• To develop an understanding about humannature and its influence on behaviour• Becoming more self-aware and have adeeper understanding about othersToday’s Objectives• To develop an appreciation for diversity
• What is personality?• What makes us what we are?• What are the key elements of personality?• Are there generic types or classes?We will cover:• Are there generic types or classes?• Is this personality “good” or “bad”?• Is diversity a “curse” or a blessing?• Application of what we have learnt
• Self-awareness• People are the most importantorganizational resource• Improving predictability and self-confidence• Building relationships• Building relationships• Effective utilization of human resources• Avoiding or managing conflicts• Improving the quality of life and workenvironment
• Have you ever faced a person whom youfailed to understand?• Have you ever been misunderstood (as aperson)?Reflection• Have you ever been frustrated by peoplewho looked, behaved, thought or felt verydifferent than you?• Have you ever looked down on someonewho behaved, thought or felt differently?
• “Every man is in certain respects like allother men, like some other men, like noother man”Kluckhohn & MurrayPersonality
• Personality describes the character ofemotion, thought, and behavior patternsunique to a person• It is a particular pattern of behaviour andthinking prevailing across time andPersonalitythinking prevailing across time andsituations that differentiates one personfrom another• Personality is the sum total of ways inwhich an individual react and interactswith others
• Personality is that which permits aprediction of what a person will do in agiven situation• It explains how each individual is uniquePersonality• Personality is one of the key determinantsof human behaviour – but there are alsoother factors of behaviour e.g. situation,attitude, cognition, motivation, belief etc.
• Nature vs. NurtureHeredity and biology - genes, nervoussystem, endocrine system and other systemsEnvironment and life experiencesThe Development of PersonalityEnvironment and life experiences• Identical twins share the same templatebut have different “states”• Twins raised in different families haveoften demonstrated similar tastes,choosing the same profession and evenusing the same brands of products
• Some traits may be more strongly linkedto heredity than others• The initial few years are critical in theformation of personalityThe Development of Personality• Plaster vs. Plasticity hypothesisSet like plasterChanges throughout adulthood
• Trait Theories – personality is a set of mentalstructures/systems, different for each individual,resulting in characteristic responses to situations• Humanist Theories – difficult to predictbehaviour – lives are not scripted – personalitiesViews on Personalitybehaviour – lives are not scripted – personalitiesare defined by their own different perceptions andexperiences• Behavioural Theories – Personality is theconstantly changing set of learned behaviour,influenced by reinforcements
• Human behaviour is influenced by:Personality traitsThe situationThe interaction between personalityInteractionismThe interaction between personalityand situation• How one perceives or defines a situation isa critical factor of behaviour
• Doctors report that the child would neverbe able to play any physically exertingsport… the child grows to be the fittestathlete in the world• How did the parents define the situation?CASE• How did the parents define the situation?• How did the child define the situation?• How did it influence their behaviour?
• Locus of Control (internal/external)The degree to which people believe they are incontrol of their own fate• Self-Esteem - Feelings of self-worth stemmingfrom the individuals positive or negative beliefsOther Attributesfrom the individuals positive or negative beliefsabout being valuable and capable• Self-awareness - being aware of oneself,including ones traits, feelings, behaviours andlimitations• Risk Taking - a person’s willingness to takechances or risks
• Before we examine various types ofpersonalities we should remember:There is no “right”, “wrong”, “good” or “bad”typeEach type has “strengths” and “weaknesses”Is this Personality Good or Bad?Each type has “strengths” and “weaknesses”A personality may however be more “suitable”for a given role or situationPersonality traits may shift over timeBehaviour/performance is not dependent onpersonality alone
• The Big Five• Cattell’s 16 Primary Factors• Myers-Briggs Type IndicatorPersonality Models
The Big FiveNeuroticismAnxietyAngry hostilityDepressionSelf-consciousnessImpulsivenessVulnerabilityExtraversionWarmth & SociabilityAssertivenessActivityPositive emotionsTalkativenessBoldnessSpontaneityOpennessFantasyAestheticsFeelingsActionsIdeasValuesSpontaneityAdventure & EnthusiasmAgreeablenessTrustStraightforwardnessAltruismComplianceModestyTender-mindednessConscientiousnessCompetenceOrderDutifulnessAchievement strivingSelf-disciplineDeliberation (reflection)
