The American Psychological Association (APA, 2016) recognizes the crucial role that education plays in
preparing students for success in the 21st century. In their publication, “Learning to Think Critically in the
K-12 Years,” the APA asserts that education in the K-12 years should prioritize the development of critical
thinking skills and encourage students to engage in problem-solving and decision-making. 

These skills are essential for success in an ever-changing and complex world, where individuals must be able to analyze information, make informed decisions, and solve problems effectively.
The APA highlights that critical thinking skills should be integrated into all areas of the curriculum, including language arts, mathematics, science, social studies, and the arts. 

Teachers can encourage
critical thinking by providing opportunities for students to engage in hands-on learning experiences, ask questions, and collaborate with their peers. Additionally, the APA stresses the importance of
incorporating technology into the K-12 curriculum to enhance students’ critical thinking skills and
prepare them for a rapidly changing technological landscape.
In conclusion, the APA (2016) asserts that cultivating critical thinking skills and encouraging
problem-solving and decision-making in the K-12 years are essential for preparing students for success in the 21st century.


  • American Psychological Association. (2016). Learning to think critically in the K-12
    years. Retrieved from