Critical thinking is a highly-organized mental activity where it involves logical analysis, reflective inquiry, and examines a complex problem for the purpose of making judgments or arriving solutions to a certain dilemma. It requires a multifaceted group of skills to be used cognitively for problem-solving, intellectual considerations, and evaluating information which are gathered from observation, experience, reasoning, concept, application, meaning, assumption or communication as guide to belief or action.
To ensure that you are studying credible information, five criteria should be considered in browsing research topics in the library. First, there should be accuracy of information. This includes the source, prevalence, importance, usefulness and editorial review method for the information. Second, the content of the information should be complete and precise. Third, the timeliness of the material should be considered. Out-of-date materials might give faulty information. Fourth, the fitness of the material to the general public should not be undermined. It should support the interest and needs of the readers. And lastly, the authority of the author to write on the topic should be taken into account. The bibliography of the writer should be adequate and carefully examined.
On the web page, one can find the author of the material we are looking for which may be a person or institution. The web page also tells of the currency of the material. This indicates when the page was placed on the web or when it was last modified or updated. The web page also states who the information is intended for or the audience. The audience can be the general public, scholars, practitioners, children, and many more. The web page also states the content of the material. And finally, it also contains the purpose of information.
“Book Selection Criteria.” (n.d.). Douglas County Libraries. Retrieved July 10, 2007, from http://douglascountylibraries.org/aboutUs/index.php?pageName=Books–Selection
Kunst, H., Groot, D., Latthe P.M., Latthe, M., & Khan, K.S. (2002). Accuracy of information on apparently credible websites: survey of five common health topics. BMJ, 324, 581-582. Retrieved July 10, 2007, from http://www.bmj.com/cgi/content/full/324/7337/581
Scriven, M. & Paul, R. (n.d.). Defining Critical Thinking. Retrieved July 10, 2007, from http://www.criticalthinking.org/aboutCT/definingCT.shtml