Critical thinking problems and solutions

With this method, you develop your critical thinking and problem solving techniques to genius levels. Instead of using the word problem, use the word situation or call it a challenge or an opportunity. The more positive your language is, the more confident and optimistic you will be when approaching any difficulty. The more creative and insightful you will be in identifying creative solutions and breakthrough ideas.

7 Ways to Improve Your Critical Thinking Skills

What exactly is the challenge you are facing? What is causing you the stress and anxiety?

Critical Thinking Steps To Solve Any Problem

What is causing you to worry? Why are you unhappy? Write it out clearly in detail. Look for the root cause of the problem rather than get sidetracked by the symptom.

What are problem-solving skills and why are they important?

Approach the problem from several different directions. Brainstorm different solutions, because there are likely multiple solutions to the same problem, not just one. What exactly must the solution accomplish?

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What ingredients must the solution contain? What would your ideal solution to this problem look like? Define the parameters clearly. Pick the best solution by comparing your various possible solutions against your problem, on the one hand and your ideal solution, on the other. What is the best thing to do at this time under the circumstances? Set measures on your decision. How will you know that you are making progress? How will you measure success?

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How will you compare the success of this solution against the success of another solution? Accept complete responsibility for implementing the decision. Many of the most creative ideas never materialize because no one is specifically assigned the responsibility for carrying out the decision.

Assess and Restate the Problem

A decision without a deadline is a meaningless discussion. If it is a major decision and will take some time to implement, set a series of short-term deadlines and a schedule for reporting. With the deadlines and sub-deadlines, you will know immediately if you are on track or if you are falling behind. You can then use your creative thinking to alleviate further bottlenecks or choke points. Get busy.

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  7. Get going. Develop a sense of urgency. The faster you move in the direction of your clearly defined goals, the more creative you will be. The more energy you will have. You need to be open to new ideas. You must explore the issue by discovering information about it. You might need to co-operate with others to get information or more details and negotiate with them in this process.

    Then you will test your assumptions check your ideas against the data and revise your beliefs if the data indicates that your initial ideas were inaccurate. Then you need to integrate this new knowledge into the problem and your general thinking and perhaps share your ideas to inform others. In many respects it is like the scientific method.

    Core Outcomes

    You construct a hypothesis a theory and then design experiments or seek data to prove or disprove the hypothesis. To solve a problem you might have to gather new information or look at the problem from a different point of view or perspective. For example, two people are arguing as they both want the same office. You need to consider why each of them thinks that they are entitled to the office.

    Perhaps a solution in this situation would be to agree that they share the office or take turns in using it. Another approach is to consider what the goals and barriers are.

    The goal in our example might be that one person likes the view from the office and the other one wants to be near their co-workers. So the solution is to either find another office with a view or move the co-workers. The barriers might include one person not wanting to lose face about giving up their argument about the office. You must first understand and structure the problem. This stage involves observation and inspection looking carefully at things , fact-finding and developing a clear picture of the problem.

    Gain more information about the problem to increase your understanding. Often, if you start with the same definition of a problem that everyone else has, your thinking will be the same and you will come up with the same solutions. Therefore, you should take time diagnosing and exploring and perhaps redefining or reframing the problem. Another way to tackle this is to be clear about your goals — What are you trying to achieve?

    7 Ways to Improve Your Critical Thinking Skills

    What would be a good outcome if the problem was resolved? What would good look like? The more complex the problem, the more information you will need to obtain. Sometimes you will find that there are several parts to the problem and each requires a different solution. Breaking things down might make a complex problem easier to solve. Now you generate a wide range of possible courses of action — even if some of them seem unlikely — with little attempt to evaluate the ideas at this stage.

    Here the aim to generate lots of ideas without worrying too much about their value. Evaluation of ideas comes later. Often the germ of a good idea can be found in a wild suggestion. Getting other people involved in considering solutions may reveal issues or factors that you are unaware of, allows you to tap into the expertise of others and may make people feel more committed buy in to the final solution agreed.

    You must consider all the possible solutions and evaluate each one. You might decide on the pros and cons — or advantages and disadvantages — of each solution.