Critical thinking skills are vital for almost any profession, but their significance is increased in clinical settings. Doctors and nurses need to analyze a variety of issues within a short time, which makes the ability to perceive the information and find solutions quickly a treasure. Nurse students’ thinking incorporates two important dimensions: cognitive skills and habits of the mind. Cognitive skills include discriminating, searching data, predicting, and logical reasoning. Habits of the mind involve intuition, flexibility, inquisitiveness, reflections, and creativity. As for me, I consider my critical thinking skills to be developed at a moderate level. I need to improve them constantly in order to become proficient in scrutinizing data and finding solutions to professional issues as quickly as possible. To improve my critical skills, I frequently engage in research and try to put many questions so that answers to them enhance my understanding. Also, I use reflective journaling since it is recognized as a helpful tool for nurse students’ critical reflection development.
I cannot say that there is much difference between how I think about everyday problems and issues in a clinical setting. I believe that in any environment, one needs to demonstrate one’s best knowledge and analytical skills. However, professional dilemmas require more attention and consideration since they are concerned with people’s health and lives. If I meet a situation that has already occurred in my practice or the one that I have analyzed with the help of scholarly literature, I consider myself an expert thinker. However, in cases of emergency or when a clinical situation is completely new to me, I am a novice, and I address my senior colleagues for advice.