Training for critical thinking and professional judgment is a core objective for many Associate Degree degree or certificate health sciences programs.
- Student retention and degree completion has been demonstrated to be closely linked with the critical thinking skills needed to develop strength in clinical reasoning and the ability to think in mathematical contexts. Strength in critical thinking is also predictive of success at achieving certification.
Graduating successful critical thinkers starts with admitting exceptional candidates and reducing the consequences of candidates who are at risk for clinical errors.
- Frequently directors of health science aide level programs must train students for jobs that have constraints on practice behaviors that involve decision-making. To avoid putting patients and the agency at risks, students need to develop the reasoning skills and mindset to identify and appropriately refer issues worthy of special attention to the physician and other care team members.
Associate degree and other and other certificate health care programs increasingly rely on the Health Science Reasoning Test – Associate Degree (HSRT-AD) which has been calibrated to measure the critical thinking and quantitative reasoning skills required for success at this level.
- The HSRT-AD provides objective measures of five core components of critical thinking skills (analysis, evaluation, inference, deduction and induction) as well as a measurement of numeracy. The Overall score describes strength in using reasoning to form reflective judgements about what to believe or what to do.
- Many programs use the California Critical Thinking Disposition (CCTDI) to measure strengths in seven mindset attributes characteristic of strong clinical thinkers such as (openmindedness, inquisitiveness, maturity of judgment, analyticity, systematicity, confidence in reasoning and being truthseeking)
The individual and group data gathered with the HSRT-AD is being used to support admissions, outcomes assessment, program evaluation, applicant advising, accreditation, and curricular research. As a diagnostic, HSRT-AD provides an indicator of whether a given student will be able to identify and respect the boundaries of their decision responsibility.
For over 25 years Insight Assessment has been providing cost-effective critical thinking assessment tests in the field of health services. The Health Services Reasoning Test (HSRT)is designed to accurately measure high-stakes reasoning, decision making, and numeracy skills needed by future health care practitioners.