Abstract

The ability to think critically is an important outcome of education. The disposition, or internal motivation, to think critically strongly influences the development of critical thought. Students (N = 79) at three levels of education in one program were administered the California Critical Thinking Disposition Inventory (CCTDI). Results indicated no differences in the disposition to think critically related to length of time spent in the program. Differences in the dispositions of open-mindedness and maturity of judgment were found between undergraduate and graduate students. A difference also was found in the disposition to think critically between the two groups. The findings suggest that students, particularly undergraduates, can benefit from instruction designed to develop the disposition to think critically. The CCTDI appears to be a useful instrument for assessing the ability and disposition for critical thinking and could serve as a reliable baseline or outcome measure for use in programs.

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