Critical Thinking - page 2

Are critical thinking skills something you either have or you don't or can it be developed? If so what can I do to develop it before classes start in January? Thanks... Read More

  1. by   toronto rn
    Although most people have the ability to learn how to think critically, there are certainly some out there who have a natural aptitude for it and others who despite all the experience and training in the world will never develop it. I have seen nurses with many years of experience who can only do tasks and not recognise the implications of their actions on the patient. Unfortunately some of these people work in the micu where I work, and they wonder why they always get the chronic vents.
  2. by   KELLYGIRL
    people use critical thinking every day....like when you are driving your car and an animal jumps out in front of you....what do you do? swerve or run over it? is another car coming toward you in the opposite lane??? that split decision is made through critical thinking....you decide what's best to do in a situation under pressure....and sometimes people make mistakes...but there's not much leniency when someone's life may be in your hands....just study hard and think about scenarios that you could possibly come across and think about what you would do in a situation.....you will get it....don't be so hard on yourself....GOOD LUCK!!!
  3. by   RN always
    This is a very good question! Good thread and good answers. I believe that if someone has good critical thinking skills there is always room for improvement, therefore you are not born with it, it is developed. make sense?
  4. by   Agnus
    Critical thinking is not unique to nursing. It is the ability to think for one's self. It objectively analize a situation and draw a conclusion from it. It requires that you beable to defend your conclusions, assumptions, and decisions.
    For example when one writes a thesis for and advanced degree the thesis is customairly challenged. If the individual cannot adequately defend the thesis against the challenge the degree cannot be granted.
    Inorder to defend your position on anything you must have throroughly thought it through.
    critical thinking requires a broad and thorough knowledge base. That is the reason a broad based education is encouraged as well as an indebth study in your field of specialization.

    American schools try to encourage critical thinking at an early age. It means using independend though rather than relying on rules or dogma to guide our thought. We are expected to figure things out for ourselves, to even disagree with a teacher or other athority.
  5. by   flaerman
    Critical thinking skills for me have developed over my years of practice, you need good exposure to the basics when you are in school. Once that is done and you get into practice start to apply all your knowledge in regards to what the problem your patients have. I've seen CHF rear it's ugly head in many ways for example so you get get attuned to subtle signs that if caught early enough can possibly prevent a bad outcome later. Networking with your co-workers who are more experinced and picking thier brains also helps a lot. Good luck.---Paul
  6. by   llg
    I agree with just about everything said so far in this thread, but wanted to add one more thing. As someone who had tried to teach critical thinking, I want to say that it is VERY difficult to teach. For someone to change the way they think (process information) is very hard.

    Many people seem to have a natural tendency to defend their old way of thinking and "refuse to see" what they did wrong and how they could improve. To improve your critical thinking skills, it seems to require not only the intelligence to understand the "new and better way" to think, but also a strong emotional foundation that will allow you to let go of your investment in your "old and flawed" way of thinking. That's where I find the stumbling block most often is.

    llg
  7. by   ohbet
    Every discipline has a method in which critical thinking takes place.
    For the scientist its the scientific method,for the nurse its the nursing process
    Prior to the method is the knowledge base which the thinker must possess.
    So just chill till class as you will be exposed to both knowledge and the nusing process in school
    Last edit by ohbet on Dec 11, '02

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