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Case Studies: ThinkersCaroline A. Caudill
IS 200-205 University of Kentucky
Case Studies: ThinkersCase studies of thinkers can reveal plenty of information about a single person. In this case study, I chose to evaluate myself, Christa Caudill APRN, Morgan McIntyre, and Tracie Caudill. As stated on Our Concept and Definition of Critical Thinking, a critical thinker “is that mode of thinking — about any subject, content, or problem — in which the thinker improves the quality of his or her thinking by skillfully analyzing, assessing, and reconstructing it.” This simply means that a critical thinker makes reasoned judgments that are always well thought out. Being a critical thinker means one does not simply accept all arguments, rather having a more questionable approach to the arguments. A creative thinker, on the other hand, is a bit more complex according to Creative Approaches to Problem Solving, creative thinking “(creativity) becomes a problem when it inhibits or interferes with their desire or ability to make sense of their own creativity and how they might use it.” Being a creative thinker is a way of looking at problems and solutions from a new fresher perspective. A creative thinker must dig deeper to generate different ideas/approaches to certain solutions. It is possible for an individual to be both a critical and creative thinker. In this case study, I have analyzed each induvial and classified them as either a critical thinker, creative thinker, and/or both.
Me: Caroline Caudill
I am Caroline Caudill, a freshman at the University of Kentucky. My major is pre-Communication Sciences and Disorders. I aspire to become a Speech Language Pathologist upon graduation from undergrad, as well as graduate school. I am well-rounded and an overall very organized individual. I would consider myself to be both a creative thinker and a critical thinker. I am very creative and always try to be original by thinking ‘out of the box’. Although I consider myself both critical and creative, I would say that I am more so a critical thinker when it comes to the two. The reason I believe that is actually a conclusion I came to after reading Our Concept and Definition of Critical Thinking. In this reading, I found that when it comes to critical thinking, you rely solely on yourself. Self-discipline and being self- guided are two main traits that critical thinkers have and qualities that I possess. While reading, the quote that really hit home for me was, “People who think critically consistently attempt to live rationally, reasonably, empathically (Elder 2007).” I am a strong believer in the saying, ‘everything happens for a reason’, especially whenever it comes to difficult situations. I know that there’s a reason for everything and it’s all a part of a “bigger plan”. Believing so strongly in that saying has helped me to become a very rational individual, as well as curious as to why? I am constantly wanting to know the reason behind everything. Although creative, thorough, and organized I consider myself overall, a critical thinker with just a dash of creativity.
Christa Caudill, APRN
Christa Caudill, APRN is a licensed Nurse Practitioner in my hometown of Owingsville Kentucky. I have known Christa my entire life, seeing that she is both my aunt and family doctor. She received her Bachelor of Science Degree in Nursing and her Master of Science Degree in Nursing, both, from Eastern Kentucky University. All of these accomplishments didn’t come easy though. I have seen Christa work extremely hard to get to where she is today. I enjoy spending time with my aunt Christa, I would even say that I look up to her. On a personal level, she is always there to help me out on assignments, or whenever I have a question about her field of medicine. Throughout observation both in the medical field as a doctor, and on a personal level, I would consider Christa a critical thinker. She always takes a more logical approach with everything that she does, being a doctor, it comes naturally to her. From the course reading, Our Concept and Definition of Critical Thinking, I know that the critical thinker has many different distinct characteristics. One characteristic that Christa holds, making her a critical thinker would be that she thinks open-mindedly within alternative systems of thought, recognizing and assessing, as needs be, their assumptions, implications, and practical consequences (Elder 2007). Christa carefully analyzes each situation she encounters, whether it be personal, but definitely at work when she is assessing patients. As a doctor, it is important to have the characteristics of and be a critical thinker. Seeming that a simple mistake could drastically impact a patient.
Morgan McIntyre – CSD Graduate Student
Morgan McIntyre is a recent graduate of Western Kentucky University and a first-year Speech Language Pathologist graduate student also at Western Kentucky University. She is a close family friend that I have known for almost two years now and I think very highly of her. My major is pre-communication sciences and disorders – on the SLP track. I am constantly turning to Morgan for advice, help with assignments, or just reassurance that I am on the correct path of becoming a Speech Language Pathologist. Morgan has just started her clinical rotations as a grad student at WKU. I look up to Morgan the most in my life, as a person as well as a student. She is always offering me help with anything, as well as words of encouragement. Watching her accomplish so much at such a young age is amazing to me, and very inspiring. I consider Morgan to be both a critical thinker as well as a creative thinker. Being both a creative and critical thinker, in my opinion, is very important in the career field of speech-language pathology. The critical thinker side is important during the clinical process of SLP when it comes to treating and assessing patients. With the creative thinking approach, that’s what would make the career fun. Recently, Morgan has shown me some activities she has created to help the children with their speech impairment. One activity was a folder of different shapes, letters, and objects where the children would speak and sort each of the objects. Creating an activity such as this required both critical and creative thinking. As stated in, Creative Approaches to Problem Solving, we associate creative thinkers with the words “usefulness, value, and purposeful”. Morgan strives to use her creative side while valuing the work she does daily and most definitely serves a purpose.
Tracie Caudill – Elementary Education
Tracie Caudill is a kindergarten teacher in my hometown at Owingsville Elementary School (OES) – she has been teaching for seventeen years now. Not only is Tracie a kindergarten teacher, she has been a second grade, first grade, and activity teacher as well as being my mother. Knowing her my entire life, she has obviously been a very influential person in my life, but she is one of the main reasons I chose my major and aspire to be a speech-language pathologist. My senior year of high school, Tracie encouraged me to co-op (job shadow) at OES. It was there I found the SLP in the school and absolutely fell in love. My mother is a big inspiration to me, watching her help shape the minds of each student that walks through her doors is why I strive to help people every day, and eventually in my career. Tracie is, without a doubt, a creative thinker, she almost has to be whenever it comes to being around thirty kindergarten students all day every day. Being a creative thinker, you possess many qualities, such as originality, energetic, thorough, and ethical. My mother has all of these traits and more. Constantly on her toes with her daily life, never knowing what a student will say or do, she has to be creative. Especially whenever it comes to teaching styles, because no two students learn the same. Creativity is the process of generating unique products by transformation of existing products (p. 06) as stated in Creative Approaches to Problem Solving. Tracie is very unique and knows how to put her own creative twist on existing ideas.
References
Benguria, K. (n.d.). Critical thinking and WISE. Retrieved September 05, 2018.

Creative Approaches to Problem Solving. (n.d.). Retrieved September 05, 2018, from Creative Approaches to Problem Solving. (n.d.). In (pp. 1-24). https://www.sagepub.com/sites/default/files/upm-binaries/32693_Chapter1.pdf
Elder, Linda. Our Concept and Definition of Critical Thinking. (2007). Retrieved from http://www.criticalthinking.org/pages/our-concept-of-critical-thinking/411