Essay About Critical Thinking: Top 5 Examples and Prompts

Critical thinking refers to our ability to reason; if you want to write an essay about critical thinking, here are helpful essay examples and prompts for you.

Critical thinkers can understand connections between opinions or ideas and detect reasoning inconsistencies. They can also identify, analyze, and solve problems systematically since they rigorously question ideas instead of immediately accepting them as facts. However, no one can think critically all the time. Our emotions, beliefs,  and current mindset affect our ability to reason. 

To better understand how critical thinking applies to our lives, below are samples you need to read:

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1. The Value of Teaching Critical Thinking by Kenny Ward

“Critical thinking helps you to imagine yourself in others… and to develop your ability to listen to them with an open mind, even if their views are contrary to you.”

Ward’s essay talks about the importance of teaching critical thinking. To think critically means to understand yourself better. Doing so will help you accept and learn from your mistakes. You will also better connect with the people around you because you’ll be able to put yourself in their shoes. You’ll learn to use your mind over your emotions in critical thinking.

Check out these essays about beliefs.

2. How Positive Thinking Relates to Learners by Jeanne Morales

“Metacognition… makes me think that I don’t really have all the answers to the world, and need to keep on exercising my brain to capture knowledge, and progressively start increasing my learning, because there is a lot of stuff out there, to not be ignorant and learn.”

Morales discusses the reality that students are fond of having their “free time” but won’t use it to stimulate their brains. Further, she explains that students today cannot control their use of technology, thereby direly affecting their learning.

It’s vital that students be aware of learning, be open-minded, and ask questions to get answers. The author believes that asking questions aids a person in developing knowledge. Additionally, for Morales, it’s best to focus on one thing to avoid distractions. Because when a person multitasks, especially students, their attention gets divided, and their tasks will take longer to finish. 

3. Barriers to Critical Thinking by Olga George

“To overcome this, we can try to not rely only on the first thing you hear and to do our research and ask questions when needed to gather more information.”

George’s essay tackles the barriers to his critical thinking. The first barrier is that he relies on mainstream media which has its own agenda. This is dangerous, as they can intentionally spread misinformation for their gain. The internet is also unreliable since it can fabricate data.

The second barrier he talks about is the ignorance or lack of details about a report or information. He explains that not having enough information is difficult for a critical thinker. An individual can come to the wrong conclusion about a specific story or event if the information is lacking.

4. The Difference Between Creative and Critical Thinking by Eduardo Ortega

“When you are thinking creatively, you are generating a new set of ideas… When you are thinking critically, you are making choices from ideas someone has already created.”

Ortega discusses what separates creative and critical thinking by laying down relevant quotes and examples in his essay. 

For him, creative thinking means creating, generating, or bringing out new possibilities. Creative thinking is nonjudgemental and expansive, for you must think broadly. In contrast, critical thinking is about the ideas you already made or choosing from the ideas you already have. Therefore, critical thinking needs to be analytical, judgemental, and selective. 

5. Critical Thinking Philosophy by Anonymous on Cram.Com

“I have learned that one of the most important aspects of critical thinking is to decide what you are aiming to achieve and then make a decision based on a range of possibilities.”

The author describes critical thinking as the ability to reason and be an active learner. He uses it as a crucial step in his decision-making process and urges others to do the same. He also mentions that people can use their “wasted time” productively by thinking critically. 

7 Prompts About Critical Thinking

Here are 7 helpful writing prompts to get you started on your next essay.

1. What Is School’s Role in Developing Critical Thinking?

Essay about critical thinking: What is school’s role in developing critical thinking?
Discuss steps in developing their student’s analyzation skills as it can significantly impact their future decision-making

Critical thinking is learned, making schools primarily responsible for children developing their critical thinking abilities. In your essay, you can include why schools should pay attention to their students’ critical thinking. 

Next, add existing operations schools follow to progress their student’s thought processes. Then discuss steps in developing their student’s analyzation skills as it can significantly impact their future decision-making. 

2. The Relationship Between Ethics and Critical Thinking

While critical thinking aids us in reaching a rational decision, ethics or values help us land a morally-correct one. Create an essay that argues critical thinking needs ethics and vice versa. Explain why, and write about their relationship. You may also offer examples by sharing your experience or personal observations.

Do you want to be an influential essay writer who takes a clear stand on a specific subject? See our guide on how to write an argumentative essay.

3. Leaders in Unifying and Dividing a Country

Writing an essay about critical thinking doesn’t mean you should only talk about what critical thinking means. In this prompt, you can demonstrate your critical thinking by showing your prowess in politics.

It doesn’t have to be controversial or jargon-filled. You can pick leaders’ qualities that you know will help unify or divide a country. For example, you can point out current problems and recommend solutions that a leader with a certain quality can understand and provide. 

4. Critical Thinking in the Medical Field

Working in the medical field requires a lot of critical thinking. People in this field deal with their lives. It’s an intriguing prompt that will allow you to put yourself in a professional position and let your readers understand their points of view. 

A great example is putting yourself in a position of a doctor who needs to choose between saving the mother or the baby inside the mother’s womb – what critical thinking should the doctor do? What should he prioritize: the hospital’s protocol, law, family’s wishes, etc.?

5. Critical Thinking, Decision Making, and Stress Management

Writing an essay about the relationship between critical thinking, decision-making, and stress management can be engaging, as many readers will relate to your prompt. How is critical thinking affected by stress? Should we make decisions when we’re stressed? 

Via this prompt, you can convince your readers that it’s vital to develop critical thinking skills continuously.

6. The Effect of Social Media on Critical Thinking Skills

Due to today’s widespread digitalization, many people spend most of their time on social media. With this prompt, you can discuss the possible connection between diminished critical thinking skills and time spent on social networking sites. Then explain how this can be avoided. 

7. Barriers to Having Critical Thinking Skills

Since critical thinking can be learned through consistent practice, why do you think some individuals, though super smart, did not attain the level of a critical thinker? You can write about the possible barriers to achieving critical thinking skills and explain why they became hindrances.

Here’s a tip: If writing an essay sounds like a lot of work, simplify it. For example, write a simple 5 paragraph essay instead.