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Critically Thinking the Mission

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Running head: DEVELOPMENT IN CRITICAL THINKING 1Critically Thinking the MissionLBAR-499-01-Dr. Sean KottkeThe Robert B. Miller CollegeLori A. ShiveFeb 3, 2014DEVELOPMENT IN CRITICAL THINKING 2Critically Thinking the MissionWhen first arriving at Miller College, the mission really did not mean much to me. However, over time I have come to appreciate the purpose of the mission. Part of the mission is learning to critically think in problem solving situations. When I started here at Miller, I would start a paper and really not plan or prepare it before writing it. Dr. Rasmussen has taught me about how to effectively write papers and how to prepare and plan in order to write effectively. The first step in writing a paper involves critical thinking. Critical thinkers are skeptical and tend to want to know more, rather than believe they already have all the answers. Critical thinking involves using reason instead of emotion and making good decisions by not making quick judgments—always think before you speak. My artifact for Dr. Rasmussen’s Presentation Delivery and Design-Comm-310 class is anoutstanding display of using critical thinking. The artifact assignment was a reflection paper. We all were assigned the same basic topic, however because we are all different, the strengths and weaknesses varied. For me, my initial thoughts were, “how am I going to make my presentation more unique and interesting than the others?” By using creativity and critical thinking skills, I collected all my feedback from all my past presentations and recorded the tallied data. With an open mind, I evaluated the results. I had to remember this is the audiences’ feedback and not go off on a tangent with my own ideas of my strengths and weaknesses. After analyzing the data, I organized it in graphs to visually demonstrate to my audience what they hadchosen for my weaknesses and strengths. I wanted my audience to know their feedback all semester had been valuable, which helped to validate the audience. In this refection, I had to be honest. I openly shared how terrified I used to be, and how I would get hives prior to a presentation. But, thankfully, I have overcome some fear because I acquired skills to feelDEVELOPMENT IN CRITICAL THINKING 3competent as a speaker (the more you know the topic-the less nervous you will be). Confidence and competence are key to effective presenting. When delivering this presentation, I was skeptical, but in the end, my presentation was the only one without a power point, I used graphs and note cards for visuals aids, and I received an A for the final presentation. Dr. Rasmussen applauded my use of visuals because they were unique and it helped separate my presentation out from the rest of the class. Prior to Dr. Rasmussen’s class, I have always been terrified to present, however, now I am confident and have learned tremendous techniques for designing anddelivering a “not-so-terrified” and interesting presentation. Another artifact which displays good critical thinking skills is the artifact from Business Communications-Mike Walby. In this artifact, we were to find a help wanted advertisement requesting applicants from our field of study. Next, we needed to create a resume along with a cover letter for the ad chosen. Once we decided on the ad, we had to present as an interviewee inresponse to the ad. In order to accomplish this, I had to use critical thinking skills. I had to explore the ads and use an open mind, use reason, use good judgment and be somewhat skeptical. I chose an article requesting for a case manager—Inasmuch House. I had to figure outwhat could set me apart from the rest of the applicants. I asserted into my speech about receiving an annual employee award from two different employers and shared about my volunteer experience at Safeplace. Overall, I had to be honest, professional, open minded, plus use good judgment along with being precise which are all part of being a good critical thinker.Since first enrolling in 2012, I have tremendously grown in critical thinking. I always tryto keep an open mind, which used to be a bit of a struggle for me (I’m a bit stubborn). I have always been very head strong and set in my way. However, attending Miller College has opened my eyes wider. One thing I have always found boring-reading—I have learned to enjoy readingDEVELOPMENT IN CRITICAL THINKING 4and to read things with more of an open mind. Creativity is part of critical thinking as well, and Iam learning to separate myself with uniqueness. Miller College has taught me a lot about myself, and has provided me with great communication skills (written and oral) to take into my career endeavors. I have become more aware of my own biases and now seeing things from different


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