14 Best Critical Thinking Online Courses

Critical thinking is the objective analysis of information to form a judgment. Some of the skills included in critical thinking include interpretation, inference, self-regulation, and problem-solving. These skills can help thinkers avoid logic traps. Critical thinking online courses teach valuable skill because it allows individuals to evaluate information that could be biased or misleading and see problems in a new light. 

By learning critical thinking skills and learning to ask the right questions, individuals can make better judgments about the information that is presented before them in any format, which enables them to make more informed decisions about what to do with that information.

List of The Top Critical Thinking Online Courses

1. Critical Thinker Academy: Learn to Think Like a Philosopher

For long-term success in school, business and life, learning HOW to think is far more important than learning WHAT to think. This course shares the growing understanding of these topics, with a focus on what is practically important and useful for developing as independent critical thinkers. Currently, the course contains over 200 videos totalling over 19 hours of viewing time!

Course Highlights:

  • fundamental concepts of critical thinking (logic, argument analysis, rhetoric, reasoning with probabilities, the importance of background knowledge, etc.)
  • the importance of critical thinking for personal development, participation in a democratic society, and the pursuit of wisdom
  • the role that critical thinking principles play in good essay writing
  • how cognitive biases make us prone to errors in how we form beliefs and make judgments
  • how our tribal psychology and political polarization affect our ability to think critically
  • how debates in science often turn on the meanings of key terms, like “theory”, “fact”, “hypothesis” and “law”

Course Duration: 19.5 hours

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2. Introduction to Logic and Critical Thinking Specialization

By taking Introduction to Logic and Critical Thinking you will improve your ability to identify, analyze, and evaluate arguments by other people (including politicians, used car salesmen, and teachers) and also to construct arguments of your own in order to convince others and to help you decide what to believe or do. This specialization introduces general standards of good reasoning and offers tools to improve your critical thinking skills. These skills will help you determine when an argument is being given, what its crucial parts are, and what it assumes implicitly. You will also learn how to apply deductive and inductive standards for assessing arguments and how to detect and avoid fallacies.

Course Highlights:

  • understand and appreciate arguments that you and other people present
  • determine whether or not an argument is deductively valid
  • analyze and assess five common forms of inductive arguments
  • recognize fallacies

Course Duration: 4 months (5 hours/week)

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3. Critical Thinking: Fundamentals of Good Reasoning

This course is an introduction to critical thinking—thinking about arguments, about reasons that might be given in support of a conclusion and is third on the list of Critical thinking online courses. The objective of the course is to improve the student’s ability in the basic skills of critical thinking. The course is built on the assumption that learning more about what exactly is involved in thinking about reasons leads us to do it better.

Course Highlights:

  • Arguments: What They Are and How to Recognize Them
  • Interpretation: Saying What the Argument Is
  • Evaluation: Arguments Good and Bad
  • The Logic of Sets
  • Generalization and Causation
  • Analogy and Explanation
  • Constructing Arguments

Course Duration: 13 weeks (2-4 hours/week)

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4. Logical and Critical Thinking- Future Learn

Even though we’re called upon to use our critical and logical thinking skills all the time, most of us are not that good at it. This free online course aims to help you develop and improve these skills. By the end of the course, you will have acquired the basic skills to assess arguments logically and critically, and so to be in a better situation to own the reasons for your beliefs.

Course Highlights:

  • Identify common flaws in belief construction
  • Recognise and reconstruct arguments
  • Evaluate arguments as being good or bad
  • Analyse arguments using basic logical tools
  • Apply basic logical strategies in areas such as science, moral theories and law

Course Duration: 8 weeks

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5. Critical Thinking: How to Develop Critical Thinking Skills

Critical thinking is a valuable everyday skill that can save time, money, and resources. This course is fifth on the list of Critical Thinking Online Courses and you will learn about the different thinking styles and how you can use critical thinking to enhance communication, collaboration, management, and problem-solving skills.

