Critical Thinking

Critical Thinking Resources

These teaching techniques will help you heighten your students' critical thinking abilities.

Why is this important?

Students should learn to recognize uncertainties/ambiguities/risks/opportunities in decision making that do not always provide an absolute or the one “correct” business/accounting solution. These resources focus on the foundational elements of teaching and learning critical thinking skills to aid in student cognitive abilities development through a scaffold approach.


As students’ progress through their academic program, the rigor employed in course exercises, cases and projects should increase and acquisition of ability should thereby evolve as well.


The emphasis on critical thinking in coursework should lend to altering and enhancing student expectations about accounting as a major and profession. Additionally, heightening this key competency will aid students in gaining comfort and confidence to pursue a career in the thrillingly complex and multi-faceted world of accounting.

Teaching Guides

NEW: FACULTY GUIDE - How to help students become better critical thinkers
Get recommendations for designing your accounting course to accelerate critical thinking development.

Critical Thinking Reference Flyer
See an illustration of the critical thinking model.

Journal of Accountancy articles

How to help students who are ‘Perpetual Analyzers’
Identifying the students who logically and qualitatively evaluate the evidence and assumptions that underpin different perspectives.

How to identify your students’ stage of cognitive development
Determine which stage of cognitive development your students have reached, and presents observations and suggestions for teaching critical thinking.

Guide students toward better critical thinking
Learn about the stages of critical thinking to help accounting students develop skills needed for professional success.

How to help students who are 'Confused Fact-Finders'
Because Confused Fact-Finders believe that all problems can be solved correctly, they are highly resistant to the idea that they must reach their own conclusions.

A problem-based learning project for accounting classes
Students work in groups to refine a driving question.

Practical ways to develop students' critical thinking skills
Try these tips and exercises to improve your students' analytical abilities.