How do adults develop critical thinking skills

Definition, skills and examples of critical thinking

What is critical thinking? Critical thinking refers to the ability to objectively analyze information and make an informed judgment. Sources such as data, facts, observable phenomena and research results are evaluated.

Good critical thinkers can draw reasonable conclusions from a range of information and distinguish between useful and less useful details in order to solve problems or make decisions.

Why do employers value critical thinking?

Employers want applicants who can evaluate a situation using logical thought and offer the best solution.

Someone with critical thinking can be trusted to make decisions independently and does not require constant hand posture.

Critical thinking skills are among the most sought-after skills in almost every industry and workplace. You can demonstrate critical thinking by using related keywords in yours. CV and cover letter and during your interview.

Examples of critical thinking

The circumstances that require critical thinking vary from industry to industry. Some examples are:

  • A triage nurse analyzes the cases and decides on the order in which the patients should be treated.
  • A plumber evaluates the materials that are best for a particular job.
  • A lawyer reviews evidence and develops a strategy to win a case or decide whether to settle it out of court.
  • A manager analyzes customer feedback forms and uses this information to develop customer service training for employees.

Develop your skills in your job search

If Critical Thinking Is A Key Phrase Be sure to highlight your critical thinking skills in the job vacancies you are applying for.

Adding keywords to your resume

You can use keywords for critical thinking analysis, problem solving, creativity, etc. in your. Curriculum vitae . When describing your work history, please include one of the skills listed below that you accurately describe. You can include them in yours too. Summary of curriculum vitae if available

For example, your summary could read: “Marketing Associate with five years of project management experience. Experience in conducting thorough market research and competitive analysis to assess market trends and customer needs and develop appropriate acquisition tactics. "

Mention skills in your cover letter

Take these critical thinking skills into your on cover letter. In the body of your letter, mention one or two of these skills and give specific examples of times you have demonstrated these skills on the job. Think of times when you had to analyze or evaluate materials to solve a problem.

Show your skills to the interviewer

You can use these skill words in an interview. Discuss a time when you faced a specific problem or challenge while working, and explain how you used critical thinking to solve it.

Some interviewers give you a hypothetical scenario or problem and ask you to use critical thinking to resolve it. In this case, explain your thought process thoroughly to the interviewer. He or she is usually more focused on how you arrive at your solution than on the solution itself. The interviewer wants you to use the key elements of critical thinking approach to analysis and evaluation for the given scenario or problem.

Of course, every job requires different skills and experience. So be sure to read the following job description information carefully and focus on the skills listed by the employer.

Top critical thinking skills


Part of critical thinking is the ability to examine something carefully, whether it is a problem, a record, or text. Those with analytical skills can examine information, understand what it means, and properly explain the implications of that information to others.

  • Asking thoughtful questions
  • Data analysis
  • research
  • interpretation
  • judgment
  • Questioning evidence
  • Recognize patterns
  • skepticism


Often times, you need to share your conclusions with your employers or a group of colleagues. You need to be able to communicate in order to effectively share your ideas with others. You may also need to think critically in a group. When this happens, you need to work with others and communicate effectively to find solutions to complex problems.


Critical thinking often involves creativity and innovation. You may need to spot patterns in the information you are looking at or find a solution that no one has thought of before. All of this requires a creative eye that can take a different approach than any other approach.

  • flexibility
  • Conceptualization
  • curiosity
  • imagination
  • Draw connections
  • conclusion
  • forecast
  • synthesis
  • vision


In order to think critically, you need to be able to put aside assumptions or judgments and just analyze the information you are given. You need to be objective and evaluate ideas without prejudice.

  • diversity
  • fairness
  • humility
  • Included
  • objectivity
  • observation
  • reflection


Problem solving is another critical thinking skill that involves analyzing a problem, generating and implementing a solution, and assessing the success of the plan. Employers don't just want employees who can think critically about information. You also need to be able to express yourself with practical solutions.

  • Attention to detail
  • clarification
  • decision making
  • evaluation
  • Grounding
  • Identify patterns
  • innovation

More critical thinking skills

  • Inductive thinking
  • Deductive thinking
  • conformity
  • Notice outliers
  • adaptability
  • Emotional intelligence
  • brainstorming
  • optimization
  • restructuring
  • integration
  • strategic planning
  • Project management
  • Continuous improvement
  • Causal relationships
  • Case analysis
  • diagnosis
  • SWOT analysis
  • Business intelligence
  • Quantitative data management
  • Qualitative data management
  • Metrics
  • accuracy
  • Risk management
  • statistics
  • Scientific method
  • Consumer behavior

Key takeaways

Add relevant skills to your resume: Demonstrate critical thinking by using keywords related to your skills on your resume.

Highlight skills in your cover letter: Mention some of these skills in your cover letter and give an example of a time when you demonstrated them at work.

Use skill words in your interview: Discuss a time when you faced a challenge at work and explain how you used critical thinking to solve it.

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