Your Deceptive Mind: A Scientific Guide to Critical Thinking Skills by Professor Steven Novella

I believe that critical thinking is going to be the most important skill my son will ever have. The ability to think for himself and make good decisions quickly based upon what he knows while being able to change his decisions based upon new information when it is available.

Your Deceptive Mind is a part of The Great Courses: Professional series and is made up of 24 lectures given by Professor Steven Novella.

There are some nuggets of wisdom in these lectures, but I do not feel like there were any breakthrough ideas or innovations. Just a lot of reasons why most people have such a hard time thinking critically and being rational in their decision-making.

The contents are interesting and the professor is a very good speaker, but I do not feel like my ability to think critically has been much improved by listening to these lectures.

From the publisher:

No skill is more important in today’s world than being able to think about, understand, and act on information in an effective and responsible way. What’s more, at no point in human history have we had access to so much information, with such relative ease, as we do in the 21st century. But because misinformation out there has increased as well, critical thinking is more important than ever.

These 24 rewarding lectures equip you with the knowledge and techniques you need to become a savvier, sharper critical thinker in your professional and personal life. By immersing yourself in the science of cognitive biases and critical thinking, and by learning how to think about thinking (a practice known as metacognition), you’ll gain concrete lessons for doing so more critically, more intelligently, and more successfully.

The key to successful critical thinking lies in understanding the neuroscience behind how our thinking works – and goes wrong; avoiding common pitfalls and errors in thinking, such as logical fallacies and biases; and knowing how to distinguish good science from pseudoscience. Professor Novella tackles these issues and more, exploring how the (often unfamiliar) ways in which our brains are hardwired can distract and prevent us from getting to the truth of a particular matter.

Along the way, he provides you with a critical toolbox that you can use to better assess the quality of information. Even though the world is becoming more and more saturated information, you can take the initiative and become better prepared to make sense of it all with this intriguing course.

Disclaimer: Please note that this recording may include references to supplemental texts or print references that are not essential to the program and not supplied with your purchase.

©2012 The Teaching Company, LLC (P)2012 The Great Courses

I rate this audiobook a 6 out of 10 and only recommend it to those who are looking for a scientific take on the mistakes people make when making decisions.

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