Course Highlights:

  • Master your critical thinking style. Identify the key components of successful critical thinking, and how to identify and gather information using the critical thinking loop.
  • Recognize your patterns. Identify the different types of critical thinking – reactive, unconscious, inflexible and “consciously creative” – including your own.
  • Become Self Aware. Become conscious of accountability and bias when building clear and strategic solutions.

Course Duration: 1 week (1-2 hours/week)

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6. Critical Thinking: Tools for Taking Charge of Your Learning and Your Life – Fall 2023

This course will introduce you to the tools the best thinkers use, and will exemplify the activities and practice you can use to begin emulating them. This course, as a whole, will introduce you to the tools of mind that will help you reason well through the problems and issues you face, whether in the classroom, in your personal life, or in your professional life. If you take these ideas seriously and practice using them, you can take command of the thinking that ultimately will command the quality of your life.

Course Highlights:

  • Demonstrate understanding of the importance of fairminded critical thinking in the cultivation of fairminded critical societies.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the parts of thinking and how these parts work together in reasoning.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of universal intellectual standards and their importance in human reasoning.
  • Demonstrate understanding of the barriers to critical thinking development and the ability to intervene in thinking for the purpose of improving it.
  • Articulate and exemplify the primary concepts in critical thinking and how they can be used as tools for understanding, and improving, human reasoning.

Course Duration: Self Paced

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7. Critical Thinking and Decision Making- MIT

This course seeks to promote the skills needed for critical thinking and decision-making. A critical thinker should be able to analyze solutions to a problem — probing its strengths and weaknesses and comparing it to other alternatives. This process of deliberation leads to a selection of good alternatives and also a clear understanding of why a certain choice was made.

Course Highlights:

  • Explore deductive thinking and meta-cognition in order to understand problems and how to solve them.
  • Analyze alternative solutions critically and be able to identify types of evidence for or against alternative solutions.
  • Examine information literacy and research techniques for forming conclusions.
  • View real-world applications to diagramming an argument in order to assess the strength of evidence and relate evidence to different social and technical factors.
  • Apply Bayes’s Law to determine the probability of an event based on prior knowledge of conditions that might be related to the event.
  • Practice group decision-making processes by utilizing the Pugh Matrix and the Evaluation Matrix.

Course Duration: 3 weeks (4-5 hours/week)

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8. Leadership and Critical Thinking Specialization

This Specialized Program is aimed at leaders who are interested in consolidating their leadership and critical thinking skills within an organization, positively impacting organizational behaviour and human flourishing. Through these critical thinking online courses, develop your motivation and negotiation skills. Discover the elements of the leadership model oriented to human flourishing to develop leaders who achieve better results and analyze events with intellectual rigour.

Course Highlights:

  • Develop a style of leadership that is suited to your strengths and the needs of the situation.
  • Design tasks for yourself and others that are motivating and effective.
  • Communicate your perspective to others in a credible and persuasive way.
  • Employ a methodology for the application of critical thinking

Course Duration: 3 months (6 hours/week)

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9. Critical Thinking in The Workplace

This course is ninth on the list of Critical Thinking Online Courses and it is very important in the workplace. Why? Being able to think well and solve problems systematically is an asset for any career. What is it? Critical thinking is the ability to think clearly and rationally, understanding the logical connection between ideas. By improving the quality of your thoughts and your decisions, better critical thinking skills can bring about a big positive change in your life.

Course Highlights:

  • Understand the links between ideas.
  • Determine the importance and relevance of arguments and ideas.
  • Recognise, build and appraise arguments.
  • Identify inconsistencies and errors in reasoning.
  • Approach problems in a consistent and systematic way.
  • Reflect on the justification of their own assumptions, beliefs and values.