MBTI ScalesExtraversionOuter worldPeople/ThingsActiveBreadth of InterestLive, then understandInteractionIntroversionInner WorldThoughts/ConceptsReflectiveDepth of InterestUnderstand, then liveConcentrationInteractionOutgoingConcentrationInwardly directedSensingFactsDataDetailsReality basedActualityHere and nowUtility/PurposeIntuitionMeaningsAssociationsPossibilitiesHunches/SpeculationsTheoreticalFutureFantasy
MBTI ScalesThinkingAnalysisObjectiveLogicImpersonalCritiqueReasonFeelingSympathySubjectiveHumanePersonalAppreciateValuesReasonCriteriaValuesCircumstancesJudgingOrganizedSettledPlannedDecisiveControl own lifeSet goalsSystematicPerceivingPendingFlexibleSpontaneousTentativeLet life happenUndaunted by surpriseOpen to change
MBTI – 16 Personality TypesISTJSerious and quiet, interested in securityand peaceful living. Extremely thorough,responsible, and dependable. Well-developed powers of concentration.Usually interested in supporting andpromoting traditions and establishments.Well-organized and hard working, theywork steadily towards identified goals.They can usually accomplish any taskISTPQuiet and reserved, interested in how andwhy things work. Excellent skills withmechanical things. Risk-takers who they livefor the moment. Usually interested in andtalented at extreme sports. Uncomplicated intheir desires. Loyal to their peers and to theirinternal value systems, but not overlyconcerned with respecting laws and rules ifthey get in the way of getting somethingThey can usually accomplish any taskonce they have set their mind to it.they get in the way of getting somethingdone. Detached and analytical, they excel atfinding solutions to practical problems.ISFJQuiet, kind, and conscientious. Can bedepended on to follow through. Usuallyputs the needs of others above their ownneeds. Stable and practical, they valuesecurity and traditions. Well-developedsense of space and function. Rich innerworld of observations about people.Extremely perceptive of others feelings.Interested in serving others.ISFPQuiet, serious, sensitive and kind. Do not likeconflict, and not likely to do things which maygenerate conflict. Loyal and faithful.Extremely well-developed senses, andaesthetic appreciation for beauty. Notinterested in leading or controlling others.Flexible and open-minded. Likely to beoriginal and creative. Enjoy the presentmoment.
MBTI – 16 Personality TypesINFJQuietly forceful, original, and sensitive.Tend to stick to things until they aredone. Extremely intuitive about people,and concerned for their feelings. Well-developed value systems which theystrictly adhere to. Well-respected for theirperserverence in doing the right thing.Likely to be individualistic, rather thanleading or following.INFPQuiet, reflective, and idealistic. Interested inserving humanity. Well-developed valuesystem, which they strive to live inaccordance with. Extremely loyal. Adaptableand laid-back unless a strongly-held value isthreatened. Usually talented writers. Mentallyquick, and able to see possibilities. Interestedin understanding and helping people.leading or following.INTJIndependent, original, analytical, anddetermined. Have an exceptional abilityto turn theories into solid plans of action.Highly value knowledge, competence,and structure. Driven to derive meaningfrom their visions. Long-range thinkers.Have very high standards for theirperformance, and the performance ofothers. Natural leaders, but will follow ifthey trust existing leaders.INTPLogical, original, creative thinkers. Canbecome very excited about theories andideas. Exceptionally capable and driven toturn theories into clear understandings.Highly value knowledge, competence andlogic. Quiet and reserved, hard to get to knowwell. Individualistic, having no interest inleading or following others.
MBTI – 16 Personality TypesESTPFriendly, adaptable, action-oriented."Doers" who are focused on immediateresults. Living in the here-and-now,theyre risk-takers who live fast-pacedlifestyles. Impatient with longexplanations. Extremely loyal to theirpeers, but not usually respectful of lawsand rules if they get in the way of gettingthings done. Great people skills.ESTJPractical, traditional, and organized. Likely tobe athletic. Not interested in theory orabstraction unless they see the practicalapplication. Have clear visions of the waythings should be. Loyal and hard-working.Like to be in charge. Exceptionally capable inorganizing and running activities. "Goodcitizens" who value security and peacefulliving.things done. Great people skills. living.ESFPPeople-oriented and fun-loving, theymake things more fun for others by theirenjoyment. Living for the moment, theylove new experiences. They dislike theoryand impersonal analysis. Interested inserving others. Likely to be the center ofattention in social situations. Well-developed common sense and practicalability.ESFJWarm-hearted, popular, and conscientious.Tend to put the needs of others over theirown needs. Feel strong sense of responsibilityand duty. Value traditions and security.Interested in serving others. Need positivereinforcement to feel good about themselves.Well-developed sense of space and function.
