The paper "Critical Thinking as a Learning Skill " is an outstanding example of a management report. During the course of learning as a master’ s level student, I have experienced new things in the Strategic Operations Management & Operational Research module. While I have experienced an opportunity to learn new things that I was initially not aware of, I have also experienced challenges at a personal level. One area in which I have experienced a major challenge is with respect to the ability to think critically in regard to the things that I have learned.
As an international student at an Australian university, I have had some difficult time trying to conceptualise the new things that I learn, be it in class, when studying alone or with my course mates. Initially, this problem affected my ability to tackle some assignments, since many assignments at this level require the ability to think critically and reflect on the ideas learned rather than just knowing what is written in textbooks or academic papers. In this essay, I provide a reflective analysis of the activities that I have undertaken within the module and the literature that I have used to improve my critical thinking skills. The reflection will be based on the activities that I have undertaken both individually and as part of a group.
By relying on some of the questions in the Honey & Mumford Learning Styles Questionnaire, I will appraise my learning style and what I have been able to learn in the module. I will also apply Honey & Mumford’ s Learning Cycle and Kolb’ s Learning Cycle to reflect on my learning style. Critical thinking as a learning skill Critical thinking can be defined as a learning process that pays attention to uncovering and checking hypotheses, weighing different perspectives, and taking an informed action as a result (Brookfield, 2012).
It can also be defined as the rational assessment of ideas, conclusions, assumptions, arguments, principles, inferences, statements, issues, actions and beliefs. Another definition is that critical thinking involves reflective thinking that encompasses the evaluation of evidence that is pertinent to claims so that a reasonable inference can be made from the evidence; or as the use of certain criteria to assess the reasoning and make judgments (Buskist & Irons 2008, p.
50). What the various definitions that have been looked at imply is that critical thinking goes further than looking at the mere meaning of an issue or a concept and involves assessing that concept in a detailed way to determine its significance or importance in relation to a given phenomenon. This requires reasoning so as to understand the meaning or significance of a given concept. Reasoning can take any of the following types: deductive and inductive (Rudinow & Barry 2008, p.
160). In inductive reasoning, generalizations are made from a set of observations of facts (Rudinow & Barry 2008, p. 160). Inductive reasoning is a logical process in which an inference is proposed that has details than the experience of observation on which it is based (Ericson 2005, p. 48). On the other hand, in deductive reasoning, reasoning takes place from understanding the general to unraveling the specific (Ericson 2005, p. 48). This means that deductive reasoning is a rational process that entails making a conclusion from a set of premises has no more detail that the context as it is (Ericson 2005, p.
48). Therefore, inductive reasoning is different from inductive for the reason that is reasoning that is done from individual cases or specific facts to making general conclusions. On the other hand, deductive reasoning entails making inferences or finding the course or source of thoughts, or “ reasoning out” an idea from facts or general principles (Schiering, Bogner & Buli-Holmberg 2011, p. 159).
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