• If you are citizen of an European Union member nation, you may not use this service unless you are at least 16 years old.

  • Work with all your cloud files (Drive, Dropbox, and Slack and Gmail attachments) and documents (Google Docs, Sheets, and Notion) in one place. Try Dokkio (from the makers of PBworks) for free. Now available on the web, Mac, Windows, and as a Chrome extension!


Critical Thinking Vs Analytical Thinking

Page history last edited by PBworks 14 years, 1 month ago

What is the difference between critical thinking and analytical thinking?



Deepthi J:

Critical Thinking is the process of analysing and evaluating information to reach an answer or conclusion. It is the ability to analyse facts generate and organise ideas, defend opinions,make comparisons,draw inferences,evaluate arguments and solve problems.


Analytical Thinking is when you habitually use analysis in your thinking process. It follows a sientific approach.


Srikanth modifies above text as follows:

Critical ThinkingCritical thinking is the intellectually disciplined process  of actively and skillfully conceptualizing, applying, analyzing,
 and evaluating information gathered from observation, experience, reasoning, or communication, as a guide to belief and action.


Analytical Thinking is step-by-step approach to break down complex problems or processes into their constituents parts, identify causes and effects patterns  and analyse problems to arrive to an appropriate solution



Shalini adds:


Critical thinking goes hand in hand with analytical thinking

Critical Thinking involves considering an issue,evaluating the evidence or viewpoint and then arriving at conclusion.Critical thinking means weighing up the arguments and evidence for and against.


Analytical thinking involves analysing the given information,examinig it in detail from different angles, looking for flaws,checking whether the statement follows logically from what went before and then arriving to an appropriate solution.


Radha adds:

Analytical Thinking:
·        The ability of an individual to think logically by breaking down complex problems into simpler subparts and identify causes and effects.
·        Analytical thinking gives more importance to “Reasoning”
·        Helps us to formulate hypothesis (clear explanation) based on the facts collected.
·        Drives us to seek more information due to curiosity to know more, thereby helping us to come out with the best solution.
Example: In interviews the frequently asked Analytical based questions include
  • Are you an analytical type of person?
  • Describe a time you had a problem with decisiveness.
  • Describe how you solve difficult problems.
  • How do you make decisions?
Critical Thinking:
·        Being critical involves or give importance in making judgments and evaluations.
Ø      Making judgments means distinguishing between fact and opinion
·        Critical Thinking is about constantly questioning – Who, What, Where, When, Why, How     
·        Critical Thinking is the ability of an individual to
  • seek information
  • analyze alternatives
  • Evaluate the alternatives in relation to your aims and requirements and reach some conclusion.
Example:  85% of a consulting project fee is typically spent accumulating knowledge the company already possesses. A major snack manufacturer saved US$600 million by using critical thinking. These success stories cannot be ignored.
Sridhar adds:
Crtical Thinking leads to more questions than answers. Critical thinking helps us in understanding a concept or questioning the solution of the problem.
Analytical Thinking helps us analyse a problem and find ways in solving it. Analytical thinking can also be said as logical thiking where one uses reasoning consistently to come to a conclusion. So it helps finding more answers than questions.
Sari adds:

Critical thinking is not an easy skill to acquire. Its all about triggering that part of the brain which lies dormant in most of us. Being critical involves 2 things , a) a sceptical  attitude which encourages you to question and challenge any information presented to you. b) the technique which allows you to ask the right question and evaluate the outcomes. It  is all about dealing with both the positive and negative aspects of a situation and thus arrive at an objective solution.



Analytical thinking is just an offshoot of critical thinking. It involves standing back from the information given ,examining it in detail, checking its accuracy,the logical flow in thought, looking for the possible flaws in the reasoning , comparing it from the point of view of others , being able to understand why different conclusions are possible, checking for hidden assumptions etc.

Deepthi J restores her original contribution and deletes everything else!

Critical Thinking is the process of analysing and evaluating information to reach an answer or conclusion. It is the ability to analyse facts generate and organise ideas, defend opinions,make comparisons,draw inferences,evaluate arguments and solve problems.


Analytical Thinking is when you habitually use analysis in your thinking process. It follows a sientific approach.

Vanaja adds

Critical thinking is the ability to generate ideas,analyse these ideas ,substantiate these ideas

and utilize these ideas to solve problems.Critical thinking emphasises that the thought process 

is in all possible dimensions.Critical thinking involves a conscious effort.

Analytical thinking is an intergal part of critical thinking .Critical thinking involves a lot of analytical

skills necessary for analysing the various dimensions of a problem ,analysing the

ideas,analysing the feasblity of the ideas etc.

Priya adds

Difference between Critical thinking and Analytical thinking



Critical thinking is reasonable reflective thinking focused on deciding what to believe or do. It is the active systematic process of understanding and evaluating arguments. It’s a conscious and deliberate process which is used to interpret or evaluate information and experiences with a set of reflective attitudes and abilities that guide thoughtful, beliefs and actions.


Analytical thinking is a methodical step by step approach to break down complex problems or processes to their constituent parts, identify causes and effects pattern and analyze problems to arrive at an appropriate solution. Analytical thinking is powerful. It is focused, sharp, linear, deals with one thing at a time. This works best where there are established criteria for analysis.

Viju adds: Critical Thinking & Anlytical Thinking- Viju.doc

Posted by:   Jinto Antony Kurian               

Date        :    08/10/07

Time        :    16:10 


Critical thinking is a self directed, self disciplined, self monitored and self corrective thinking. It is a mode of thinking by which the thinker can improve the quality of his thinking by imposing standards upon them. Critical thinking is not universal, every individual has a different level of thinking. Critical thinking is not simply about acquiring and retaining the information. Critical thinking has two aspects, they are 1) set of information and skills to analyze them and 2) using skills to guide behavior.


