The Vocabulary of Critical Thinking

Oxford, England: Oxford University Press (2009)

Abstract

The Vocabulary of Critical Thinkingtakes an innovative, practical, and accessible approach to teaching critical thinking and reasoning skills. With the underlying notion that a good way to practice fundamental reasoning skills is to learn to name them, the text explores one hundred and eight words that are important to know and employ within any discipline. These words are about comparing, generalizing, explaining, inferring, judging sources, evaluating, referring, assuming and creating - actions used to assess relationships and arguments - and the words are grouped according to these and other concepts essential to critical thinking. Featuring five or more words and an introduction on how they are related, each chapter is organized into three parts. Part I includes definitions of the words, brief examples of their use, and matching exercises. To further contextualize the words, Part II, Understanding the Meaning, provides numerous real-world examples, with commentary, of the words in use. Finally, Part III, providing practice of the associated critical thinking skills. Questions also appear throughout the chapters to encourage reflection and to highlight important points. Thirty-five photographs and illustrations additionally enrich the text. The book is an ideal text for critical thinking and reasoning courses as well as a variety of courses that prepare students to succeed.

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