MBTI – 16 Personality TypesENFPEnthusiastic, idealistic, and creative. Ableto do almost anything that intereststhem. Great people skills. Need to live lifein accordance with their inner values.Excited by new ideas, but bored withdetails. Open-minded and flexible, with abroad range of interests and abilities.ENFJPopular and sensitive, with outstandingpeople skills. Externally focused, with realconcern for how others think and feel. Usuallydislike being alone. They see everything fromthe human angle, and dislike impersonalanalysis. Very effective at managing peopleissues, and leading group discussions.Interested in serving others, and probablyplace the needs of others over their ownplace the needs of others over their ownneeds.ENTPCreative, resourceful, and intellectuallyquick. Good at a broad range of things.Enjoy debating issues, and may be into"one-up-manship". They get very excitedabout new ideas and projects, but mayneglect the more routine aspects of life.Generally outspoken and assertive. Theyenjoy people and are stimulatingcompany. Excellent ability to understandconcepts and apply logic to find solutions.ENTJAssertive and outspoken - they are driven tolead. Excellent ability to understand difficultorganizational problems and create solidsolutions. Intelligent and well-informed, theyusually excel at public speaking. They valueknowledge and competence, and usually havelittle patience with inefficiency ordisorganization.
• Self-managementUnderstand strengths, weaknesses andpreferencesPredict, plan and avoid failuresSelf-optimize, excel and adaptApplicationSelf-optimize, excel and adapt• Managing relationshipsUnderstand strengths, weaknesses andpreferencesPredict, plan and avoid conflict and failuresAdapt and support
• Try to accommodate type mismatchRemember, type mismatch is unavoidableRemember, 50% of the mismatch is caused byyou ☺ApplicationDo not blame the person for something s/hehasn’t done ☺Do not forget that the perceived weaknesscould be a real advantage in a differentsituation
• DiversityRecognizing differences as naturalAppreciating diversityDeveloping complementary work teamsApplicationDeveloping complementary work teamsExpertise and task assignmentCaution: other components of behaviour +development of others• Synergyn1 + n2 = k x (n1 + n2)where k > 1
• For those traits that are not dominantAvoid over exposure and over commitmentUnderstand the consequencesCognition (thinking)Application: Other ConsiderationsCognition (thinking)Self-monitoringPositive attitudeLearning and practiceChanges in socio-technical environment
Can you visualize someone who:• would panic under stress, is a frequent worrier orwould be intensely tense on slightest criticism• is very open to change, new idea or suggestion• would do all it takes to get the job done, on time,Exercise: Trait Recognition• would do all it takes to get the job done, on time,even if it involves taking on enormous stress• Enjoys parties and gatherings, is talkative evenwith strangers, is adventurous and is actionoriented• Is very considerate and sympathetic, and workshard to ensure that others feelings are not hurt
• Identify a trait that you perceive as a“weakness”, then think of a situationwhere it could be utilized as a strengthExercise: “Undesirable” Traits
• Awareness and recognition is the first steptowards change• After self-evaluating your personality,observe other available templates and seehow that may help you in adapting into aAfterthoughtshow that may help you in adapting into a“new” person or adopting a differentresponse set• If no traits are absolutely bad, thenrecognize that differences, perspectivesand conflicts are actually opportunities tobroaden our thinking and prospects
• While dealing with people, lose yourspectacle and put on their glasses – try tounderstand first before being understoodFinal Word
And the Educated PersonAnd the Educated Person
What is Critical Thinking?Problem solvingAnalyzing informationInterpreting informationRecognizing biasRecognizing biasUnderstanding diverse points of viewApplying informationLearning!
Becoming a Fair-MindedCritical ThinkerOur ability to be fair-minded is the result of cognitiveand socio-emotional development. We must allrecognize that to be fair-minded we must developtraits such as intellectual humility, intellectualtraits such as intellectual humility, intellectualintegrity, intellectual courage, intellectual autonomy,intellectual empathy, intellectual perseverance, andconfidence in reason.
Weak vs. Strong Critical ThinkingA weak-sense thinker is a Sophist. The sophist is one whoseeks to win an argument regardless of whether there areproblems in the thinking being used, regardless of whetherrelevant viewpoints are being ignored. The objective is towin.win.Strong-sense critical thinkers are not easily tricked by slickargumentation, by sophistry, and intellectual trickery, theyuse thinking in an ethical, reasonable manner. As strong-sense thinkers, we question our own purposes, evidence,conclusions, implications, and point of view with the samevigor that we question those of others.
Fair-Mindedness Requires:Intellectual humility: to develop knowledge of theextent of one’s ignorance, being aware of one’sbiases and prejudices as well as the limitations ofone’s viewpoint, and it recognizes that one shouldone’s viewpoint, and it recognizes that one shouldnot claim more than one actually knows.What do you do when you are challenged on somethingyou think you know?Can you name some of your false beliefs, illusions,prejudices, myths and misconceptions?