Analytical thinking is methodical and step by step procedure to understand and study the information. Analytical thinking is used to approve or disapprove hypotheses. This kind of thinking is used to substantiate favorably or against the gathered information. It supports in problem solving, judgement, and ensures action is followed through. Critical thinking and analytical thinking goes hand in hand.






For more detailed explanation on analytical thinking:



Aparna adds:

                 Critical thinking is that mode of thinking about any subject, matter or a problem in

which the thinker improves his/her quality of thinking by skillfully analyzing the structures inherent

in thinking and imposing intellectual standards upon them. It raises important questions, formulating them

clearly and precisely. It means correct thinking in the pursuit of reliable and relevant knowledge about

the world. It is the reasonable, reflective, responsible and skillful thinking that is focused on deciding

what to do and believe. A person who thinks critically can ask appropriate questions, gather sufficient information, efficiently and creatively sort through this information, reason logically from this information,

and come to trustworthy reliable conclusions.

                                                    Analytical thinking leads to a methodical step-by-step approach to breakdown

complex problems or processes into their constituent parts, identify causes and analyse problems to arrive at an

appropriate solution. It is more about finding logical solutions for a problem rather than analyzing the problems in such a way that will lead to further questions. It attempts to find out the most suited solution to a problem whereas critical thinking does not limit itself to just one answer; but a lot of answers by asking questions on all aspects of a problem.




Asha Sukumaran Adds:8/10/2007 10:31




According to Cottrell (1999:188), Critical thinking means “weighing up the arguments and evidence for and against”


It involves:

  • Considering an issue carefully and more than once
  • Evaluating the evidence put forward in support of the belief or viewpoint
  • Considering where the belief or viewpoint leads – what conclusions would follow, are these suitable and rational; if not, should the belief or viewpoint be reconsidered?


Critical thinking goes hand in hand with Analytical thinking. For Cottrell (1999:188)


Analytical thinking involves the following additional processes.

  • Standing back from the information given
  • Examining it in detail from many angles
  • Checking closely whether it is completely accurate
  • Checking whether a statement follows logically from what went before
  • Looking for possible flaws in the reasoning, the evidence, or the way that conclusions are drawn.
  • Comparing the same issue from the point of view of other theorists or writers
  • Being able to see and explain why different people arrived at different conclusions
  • Checking for hidden assumptions
  • Checking for attempts to lure the reader into agreement









 Ramki: Oct 9, 3.15 PM


I am glad that technology has excited you to do some work. Nice to see that many of you have sought some information through the web. However only a few have manged to use the information and say something on their own (e.g. Radha, Sridhar, Sudith et al.) Many of you have been satisfied with reproducing the excerpts that you found from the web. Please make an attempt to digest them and say something in your own words. That is also a requirement to become a critical thinker.

Can some one sum up some of the differences that have been thrown up? Are there more? Is  "point of view"  a dimension to be considered in the context of this discussion? What about "meta thinking"? What is it and is it part of CT or AT? Keep thinking!





 SUDHIT SETHI Adds : 9.10.07, 6.15 PM



 Surfing the internet don’t give us enough information regarding difference between Critical Thinking and Analytical Thinking.   Different links give different definitions of Critical Thinking and Analytical Thinking but fail to give difference between them.   What I have gathered is that Analytical Thinking is nothing but thinking with logic.   It means thinking clearly & rationally.   According to internet, this element of logic also applies to Critical Thinking but unlike Analytical Thinking, Critical Thinking involves being critical(finding faults/negative points) of whole situation or people on whom we are doing Critical Thinking.   Here, confusion again arises when we go through notes on Critical Thinking(given by ASB) as these notes clearly mention that Critical Thinking should not be confused with being argumentative or being critical of other people.   Being critical is not just finding faults. Then what is it that makes CT something more than AT?  We will have to find answer to this question as soon as possible.  Thanks!




 Manu Mohan Das:


Critical thinking, in simple words can be enumerated as the process of  responsible thinking and arriving at decisions, based on reason. Here we consider the pros and cons and make judgements for uncertain situations, with multiple option to be considered while making a decision. Critical thinking unlike factual situations doesn't pertain to a single solution, its solution varies according to the situation. It is the rational solution for a problem, which is unempirical and in no-way related to similar situations in the past.


Analytical thinking involves the systematic analysis of a problem as a whole, or ,by breaking it down into smaller factions which can be easily tackled. It is a scientific approach and is involves the use of empirical data based on exsisting norms. Analytical thinking more or less revoves around factual data and situations. It is characterised by logical methodological approach.


Unlike analytical thinking, critical thinking is far-fetched and it's solutions cross all possible limit of imagination, as the solution for each problem is based on the ability of the person to think critically and unconventional thinking , is its hallmark. The latter is more of  out-of-the-box  thinking.




chithra. r.doc 



ASHA.V: 16.10.2007 1.20 pm

Elder, L. and Paul, R. defines critical thinking as: “Critical thinking is best understood as the ability of thinkers to take charge of their own thinking. This requires that they develop sound criteria and standards for analyzing and assessing their own thinking and routinely use those criteria and standards to improve its quality."


Analytical Thinking implies the ability to analyze information, identify key issues, relationships or objectives, diagnose opportunities, make sound inferences from available information, and draw logical conclusions.  


Comments (0)

You don't have permission to comment on this page.