How to best teach critical thinking

August 15, 2019

How to teach critical thinking.  Despite consensus on the need for critical thinking, considerable debate exists over how it is learned and, how educators can best support students to develop critical thinking capabilities. This paper considers what the research can tell us about how critical thinking is acquired, and the implications for how education might best develop young people’s critical thinking capabilities.

Willingham recommends a four-step process to develop a program to teach critical thinking:

  • identify a list of critical thinking skills for each subject domain;
  • identify subject matter content for each domain;
  • plan the sequence in which knowledge and skills should be taught;
  • plan which knowledge and skills should be revisited across years.

Citation: Willingham, D. (2019). How to teach critical thinking. New South Wales (NSW) Department of Education.