Thinking Skills & General Ability

Thinking skills is defined as having two sets of assessable skills: problem solving and critical thinking. Problem Solving requires reasoning using numerical skills, whilst Critical Thinking requires reasoning using everyday written language.

CS Education further breaks this down into different types of questions so that they are easier to understand. There are many categories of questions that can be included in Thinking Skills. Some examples are given below.


General Ability is a subject that has always been taught at CS Education as it helps students develop new and unconventional approaches for solving problems, along with exposing them to new patterns that will further their brain development. The core skills required to solve these questions are what we call ‘Thinking Skills.’ Unlike other core subjects such as Maths and English, where there is a defined curriculum and set methodology for solving problems, General Ability does not have a set curriculum that is studied in school, so its elements remain a mystery to many.

  • Finding the Main Conclusion: Students will be required to recognise the core point of a stimulus provided. They will be required to link different ideas into one singular coherent idea which represents the main aim of the passage.
  • Applying Principles: Students will be required to read and recognise certain principles provided in a stimulus, extending these to certain scenarios and situations.
  • Identifying Inferences and Assumptions: Students will be required to detect instances of inferred statements as well as detect when an assumption has been made in reasoning. They will also be required to discern whether these inferences and assumptions made are correctly made.
  • Detecting Reasoning Errors: Students will be required to question reasoning and find flaws in how an argument is constructed.
  • Matching Arguments: Students will be required to find the main argument of a stimulus or passage and match statements that support or go against the argument, whilst maintaining its relevance to the information.
  • Relevant Selection: Students will be required to select relevant and important information from a source provided via stimulus, utilising this information to efficiently arrive at a solution.
  • Finding Procedures: Students will be required to arrive at their solution from a stimulus by applying numerical skills and concepts to form a pathway to achieving the answer. Their creative interpretations of the skills required and application of such will be examined.
  • Identifying Similarities and Patterns: Students will be required to discern between stimuli, comparing and contrasting differences and similarities which can lead them to arrive at the answer to the problem.
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