There are number of situations that come to mind where critical and creative thought could have been used for a better outcome. And major disaster could have been prevented from happening just by using the critical thinking process in decision making. According to "Critical Thinking Community" (2012), "Critical thinking is the intellectually disciplined process of actively and skillfully conceptualizing, applying, analyzing, synthesizing, and/or evaluating information gathered from, or generated by, observation, experience, reflection, reasoning, or communication, as a guide to belief and action.”
(Critical thinking...the awakening of the intellect to the study of itself.). The best ( or the worst) example of the absence of critical thinking is the oil spill of the Exxon Valdez. It is very obvious that the personals involve in decision making process in this situation were not bothered using the critical thinking skills while making the business decisions. It can easily be proved by looking at the certain facts such as:
• Necessary inspections of the ships, that could have indicated any existing problem in the ship, were not performed.
• Number of crew that was operating the ship was way below the number of crew required to perform those operations. The reason for that was probably to save money.
• Due to the small number of crew the work load was way too much for the people operating the ship That is probably the reason why the Captain was sleeping deck below and a untrained crew member was at the wheel asleep controlling the ship.
• Collision avoidance system which could have prevent the accident was not available on the ship.
This horrible situation could have easily been prevented from happening if the authorized personals had used the critical thinking skills while making the decisions. If the crew members of the Exxon Valdez had adopted critical thinking, they could have prevented the accident from taking place. Similarly, if the procedures were followed and the equipments were issued and properly maintained with the appropriate crew size on board, the accident would never have taken place.
According to "Dnate.com The Nexus Of Politics, Culture And Genetics" (2013), “Free Will is the ability to do what you want, and pursue your interests. In other words, Free Will is the ability to pursue the object of your passions, motivations, wants, interests, and desires.”(para.1.). In simple words free will is the ability to do what we want to do. For example if a person wants to go to a football game and he made a decision to go to the game. However many philosophers say this instinct is wrong. According to their view, free will is a figment of our imagination. No one has it or ever will. There is still a big argument about the existence of free will of it’s being an illusion. The thinkers are trying to get the answers of the following questions: "are the choices we make predetermined?", or "do we necessarily choose what we choose?", or "was it really possible for us to have chosen otherwise?". ("Do We Have Free Will", 2012).
According to "Plato’s Theory Of Knowledge" (2013), “Knowledge is justified, true belief.” (Para. 1). Knowledge is a collective set of information and facts acquired through both education and experience. There is, however, not a single definition of knowledge that all agree upon totally. Whatever the case maybe, knowledge is the that helps us in building our thoughts. Knowledge helps in making rational decisions in critical thinking based upon our experience and what we take as truth
Opinion is based on a belief or view. It is basically a personal belief that can be turned into facts if supported by proof. There are three major hindrances (obstacles) in Thinking Critically
According to "Simply Psychology" (2012), " A stereotype is a fixed, over generalized belief about a particular group or class of people.” (para. 1). Stereotyping is categorizing the people, ideas or places based on some common elements or fixed notion.
Resistance to Change
Some people tend to reject new ways of doing/seeing things or new ideas. They are happy with the old routine life. This is called “Resistance to change.”
Face saving is something that prevents oneself from loss of dignity, self-esteem or prestige. It can occur when somebody has believed in a lie or an opinion and their ego prevent themselves from admitting it.
There are few techniques to overcome the hindrances in critical thinking. Such as being objective in any situation, keep personal feelings and opinions separate, and gain all the information necessary to make a decision.
In a world of advertising there is a message in everything hidden or obvious and sometimes even both. Perception is very important in advertising and marketing. How customers feels about a product and what kind of perception people have about it plays an important role in the success of that product. Marketers spent huge funds to create a good consumer’s perception of the product that is being advertised.
Critical thinking plays an important role in decision making process. It can help to understand the pros and cons of any decision and can prevent from any misfortunate incidents. However in order to use the critical thinking effectively, it is important to overcome the three hindrances to the critical thinking process.
Critical Thinking Community. (2012). Retrieved from http://www.criticalthinking.org/pages/defining-critical-thinking/766
dNATE.com The nexus of politics, culture and genetics. (2013). Retrieved from http://freewill.typepad.com/genetics/2009/12/what-is-free-will.html
Do We Have Free Will. (2012). Retrieved from http://www.godcontention.org/index.php?qid=164
Plato's theory of knowledge. (2013). Retrieved from http://laumasblog.blogspot.com/2007/11/platos-theory-of-knowledge.html
Simply Psychology. (2012). Retrieved from http://www.simplypsychology.org/katz-braly.html