Critical thinking was one of the approaches the panel on the DR show
talked about to “Judge the Credibility of News in the Media Age.”
The panel offered six steps to critical thinking. Since it is one of the
soft skills we seek for in our careers, it is valuable to share them.
1. who is the author, what and who is the source of news
what is their reputation? is there a bias?
2. ask if the information is gathered from first hand or second hand
observations. is there a conflict of interest? is there corroborating evidence
[it might be questionable if it is an “unnamed source.”]
3. what is the purpose of sharing the information? to sell, to convince,
to scapegoat someone?
4. are there conclusions, opinions or judgments? are all alternatives
described and compared? Are there unanswered alternatives?
5. what is missing? is it all negative?
skepticism is fine, cynical might not be!
6. who does it benefit? Who sponsors the work? What do the sponsors
gain from the piece? Recall the theme in the book Merchants of Doubt.