Hands up who regularly reads more than one news source throughout their day – including via social media? If like me your phone storage is complaining, at the amount of time you’re spending on various news channels (which given the current situation is understandable), you’ll know how important it is to be able to interpret the information received and decide how to react. Such decisions are not only important for shaping our actions on a business and societal level, but personal also for our own mental health. Research suggests that over 5 billion searches are made on the internet each day with 3.5bn made via Google.
With this in mind, we’ve put together a useful reminder of Pearson’s RED Model – three steps that are the building blocks of critical thinking. Taking these into account when you process information may help you separate fact from fake news, and remain objective.
Step 1: Recognise assumptions
Ask yourself the following:
- What did you assume or take for granted?
- What were the facts from the assumptions and opinions?
- Did you ask or consult with others to check if your assumptions were sound?
- Did the outcome support your assumptions?
Step 2: Evaluate arguments
When evaluating arguments, here is a useful checklist you can reference.
- Do I have all of the necessary information?
- Is the information relevant and accurate?
- Am I considering information contrary to what I believe to be true or go against my values?
- Am I evaluating the information objectively (without bias)?
Step 3: Draw Conclusions
- Does your conclusion fit the evidence?
- Achieve my goals?
- Make sure the conclusion logically follows from the information.
Gathering, analysing, evaluating, and synthesising credible evidence to make a decision is what learning – and critical thinking – is all about.
Many organisations are taking time to evaluate their next steps, decide the best way to proceed, hire and onboard new employees. Looking for candidates who possess good critical thinking skills will be part of this process, as businesses look for new ways to engage, respond and evolve for the future.
If you have any questions about critical thinking skills contact us to discuss in more detail, visit our Critical Thinking hub or download one of our whitepapers.
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