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BLOG Archive - 6 / 2015

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ICOT BIlbao Conference Center

The ICOT 2015 International Conference on Thinking is underway in Bilbao, Spain. Business and education leaders from 43 countries have convened to discuss effective strategies for training reasoning skills and the mindset attributes conducive to problem solving and decision making.  It's a steamy, sluggish 34 degrees centigrade today in Bilbao, but in the conference center the atmosphere is energetic as experts exchange useful strategies for designing training programs for working professionals and best practices for classroom teaching of thinking.

ICOT Insight Assessment booth

It's clear that those who have come to ICOT share a passion for critical thinking. Insight Assessment brings a focus on the importance of assessing reasoning skills in individuals and groups to document training success and to identify areas where more training is needed. The conference continues until Friday. ICOT members come together once every two years. The rumor is that the next conference will be in Miami ,Florida.

            Report from the Insight Assessment team at ICOT 2015 in Bilbao Spain

ICOT 2015

ICOT 2015 international Conference on Thinking has opened in Bilbao, Spain! Insight Assessment salutes the over 2000 conference attendees who are dedicating four days to focus on the global importance of developing critical thinking in business, education, sports and the arts.  We’re excited to be able to discuss measuring and training good thinking with this enthusiastic group.

 If you’re attending the conference, stop by our booth. We invite you to attend these presentations by Insight Assessment senior researcher Dr. Peter Facione:


1ST JULY: The Educational Power of Measuring Critical Thinking. (available by conference videostream)  Dr. Facione will discuss effective ways of teaching for thinking at all educational levels in all disciplines. He will examine group datasets to demonstrate how the measurement of critical thinking can empower educators and enable more effective student learning.
2ND JULY: Training and Measuring Leadership Decision Making.  Dr. Facione will talk about the importance of critical thought in companies. Leaders with strong thinking skills take advantage of opportunities through effective decision-making, discover opportunities where others can't, encourage collaborative learning and lead the team efficiently.  He will use data gathered by the INSIGHT series of test instruments to discuss practical insights about the potential effectiveness or ineffectiveness of various approaches to training employee thinking at all levels of the business or professional organizations.
 2ND JULY: Round Table on the topic of “Skills for Successful Leadership in Business in which Dr. Facione will link leadership decision making directly to the educational learning outcomes known as critical thinking.

If you’re not able to attend the conference, check out the ICOT website, http://www.icot2015.com for instructions on video-streaming presentations and for free access to the ICOT papers after the conference. Watch for a guest post from our conference participants at the close of the conference.

To find out more about Insight Assessment’s commitment to the International Measurement of Critical Thinking .

ICOT 2015 “The most important conference on thinking in the world”

Group of businesss people working together as a team

The Work Ethics Most Valued by Leaders

The modern definition of what constitutes a good work ethic often varies.  Different businesses have different expectations. 

In Healthcare, for example, following the rules is paramount.  To deviate may lead to injury or death.  In Advertising, there is a greater emphasis on creativity.  Breaking the rules can result in innovative campaigns that boost the client’s bottom line.  The beliefs and behaviors that define work ethic must closely align with your customer needs.   The customer, in this instance, is always right.

There are common traits, however, which characterize an effective executive, manager or worker, regardless of industry sector.  Basically, how someone acts ethically, in life, translates directly into the workplace.  Employees with outstanding work ethics display the following.

1.  Desire to think

Not only has the ability to think critically, but to apply itSees the value of thinking things through before making decisions and when resolving problems.

2.  Commitment

Is loyally oriented to the job, company goals and mission.

3.  Honesty

Respects other people's property, follows rules, keeps promises, and tells the truth. 

4.  Regard for safety

Values workplace safety rules and precautions for personal and co-worker safety. Avoids unnecessary risks.

5.  Professionalism

Takes an appropriate approach to social interactions at work. Maintains focus on work responsibilities.

6.  Motivated

Eagerly focuses energy on accomplishing tasks, also referred to as demonstrating ownership. Takes pride in work.

7.  Tolerance

Respects diversity in the workplace, including showing due respect for different perspectives, opinions and suggestions. 

8.  Flexibility

Is resilient. Able to welcome and adapt to changing workplace situations and the application of new or different skills.

9.  Desire to learn

Willing to learn new processes, systems and procedures in light of changing responsibilities.

10.  Dependability

Motivated to complete assigned tasks well, taking pride in the accomplishment of work assignments.

Is a strong work ethic important?

Every business needs people who get things done without intense supervision. Your business success is powered by staff who efficiently interact with clients. They are able to represent your policies, procedures and fuel your corporate growth.  will help you discover the people who have the work ethic and problem solving skills needed for customer satisfaction and project success.

‘NSIGHT Business Staff’ words in blue and red - name of a product that assesses workplace problem-solving skills and work ethic

Yes? Then, assess the work ethic of your employees.

