Critical Thinking (LA #4)

This is a very important concept in nursing. Critical thinking is an active, structured, educated, and disciplined method of applying skilled reasoning in order to guide a belief or action. It is the ability to take what is known and apply it to a given situation.

Critical Thinking…
Requires reasonable, reflective thinking. Piecing things together and pulling things out from past experiences, education, or research and applying the knowledge to any given situation.

Know enough to understand that you do not know everything. Know when to ask questions!

Brainstorm: Intellectual humility, mutual exchange of thoughts, empathetic, able to put feelings aside, independent thinkers, proactive, humble, honest, team players, open-minded, active thinkers, purposeful, goal-directed, controlled, structured, goes beyond what is seen or heard, based on fact, not guessing… 

In order to be an excellent nurse, you can’t just regurgitate facts. You have to know how to apply information and think outside of the box.

As a critical thinker, you must have the ability to mutually exchange ideas with members of your team, be empathetic and put your own feelings aside when thinking about a patient, be truthful and honest — do not guess. Answer “I don’t know” and come back to a question if you do not know the answer — Be proactive rather than reactive. Be aware of what you do not and what you don’t know. Practice intellectual humility. Acknowledge your intuition, but weight the scientific knowledge as well.

Critical thinking is the ability to think beyond what is shown or what has been said; considers all options relating to the information presented, and makes a decision based on multiple sources of information, knowledge, and evaluation.

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