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Being able to recognize and question assumptions is key to becoming a more active and critical thinker. Virtually everything we hear and read rests on a host of assumptions, most of them hidden. Once you can identify them, you are in a good position to determine whether or not they are valid.
“Thinking outside the box” is now a cliche, but it comes from the 9 dot puzzle that you may have encountered.
Whether or not you have seen the puzzle before, you probably made a number of assumptions about how to solve it. These unquestioned assumptions probably made it hard or even impossible to solve the problem. Only when you recognize and challenge these assumptions can you begin to solve the puzzle.
Now that you can identify assumptions, you can start challenging them. This is relatively easy to do when you disagree with the conclusions, but harder to do when you agree.
1. Pick a blog post, article, or video from a news or opinion source you read or watch regularly.
2. Identify hidden assumptions.
3. Then ask: Is this actually true? How do I know? How can I find out?
4. Annotate the document by identifying the assumptions and then challenging them.
In your submission include a link or copy of the article or video you chose. In a separate document or the text box provided, highlight the hidden assumptions and show how you validated or challenged them.
Recommended length of post: 150-200 words.