opposing them would defy the very point of recruiting a mediator. The qualities needed by a mediator are quite obvious and go along with the reason for and definition of a mediator.

The premises given by Jim are relevant to the discussion and final conclusion, giving more good reasons to believe and accept them. These reasons satisfy the ‘A’ and ‘R’ conditions. Working together, the premises give a strong reason and evidence to accept the conclusion of “the idea that the United States can go in and mediate in the conflict between Israelis and Palestinians is completely stupid”. Each of the claims gradually leads up to the conclusion and there is no sufficient evidence to believe the premises are false.

The premises are reasonably and progressively built with detective validity, making the ultimate conclusion about the United States a rational and logical one which aids in satisfying the ‘G’ condition. For these many reasons working together, we can justifiably declare Jim’s argument as acceptable and cogent. The response given by Rogers does not meet the challenge of the argument made previously by Jim. Roger’s response of “I don’t think so.

It’s the one country capable of bringing pressure on both sides, and that’s the most fundamental thing” failed to explain or give proof and reasoning for his claim to be true. He provides no evidence to support his singular claim, which as a result, creates an extremely weak argument. Instead, Roger’s response was more of a simple opinion oppose to a structured rebuttal that would be needed to meet Jim’s previous statement.

Because of this, Rogers ‘argument’ is easily debatable and challenged – qualities that make one’s argument extremely weak. Not only was Roger’s response too vague, the reasoning that he did provide failed to acknowledge the premises previously stated by Jim.

Roger simply just disagreed while failing to communicate why he disagreed. If Roger referenced Jim’s statements and took them into consideration while forming his response, he might have had a better chance of adequately meeting Jim’s argument. Overall, the response given by Roger lacked information relating to the argument he was challenged with and ultimately gave little to no reason to accept it.

An example of an acceptable rebuttal would be… Roger: “I don’t think so. It is more important for a mediator to be able to bring pressure on both sides than to be neutral. Applying pressure to Israeli and Palestinian will be a lot more effective for coming to a resolution. I understand how important neutrality while mediating a conflict but I think it comes secondary which is why the United States is the ideal candidate to be the mediator.”

The second argument being discussed goes as follows… Steve: “I would never let myself be hypnotized by anyone, for any reason” Peter: “Why not?” Steve: “Too much is at stake. I just don’t trust anyone that much. When you let somebody hypnotize you, they are getting right inside your mind, and they have a lot of potentials to control you. Hypnosis is dangerous because it opens your mind to too much outside influence.” Peter: “I can see what you mean but I don’t know; hypnosis helped me a lot when I was quitting smoking. I used it once for dental work too, and it was great.”

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After being challenged about his previously stated opinion, Steve goes on to explain the reasoning behind his statement. We can accept steve’s statement as, in basic terms, it explains what happens during a hypnotization. His statements are reasonable for the topic at hand. Steve’s premises are relevant and lead to the conclusion as they discuss the steps of how being hypnotized opens the mind.

Steve’s reasoning is known a priori to be true as one does not necessarily need first-hand experience to understand how a hypnotization works. This can also be based on common knowledge as his reasonings are simple basics of what takes place during a hypnotization that the majority of people are familiar with. This aids in giving good reasons to accept them.

Steve builds to his conclusion gradually through deductive validity. The claims leading to the conclusion are known to be true and show no reason to decline them. This allows the conclusion to be seen as reasonable and truthful. Part of this is because Steve is discussing the potential of another human misusing their power, which is an extremely valid statement as we can never determine a human’s decisions.

Together the premises and conclusion show no reason to declare them false and show no evidence to deny them while satisfying all conditions. The response given by Peter does not meet the argument. Peter answer simply “I can see what you mean but I don’t know; hypnosis helped me a lot when I was quitting smoking.

I used it once for dental work too, and it was great” doesn’t even consider Steve’s premises and conclusion. Failing to acknowledge the Steves’s side of the argument immediately diminishes his credibility. Peter also fails to realize that his ‘argument’ is purely based on personal experience, creating a completely biased, and therefore unsatisfactory, response while lacking all evidence. Even after stating “I can see what you mean” Peter fails to actually acknowledge Steve’s argument at all.

The main issue with this argument is the lack of one. Overall, Peter’s response is not an acceptable one. A stronger argument could look like this… Peter: “I can see what you mean. They do have a lot of influence on your mind but that’s the point of a hypnotization. Hypnotizing can be used for good, for example, it’s helped me quit smoking and with dental work also. I understand your fears though.” The third and final argument goes as follows…

Nicholas: “Legislation compelling children to wear helmets when they are riding their bikes is really a good thing. The latest statistics from the Canadian Institute for Health Information show that hospitalizations due to cycling-related injuries decreased by 12.5 percent between 1997 and ’98 and 2001 and ’02, and during the same period, head injuries decreased by 26 percent. Helmet laws really work.” Kaitlyn: “That’s great news.

But I wonder whether these declines are actually the result of the legislation. I mean, it could be that people are cycling less, or that public education campaigns about helmets are helping more than the actual legislation.” This is the only argument out of all three where the response meets the argument and both sides are acceptable and cogent. The first half of the argument, presented by Nicholas, makes rational and plausible claims. His premises provide factual information and a good reason to believe them.

Being from Statistics Canada, the premises bring irrefutable claims into his point. These premises lead to a sensible conclusion. The argument is based on a matter of common sense as it’s basic ‘math’. When a person takes extra steps of precaution, an accident becomes less likely to take place. Nicholas’ claims make it difficult to deny or refute his conclusion and all the ARG conditions are met. Overall, all conditions are met and the argument is acceptable.

