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He established the method of questioning beliefs, closely inspecting assumptions and relying on evidence and sound rationale.
His method of questioning is now known as "Socratic questioning" and is the best known critical thinking teaching strategy.
In his mode of questioning, Socrates highlighted the need for thinking for clarity and logical consistency.
Traditionally, critical thinking has been variously defined as follows: Contemporary critical thinking scholars have expanded these traditional definitions to include qualities, concepts, and processes such as creativity, imagination, discovery, reflection, empathy, connecting knowing, feminist theory, subjectivity, ambiguity, and inconclusiveness.
Some definitions of critical thinking exclude these subjective practices.
Socrates established the fact that one cannot depend upon those in "authority" to have sound knowledge and insight.
He demonstrated that persons may have power and high position and yet be deeply confused and irrational.
He established the importance of asking deep questions that probe profoundly into thinking before we accept ideas as worthy of belief.
He established the importance of seeking evidence, closely examining reasoning and assumptions, analyzing basic concepts, and tracing out implications not only of what is said but of what is done as well.
It presupposes assent to rigorous standards of excellence and mindful command of their use.
It entails effective communication and problem-solving abilities as well as a commitment to overcome native egocentrism The earliest documentation of critical thinking are the teachings of Socrates recorded by Plato.