Assessing students' critical thinking performance: Urging for measurements using multi-response format

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212 Citations (Scopus)


The current paper discusses ambiguities in critical thinking assessment. The paper first reviews the components of critical thinking. It then discusses the features and issues of commonly used critical thinking tests and to what extend they are made compatible to the conceptualization of critical thinking. The paper argues that critical thinking tests utilizing a single multiple-choice response format measures only recognition or level of knowledge, and do not adequately capture the dispositional characteristics of test-takers. Multiple-choice response format does not reveal test-takers’ underlying reasoning for choosing a particular answer, nor does it reflect test-takers’ ability to think critically under unprompted situations. Whereas measurement that allows for responses in both multiple-choice and open-ended format makes it possible to assess individuals’ spontaneous application of thinking skills on top of their ability to recognize a correct response. Assessment consists of multi-response format should be pursued for effective evaluation of students’ critical thinking performance.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)70-76
Number of pages7
JournalThinking Skills and Creativity
Issue number1
Early online date26 Feb 2009
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2009

User-Defined Keywords

  • Critical thinking
  • Assessment
  • Response format
  • Higher education
  • Thinking skills


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