Fair-Mindedness Requires:Intellectual Courage: facing and fairly addressingideas, beliefs or viewpoints even when this ispainful, recognizing that ideas that societyconsiders dangerous or absurd are sometimesrationally justified or simply a matter of subjectiverationally justified or simply a matter of subjectivetaste. To determine what makes sense to believe,one must not passively and uncritically acceptwhat one has learned.Have you ever questioned your beliefs and thenquestioned your identity?Have you ever held to certain beliefs because of the fearof rejection?
Fair-Mindedness Requires:Intellectual empathy: to put oneself imaginativelyin the place of others on a routine basis, so as togenuinely understand them. It requires one toreconstruct the viewpoints and reasoning of othersreconstruct the viewpoints and reasoning of othersaccurately and to reason from premises,assumptions, and ideas other than one’s own.What’s it like to have a disability?What’s it like to be male/female/gay/lawyer/priest….?
Fair-Mindedness Requires:Intellectual integrity: to be true to one’s owndisciplined thinking and holding oneself to the samestandards that one expects others to meet. It meanspracticing daily what one advocates for otherspracticing daily what one advocates for others(walking the walk).Have you ever experienced cognitive dissonance? This isbelieving one thing and doing another.
Fair-Mindedness Requires:Intellectual perseverance: the disposition to work one’sway through intellectual complexities despitefrustrations inherent in the task. Some problems arecomplicated and cannot be solved easily (toleratecomplicated and cannot be solved easily (tolerateuncertainty).Have you ever tried to understand something orsomeone and given up, or been invited to give up?
Fair-Mindedness Requires:Confidence in reason: based on the belief thatone’s own higher interests and those ofhumankind at large are best served by giving thefreest play to reason, by encouraging people tocome to their own conclusions through the use ofcome to their own conclusions through the use oftheir own rational faculties. People can learn tothink for themselves, form insightful viewpoints,draw reasonable conclusions, think clearly,accurately, relevantly and logically and persuadeeach other by appeal to good reason and soundevidence.Have you ever said “oh, you just don’t understand andnever will…”?
Intellectual Distrust of ReasonFaith in charismatic national leadersFaith in charismatic cult leadersFaith in the father as the traditional head of the householdFaith in institutional authoritiesFaith in spiritual powersFaith in spiritual powersFaith in some social groupFaith in some political ideologyFaith in intuitionFaith in one’s unanalyzed emotionsFaith in one’s gut impulsesFaith in fateFaith in social or legal institutionsFaith in folkways or moresFaith in one’s own unanalyzed experiencesFaith in people who have social status
Fair-Mindedness Requires:Intellectual autonomy: thinking for oneself whileadhering to standards of rationality, thinkingthrough issues using one’s own thinking ratherthan uncritically accepting the viewpoints ofthan uncritically accepting the viewpoints ofothers. Independent thinkers are not willful,stubborn, or unresponsive to the reasonablesuggestions of others.Have you ever conformed to a belief that you later cameto reject?Have you ever been rejected by your independentbeliefs?
The First FourStages of DevelopmentStage One: The Unreflective thinkerWe don’t notice we are continually making assumptions,forming concepts and opinions, drawing inferences, andthinking within points of view.thinking within points of view.Our egocentric tendencies at this stage play a dominantrole in our thinking.We lack the skills and motivation to notice how self-centered and prejudiced we are.
The First FourStages of DevelopmentStage Two: The Challenged ThinkerWe begin to notice that weMake questionable assumptionsUse false, incomplete, or misleading informationMake inferences that do not follow from the evidence we haveMake inferences that do not follow from the evidence we haveFail to recognize important implications in our thoughtFail to recognize problems we haveForm faulty conceptsReason with prejudiced points of viewThink egocentrically and irrationallyWe begin to become aware that our thinking is shapingour lives.
The First FourStages of DevelopmentStage Three: The Beginning ThinkerWe are beginning to:Analyze the logic of situations and problemsExpress clear and precise questionsCheck information for accuracy and relevanceCheck information for accuracy and relevanceDistinguish between raw information and someone’s interpretation of itRecognize assumptions guiding inferencesIdentify prejudicial and biased beliefs, unjustifiable conclusions,misused words, and missed implicationsNotice when our viewpoint is biased by our selfish interestsThe purpose of the autobiography (culture, time, place,raised, associations)What are two traps that can derail the beginning thinker?
