Critical Thinking is a demanding course that aims to refine the core reasoning skills that form the basis of all academic discourse. In particular, these skills include the analysis, evaluation and deployment of argument, along with the evaluation of evidence.
Although it can be easily shown that the development of these skills is beneficial to study at A level and to an even greater extent beyond, particular emphasis on the course is given to supporting university applications, particularly for the more competitive courses, which increasingly involve the assessment of critical thinking skills by means of assessment test, usually taken in November of Year 13. Depending on the university, subjects requiring these papers include Medicine, Law and Engineering and an increasing number of subjects at Oxbridge. Critical Thinking is taught as an A level Plus course in Year 12, and as a Liberal Studies course in Year 13. The number of places is limited, so students are encouraged to take active steps to determine whether they may need to sit an assessment test when they apply to university before opting for the Critical Thinking course.