Course Duration: 39 mins

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10. Critical Thinking Strategies for Better Decisions

If you work for a company or operate your own business or startup, then you know your daily work environment will involve making critical decisions about anything and everything. It’s no easy task, and you don’t want your decisions based on the popular response, colleague pressure, emotion, or your gut. Instead, you want to know how to apply critical thinking to each and every decision you make to ensure better results. This course provides a deep dive into the concept of critical thinking, its benefits, and the challenges involved in being good at critical thinking. The course will walk you through the critical thinking process of today’s successful leaders and share my own experiences.

Course Highlights:

  • Explore the concept of critical thinking, its value, and how it works.
  • Discover what goes into critical thinking to create effective critical thinking.
  • Determine what stands in the way of critical thinking and how to tear down these barriers.
  • Master critical thinking by applying its components and processes.
  • Develop your personal critical thinking action plan.

Course Duration: 1 hour

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11. Critical Thinking- eCornell

In this certificate program, you will practice a disciplined, systematic approach to problem-solving. You will learn how to deeply analyze a problem, assess possible solutions and associated risks, and hone your strategic decision-making skills by following a methodology based on tested actions and sound approaches. Whether you’re interested in preparing for a management role or already lead an execution function, you’ll come away better equipped to confidently tackle any decision large or small, make a compelling business case, and apply influence in your organization in a way that creates the optimal conditions for success.

Course Highlights:

  • Respond decisively and consistently when faced with situations that require a decision
  • Assess the context of the problem
  • Summarize your analysis of the problem
  • Analyze potential solutions from multiple perspectives
  • Build a compelling business case for your solution
  • Improve your ability to exercise influence in your organization and activate your network to achieve goals
  • Establish responsibilities and accountabilities to ensure effective follow-through on decisions made

Course Duration: 2 weeks

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12. Critical Thinking: Reasoned Decision Making

In this course of critical thinking, the students will learn the tendencies, approximations and assumptions on which their reflections are based, and the conditions and the outcomes derived from their ways of thinking. This reflective thought is the active, careful and persistent examination of all beliefs in the light of the fundamentals that support them and their conclusions.

Course Highlights:

  • Identify the theories that support critical thinking
  • Employ a methodology for the application of critical thinking
  • Relate the elements that make up the stages of critical thinking
  • Analyze the standards of critical thinking practice
  • Assess the responsibility of perpetuating the intellectual values of the resolution analysis
  • Distinguish the vices of thought in decision making
  • Apply critical thinking to groups

Course Duration: 4 weeks

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13. Critical Thinking – An Upgrade for Your Mind

This course distils what I have found to be the most engaging and generally useful critical thinking material. It sharpens up thinking skills that you can then usefully apply in your career, your education, and in your personal life too. This course is designed to be highly engaging and accessible. I’m one of the world’s leading popularizers of critical thinking and philosophy, with a reputation for explaining even complex ideas clearly. The course is grounded in some of the most up-to-date research and thinking.

Course Highlights:

  • The ability to think and argue more clearly and effectively.
  • Critical thinking skills for career, education, and life.
  • Learn some of the most useful material I’ve developed as a professional philosopher at Oxford and London Universities.

Course Duration: 2.5 hours

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14. Solving Problems with Creative And Critical Thinking

In order to find a solution, one needs to be able to analyze a problem. This short course is designed to teach you how to solve and analyze problems effectively with critical and creative thinking. By taking this quick course you will gain the skills you need to find the root cause of a problem through the use of a five-step method. This course provides fundamental skills that you will need to use in your day-to-day work. The course is suitable for anyone – students, career starters, experienced professionals and managers – wanting to develop problem-solving skills regardless of their background. This course is part of the People and Soft Skills for Professional and Personal Success Specialization from IBM.

Course Highlights:

  • Utilize critical and creative thinking to solve issues.
  • Describe the 5-step process of effectively solving problems.
  • Analyze a problem and identify the root cause.
  • Explore possible solutions and employ the problem-solving process.

Course Duration: 3 hours

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