The First FourStages of DevelopmentStage Four: The Practicing ThinkerUsing wasted timeHandle a problem a day (at least)Internalize intellectual standards (ADEADCAT)Internalize intellectual standards (ADEADCAT)Keep an intellectual journalPractice intellectual strategiesReshape your characterDeal with your egoRedefine the way you see thingsGet in touch with your emotionsAnalyze group influences on your life
Self-UnderstandingThink of the most self-centered person you know. Thismay be someone who is fundamentally selfish orarrogant. Describe the person’s behavior in detail.Based on the person’s behavior, how would youBased on the person’s behavior, how would youdescribe his or her thinking? What are their feelingsand motivations? Do they use others to get what theywant?
Fallacies of BeliefIt’s true because I believe it.It’s true because we believe it.It’s true because I want to believe it.It’s true because I have always believed it.It’s true because I have always believed it.It’s true because it’s in my selfish interests to believe it.
The Mind’s Three Distinctive FunctionsThinking: to create meaningFeeling: monitor or evaluate meaningWanting: allocates energy to action, in keepingwith our definition of what is desirable andwith our definition of what is desirable andpossibleFor every positive thought the mind believes, thereis a corresponding emotion and value.Ask yourself: what is the thinking that influencesme not to want to learn this? What is the value oflearning it?
The Three Functions of the MindThinking:Makes sense ofthe worldJudgingFeeling: Tells ushow we aredoingHappySadWanting: Drivesus to act as wedoGoalsPerceivingAnalyzingClarifyingDeterminingComparingsynthesizingSadDepressedAnxiousStressedCalmWorriedexcitedDesiresPurposesagendasValuesmotives
Learn Both Intellectually andEmotionallyIn order to learn and remember something, it must bemeaningful to our lives and therefore, must haveaffective connotation and a value attached to it.How does one use motivation to put a different spin onHow does one use motivation to put a different spin ona domain that has previously been assumedunimportant and not valuable?
The Parts of ThinkingReasoning: the mental process the mind uses tomake sense of whatever we seek to understand.We draw conclusions on the basis of reasons(decisions, interpretations, inferences).(decisions, interpretations, inferences).Whenever we think, we think for a purpose, withina point of view, based on assumptions, leading toimplications and consequences. We use data, facts,and experiences to make inferences and judgmentsbased on concepts and theories to answer aquestion or solve a problem.
Questions Implied by the UniversalStructures of ThoughtWhat is my fundamental purpose (goals, desires, needs,values)?What is the key question I am trying to answer?What information do I need to answer my question?What information do I need to answer my question?What is the most basic concept in the question?What assumptions am I using in my reasoning?What is my point of view with respect to the issue?What are my most fundamental inferences or conclusions?What are the implications for my reasoning (if I amcorrect)?
ReasoningPurpose: Humans reason in line with their goals, values,needs and desiresPoint of view: our thinking has a focus or orientationConcepts: general categories or ideas by which weinterpret, classify, or group the info we use in thinkingConcepts: general categories or ideas by which weinterpret, classify, or group the info we use in thinkingWe often face questions we need to answer, problems weneed to solve, issues we need to resolveInformation in our reasoning: facts, data or experiences tosupport our conclusionsJack and Jill
How the Parts ofThinking Fit TogetherOur purpose affects the manner in which we ask questionsThe manner in which we ask questions affects theinformation we gatherThe information we gather affects the way we interpret itThe way we interpret information affects the way weThe way we interpret information affects the way weconceptualize itThe way we conceptualize information affects theassumptions we makeThe assumptions we make affect the implications thatfollow from our thinkingThe implications that follow affect the way we see things –our point of view
Best ThinkersThink to some purposeTake command of conceptsAssess informationInert information: memorized, but we don’t understandActivated ignorance: actively using false informationActivated knowledge: actively using true informationActivated knowledge: actively using true informationthat leads us to more knowledgeDistinguish between information, inferences andassumptionsThink through implicationsThink across points of view
Intellectual Standards and the Elementsof ReasoningClarityAccuracyPrecisionRelevanceDepthPurpose, goal, end in viewQuestion at issue or problem tobe solvedInformation, data, facts,observations, experiencesDepthBreadthLogicSignificanceFairnessobservations, experiencesImplications and consequencesConcepts, theories, definitions,axioms, laws, principles, modelsPoints of view, frames ofreference, perspective,orientation
Ask Questions that Lead toGood ThinkingThree kinds of QuestionsQuestions of fact: require evidence and reasoning withina system, a correct answer, lead to knowledgeQuestions of preference: call for stating a subjectiveQuestions of preference: call for stating a subjectivepreference, a subjective opinion, cannot be assessedQuestions of judgment: require evidence and reasoningwithin multiple systems, better and worse answers,require reasoned judgment
Questioning Your QuestionsQuestions of purpose force us to define our taskQuestions of information force us to look at oursources of information as well as the quality of ourinformationinformationQuestions of interpretation force us to examine howwe are organizing or giving meaning to informationand to consider alternative ways of giving meaning
