The Integrative Critical Thinking Toolkit is a collection of resources that will support you in developing the intellectual flexibility and adaptability necessary for prudent decision-making and action in the 21st century.
|Study Guides (1 - 10)
Learn key concepts and procedures for mature critical thinking.
|Worksheets (1 - 4)
Use writing prompts to create an ICT Letter.
Refer quickly to key concepts and procedures cited in the Study Guides.
Access curated online research and communication assets.
Construct citations for your research sources and view ICT Toolkit credits.
The Toolkit's resources will help you to integrate critical thinking concepts, theories, and methods with your own experience. With these resources, and through continuing reflection on your personal experience, you can develop the habits of strong critical thinking. This kit supports integrative learning — making connections among concepts and experiences so that information and skills can be applied to novel and complex issues or challenges. (1)
Integrative critical thinking (ICT) employs logical ideas and methods for addressing topics, issues, problem areas, or human challenges that currently confront us or are likely to emerge in the future. With ICT, you will be able to confront tomorrow's surprises and challenges with confidence and effective action.
Following our ICT learning path, ICT will support you in developing habits of self-reflection and self-assessment. You will be able to demonstrate your CT progress in a brief letter about an issue or problem of your choosing and from your point of view.
Your success in learning how to become a better critical thinker depends on using this toolkit's resources and your diligence in staying on our learning path:
These guides are designed to be clear and concise summaries of the basic concepts and techniques for becoming a reflective critical thinker. It is not necessary to memorize the definitions of key terms, but it is essential that you understand the meanings of these terms. By reflecting on your own ability to use the language of logic correctly, you will discover new ways to become a better critical thinker.
► Save and/or print the Adobe Acrobat files to fit your needs.
► Focus on comprehension (understanding the meanings of key terms).
► Memorize the key terms that are marked accordingly.
► Study each of these guides in the sequence listed below.
► Study with your utmost gusto!
|Links (Adobe Acrobat files)|
|1. Arguments & Issues|
|2. Assumptions & Values|
|3. Categorical Logic|
|4. Propositional Logic|
|5. Inductive Logic|
|6. Informal Fallacies|
|7. Using Language|
|8. Using Media|
|9. Listening & Reflecting|
|10. Facing Tomorrow|
These worksheets will help you demonstrate your comprehension of basic concepts and procedures, and how well you understand the ways they can be integrated in your life
It is not necessary to memorize the definitions of most key terms. But it is very important that you understand the meanings of these terms. By reflecting on your own ability to use the language of logic correctly, you will discover new ways to become a better critical thinker.
► Save and/or print the Microsoft Word files to fit your needs.
► Find a place that is quiet and comfortable.
► Turn off your phone, radio, television, or other media device.
► Eliminate all distractions if possible.
► Study with your utmost gusto!
|Links (MS Word files)|
|S-R Cycle Worksheet|
|Skill Worksheet 1|
|Skill Worksheet 2|
|Skill Worksheet 3|
|Skill Worksheet 4|
Self-reflection is a necessary habit for critical thinkers. To be a strong critical thinker means to habitually reflect on, and evaluate one's experience. The process of self-reflection can be envisioned as a continuous learning cycle grounded in a person's experience:
Many of our concrete experiences are noteworthy in some respect. Only you can say what might call for self-reflection at any given time. Only you know the people or situations or things that come to mind when you are thinking about how your day is going, or how it went. Often, the focus should be on a revisiting of some experience that may not have gone as well as you expected or wanted.
When you move into abstract thinking, interrogate your attitudes, assumptions, beliefs, and values that were involved in the experience. This is a difficult stage because it requires deep personal honesty and courage to face unpleasant truths about ourselves. By unmasking assumptions and clarifying your values, you can draw new conclusions about your life and where you want to go with your new insights.
New insights can lead to new plans for how you might capitalize on a strong skill, solve some personal problem, improve a relationship, foster social change, or contribute to your community and world.
Self-reflection requires mental focus and personal honesty. Silence is very important. You must be able to hear your inner voice. Completing a Skill Worksheet requires self-reflection.
Philosophy Web Sites
Fact-Checking Web Sites
Basic Issue Research
Cover (Top): NASA, ESA and the Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA). This Hubble image was taken in November 2008 with the Wide Field Planetary Camera 2. The colors in the image represent a range of emissions coming from the clouds of the nebula: red represents nitrogen, green represents hydrogen, and blue represents oxygen. The unique planetary nebula NGC 2818 is nested inside the open star cluster NGC 2818A. Both the cluster and the nebula reside over 10,000 light-years away, in the southern constellation Pyxis (the Compass). The spectacular structure of NGC 2818 (also known as PLN 261+8.1), contains the outer layers of a sun-like star that were sent off into interstellar space during the star' s final stages of life. These glowing gaseous shrouds were shed by the star after it ran out of fuel to sustain the nuclear reactions in its core.
Thank you for checking references carefully.
You can use an online text formatting tool like EasyBib for constructing citations (footnotes) for an ICT Letter.
Some material in the Integrative Critical Thinking Toolkit is based on, or adapted from material originally published elsewhere. Extended quotes are noted in quotation marks or as indented or highlighted text.
Carey, Stephen. A Beginner's Guide to Scientific Method. 4th ed., Wadsworth-Cengage Learning (2012).
Conway, David A. and Ronald Munson. The Elements of Reasoning, 3rd ed., Wadsworth/Thomson Learning (2000).
Diestler, Sherry. Becoming a Critical Thinker: A User Friendly Manual; 6 th ed., Pearson/Prentice-Hall (2012).
Hurley, Patrick and Lori Watson. A Concise Introduction to Logic, 13th ed., Wadsworth-Cengage Learning (2018).
Kahane, Howard. Logic and Philosophy, Wadsworth Publishing Company, Belmont, CA (1969).
Moore, Brooke N. and Richard Parker. Critical Thinking, 4th ed., Mayfield Publishing Company, Mountain View, CA (1995).
Schick, Theodore Jr. and Lewis Vaughn. How to Think About Weird Things, Mayfield Publishing Company, Mountain View, CA (1995).