INSIGHT Business Staff objectively assesses and reports an individual’s strengths and weaknesses on these 10 mindset attributes plus 5 core thinking skills. Everyday, relevant, scenarios in the assessment will challenge a staff member to anticipate the needs of customers.  They will demonstrate their abilities through interpreting and understanding analytical information that contributes to team problem solving.  Comprehensive reports provide valuable insights for making individual hiring and promotion decisions. Further, these reports identify areas for improvement, training and, overall, building strong, productive teams.  Assessments, geared for middle level mangers and your executive leadership, are also available.

Make sure you can rely on your people to get things done well.   Contact us today.

Job candidates sitting in line for an interview

How do you assess second career applicants? Much of the available workforce is re-entry from a previous skill set. You can build your confidence doing interviews trying to connect your needs with their abilities, but ultimately you are determining whether to bring them on subjectively.

INSIGHT Business Professional provides metrics for 14 objective quantitative attributes and skills that will give you a better picture on how new candidate strengths will port. It will help you evaluate their ability to learn and think in ways that are important to you.  INSIGHT Business Professional assesses professional mindset and problem solving skills using complex, multi-layer situations; in order to answer the questions, individuals must employ their reasoning skills to make decisions about the next steps to resolve the dilemma.  Based on responses, we identify how decisions were made and measure the application of reasoning skills.

Resumes and credentials provide selfie snapshots of the past; INSIGHT Business Professional provides reliable insights into how applicants will apply current skills and experience to new job requirements. That’s why increasing numbers of employers are using thinking skills as a framework for assessing competencies and potential.  

Today many individuals are re-entering the job market looking for new opportunities; from veterans and retirees with non-traditional paths to laid off workers, their resumes are filling your inbox. Many wouldn’t be able to make the transition to your job expectations. But some of those candidates have strong problem solving skills and the drive to excel and accomplish goals . INSIGHT gives you the confidence to identify the future employees who are eager to learn new skills and to succeed.

Call us. Hire with confidence.

Integrity is doing the right thing, even when no one is watching -- CS Lewis

The primary cause of employee failure is a lack of personal integrity. Some individuals make a deliberate decision to take advantage of an opportunity, to do—and take—what they want.  They consciously evaluate the risks, anticipate the gains and then prioritize their self-interest over the consequences to others.  Their compromised ethical standards leave clients, customers, managers and entire companies bearing the cost in lost trust, lost revenues, tarnished reputations and lost company credibility. Other employees act without thinking decisions through, resulting in errors. Insight Assessment clients use INSIGHT Business Professional to identify risks of deliberate misconduct as well as the risks of poor decision making skills.

INSIGHT Business Professional  objectively and reliably measures 10 professional mindsets including honesty, integrity, commitment, professionalism and motivation. Comprehensive individual reports document strengths and weaknesses in the essential cognitive thinking skills and mindset attributes that are the basis of good decision making.

Warren Buffet, CEO, Berkshire Hathaway, provided excellent advice:  "In looking for people to hire, you look for three qualities: integrity, intelligence, and energy. And if they don't have the first, the other two will kill you." 

Contact us. You need to be able to trust your employees. INSIGHT delivers the data you need to hire strong thinkers who can demonstrate integrity and a drive for success.


Each year new doctoral students begin dissertation studies using Insight Assessment instruments to measure critical thinking skills and mindset. This academic year about 40 dissertation students have collected data here in the US and internationally. Study samples included students and trainees in:

  • K-12 schools (TER, CM3, CCTST, M-25),
  • Business education programs (BCTST),
  • Exercise science programs (CCTST, HSRT),
  • Military training sites (MDCTI),
  • Health care training and delivery sites (HSRT, CCTDI), and
  • STEM education programs (CCTST, CCTDI)

Congratulations to all the new PhD graduates this Spring. We welcome you to the community of scholars studying reasoning skills and mindset, and stand ready to provide valid and reliable measures for your future studies. We hope that your future research will help improve human decision-making, and lead to innovative problem-solving and new insight development.

ICOT 2015

The seventeenth  ICOT 2015 International Conference on Thinking  will focus on integrating scientific findings and best practices in business, education, art and sport. With more than 1600 participants already registered for this Bilbao, Spain conference, the 2015 ICOT is reporting record interest and attendance. The program includes four days (23 June-3 July) of conferences, workshops, lectures, panels, best practices, symposia, think tanks, and round tables lead by over 50 international experts. Presentations will focus on thinking in four fields: Business, Education, the Arts and Sports.

Insight Assessment senior researcher, Dr Peter Facione, has been invited to make two presentations: The Educational Power of Measuring Critical Thinking and Training and Measuring Leadership Decision Making. He will also participate in a round table on the topic of “Skills for Successful Leadership in Business” in which he will link leadership decision making directly to the educational learning outcomes known as critical thinking.

Insight Assessment is excited to participate in this global discussion of the importance of good thinking. Our thinking assessments are used in English and in translations throughout the world ; our clients value our ability to provide language flexibility in the assessment instruments and in the test taker interface (TTI).  Stay tuned for more information about the proposed live feed of conference presentations. We also plan to post portions of Dr. Facione’s presentations after the conference. If you’re attending the conference, be sure to stop by our booth.

Good thinking is in demand. Download Critical Thinking Insight from your app store today:

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