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Critical Thinking:
An Online Course

What you'll learn

What you'll learn

This course equips students with the skills and habits of critical thinking. It teaches practical techniques for confident, discerning critical engagement with sources, evidence, arguments and reasoning. 

The course also:

  • Builds key reasoning, argument and analysis skills

  • Boosts writing, essay and exam results

  • Improves work, planning and research habits

  • Provides explicit training in a key skill sought by graduate recruiters

  • Teaches digital and information literacy.

Students gain skills and habits for successful, independent study and future employment.

Universities get interactive flexible content they can deliver as a course or embed into current teaching.

 Register your interest to find out more and get exclusive access to Module 1.

6 - 8 hours to learn
Available for subscription
Tom Chatfield

On application

How to access
Course available for institutional subscription only

User toolkit
Institutions that have subscribed to the course can access our handy user toolkit of resources here.

Course modules

Course modules

students will learn six big lessons

  1. How to think about evidence

  2. How to argue

  3. How to evaluate explanations and reasoning

  4. How to think carefully and deliberately

  5. How to structure writing and reading

  6. How to manage time and attention



What our course testers say

“I like that it is interactive and needs the student to actually think whilst using the material.”

- Sarah Robson, Senior Lecturer in HRM and Leadership, Sunderland University

“Its paced well and is easy to engage with. Visuals are high quality and engaging.”

- Russell Delderfield, Senior Skills Advisor, University of Bradford

“A good match to the book – you could take the course then follow up with relevant chapters and exercises from the book. I love the module summary handout at the end. Students love ‘getting something’.”

- Hazel Brown, Head of Department of Sport, Exercise and Health, Winchester University

“I really like the questions throughout as they get the student to build up their critical thinking and realise they are already doing it.”

- Kizzy Beaumont, Learning Developer, Keele University





Flexible format


The course can be delivered as full modules and individual topics

Strikingly visual

It captures students’ attention and
keeps them engaged

Quizzes and interactions


Quizzes, videos and reflective points put core skills into immediate practice



Frequently Asked Questions

What level and discipline is the course for?

The course is suitable for FE (including Access to HE) and HE students, particularly those with little or no prior experience of critical thinking. It is cross-disciplinary so can be used by any student, whatever they’re studying.

Does it come with any course handouts?

Many modules include downloadable ‘Handy Reminders’ and ‘end of topic’ lists outlining learning outcomes. Students can keep these to use for revision and as refresher material after they’ve completed the course.

How is the course accessed?

The course is available on an institution-wide subscription basis. The files are embedded into your VLE/LMS using SCORM files, so is hosted completely separately by you in your institution’s own environment. Students can be given access via a link or pathway in your VLE/LMS.

I’m not based at a university or organisation - can I access the course?

Unfortunately the course is only available for institutions to subscribe to, not individuals.

Can I view more than the sample module?

Yes! If you would like to sign up for a complimentary 30 day trial of the full course, please sign up here.
If you’re interested in subscribing and would like to find out more, please contact your local SAGE Representative.



Dr. Tom Chatfield is an author, tech philosopher and broadcaster. His books explore the skills required to thrive in a digital age, including Critical Thinking (SAGE) and Live This Book! (Penguin). Tom is interested in improving our understanding of digital technology and its uses in policy, education, and engagement. He is currently technology and media advisor at Agathos LLP, non-executive director at the Authors’ Licensing and Collecting Society, a faculty member at London’s School of Life, a Master’s committee member at the Economics Research Council, and a senior expert at the Global Governance Institute. Tom speaks and broadcasts around the world on technology, the arts, and media. Appearances include TED Global, authors@Google, Science Foo Camp and the Houses of Parliament. He also guest lectures at universities in the UK and Europe.