Art of Questioningposted by Anna Mar, May 17, 2013
Critical questioning is an art.
It's the basis of learning. It's also the basis of leadership, decision making, negotiations and practically every other soft skill.
Critical Questioning vs. Creative Questioning
Creative questioning is a somewhat vague term. It has evolved because people feel that "critical questioning" sounds too negative.
Critical questioning is a more defined technique that has roots extending back to Socratic Questioning (a method of critical questioning developed by Socrates).
How To Use Critical QuestioningCritical questioning relies on your listening and interpersonal skills. It's pointless to question someone if you're not actively listening to them.
Critical questioning cuts quickly to the heart of ideas. It can easily be perceived as hostile. Use your social skills to soften questions. Add humor or friendly disclaimers.
Use combinations of the following techniques to critically question ideas:
- Establish Relevance
Why are we talking about this?
- Ask For Clarifications
What do you mean?
- Challenge Assumptions
What could we assume instead?
- Seek Evidence
Can you give me an example?
- Probe Alternatives
What about ...?
- Investigate Perspectives
How would .... feel about this?
Is there another way to look at this?
- Examine Implications & Consequences
What are you implying?
What does this mean to ....?
What's the global impact?
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