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Critical Thinking & Academic Research

This guide is created to aid you in your development of critical thinking skills and in your ability to conduct research using library resources.

Contact Librarian

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Nurhak Tuncer
Available via Zoom for virtual consultations. Email me to set up an appointment please.
Pronouns: she/her/hers

Location: Fine Arts Center, 2nd Floor, Room 234

Critical Thinking Defined

Critical Thinking as Defined by the National Council for Excellence in Critical Thinking, 1987

A statement by Michael Scriven & Richard Paul, presented at the 8th Annual International Conference on Critical Thinking and Education Reform, Summer 1987.

Critical thinking is the intellectually disciplined process of actively and skillfully conceptualizing, applying, analyzing, synthesizing, and/or evaluating information gathered from, or generated by, observation, experience, reflection, reasoning, or communication, as a guide to belief and action. In its exemplary form, it is based on universal intellectual values that transcend subject matter divisions: clarity, accuracy, precision, consistency, relevance, sound evidence, good reasons, depth, breadth, and fairness.


Source: Defining Critical Thinking. The Foundation for Critical Thinking. Web.


This guide is created to aid you in your development of critical thinking skills and in your ability to conduct research using library resources. We are here to help you to achieve your academic career goals and have a successful research journey by providing you the necessary tools you need. Research starts at the library and contacting your librarians.

This guide is designed in three sections:

A- Steps to Research Process (investigate, understand the types of information, when to use, which discipline, access and locate information)

B- Evaluating Resources Critically (Currency, Relevancy, Authority, Accuracy, and Purpose (CRAAP) test)

C- Utilizing Resources Using Critical Thinking Strategies (What to cite, when to cite and how to cite while blending critical thinking skills)

Critical Thinking & Academic Research

Academic research focuses on the creation of new concepts when the researcher seeks relevant information in articles, books, and other resources using critical thinking skills. Thus, librarians play an essential role to assist researchers to sharpen their critical thinking skills by showing them how to locateanalyze, evaluate and incorporate these academic resources into their research as part of the information literacy concept. 

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G.R. Little Library

Elizabeth City State University