Questioning Your QuestionsQuestions of assumption forces us to examine what weare taking for grantedQuestions of implication force us to follow where ourthinking is leading usthinking is leading usQuestions of point of view force us to examine ourpoint of view and to consider other relevant points ofviewQuestions of relevance force us to differentiate whatdoes and what does not bear on a question
Questioning Your QuestionsQuestions of accuracy force us to evaluate and testfor truth and correctnessQuestions of precision force us to give details andbe specificQuestions of consistency force us to examine ourQuestions of consistency force us to examine ourthinking for contradictionsQuestions of logic force us to consider how we areputting the whole of our thought together, to makesure that it all adds up and makes sense within areasonable system of some kind
Socratic ThinkingProbing, analytic, synthetic, creative, connection-forming thought construction of a logical system ofunderstandings leading to insight a natural wayto develop and test our understanding of content ato develop and test our understanding of content anatural way to give life to content
Redefine Grades as Levels of Thinkingand LearningBest Learners:Continually assess their learning against standards of excellenceAre not dependent on instructors to tell them how well they are doingTie each step of their learning process to a self-reflective step of self-assessmentSeek to enter the foundations of any subject and use that foundation toSeek to enter the foundations of any subject and use that foundation tounderstand everything else within the subjectSeek to identify the most basic kinds of information used byprofessionals within the fieldDo not memorize random bits of information, their learning isproblem or question basedThey state a problem, assess for clarity, gather information, check it forrelevance, form an interpretation and check the interpretation to seewhat it’s based on and whether it is adequate
Developing Strategies for Self-AssessmentUsing profiles to assess your performanceExemplary studentsHigh-performing studentsMixed-quality studentsMixed-quality studentsLow-performing studentsIncompetent students
Exemplary Students (Grade of A)The exemplary student has internalized the basicintellectual standards appropriate to the assessment of hisor her own work in a subject and is highly skilled at self-evaluation. They regularly:Raise important questions and issuesRaise important questions and issuesAnalyze key questions and problemsRecognize questionable assumptionsClarify key concepts effectivelyUse language in keeping with educated usageIdentify relevant competing points of viewDisplay sensitivity to important implications and consequencesDemonstrate a commitment to reasoning carefully from clearlystated premises in a subject
High-Performing Students (Grade of B)HP in thinking through a subject implies sound thinking within thedomain of a subject along with the development of a range ofknowledge acquired through the exercise of thinking skills andabilities. HP students on the whole are clear, precise, and well-reasoned, but sometimes lack depth of insight (especially opposingpoints of view). Basic terms and distinctions are learned at a level thatimplies comprehension of basic concepts and principles. HP studentspoints of view). Basic terms and distinctions are learned at a level thatimplies comprehension of basic concepts and principles. HP studentsinternalize the basic intellectual standards appropriate to theassessment of their thinking in a subject and demonstrate competencein self-evaluation. They:Often raise questions and issues, commonly analyze questions andproblems clearly and precisely, recognize most questionable assumptions,clarify key concepts well, typically use language in keeping with educatedusage, commonly identify relevant competing points of view, displaysensitivity to many important implications and consequences, andfrequently demonstrate the beginnings of a commitment to reasoningcarefully
Mixed-Ability Students (Grade C)Thinking of mixed-ability students impliesinconsistent/incomplete performance within the domain ofa subject along with limited development of knowledgeacquired through the exercise of thinking skills andabilities. The MQ student often tries to use memorizationas a substitute for understanding. The MQ student:abilities. The MQ student often tries to use memorizationas a substitute for understanding. The MQ student:Sometimes raises questions and issues, sometimes analyzesquestions and problems clearly and precisely, recognizes somequestionable assumptions, clarifies some concepts competently,sometimes uses language in keeping with educated usage,sometimes identifies relevant competing points of view, sometimesdemonstrates a clear commitment to reasoning carefully fromclearly stated premises in a subject, are inconsistently sensitive toimportant implications and consequences
Low-Performing Students (Grade D/F)Low-performing students reason poorly within the domainof a subject. They try to get through courses by means ofrote recall, attempting regularly to acquire knowledge bymemorization rather than through critical thinking skillsor insights requisite to understanding course content. LPor insights requisite to understanding course content. LPstudents:Rarely raise questions and issues, superficially analyze questionsand problems, do not recognize their assumptions, clarify conceptsonly partially, rarely use language keeping with educated usage,rarely identify relevant competing points of view, show nounderstanding of the importance of a commitment to reasoningcarefully from clearly stated premises in a subject and areinsensitive to important implications and consequences
Skilled LearnersTo be a skilled learner you have to be a skilledthinker.You must take responsibility for your learning.You plan your learning by becoming clear as toYou plan your learning by becoming clear as towhat your goals are, what questions you have, whatinformation you need to acquire, what conceptsyou need to learn, what you need to focus on, andhow you need to understand it.