The response, made by Kaitlyn, meets the challenge and is also a cogent and acceptable argument. The premises are acceptable as they acknowledge and are relevant to Nicolas’ statements. Kaitlyn’s claims provide a strong rebuttal as she still uses Nicolas’ claims but reworks them to create a new point. Mentioning that the statistics that Nicolas used can be a result of other decisions that make her premises strong and irrefutable. Kaitlyn’s response is overall acceptable and meets the challenge put forth by Nicholas and needs no reconstruction.


Example #9

In my critical analysis essay based on the article Some Lessons from the Assembly Line by Andrew Braaksma, my target audience will be graduating high school seniors. This audience will consist of adolescents between the ages of 17 and 19, who are contemplating what to do with their lives once graduated. My analysis will use examples from the aforementioned article to provide the audience with insight into some potential options after high school and provide a comparison of the life of a college student compared to that of a blue-collar worker.

The analysis of a college junior’s point of view will also help them to gain awareness of the importance of higher education and how to appreciate opportunities they’ve been afforded. All of these elements can prove to be beneficial when it comes to decision-making time.

In order to understand what you’re reading, you must be able to analyze it in further detail. Therefore, as the audience reads this essay, it is essential to include an analysis that will assist them in understanding all of the elements included to give a strong insight into the author’s point of view. Author, Andrew Braaksma, was clear and concise in the text of his writing which made it a generally easy read.

Using both a casual and persuasive tone, he did an excellent job expressing his point of view on how invaluable a higher education is; to appreciate what you have, and to work hard at all you do. His vivid descriptions of scenes throughout the article help the reader to visualize themselves in those same situations. Perhaps, having that type of insight can persuade a graduating senior to take a deeper look into their future.

In analyzing the author’s article, I agree with his point of view and believe my goal is to explain my understanding and support of his views on education and hard work. To expound further on my backing of the author’s viewpoints, I plan to provide more context on the advantage of having a higher education from a personal standpoint in hopes to encourage the youth to strive for more out of life. My analysis will not be complete without the inclusion of text examples from the author.

An example such as rows of hulking, spark-showering machines have replaced the lush campus and cavernous lecture halls of college life, is torture describing how his summer days as a blue-collar work differ from his college days are imperative when trying to reach this young and impressionable audience. I believe those examples will open the audience up to considering all their options after high school. In conclusion, I believe my critical analysis of the author’s article can prove extremely beneficial to the intended audience of graduating seniors.


Example #10 – interesting ideas

I have to write a critical thinking paper. I want to do it over the effects of love or something along those lines. Can someone please help me get started and maybe some ideas?

The thought of falling in love is publicized so much that it is the only thing some people are able to think about, you could start by talking about how it affects those who don’t even have it, have a middle section about the affects on the people who currently do, and you could write about how people feel after love is lost in one way or another.

I need help with an essay that I don’t completely understand. There are two parts. The first part I have completed, which tells me to take any aspect of my life and describe it using at least five metaphors (175-300 words). The second part says to address the following questions, each of them I do not understand completely.

What role does language and language diversity play in the critical thinking process? How does language empower or limit the expression of our thoughts? What is the role of critical thinking in persuasion? I need to use 700 to 1,050 words to answer each of these questions. All I need is a simple explanation of each question and how I could probably answer it.

the first answer is the lang and lang diversity play a very imp role in the critical thinking process. our mind understands a msg in the native lang but if the answer is to be given in a second lang then the mind has to do double thinking. Similarly, if there is a diversity of the lang then the critical process also takes more time. because no matter what happens the mind thinks in the native lang and due to the diversities it tends to confuse things or it takes time in separating some words from the other.

2nd answer is language is v imp it can enhance or it can denounce our thought expression. We can express ourselves very well in our native lang but if it comes to the second lang then some time is needed to process the thought and to answer it correctly. the lang can limit us in the sense that our mind cannot properly express itself in the target language.and it can empower or expression by combining the culture, background, and wide array of meanings in our expression.

3rd answer is critical thinking in persuasion……..

it plays an imp role. if a mind is apt and is sound and can analyze things clearly then it can properly fulfill its purpose and it can effectively pass its msg to the receiver. critical thinking can also persuade others. if a person is good in words and is able to pass his meaning nicely then he can also convince others or dissuade others.

I need help with an essay that I don’t completely understand. There are two parts. The first part I have completed, which tells me to take any aspect of my life and describe it using at least five metaphors (175-300 words). The second part says to address the following questions, each of them I do not understand completely. They are

What role does language and language diversity play in the critical thinking process? How does language empower or limit the expression of our thoughts? What is the role of critical thinking in persuasion? I need to use 700 to 1,050 words to answer each of these questions. All I need is a simple explanation of each question and how I could probably answer it.

Role of Language–speech channels our thoughts: It takes them from amorphous, disjoint ideas into the concrete, structured form of language. It’s sort of like pouring concrete into a mold. It doesn’t change the concrete into rose petals, but it does form the outline, shape the form, and embed its influence in a very significant way.

Language empowers/limits our thoughts: I would cover this by discussing a little of other languages and cultures. For example, in French, there are something like thirty words that describe what we English call “love.” Different languages are better suited to different things. I remember German is best for warfare, French for romance, etc.

Critical thinking and persuasion: I can’t persuade you of anything if I can’t think critically both in terms of possible flaws in my own arguments and refute or reframe your objections and counter-arguments. The lack of critical thinking would make my arguments laughable. I’d probably try to work in a blond joke on this one. Most of them are the perfect example of non-critical thinking on the part of the blonde. When the blonde bank employee climbed the tree outside the building did she becomes the branch manager?

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