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We are a worldwide social network of freethinkers, atheists, agnostics and secular humanists.

Information

CRITICAL THINKING

CRITICAL THINKING: Dedicated to the humble pursuit of knowledge and understanding.

Location: #philosophy
Members: 74
Latest Activity: Sep 15

WELCOME TO CRITICAL THINKING

Why, you may ask, did I say that this group was about the humble pursuit of knowledge and understanding? What is humble about it?


Well, the reason I wanted to create this group was because of my extreme disappointment with the lack of critical thinking around us today—even among intelligent people. This is not due to a lack of available information. It is not because of a lack of education. And it is certainly not due to a lack of rational thinking, because even ignorant people can be rational within the confines of their own mistaken beliefs.


No! It is because that in order to understand the world, and even to understand ourselves, we must first admit our ignorance. We must first admit that there are things that we do not know, that there are things that are worth learning, and that there is an inherent uncertainty in our beliefs and our perceptions.


Humility is the whetstone that sharpens our dull intellect. Intelligence is nothing without it.


The practice of critical thinking should be made in a spirit of humilty.


Here we will explore how to think. We will examine why we believe. We will challenge our assumptions.


There will undoubtedly be some crossover between this group and my other group THE NAKED APE, especially when it comes to the brain, perception, and cognition. But I think I’d like to make attempts to confine the discussions here to the methodology of thinking, and keep posts on biology and psychology on THE NAKED APE.  


Threads on woo, stupid beliefs, and other nonsense belong more appropriately to my group WHEN PIGS FLY.


Threads on cognitive biases, skeptical thinking, logical fallacies, and general knowledge and comprehension are welcome here.

ONGOING THREADS
The CRITICAL THINKING Repository
 

EXTERNAL LINKS
Critical Thinking Web
Foundation for Critical Thinking
Taxonomy of Logical Fallacies
Why Do Humans Reason? Arguments for an Argumentative Theory 

 

 

Discussion Forum

In defense of dangerous ideas

Started by A Former Member. Last reply by Doug Hanlon Aug 27. 25 Replies

The CRITICAL THINKING Repository

Started by A Former Member. Last reply by Andy Stout Apr 22. 24 Replies

Quora

Started by Adriana. Last reply by Adriana Mar 30, 2013. 12 Replies

Reason Seen More as Weapon Than Path to Truth

Started by Sydni Moser. Last reply by Adriana Jun 29, 2011. 11 Replies

Taxonomy of logical fallacies

Started by Adriana. Last reply by Adriana Jan 15, 2013. 10 Replies

Giving Ockham's Razor its true dimension

Started by Adriana. Last reply by Adriana May 6, 2011. 9 Replies

Sporting superstitions: Why do we have them?

Started by A Former Member. Last reply by Michel Apr 20, 2012. 5 Replies

Rapture Ready: The Science of Self Delusion

Started by A Former Member. Last reply by A Former Member May 23, 2011. 5 Replies

Religious issues

Started by Marianne. Last reply by Marianne Oct 25, 2011. 4 Replies

Reflective equilibrium

Started by Adriana. Last reply by Adriana Oct 16, 2011. 4 Replies

College Students Not Learning Critial Thinking Skills

Started by Jacob W. Andrews. Last reply by Jacob W. Andrews Apr 7, 2011. 4 Replies

Comment Wall

Nice Comment

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Comment was by Joan Denoo on September 11, 2022 at 5:04am

A splendid set of questions and responses today and ones that concern me greatly. Critical thinking should be taught in the home from day one of a child's life. Such learning is not Impossible, nor is it easy.

.
Excuse me, old-timers, you read this story before.

Students need to learn life skills. From
 a teacher's point of view, they have teaching requirements set by the state Board of Education. With 35 kids in a classroom, heavy teaching requirements, lack of funding for supplies, and parents who do not want their children to learn certain things, the teachers carry a heavy load.

Graduating seniors in Washington, D.C., did not know how to read, write, or speak, nor were they able to write resumes or go for interviews; they couldn't get jobs and had no skill sets.
At Valley Green Housing Project in
Washington, D.C., a program for single mother heads of households with dependent children on welfare, the project manager assigned me an apartment to use as a classroom.

As an experiment, 13 girls volunteered to learn how to read, write, speak, write a resume, think critically, solve problems, assertiveness, active listening, and conflict resolution without using violence. After 27 weeks of training, all 13 girls successfully got jobs and got off welfare. All of their cohorts did not learn essential life skills and were unsuccessful in getting jobs. They remained on welfare, as were their mothers. 
We can no longer depend on ignorance and brute force to get through life. We need life skills to be successful. Public schools must do the job if one does not learn these skills at home. 