Learn to use information critically andethicallyThe ideal of knowledge acquisitionTo the extent we are committed to the development offair-mindedness, we are committed to knowledge beingacquired and used to minimize human suffering, toacquired and used to minimize human suffering, tomeet basic human needs, to preserve rather than destroythe environment, to contribute to a more just world, andto serve rational rather than irrational ends.Disciplines seek knowledge not to benefit a select fewbut rather to distribute benefits in the broadest andmost just way.
True Loyalty to a DisciplineTrue loyalty to a discipline is born out of recognition of the discipline’spotential power for good in the world. It is not a commitment topractices in the discipline as it stands. It is not given by the intensitywith which one defends the discipline. A person committed to thediscipline of history recognizes the importance and the power ofhistorical thinking in the world. For example, a history personrecognizes that:historical thinking in the world. For example, a history personrecognizes that:We are creators of historyWe are products of historyNonetheless, we are not successfully teaching historical thinkingHistory, as a written and taught, often reflects personal and socialprejudicesAsk yourself two questions:am I coming to recognize the power of the discipline as a form of thinking?Am I coming to recognize the limitations of the discipline in the light ofthis present state of development?
The Gap Between Fact and IdealThe following two phenomena are the root of much of themisuse of knowledge in the world:Human fallibility: All knowledge is acquired, analyzed, and put touse in the world by individuals who are subject to the pitfalls ofhuman weakness, self-deception, and pathological states of mind(e.g., prejudice, egocentrism, sociocentrisim)(e.g., prejudice, egocentrism, sociocentrisim)Vested interest: Human knowledge exists in a world of power,status, and wealth, all of which significantly influence whatinformation is acquired within any discipline, how it is interpreted,and how it is used.It should follow that we should be skeptical of anydescription of a human knowledge-constructing enterprisethat characterizes itself as an approximation of an ideal.Rather we should approach human disciplines as in somestate of contradiction between an announced ideal andactual reality.
The Ideal Compared to the RealThe first essential step is to recognize the discipline as a powerful modeof thinking and setting forth the ideal of the discipline. To set out theideal, ask yourself if the discipline were striving to function in anoptimal way in an optimal setting:What would the discipline look like?How would it function?How would it function?How would it be represented?How would it be taught?How would it be applied?Two important insights:All knowledge in use in the world is subject to the pitfalls of humanfallibility on the part of the individuals using it.Knowledge exists in a world driven by the pursuit of power, status,and wealth, each of which exacts its toll.
ConclusionAs critical thinkers, we must be careful not to assumethat things are actually the way they are represented tobe in human life.To understand a field of knowledge we mustTo understand a field of knowledge we mustunderstand it realistically.
Learn to Use Information Critically andEthicallyMen, whose life lies in the cultivation of one science,or the exercise of one method of thought, have nomore right…to generalize upon the basis of their ownpursuit but beyond its range, than the schoolboy…pursuit but beyond its range, than the schoolboy…John Henry Newman, The Idea of a University, 1852
Realistic UnderstandingIn this chapter we will focus our analysis on onedomain, that of psychology, and on the alliedfields of mental health. We begin with the premisethat the art of thinking psychologically is apowerful form of thought, important to humanwell-being and self-insight. We also begin with thewell-being and self-insight. We also begin with thehypothesis that the benefit from this powerfulmode of thought is diminished by the manner inwhich it is sometimes taught and used bypsychologists and by those trained bypsychologists in the fields of mental health.
Realistic UnderstandingWe need to examine all information with fullawareness that, though virtually all theinformation we are presented with is presented tous as true– as something known and not justbelieved—it may well be false or mere half-truth.believed—it may well be false or mere half-truth.Politicians don’t say, “Everything I am about to tell you inthis speech is intended to get myself elected to a position ofpower and influence—not to reveal the full truth aboutwhat is really happening. I will therefore hide, to the bestof my ability, everything that puts me or my party in a badlight.”
Realistic UnderstandingOur minds do not have a built-in warning system to alert us to what wehave already taken in uncritically from our parents, our peers, themedia.We reemphasize the theme that we are ethically responsible for themanner in which we take in and use informationmanner in which we take in and use informationIf we want to understand a field of knowledge, we must understand itrealistically, that it is an imperfect construction. If we want tounderstand our learning of a field of knowledge, we must realisticallyunderstand the imperfections of our learning, that even at best weimperfectly learn what we learnWe have chosen psychology: because human good and harm seemespecially germane to its practice, and because there seems to be anespecially large gap between the ideal promised by psychology and therealities of its actual practice.
