Critical Thinking Skills – Outline

Comprehension Skills

Ability to understand information stated explicitly.
Ability to distinguish main ideas from supporting data
by differentiating primary from secondary significance.
Ability to differentiate information states
a process from its stages,
a category from its exponents,
a statement from examples,
an act from opinion,
a proposition from argument.
Ability to understand and interpret information drawn from
the factual world.
Ability to comprehend a range of specialized texts,
reference books,
technical documents
computer printouts.

Communication Skills

Ability to understand, generate, and utilize everyday
English in communicative contexts.
Colloquial language: Ability to understand features of
colloguial speech
Basic fluency in listening, reading, writing, and
Ability to distinguish communicative purpose.
Ability to recognize language patterns
of statements,
in both affirmative
and negative forms.
Ability to exchange information and express meaning
through speaking,
and nonverbal means.

Inferential skill.

Skill in deriving meaning from situation (verbal and

Academic Skills

Ability to read a variety of texts with comprehension.
Ability to comprehend lectures.
Ability to participate in class discussions.

Skill in academic writing

Skill in taking notes on lectures.
Ability to write examinations for courses.
Skill in writing course papers based upon research.
Ability to write fairly detailed essays
on general academic subjects.
Competence in research
on an assigned topic.

Analytical Skills

Ability to infer cause and effect relationships.
Ability to analyze facts.
Ability to separate subjects into component parts.
Ability to infer analogies.
Anticipatory skills.
Ability to recognize and use indicators for
anticipating an objection or contrary view.

Application Skills

Ability to analyze written material and apply to
relevant situations.
Argumentation: Ability to expoundand argument
Ability to communicate a point of view in speech and
in writing.

Clarification Strategies:

Ability to recognize and use discourse indicators
for explanation
or clarification of points already made.

Consensus: Ability to recognize and use modes for

coming to consensus of opinion in groups.
Classification: Skill in classification techniques.
Ability to separate information
Ability to classify according to attributes.
Cohesion: Ability to understand and express relations between
parts of a text through grammatical cohesion devices of
reference, substitution, ellipsis, time and place relations,
logical connectors.

Conceptual Meaning: Ability to understand conceptual

quantity and amount,
definiteness and indefiniteness,
comparison and degree,
time (tense and aspect),
means and instrument,
Ability to describe
and analyze conditions.
Ability to mark boundaries in discourse using verbal
and vocal cues.
Ability to recognize and use indicators for
concluding an idea.
Ability to conclude appropriately (excuse, concede,
pass, etc.).
Ability to use verbal cues for summing up.

Affective Communication Skills

Attitude: Ability to interpret and express the attitudinal
dimension of a communication.
Certainty: Ability to distinguish and express degrees of
certainty, including probability, possibility, conjecture,
negation, doubt, disbelief

Adaptive ability: Ability to recognize change and adapt to change