Comment was by Chris B on September 11, 2022 at 1:56am

Thanks, I like that.

Comment was by Doone on September 10, 2022 at 1:58pm

One of the biggest problems, Piantadosi says, is that someone’s IQ score can change based on the context. “IQ tests are known to be sensitive to things like motivation and coaching. This makes a lot of sense — if you try less, you’re not going to score as high. Or, if you don’t know strategies that people do, you won’t score as highly as them,” he says. “I think it’s a mistake to say that your true ability can be summarized by how much you’re willing to put into a test.”

https://www.discovermagazine.com/mind/do-iq-tests-actually-measure-...

Comment was by Kurt Neuleuf on August 31, 2022 at 4:07am

If teaching facts were the best education, then mankind is in dire trouble.

Kids must be taught to think evaluate and have the ability to make use of the facts.

 Libraries are full of facts , which are totally useless unless someone has need of the facts and is seeking to evaluate and use that knowledge.

Even playing  games and social media on the mobile phones the kids are taught to evaluate and think online without seeming to having been educated. (mostly for the sole benefit of the game/ social media company .) They are "guided " to read the EULO (which everyone just clicks accept ) This explains the legal and working of the game/ SM, then encouraged to explore, learn,evaluate and play the game.

Comment was by Doug Hanlon on August 30, 2022 at 7:47pm

I would like to respectfully disagree with the following statement:

"The average teacher teaches kids facts.

The outstanding teacher teaches kids to teach themselves."

It's true that all real education is self-education, but to start out, we need teachers.  These teachers need to teach facts.  They should also teach things like how to find information (and other skills), but children need to learn facts, and, especially in their early years, they learn these from, among others, teachers.

I don't see how anyone can disagree with this, but perhaps we're using our words differently.

So, would anyone like to comment on my assertion: teachers should teach factual knowledge.  (I'm basically making the argument for 'Cultural Literacy', as argued for by E.D. Hirsch: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cultural_literacy ... a more extended exposition of 'cultural literacy' is here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/E._D._Hirsch )

Comment was by Kurt Neuleuf on July 1, 2022 at 9:13pm

The average teacher teaches kids facts.

The outstanding teacher teaches kids to teach themselves.

Comment was by Kurt Neuleuf on July 1, 2022 at 9:09pm

Stephen

I hypothesise that the only sure fire way to teach our future citizens to think will be forced on them by necessity.

A calamity that threatens our present way of life. An adapt or die situation.

Hang on , maybe we are already at the very beginning of it?

Blind Freddy can see that the present global crises will have far reaching  dramatic consequences and repercussions .

A child will only start to walk when it is forced/ needs too. It will start to speak  when it needs/ forced to. BUT learning is inherent in the biology.

So the question remains. Nature or Nurture? Is intelligence (ability to think and reason) Nature or the cumulation of learning??

Comment was by Stephen Brodie on July 1, 2022 at 4:40pm

Kurt now that's a hard one to answer. Our only hope I think is to teach our children not what to think but to teach them how to think. Try to instil in them the dialectic of ideas. Logic and rationality 

Comment was by Kurt Neuleuf on June 30, 2022 at 8:23pm

In both our countries the pioneers set out with a wagon and an oxen, with little else and built thriving communities within a short time. An excellent example of thinking , planning , learning, adapting and survival.

Successive generations , as circumstances got easier and communities became more prosperous, there was a decline in thinking. A conservative attitude kicked in bringing with it complacency. There was no need to strive and think. After all my grandfather did?**^ this way, my father did ?**^the same way, I always  follow the tradition.

Today we are( supposedly ) at the pinnacle of our civilisation today. We now live in an electric universe where information and ideas are abundant. We do not have the need nor have capacity to critically evaluate the real world any more. Industry and Governments are sinking us deeper and deeper into this abyss.  We are now conspiracy theorists, spreading fake news or mentally in ill health, delusional if we dare to think, critically evaluate, ponder on the future.

Teaching children to think, how? social media, by teachers who themselves are caught up in the  modern dilemma?

Ok Friends, I have no answers, for  I am caught up in the time clouding issues  of the great reset, Covid, looming war, Worldwide economic crash Internet of things etc etc like the rest of us. But I still retain the ability to think as do us friends here.

The Delai Lama once remarked:- If you think you cannot make a  difference in society, try sleeping with a mosquito. 

What are your thoughts? what ideas can you bring? how and what do we teach our kids so that they relearn to think?

What say you?

 

Comment was by Andy Stout on June 30, 2022 at 7:27pm

I think it is a crime that public schools do not teach kids HOW TO THINK.

What could be more important than teaching our kids—as soon as possible—how to use their faculty of reason? What could be more important to prepare them for life?

SHAME on our educational system. →

 
 
 

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