Critical thinking requires students to think for themselves, question everything, and look at both sides of an issue before coming to a conclusion. In critical thinking essay writing, these same skills are applied to examine a topic more closely. In this type of essay, the writer must not only present their own opinion on the subject but must also back it up with evidence and reasoning.
Critical thinking essays can be challenging to write depending on the topic, course, and length of the assignment. However, there are some tips and tricks that can make the process a little bit easier. Take a look at our detailed guide breaking down the components of an excellent critical thinking essay, and consider using any of our 75 critical thinking essay topics at the end to get started.
Essential Things to Consider When Writing a Critical Thinking Essay
When writing a critical thinking essay, students must look past surface-level information and delve deeper into the subject matter. This requires a lot of research and analysis, which can be tough for some students. However, if you take the time to plan your essay and follow these tips, you should be able to write a great critical thinking essay that will impress your instructor.
1. Do Your Research
Before you can start writing your essay, you need to make sure that you have enough evidence to support your claims. This means doing a lot of research on your topic. Try to find reliable sources from experts in the field that you can use to back up your points. Once you have gathered all of your evidence, you can plan out your essay.
2. Create An Outline
An outline will help keep your thoughts organized and ensure that you don’t forget any vital information. Your outline should include a thesis, an introduction, body paragraphs, and a conclusion. Each part of your outline should also have a few key details that you want to discuss to help make the writing process go smoothly.
3. Write A Thesis Statement
Your thesis statement is the most essential part of your essay. It should be a clear and concise statement that presents your argument. Your thesis statement should be included in your introduction and reaffirmed in your conclusion.
It is important to note that because this is a critical thinking essay, your thesis should be more than just a statement of fact. Instead, it should be an arguable claim that you will be defending throughout your essay.
For example, if you are writing about the death penalty, your thesis statement needs to be more than, “The death penalty is wrong.” This thesis doesn’t leave room for discussion or debate. A better thesis statement would be, “The death penalty is a violation of human rights and it should be abolished.” This thesis statement presents an argument that can be debated and discussed.
4. Write The Introduction
Your introduction should start with a hook that grabs the reader’s attention. You can use a surprising statistic, a quote, or a rhetorical question. After the hook, you should provide some background information on your topic. This will help orient the reader and give them context for your argument. Finally, you should end your introduction with your thesis statement.
5. Write The Body Paragraphs
Each body paragraph should start with a topic sentence that introduces the paragraph’s main point. The rest of the paragraph should be used to support this point with evidence and reasoning. You should have at least three body paragraphs in your essay, but you can have more if needed.
Pro Tip: Critical thinking essays examine and analyze – they don’t just restate facts. When presenting your evidence, be sure to discuss it critically. What are the implications of this evidence? How does it support your argument?
6. Write The Conclusion
The conclusion of a critical thinking essay should be just as strong as the introduction. You should start by restating your thesis statement. Then, you should provide a brief summary of the main points of your essay. Finally, you should end with a strong closing statement that leaves the reader thinking about your argument long after they finish reading, such as a call to action or a final thought-provoking question.
Citing Sources in a Critical Thinking Essay
Since this type of essay will rely on evidence and reasoning, it is important to use credible sources. Be sure to only use reliable sources from experts in the field. When you do use sources, be sure to cite them properly. This will show that you are using other people’s work ethically, and it will also help strengthen your argument by showing that you have looked at the issue from multiple perspectives.
Citing sources has many different rules that you will need to follow depending on the formatting style that you are using. The most common formatting styles are MLA, APA, and Chicago. Be sure to check with your professor to see which style they prefer before you start writing your essay.
When citing in MLA format, you’ll need to use in-text citations. These are brief citations included in the body of your essay whenever you use a source. The full citation for each source is listed in the Works Cited section at the end of your paper.
When citing in APA format, you’ll need to use in-text citations and a reference list. The in-text citations are brief citations included in the body of your essay whenever you use a source. The reference list is a list of all the sources that you used – usually included at the end of your paper.
When citing in Chicago style, you’ll need to use footnotes or endnotes. These are brief citations at the bottom of each page (footnotes) or the end of your paper (endnotes).
75 Critical Thinking Essay Topics
Any of these 75 critical thinking essay topics will help students struggling to find an arguable and interesting topic.
Critical Thinking Essay Topics About Social Issues
- Is democracy the best form of government?
- Is capitalism good or bad?
- Is socialism a viable alternative to capitalism?
- Does religion do more harm than good?
- Should creationism be taught in schools?
- Is the death penalty ethical?
- Are zoos cruel?
- Is it ethical to eat meat?
- Is climate change real?
- Who is responsible for climate change?
- Should wealthy nations do more to help developing nations?
- Is immigration a good or bad thing?
- What are the root causes of terrorism?
- Is terrorism ever justified?
- Are gun laws too strict or not strict enough?
- Is healthcare a human right?
- Should abortion be legal?
- What are the ethical implications of stem cell research?
- What should be done about the global water crisis?
- How can we best help refugees?
Critical Thinking Essay Topics About General Issues
- Should people be judged by their looks?
- Is it better to be single or in a relationship?
- Are men and women equal?
- Should parents be held responsible for their children’s actions?
- Is it better to grow up with siblings or as an only child?
- Should the drinking age be lowered?
- Is drug legalization a good or bad idea?
- What are the best ways to deal with stress?
- How can we prevent bullying?
- Are social media and technology making us more or less connected?
- Should parents monitor their children’s internet use?
- Should schools ban cell phones?
- How can we reduce the number of teenage pregnancies?
- What is the best way to deal with teenage rebellion?
- Is homeschooling a good or bad idea?
- Should all students be required to learn a foreign language?
- Should schools start later in the morning?
- Are there better alternatives to traditional schooling?
- Is college tuition too high?
- Should student loans be forgiven?
- Should colleges be free to attend?
- What are the best ways to prepare for a job interview?
- How can we better retain employees?
- What are the best ways to motivate employees?
- How can we reduce workplace stress?
- Should remote working be encouraged?
- What are the pros and cons of globalization?
- Is consumerism a good or bad thing?
- How can we reduce our reliance on fossil fuels?
Critical Thinking Essay Topics About The Environment and Conservation
- What are the best ways to reduce pollution?
- Should we be doing more to conserve water?
- How can we reduce food waste?
- Is nuclear energy a good or bad thing?
- What are the best ways to deal with climate change?
- Is overpopulation a real problem?
- What can we do to reduce our reliance on plastic?
- Should we be doing more to protect endangered species?
- How can we best preserve our natural resources?
- What is the best way to deal with hazardous waste?
- What are the best ways to reduce deforestation?
Critical Thinking Essay Topics About Technology
- Should we be doing more to regulate the internet?
- How can we best protect our privacy online?
- What are the best ways to deal with cyberbullying?
- Is social media a good or bad thing?
- Are we too reliant on technology?
- What are the best ways to deal with data breaches?
- Should we be worried about artificial intelligence?
- What are the best ways to deal with tech monopolies?
Critical Thinking Essay Topics About American Classics
- Explore the theme of capitalism in Fight Club.
- What is the significance of the title The Great Gatsby?
- Is Atticus Finch a good father?
- What is the significance of the title To Kill a Mockingbird?
- Is Holden Caulfield a sympathetic character?
- How does Steinbeck portray the American dream in The Grapes of Wrath?
- How does Fitzgerald use symbolism in The Great Gatsby?
When writing on any of these 75 critical thinking essay topics, be sure to support your position with solid reasoning, examples, and evidence.