Be a Critic, Not a CynicA cynic views all knowledge as baseless, such an absolutenegation of knowledge cannot be justified for it is, in effect,an arrogant claim to know the status of all knowledge-thatthere is nothing we can claim to know absolutely.there is nothing we can claim to know absolutely.The spirit of critical thinking is intellectual humility. It isbased on evidence that each of us must assembleindividually, and it requires heightened awareness of howfrequently humans make mistakes.We can access that evidence if we overcome our egocentricdefensiveness. We must examine each claim to knowledgeone by one, evaluating each on its merits.
Recognize the MentalNature of KnowledgeHuman knowledge exists as knowledge in thehuman mind, and as an imperfect learner, we areeminently fallible. We must get into the habit ofevaluating what we come to think and believe.evaluating what we come to think and believe.Further, all minds, without exception arepossessed by prejudices, vested interests, fears,insecurities, and social ideology.Paradoxically, whenever knowledge exists, somedegree of ignorance also exists in somerelationship to it.
Develop Awareness of the Harm fromMisuse of InformationIntelligent people with a lofty sense of theirimportance, pursuing their vested interests, aremore dangerous to the well-being of others thanare unintelligent people stumbling along unskilledare unintelligent people stumbling along unskilledin the art of deception and manipulation.The use of ethical knowledge begins with arecognition of the limits of one’s knowledge and ofthe various influences that are likely to underminethe proper use of that knowledge.
Strategic ThinkingStrategic thinking has two phases:The understanding of an important principle of mental functioning.Using that understanding strategically to produce a mental change inourselves.Understanding. The human mind has three interrelated functions: thinking,feeling, and desiring or wanting. These functions are interrelated andinterdependent.feeling, and desiring or wanting. These functions are interrelated andinterdependent.The Strategy. Whenever you find yourself having what may be irrationalemotions or desires, figure out the thinking that probably is generating thoseemotions and desires. Then develop rational thinking with which to replace theirrational thinking you are using in the situation.Explicitly state what the feelings and desires are.Figure out the irrational thinking leading to it.Figure out how to transform the irrational thinking into rationalthinking—thing that makes sense in context.Whenever you feel the negative emotion, repeat to yourself the rationalthoughts you decided you needed to replace the irrational thoughts, untilyou feel the rational emotions that accompany reasonable thinking.
Components of strategic thinkingAn identifying component. You must be able tofigure out when your thinking is irrational orflawed.An intellectual component. You must activelyengage and challenge the acts of your own mind.An intellectual component. You must activelyengage and challenge the acts of your own mind.What is actually going on in the situation as it stands?Your options for action.A justifiable rationale for choosing one of the options.Ways of reasoning with yourself when you are beingunreasonable, or ways of reducing the power of yourirrational state of mind.
Key idea #1Thoughts, feelings and desires are interdependent.If, for example, I experience a degree of anger thatI sense may be unreasonable, I should be able todetermine whether the anger is or is not rational. Ishould be able to evaluate the rationality of myshould be able to evaluate the rationality of myanger by evaluating the thinking that gave rise toit.Has someone truly wronged me, or am I misreading thesituation?Was this wrong intentional or unintentional?Are there ways to view the situation other than the way Iam viewing it?Am I giving a fair hearing to these other ways?
Key idea #2There is a logic to this, and you can figure it out. (pg. 413).Questioning goals, purposes, and objectives. What is the centralpurpose of this person? This group? Myself? I realize that problems inthinking are often the result of a mistake at the level of basic purpose.Questioning the way in which questions are framed, problems areposed, issues are expressed.posed, issues are expressed.Questioning information and sources of information.Questioning interpretations or conclusions.Questioning the assumptions being made.Questioning the concepts being used.Questioning the points of view being considered.Questioning implications.
Key idea #3For thinking to be of high quality, we must routinely assess it byapplying intellectual standards to our thinking.Focusing on clarity in thinking. Can I state it precisely?Focusing on precision in thinking. Am I providing enough details?Focusing on accuracy in thinking. Am I certain that the informationI am using is accurate?I am using is accurate?Focusing on relevance in thinking. How does my point bear on theissue at hand?Focusing on logicalness in thinking. Given the information I havegathered, what is the most logical conclusion?Focusing on breadth in thinking. I wonder whether I need toconsider another viewpoint(s)?Focusing on depth in thinking. What complexities are inherent inthis issue?Focusing on justification in thinking. Is the purpose justified or is itunfair, self-contradictory, or self-defeating given the facts?