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Critical and Creative Thinking

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  • Pages: 5
  • Word count: 1114
  • Category: Logic

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There are different types of ways to think. There are things we do every day without much thinking, such as blinking, waking up, walking and so on. Other things we do in life may require more thought such as driving, what to wear, or what to say. Then there are the instances when your thinking has a purpose. According to Dr. Paul and Dr. Elder (2008), “Purposeful thinking requires both critical and creative thinking.”(p.5), you have to be open-minded to alternatives to solving problems and be able to accept that consequences of what choice that has been made. Critical thinking is a self-regulated judgments which results in interpretation, analysis, evaluation, inference, and explanation (“Creative and Critical Thinking: Assessing the Foundation of a Liberal Arts Education”, n.d.). Creative thinking consist of idea generation, curiosity, imagination, divergent thinking, and originality (“Creative and Critical Thinking: Assessing the Foundation of a Liberal Arts Education”, n.d). While critical thinking is thought of as left brain and creative thinking is more right brain, both critical and creative thinking have to be used mutually to achieve a higher thought process to solve complex problems. According to authors Paul and Elder (2008), “Critical and creative thought are both achievements of thought.

Creativity masters a process of making or producing, critically a process of assessing or judging” (p. 4). Critical thinking is more than just looking at a problem. It involves laying out all the options and variables in the situation. You have to detach and look at things from a more clinical and less emotional view point. All logical thinking must have intellectual standards to come to the right decision that is best suited for the problem which you are trying to solve. You have to implement standards such as clarity, accuracy, relevance, fairness, and significance (Paul & Elder). To achieve a high quality within your thought process these standards are very important. Without them your thought process can wonder off into unrelated, inaccurate, and unclear directions that will prevent you from solving the problem. One example of how I used critical and creative thinking in my life was when I decided to change majors. I was in my next to the last quarter of study for my diploma in cosmetology when I decided to pursue a career in counseling. I had to consider a lot of different factors that would be involved.

I knew what I decided would not only affect me, but it would affect my family, my job, and my finances also. Although I had a passion for styling hair as I got farther along in the course I became indifferent about this being a career I would be happy with for the rest of my life. The main reason I chose to be a hairstylist because it was a hobby of mine and I truly enjoyed making people look good. When I decided to go to technical school to get the diploma in Cosmetology, because of the environment I was in at the time it was considered something that I could make a decent living at without having to go to school for a long period of time. I really didn’t take the time to critically think about what I really wanted to do with my life. I had just dropped out of school and was feeling the pressure of my family that I had to do something with my life. I didn’t think that I could do what I really wanted to do. I was doing it because I could make money, I was not thinking about would I be satisfied with my choice. I have always had a passion for helping others with their problems.

Even when I was styling someone head for the most part they would talk to me about what issues they were having in life and I would listen and give them advice or sometime just listen. I had one of my customers tell me that I should be a counselor because she felt like I help people with their problems. When I was in elementary school when teachers would ask what I would like to be when I grew up I would always reply “I want to be a child psychologist”. I was very curious as to what makes people think and act the way they do. I was fascinated by how people react to different situations and what emotions they displayed. I analyzed all the possible paths I would have to take in becoming a counselor since I only had a GED and had already used a good portion my grants. I had to also consider what college I would go, how I would pay for it, and transportation cost if I needed to travel far. I also had to consider my family, because I was responsible for taking care of my disabled mother and my son.

After I considered all the elements it would cost for me to pursue the career that I have always wanted. I choose a community college that was close by and offer the degree I needed. It was also affordable and had flexible school hours because of the many of the alumni were considered non-traditional students like myself which they had excellent a support system and accommodations with the course load. This was a tedious process that took much thought and consideration, I now love the path that I am taking to the career that I really want. Critical thinking skills are vital in decisions like this. It could be very easy to think that I would be getting a better deal by being a cosmetologist and making a decent living, but would I be fulfilled with that decision. Critical thinking helps us look at all the aspects involved.

I am much happier now that I am on the right path Critical and creative thinking is a lifelong process of solving many different problems. Both are necessary to come to a conclusion, they complement and enhance each other. Both thinking require high levels of thought. And we have to initiate both when solving problems settling disputes and reaching our goal on a day to day thinking process when trying to figure things out we have to use both the creative and critical thought process. I know that if I had not used critical thinking in my career choice I would be living life with regrets of what could have been.

Paul, R. & Elder, L. (2008). The Thinkers guide to critical and creative thinking. Foundations for Critical Thinking Plus. Retrieved from www.criticalthinking.org. Creative and Critical Thinking: Assessing the Foundation of a Liberal Arts Education. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://www3.wooster.edu/teagle/creativity.php

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