ECONOMIC & SOCIAL RESEARCH COUNCIL
Getting inside the mind of an expert management researcher
Your learning through the two-way process of academic discourse
Who do we think you are?
Who do you think your audience is?
What’s distinctive about researching management?
Induction into a western tradition of academic scholarship
What’s your ‘academic comfort zone’, and how could you expand it?
Official expectations that you will develop your critical frame of mind
Expectations check-up
How well does your work match-up to your assessors’ expectations?
Are you a more critical thinker than you realise?
Experiences of thinking critically in your academic work
Helping yourself learn to think like an expert management researcher
Comparing lists of Dos and Don’ts
Maximising your learning by linking critical reading with self-critical writing
Are you a more critical thinker than you realise?

 

You may have already acquired a more critical frame of mind than you currently perceive. Critical thinking that follows the logic of enquiry is only an extension of what people do as part of everyday living.

Over the last year or so, in your domestic or social life, have you:

Type of incident

Yes/No

 

 

  1. tried to convince a friend about something that he or she doesn’t believe?

 

  1. questioned someone’s strongly held opinion because they haven’t enough evidence to support it?

 

  1. read claims in a newspaper or heard claims on television or radio which you have not been ready to accept?

 

  1. attempted to resolve others’ disagreement or conflict?

 

  1. changed your mind about an issue after you reflected on other people’s points of view?

 

  1. discovered that someone sees things differently from you because she or he holds different assumptions about the situation?

 

  1. planned how to find something out which will involve making some detailed enquiries?

 

  1. weighed up different alternatives in working out how to solve a difficult problem?

 

  1. drawn a sketch or diagram to explain a difficult idea to someone?

 

  1. written a complaint setting out the basis of your grievance, or a thank-you note stating why you are grateful?

 

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Add up the number of ticks. The more ticks you have, the more likely it is that you habitually think quite critically when you need to in your daily life, broadly consistent with the logic of enquiry. You evaluate others’ arguments and develop your own. You ask questions, work out how to get answers, and find ways of explaining complicated ideas.