As defined by Michael Scriven and Richard Paul (1987), critical thinking is intellectual disciplined process of applying skills, concepts, analyzing, synthesizing , evaluation of information got by, observation, reasoning, experience, reflection, as a guidance towards an action. Edward Glaser (1941) defined critical thinking as an attitude of thinking towards solving problems that comes within the range of one’s experience.
Critical thinking is intellectual disciplined process of applying skills, concepts, analyzing, synthesizing, evaluation of information got by, observation, reasoning, experience, reflection, as guidance towards an action.
The common things about the given definitions are, critical thinking leads toward achieving a certain goal. Also, one must have a problem and using the experience acquired, action is taken towards getting the solution.
The differences between the definitions are, according to Michael Scriven and Richard Paul (1987), critical thinking is taken as an intellectual process while Edward Glaser (1941) portrays it as an attitude. The later also see as a way of solving a problem but the former say that it leads to taking the necessary action. The first definition also gives us a consistence way in which critical thinking works, but the second one just talk of range in which one is experienced.
Definition that Suite Nursing Process
A nurse should follow a careful and systematic process in executing his/her duty and thus the best suited definition is that of Michael Scriven and Richard Paul (1987). First nursing duty requires a lot of intellectual skills and discipline. This is because there is no room for mistakes. Once a mistake is done either through ignorance or through carelessness a life somewhere is lost.
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For a nurse, every detail offered by the sick person is very important. Thus analyzing each concepts and synthesizing the information given is equally important. This is because, if she/he is trying to diagnose a certain disease, fine details are required to ensure that the disease suffered is the one treated. For a nurse, before any action is taken clear observation is done. This is will always eliminate the idea of guess work because one is dealing with people’s life. Appropriate reasoning is required in nursing to ensure that required action in treatment is taken. This is enhanced by proper reflection and strong experience in the nursing field. Thus integrating all the required procedures as stipulated in the definition of critical thinking by Michael Scriven and Richard Paul (1987) the nurse in his/her full capacity will be able to execute duties fully.
Definition of Critical Thinking and its Relevance in Clinical Decision Making
Critical thinking is a strong concept acquired through the process of approaching an issue using systematic skills and experience attained by virtue of education, interaction, communication, observation and through analysis and accurate data correction and entry using appropriate facts towards attaining most appropriate solution.
For a decision to be arrived in the nursing field one has to probe thoroughly and critically examine the information gotten before making the final decision. Taking a example of a nurse working in the Intensive Care Unit where the patient may be in coma and must be treated. The process of approaching such an issue requires a systematic skills and experience for an appropriate decision making. Such skills are adapted through critical thinking with the use of knowledge and existing facts when well interpreted.
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Practitioners in nursing must be accurate and precise in making decisions. They should always be lead by the virtue of listening; collecting appropriate data, analyzing it correctly and by the norms and intellectual standards of nursing gives a correct decision. In a hospital setting, there are always hustle and bustles. Patients entering and others leave. So, a nurse is required to be sane to be able to execute his/her duty. Thus without communicating to the fellow nurses, one my find it difficult to give correct information. So communication is vital to help judge once decision by comparing different ideas before giving a decision that you may not be well conversant with.
Education is a very important aspect in critical thinking. Especially for a nurse, one should be well informed on type of disease patient is suffering from. Some diseases have very close symptoms thus without good knowledge, one is liable of making a mistake in arriving at decision on how to treat or prescribe medicine. The consequences of wrong prescription or treatment may lead to permanent personal damage or death. Thus, to perfect once degree of critical thinking, education is very important. In course of practicing clinical work, it is advisable also to attend different medical trainings and workshops that will act as refresher courses to refresh once critical thinking.
Another very important issue is interaction. Once you interact with many people of similar profession, you get to acquire different ideas that you had not thought of. This will always boost
your capability of judgment on issues. Interactions help one to broaden once mind and enhance once ability of making good decision. It is also a form of exposure that helps one to have extra experience from different broad minded people. Interaction may also be exposure to different disease diagnose and different patient. This gives one confidence in future to deal with the same ailment or patient of similar sickness with ease.
Professional Development Strategies Plan To Improve Critical Thinking
Skills When Making Clinical Decisions.
Getting information is paramount in improving critical thinking. The information of those things that seem not to clear can be gotten from different clinical materials. One can read health and clinical journals, intellectual journals, go to clinical website or else hospital library. Most of the information is learnt from the environment we are in. for example, one has to analyze his/her environment to understand what is required of him/her or not. Different people have different likes and preferences. As a nurse you are either helping a doctor in surgery room, or attending patient in the hospital. Thus, one should always be guided by professional ethics as you try to analyze group influence. This will help you improve your critical thinking.
To improve clinical critical thinking, one has to internalize intellectual standards required in nursing. Such things as accuracy in data collection, clarity in drugs prescription among others must always be on the finger tips. These qualities should be practiced on daily basis to make them part of life. As a nurse one should fight with once ego. This makes one to be bias in judging a certain scenario unconsciously. This may lead to making bad decisions. So practicing intellectual traits and admitting when you go wrong will make you go miles away as far as decision making is concerned.
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